Oh gawd, I just went back through my Learnvest My Money Center account and tallied up how much I spent from May 2012-May 2013. I did this because this May it has been one full year since I moved back South from New York City, and I wanted to see how I’d been spending since my location, job, and everything else has changed.
I did this cute little project back when I first started my blog. Some of you who have been reading from the beginning (all 2 of you…ha ha!) may have seen it already. Have a look at it, but don’t laugh at my plumpness or the bad writing, because it was only my fourth post. When I first moved, I accidentally sent my boxes of winter clothes home instead of my summer clothes and had to go shopping again for a few things to wear during the six weeks it took to ship the rest of my things across the country. I bought ten items of clothing (and some shoes..and scarfs…and jewelry) and was really happy with a smaller wardrobe, and I promise that is the honest truth.
How Much Do You Spend On Clothes? Well…too much.
I did really well in every category last year, even despite my 40% pay cut and higher rent from living alone. Well, every category except one. I spent $3500.00 on clothes just last year, and that doesn’t even count the monstrous spending spree I went on last April to make myself feel better after I quit my job. In some small way I shopped because I thought, “well, I may not have a job anytime soon and may not get any new clothes.” But woah. I was wrong.
How did having only ten pieces of clothing evolved into spending nearly 7% of my yearly income? I mean I do have a few explanations:
1) Saving exhaustion- from not having spent hardly anything on clothes in 2011-2012, even though I needed them. Once I had extra money to spend in the form of my massive severance package from my last employer…I went hog wild because I’d deprived myself.
2) Despite the dollar amount, my closet is still the same size season-to-season, because I’ve been throwing out clothes from my college days and investing in items of a better quality and therefore more expense. J. Crew is my new best frenemy.
3) I have lost fifteen pounds this year, which isn’t a lot to some people, but it’s a huge deal to me. Especially on a 5’3 frame, it makes a noticeable difference especially in the way my clothes fit and make me feel. I’ve had to replace some things because they were too big, or have them tailored to fit.
Even though these are valid
reasons excuses…$3500.00 is exactly the amount of the closing costs on my new house. Or a the price of a down payment on the car I’m desperately going to need within the next few months. Desperate times call for desperate measures. Extremely desperate measures that make me so super sad I don’t even believe that I’ll be able to make it. So to hold myself accountable I’m going to speak these horrible, horrible words out loud.
I’m not buying any new clothes for six months.
And I’m only doing six months because I honestly don’t believe I can do the whole year, but I’m willing to try it out for six. I mean, seriously, why set myself up for failure? I’m doing it, because I know it’ll be good for me, but there really aren’t words to describe the near climax I reach when the J. Crew catalog comes in the mail. TMI? Sorry, I just wanted to illustrate how difficult this is going to be for me.
Le sigh. It’s going to be a loooooooong six months. Long. So Long. I can buy underwear and yoga pants, right?
Have you ever done a clothing fast? If not, what would you do with an extra $3500.00?