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  • Karla Trippe

How Many Clothes Do You Need?

I recently read an article by Melissa Kirsch in The Morning edition of The New York Times on how many clothes you need. It reminded me that it's been a while since I wrote a blog on fashion and giving my point of view on Melissa's column might be fun. Plus I just finished my fall shopping so I can provide you with a few tips.

To begin, how many clothes do you need? That’s always a difficult question to answer. For me, it starts with a closet cleanout which I do every season. I look at the quality of the item first and then think about how often I wore it over the last two years. Is this a piece that people have seen too often or not enough? That’s a critical deciding factor. Next, I pull out items for the month that need more time in the rotation. I always buy at least one new outfit each season to freshen my wardrobe. And then there are the trends. After I’ve reviewed the newest looks online I determine which will look good on me and which I can wear in Tucson. My new home location has changed my style. For instance, I now wear white year-round.


My favorite new trend is Barbiecore. I look especially good in bright pink. As I already have lots of pink in my wardrobe, my purchase was a fun pair of pink Coach booties. I will wear them with an all-black or black-and-white outfit so they pop.


Another check each season is whether I have enough outfits that work together, particularly if I'm taking a trip. I bought a great pair of loafers last season that I didn’t wear enough so I added a pair of medium brown NYDJ jeans that matched the shoes perfectly. Brown is big this season so I added a light brown sequined zip-up cardigan. It’s a piece that can be dressed up or down and goes great with dark brown, black, or white. That’s it. Four pieces.

I have pull-out clothes hangers in my closet to help style the pieces that I need more wear. Makes it easier when I’m getting dressed. I also check regularly with my two gay best friends who always notice what I wear to see if I have worn something too many times. If so then it’s retired either to Good Will or my storage closet if it’s a designer piece. I do save clothes for my daughter and she always does a check whenever she’s home. Last time she grabbed a wonderful Dana Buchman hot pink silk skirt for work and a 1980s Levis denim jacket. I store designer clothes and clothing I love that may no longer fit for the chance that I will get down to my goal weight (one must hope.)


My last point is that making clothes is hard on the environment. Therefore, I am big on recycling. I shop regularly on Real Real and try to give away whatever I am done with. And I never buy fast fashion.

I hope these thoughts help you in updating your closet. In regards to how many clothes you need my answer is as many as will fit visually in my glam closet!

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