The Science Behind My Wardrobe

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How I pick clothes that are Instagram friendly and sustainable.

When I recently took to Instagram to ask what my followers would be interested in, I was really surprised that so many people were interested in the clothes that I wear. So I decided, “okay I hear you, I’ll do a few blog posts about my clothes” so here I am, doing my first blog post about clothes. Here it goes. #imafashionbloggernow

Where was I?

Before we get to where I am now with my wardrobe, we’re going to go back to late 2018. I had just moved back home from my university house and I was shocked by how many bloody clothes I had. Moreover, I was shocked by how many I didn’t wear! I knew something had to change, so I had a complete wardrobe purge. I ended up with less than half of the clothes I had before. It was crazy! It was around this time that I watched Stacey Dooley’s Fashion’s Dirty Secret, and decided that I was going to boycott the fast fashion industry as much as possible and buy from more ethical brands. This wardrobe purge left me in a torn state of mind, one the one hand I didn’t have a lot of clothing left, specifically for summer, but on the other hand I now had room for more pieces that I love and would last a lifetime.

Where am I ?

Now, let’s fast forward to where I am now; January 2019. I tried, and failed, to have a capsule wardrobe but I quickly found out that it wasn’t my thing. I adore fashion. It’s how I express myself and there’s nothing wrong with that. In fact, I love fashion even more now that I’m shopping ethically. Saying that, I’m not an over-consumer. I will only buy things that I actually need. I even have a list of items that I need to buy in my bullet journal, which somehow stops me from impulse buying. I have no idea how, but for some reason just having a list of clothes I need stops me from scrolling through aimlessly on shopping sites.

When it comes to to buying clothes, it’s, strangely, a really thought out process for me. It’s a lot more that just finding something that I like online and adding it to my cart. It might sound shallow, but when I’m buying something it will HAVE to look good on Instagram, because that’s mainly where my clothes get shown. When I’m not taking a photo for Instagram, I’m pretty much in my PJ’s or in my lounge wear (that’s the fun of being self employed!) Especially now in the winter when it’s cold, I’m pretty much in my dressing gown 24/7. Of course, I have to love what I’m buying and want to wear it outside of taking photos, but an item of clothing looking good on Instagram is one of my main priorities.

So, what do I actually look for when I’m buying clothes?

Well, like most people, I have a specific colour palette that I like to wear. If you look at the inside of my wardrobe, you’ll see a lot of blacks, whites, reds, greens and browns. Basically, Earthy colours. Now, this is where the science behind it comes in. Neutral colours like whites and blacks work well when you don’t want the clothing to be the centre of attention in the photo, whereas bold colours like red work well when you want to stand out. If you scroll through my Instagram, you’ll notice that I only really wear block colours. In my opinion, wearing block colours makes you become part of the photo. Prints can often distract from the photo unless you want the clothing to be one of the focal points. So whenever you see me wearing a print, it’s done intentionally.  

Ethical fashion has also recently become really important to me. However, this also meant snubbing some of my favourite high street names. Of course, I didn’t get rid of the clothes from those places just because they didn’t fit with my values anymore. The majority of my wardrobe is still made of up of clothes I bought from fast fashion stores, and I plan on keeping them until they’re worn out. The only difference now is that I won’t be buying from fast fashion again unless I have to and I will be putting my money into small businesses that produce ethically made clothes. Ethical brands tend to be more pricey, but I don’t mind that as it encourages me to consume less, and I know that I’m being kinder to the planet and the people who make my clothes are getting a fair wage.

Of course, I’m not a saint and there is an exception to the snubbing fast fashion rule. If I need something very specific for a photo (and i’m talking ‘I need a mesh, see through dress in pink specifically) then I will go to fast fashion. I will try second hand first, but if that fails then often I have no choice. The same goes for jeans. I don’t have the budget to shop ethically for them as they’re quite expensive, so I either go fast fashion or second hand. You have to live a lifestyle that works for you, and completely giving up fast fashion doesn’t always work for me. But 95% of the time, shopping ethically and slowly does work for me, and that’s a heck of a lot more than I was doing six months ago.

Where Do I Actually Buy My Clothes From?

As it stands now, the majority of my wardrobe is from Pull&Bear or Zara as these are the clothes I had left after I decided to purge my wardrobe. Of course, they are fast fashion brands but I promise the clothes are loved and they are all worn regularly! I haven’t bought anything directly from their site in a long time, but I have bought second hand from DePop. As I’ve said in this article, I’m now buying from ethical brands when I need clothes and some of my favourites are Lucy and Yak, MuthaHood (I have three of her t-shirts and they are the comfiest t-shirts I own!), Olive Clothing, Son de Flor, and LinenFox (you will be seeing A LOT of them in summer!)

You may think my way of shopping is really shallow, and you may roll your eyes at the fact that I shop with Instagram in mind, but that’s how my life is and I’m pretty darn happy with it! I put a lot of time into thinking about what clothes I wear, and I think that’s partly why my photos turn out so well. I fell into the trap of feeling guilty for loving fashion so much and loving to buy new clothes because of how much damage it does for the environment. But now that I’m buying more ethical, expensive pieces that I love and will last a lifetime, I feel much better about spending my money. I also don’t want to make anyone feel bad for not being able to shop for ethical brands. I’m lucky enough to be in the position where I can, so I feel like I should. There’s a lot of science which goes into buying my clothes, and I, personally, LOVE that!

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how I pick my Instagram wardrobe

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