The idea of expanding my month-long shopping freezes has been on my mind lately (you can read about my January-freeze here). Not only because Summer is the time of year when I should be spending the least amount of money (#teacherproblems) but also because I want to pare down my closet even further. Ever since my Spring declutter and transitioning to a monochromatic wardrobe, I still feel like I have too much in my wardrobe. And even with only 40-50 items in my Spring/Summer wardrobe, I still find myself wearing the same handful of items over and over again (like this Eileen Fisher dress and these espadrille mules).
There are a couple babes I follow on Instagram that are participating in the Slow Fashion Summer challenge where they won’t be buying any new clothes this summer. They can shop secondhand or swap or borrow clothes, but they cannot buy anything that’s new. A few days ago, I found myself inspired after watching a marathon of thrift haul videos on YouTube to go visit a Good Will store. After an hour of sifting through clothes and trying on a few pair of jeans, my resolve to not shop got stronger. As I was swiping through so many discarded Forever 21, Target-brand, H&M, and other fast fashion clothes, I was reminded of how much I used to contribute to these racks with my fast-fashion addiction. I also realized that I didn’t even really need anything. Everything that I needed (and more than what I needed) was sitting at home in my closet.
I walked out of Good Will empty handed but more appreciative of all the things I owned. I then knew that I wanted to impose a seasonal shopping ban. Summer isn’t even my favorite season to dress for anyway, so instead of trying to buy clothes (aka sundresses, shorts, and other summer thangs) that I think I need, I’m going to shop my own closet until Fall and also try to pare down my closet even more. In this last week, I’ve conquered my underwear & bra drawers. Soon I want to conquer my shoes and my sweaters (they’re both the hardest for me to let go of). My ultimate goal for my wardrobe item count is to be around 50 items. I think my current count is somewhere between 90 to 100 items, so it will definitely be a process, but I’m excited to get started. I don’t think I’ll ever be the minimalist who has a spreadsheet of my clothes who keeps track of wear count and is really rigid about sticking to a certain number, but I do think I’ll be very happy with less. I definitely have more than enough than my lifestyle calls for.
This is also the first summer where we have zero travel plans. Zero. Not even a trip to the desert. No plans at all in the horizon (even the in the horizon beyond this summer). At first, I felt sad and sorry for myself. I even began to frantically try to plan something just to have something to look forward to. But as I began to explore why I was feeling this way—everyone else is on exploring the world and I’m not; my Instagram feed will be boring; I will have nothing to share when I catch up with friends or when I go back to work in August; etc.—the more I realized just how wrong these reasons were to travel. The (not so pretty) truth is that travel just isn’t a priority for us right now. Not because we don’t like it, but because it’s just not the right time. With Brandon starting grad school in the Fall and us trying to survive on my income and what’s left of his savings, it’s just not the right time. Brandon also reminded me that traveling is a luxury that not everyone can afford, and is not all that normal (can you tell he’s the realist in this relationship?).
But another honest truth is: I don’t really want to go anywhere this summer (or for a while). I want to enjoy our apartment. I want to enjoy our home. I’ve lived here for 3 years now. We’ve lived together here for the past year and a half. And for the big part of year, I don’t spend too much time in this place we call our home. It’s mostly a place for resting during months of hard work. So this summer, I am going to enjoy our furniture that we built together; guiltlessly watch our TV with the Netflix, Hulu, and Amazon prime video that we pay for; cook meals in our small kitchen; and soak in our own city. There’s no place like our luxurious-to-me 400 square foot home.
This is going to be our summer of enough. We have enough, and we are enough.
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