Cutting Down on Clothing

So you have already gotten a breakdown of what I’m planning on bringing in terms of clothing in my Packing List post. What you didn’t see was the time and effort it took to come up with that short list. If you are like most Americans, you have entirely too much clothes and don’t even realize it.

Upon touchdown last year from my study abroad in Berlin, I promptly began purging my wardrobe. The reason? I had successfully lived out of a suitcase with only an handful of my favorite clothes for months and I STILL had packed some items I never even wore. I backpacked for a week and a half with only 3 shirts and 2 pairs of pants without problems. The result was the realization that I, and most other people have WAY too much stuff.

After selling bags and bags of clothes and taking even more bags to goodwill over the past year, I STILL have a lot of clothes. Too many to take even half with me. There are loads of posts online about how to get rid of clothes and I took a tip here and suggestion there from each of them. The biggest advice I can give is to Pinterest the shit out of it. Watch some YouTubers and maybe read some articles. Do whatever you need to to convince yourself that you need to be ruthless and get yourself in the zone, then go to town!

Now that I am pretty much down to only owning what fits, is in style, and in good shape, it’s getting harder to make cuts. That’s why I downloaded the app Stylebook about three months ago. Before I start raving about the app, I should probably clarify that I am not being paid to review the app nor am I affiliated with the company. I just really liked the product so I thought I would talk about it.

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Above is a slide show of some screenshots from the app which I’ll use it to give you a virtual tour. The first photo is the opening screen; that’s pretty self explanatory.

The second photo is of the Closet page where you can see the items in your wardrobe sorted in custom categories. You can upload a picture you took or (what I find easier) find your article of clothing online at a retailer and use their professional quality photo. You can also upload stats such as price, fabric, color and size among others. Among these stats, price is the most important one. I did not guesstimate any prices for my old clothing, but I’ve been sure to include it with any new items I purchase and upload.

The third photo is of the Looks page. You can assemble your clothes very Pinterest-like and save them to custom categories. I chose to make categories based on occasion but you could make categories to suit anything from your mood to the season. The other great thing about Looks is that you can upload a photo of something you want to buy and then try and integrate it into your wardrobe before you purchase it. This could save you from buying something you think you’ll wear all the time but don’t have anything that matches.

The fourth image is of the Calendar. You can add looks to the calendar which will help you track what items you wear and how often you wear a specific outfit. You can also use this page to plan your outfits ahead of time. This is perfect for vacations or for saving time by “laying out” outfits the night or weekend before school/work.

The fifth, sixth and seventh images are of the Stats page. This is the heart and soul of the app in my opinion. For someone like me who is using it to create and maintain a condensed wardrobe, it’s absolutely essential. This page can help me see what colors I gravitate towards, what items I’m wearing and what I’m not, and what I spent a lot of money on and never wore.

The eighth image is the Cost per Wear breakdown in the Stats section. This feature breaks down how much you paid for an item versus how much you wear it. The logic is that you can buy an expensive article of clothing if you will wear it all the time and if it lasts longer. This would result in a low cost per wear ratio. For example, if you bought a pair of jeans for $100 and wore them 100 times then the cost per wear would be $1. You could contrast that with a cheep pair of jeans that cost $30 but you only wore three times before they ripped or shrank. They would have a cost per wear of $10. Buy this train of thought, the $100 pair of jeans were the better purchase because $1 is less than $3.

As you probably noticed, there are many more features to this app that I don’t even use. I may use them in the future but as you probably noticed by my calendar page, I haven’t been wearing much clothing over the summer. I’ve been working a lot which means I’m wearing a uniform and I see no reason to log that.

The other thing to note is that it is an undoubtedly a long process to upload all of your clothes. I had downloaded this app maybe a year ago but deleted it because I couldn’t be bothered uploading my clothes. Now that I have gotten a significant number of clothing in, it’s much easier to use. I still don’t have my entire wardrobe in yet because I’m waiting to see what all makes it into my suitcase. I see no point in wasting time uploading the item only to not have it with me in just a couple of weeks.

Overall, this app has helped me cut a handful of items already but I think the real value of the app comes with time. After a year of using the app, there should be so much data that I can really know, across all seasons and occasions what items get use. Right now, while it’s 100 degrees, there’s no way my boots are going to get use so it looks like my Birks are all I’ve ever worn. After a whole year, I can compare my boots to my Birks across all seasons and see what I can maybe justify buying a second pair of.

I hope this review was helpful. Like I said, I’m in no way being compensated for my opinion; I’m just a happy customer sharing my thoughts. Let me know if you have any questions and if you would like a run-through of everything once I have all of my clothes inputted.


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