a secret revealed

Last time, I regaled you with the details of my version of Kendi Everyday‘s 30 for 30 Remix.  As I muddled through the experiment, I grew curious.  I know I have more clothes than I need–that’s an understatement.

 The favorite, nice-fitting shirts that survived my post-30-for-30 closet purge.

I know I devote a significant portion of my “frivolous spending” money to wearable things.  In case you’re wondering, “frivolous spending” is a real category in our budget.  It’s not the first category to receive funds when we’re allocating our income, but we try to put a little something in it each month as we save larger amounts for more important things.  It’s like a pressure-release valve.

My growing scarf collection–a favorite way to add pizzazz and warmth to outfits.

Anyway, I felt confident that, despite the fullness of my closet, what hung there did not represent a huge financial outlay.  I can’t be the only one who watches “What Not to Wear” and just about chokes at the thought of spending five grand in a few days, right?  Give me five grand and a few months and just see how much I could buy!  You have no idea.  Then again, if your wardrobe consisted of classic and compatible pieces you could remix them almost endlessly, so I guess I could understand spending five grand on top-quality basics–if someone handed me the money, that is.  If it’s my own cash, it’s going thrifting!  (Or clearance shopping.)

Cardigans in many colors allow me several options for styling the same basic shirt…all thrifted.
Camisoles are another basic I keep in plenty.  These are from Charlotte Russe & Forever 21.

Eager to unveil the financial backstory of my clothing, I decided to inventory my closet.  (I included the clothes on my back and in my laundry basket, since not everything can be hanging in the closet at the same time.)  Want to know what I discovered?

74% of my clothing is from either a thrift store or a friend/sister.  In my guesstimation that means that, per piece, I paid $8 or less for 74% of my clothes.  IfI paid a full $8 for each of those thrifted or gifted pieces (which I didn’t, but let’s just say) the total would be under $1,000.  You can be sure that the pieces making up the other 16% were bought on sale, so their price average probably comes out to be only slightly higher than those purchased at thrift or consignment stores.

My most expensive consignment store piece–which I like a lot!–a White House Black Market cardigan. I paid less than $9 for it.

I think this is good news.  What do you think?  Have you built the core of your wardrobe frugally?  Do you like versatile basics, or are attention-grabbing pieces for each season more your style?  Feel free to share any ideas you use to make your fashion buck stretch further!

P.S. Here are two shirts I got this week for free because I had a great coupon.  And the green shirt has some unraveling seams, which meant an extra % off.  I have a friend who might be able to help me fix it, but even if she can’t my feelings won’t be hurt because it didn’t cost me anything!

I can’t wait to get some leggings and throw on one of these shirts, a warm layer, a scarf, and tall boots!
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  1. That's so good! We have started thrifting more lately. But a lot of my clothes have come from Platos Closet… so consignment, not quite thrifting. But last Spring I purged my closet of things I no longer wore/liked and once the cold weather hit, I realized I have like two long sleeve shirts! Haha, oops!

  1. shopping free « wellcrafted

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