growing up and paring down, part 2: less is more

Nearly two months have passed since I threw out all my clothes in a fit of minimalistic maturity. I’ve waited to hammer out a sequel to the original post because, honestly, I wanted to be sure my new attitude toward style and simplicity would stick.

It’s stuck.

I was 25 years old when I started this blog. Back then, my shopping philosophy fit somewhere between, “too much is never enough,” and “if it’s on sale, it’s mine.” My closet was a revolving door, through which countless pieces passed with little to no regard for quality, fit, or timelessness.

When I look back at my outfit posts of yore, I shudder at the realization that the majority of the pieces I thought I loved only saw the light of day once or twice. After I ran out of ways to remix something, the passion I felt in the checkout line — made extra steamy by the buzz of a good bargain high — quickly fizzled. Boredom ensued. Restocking commenced. Lather, rinse, repeat. For years.

Then, the purge to end all purges.

Initially, a 50% reduction of my wardrobe was a shock; similar, I’d imagine, to chopping your waist-length hair into a pixie. But like the liberation that comes with a drastic haircut, I felt fresh and light, free to start a new chapter without baggage from a decade of style-searching and bad habits.

In the last seven weeks, I haven’t had a single morning of anxiety-ridden closet gazing. For a girl who’s spent a large chunk of her life groaning, “I have nothing to wear,” this is a big deal. Perhaps even more shocking, I haven’t felt the urge to refill the empty hangers. When your closet is stocked — not to be confused with stuffed — with quality basics and special pieces you actually love, pulling together outfits that make you feel good is a no-brainer.

I’ll tell you more about that in part 3.

To be continued!

Popular Posts

What do you think?

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.


  1. 11.20.14

    Wonderful article! We will be linking to this particularly
    great content on our website. Keep up the good writing.

  2. 10.7.14
    Lashawn said:

    Please let me know if you’re looking for a writer for your weblog.
    You have some really great posts and I believe I would be a good asset.
    If you ever want to take some of the load off, I’d absolutely love too write some content for your
    blog in exchange for a link back to mine. Please send me an email if interested.

  3. 9.25.14
    Judson said:

    Wow that was unusual. I just wrote an very long comment but after
    I clicked submit my comment didn’t show up. Grrrr…
    well I’m not writing all that over again. Anyhow, just wanted to say wonderful blog!

  4. 9.18.14
    Quyen said:

    Thanks for your personal marvelous posting! I quite enjoyed
    reading it, you may be a great author.I will always bookmark your blog and will come back in the foreseeable future.

    I want to encourage continue your great writing, have a nice evening!

  5. 9.18.14

    Excellent site you have got here.. It’s hard to find high quality
    writing like yours these days. I seriously appreciate individuals like you!
    Take care!!

  6. 9.17.14

    You really make it seem so easy with your presentation but I to find this matter to be really one
    thing that I feel I would by no means understand.
    It sort of feels too complex and extremely broad for me.
    I am looking forward in your next submit, I will attempt to get
    the hold of it!

  7. 9.14.14

    Every weekend i used to go to see this web site, as i want enjoyment, since this this web page conations in fact fastidious funny stuff too.

  8. 9.10.14

    This sitfe really has all of the info I wanted concerning this subject
    and didn’t know who to ask.

  9. 8.27.14

    My partner and I stumbled over here coming from a different
    website and thought I might as well check things out. I like what I see so now i am following you.
    Look forward to looking into your web page for a second time.

  10. 8.24.14

    Hey There. I found your blog using msn. This is a really well
    written article. I will make sure to bookmark it and return to read more of your useful info.

    Thanks for the post. I will definitely return.

  11. 8.23.14

    I love what you guys are usually up too. This type of clever work and
    reporting! Keep up the good works guys I’ve included you guys to my
    own blogroll.

  12. 8.23.14 said:

    Fantastic post however , I was wondering if you could write a litte
    more on this topic? I’d be very grateful if yyou could elaborate a little bit more.
    Bless you!

  13. 8.17.14

    Attractive part of content. I simply stumbled upon your site and in accession capital to say that I get in fact enjoyed account your weblog posts.
    Any way I’ll be subscribing on your feeds and even I success you get entry
    to persistently fast.

  14. 8.1.14

    It’s nearly impossible to find well-informed people for this topic,
    however, you sound like you know what you’re talking about!

  15. 7.6.14

    Generally I don’t read article on blogs, however I wish to say that this write-up very pressured me to try and do it!
    Your writing taste has been surprised me. Thanks, quite nice

  16. 6.27.14

    Excellent site you have here.. It’s difficult to find excellent writing like yours nowadays.

    I really appreciate individuals like you! Take care!!

  17. 6.17.14

    You are able to see this within the popular after sun moisturizers by it listed as primary ingredient.
    This can be the primary reason why it really is popularly used being a
    soothing gel for sunburn relief. Aloe vera gel is touted being a digestive aid with
    benefits for treating heartburn, Chron’s disease,
    IBS as well as other problems.

  18. 5.29.14
    white said:

    On the positive side the purchaser could earn a
    quick and substantial profit if they can quickly sell
    their option to a third party. Today, more and more investors are looking
    toward the real estate sector. Armed with this information, my suggestion is
    to do what makes the most sense for you.

  19. 5.9.14

    For most recent information you have to go to see internet and
    on internet I found this web page as a best web page for hottest updates.

  20. 5.7.14
    Bert said:

    Unlock Her Legs has remedies and all the answers for all love afflicted questions.
    Men are provided by the Scrambler with manners of becoming strong
    and hot and in obtaining all the attention from women without being jerks.
    With The Scrambler technique unfolded in Unlock Her Legs,
    guy will naturally become competent to attract all the goodness towards them.

  21. 5.5.14

    Good day! This is my first visit to your blog! We are
    a team of volunteers and starting a new project in a community in the
    same niche. Your blog provided us useful information to work on.

    You have done a outstanding job!

  22. 5.4.14

    Thank you for sharing your thoughts. I really
    appreciate your efforts and I will be waiting for your further write ups thanks once again.

  23. 5.1.14
    Foster said:

    Usually I do not learn article on blogs, but I would like
    to say that this write-up very compelled me to take a look at and
    do so! Your writing taste has been amazed me. Thanks, quite
    nice post.

  24. 4.25.14

    Having read this I believed it was very enlightening. I appreciate you spending some time and energy to put this short article together.

    I once again find myself personally spending a significant amount
    of time both reading and leaving comments. But so what, it was still worthwhile!

  25. 4.23.14

    The only thing you have to do is to utilize this laser
    leveler tool which will project a visible laser-cross on the walls by simultaneously,
    displaying accurate horizontal and vertical lines within seconds.
    Naperville landscapers are a solution for yard landscape and maintenance.
    If you haven’t yet, open the box your motherboard came
    in and use the manual to make sure you have everything that should
    be there.

  26. 4.22.14

    But at the very beginning, it is important that
    you are consistent with your child”. What makes car seat toilet training liners so great is that you don’t have
    to worry about accidents like you would if you weren’t using
    them. Diaper Pin is a great online resource for cloth diaper reviews.

  27. 4.18.14

    Nice blog here! Also your web site loads up fast! What host are you using?
    Can I get your affiliate link to your host? I wish my web site loaded up as quickly as yours

  28. 3.17.14

    I every time emailed this weblog post page to
    all my associates, as if like to read it afterward my links
    will too.

  29. 11.26.13
    Lorena said:

    I went back and read part 1 and have to say that my hat’s off to you!
    You’re actually doing what every woman dreams of doing… I am looking forward to part 3-

  30. 11.5.13
    Lindsay said:

    I am always so inspired by your seemingly effortless sense of style, and know you’ve inspired me to do a giant closet purge. I’m on the verge of 30 and it just seems like time to rid my closet of the cheap trendies and focus on the lasting classics. You’re awesome!

    • 11.5.13

      Aww, thank you, Lindsey! This totally made my day! :-)

  31. 11.4.13
    Food, Fash, Fit said:

    I love the idea of this, but I always come up with a million reasons why I can’t do it… Maybe I’ll take the plunge soon!

  32. 11.1.13

    I’m in the process of doing this myself…thanks for the added inspiration!

  33. 11.1.13

    I love this! I’m honestly all for “less is more”, learning that back in college. For clothing that idea came into play more in the last 5 years. I have 4 feet of closet space, a dresser and a lingerie cabinet: I need to make it count. I have a list of “Foundation Pieces” that I want and I won’t buy them unless they are high-quality and timeless.

  34. 11.1.13
    Mandi said:

    Congrats on such an overhaul! I can definitely relate, especially with your haircut analogy. Perfectly put.

  35. 11.1.13

    Absolutely agree! There is nothing more liberating than finally taking the plunge and doing a thorough edit. After having my two kids, I started to reexamine my wardrobe and found that years of impulse buys and sales shopping actually meant that there was NOTHING decent in my wardrobe; certainly no decent looks, or outfits, just lots of individual items that should never have been bought! So, yeah, like you, I never had anything to wear – to quote the great Homer, “the ironing is delicious”! Now, having chucked or resold the majority of my wardrobe, and rebuilt a more coherent collection of clothes, I can finally dress myself like a grown-up in under five minutes. Ah, the wisdom of age!
    Keep up the good work :)
    Greedy Edie (

    • 11.1.13

      Wisdom of age, indeed! I love everything you said here, because you’re totally singing my song. I’m happy to hear there’s success on the other side!

  36. 11.1.13

    i know this feeling ! i can not stop buying importable clothes but i do, i can not stop buying clothes on sale but i do, and each morning and do not know what to wearing = military mission. every time i say “you should take some basics rather than that particolored top/trouser/shoes” and it results that i have nothing to wear in my closet. my closet is packed and i wear always the same outfit. when will i have the balls to throw it all ?

    • 11.1.13

      Maybe try taking it all out of your closet, packing it up, and storing it somewhere else in the house for a bit. This way, you’ll see what your wardrobe looks like pared down, and see if you like it. After a while, if you’re digging the new minimalism, donate all the clothes you packed up to a charity. If you miss your old pieces, bring them back in!

      • 11.1.13

        it is a good idea ! i have to try this. no. i have to DO this… thank you :)

  37. 11.1.13
    lacamdemy said:

    I love this !

  38. 11.1.13

    I’m due a purge! Just finished university which was obviously a period of just getting EVERYTHING if it was cheap! I’ll be purging soon and only getting clothes that I love from now on.

    • 11.1.13

      Oh man, my college days were the heyday of my bargain shopping. I don’t think I have any of the clothes I bought back then, which makes me cranky when I think about how much money I wasted that I could’ve put toward my student loans instead. Good luck on paring down!

  39. 11.1.13

    Love this! I just got a wild hair to do this myself. The feeling is so amazing!

  40. 10.31.13

    Reblogged this on fashionqueen417.

  41. 10.31.13
    megtini said:

    I just did a huge purge of my own – two garbage bags full of random prints, funky colors and items that I bought only because they were a great deal and/or I loved the one item. Hence no ability to mix and match. On the road to recovery myself – pared down and I feel so much lighter, and have a better agenda in mind when I do shop or go thrifting for items :) Thanks for being a great inspiration!

    • 11.1.13

      I love what you said about having a better agenda in mind when you’re shopping. I’ve been working on this myself. I keep a running mental shopping list of the things I would like to add to my wardrobe (mostly basics, like a great blazer or leather riding boots) and when I’m out shopping, if it’s not on my list I don’t buy it. Even if it’s on super sale.

      • 11.3.13
        megtini said:

        Thanks! It definitely helps keep me on track – especially when I run into a super sale or EVERYTHING half off at my local thrift store … :) Gotta keep it in check!

        I follow you on Pinterest as well, Pinterest is such a great tool to keep a visual “list” going of wanted items!

  42. 10.31.13

    I LOVE this! I wish more people would talk about/get on board with the “less stuff, less stress” philosophy (borrowed from Christine, pinksofoxy on YT). I enjoy posts like this far more than hauls! Keep it up and I can’t wait for part 3!!!

    • 11.1.13

      Thank you! “Less stuff, less stress,” is SO true. I wish I’d realized it a long time ago.

      I was talking with my husband about all this earlier this week, after being pleasantly surprised by the extra cushion in my bank account from cutting back on shopping. I don’t think I realized how much I was spending, and how little enjoyment I was getting from my purchases. These days, I’m trying to buy things I absolutely love — instead of buying 10 $10 things, buying a great pair of $100 leather boots that I’ll wear for years.

      • 11.3.13

        Exactly. The older I get, the more I understand “quality over quantity!”

  43. 10.31.13

    I know exactly what you mean! I’m still in love with sales and have fomo- fear of missing out!
    Nicely done!