The truthful account of a fashion journalism student undergoing a shopping ban

At the start of 2019, I made a decision. This New Year’s resolution wouldn’t be starting the gym or embarking on a diet (which has been a perpetual and unsuccessful aim of mine for four years and counting) but to go cold turkey when it came to shopping. Clothes shopping, that is.

During November to December 2018, my spending had become slightly careless and excessive. Did I need to buy four pink coats for the winter? Probably not. Did I do it? Yes.

My mind set had begun to resemble fictional character Rebeccca Bloomwood from 2009 romcom, ‘Confessions of a Shopaholic’. “Because when I shop, the world gets better” – and it had. Every purchase brought a little sense of happiness. Big or small.

I partially blame the constant exposure to marketing when it comes to my spending, as it’s near enough impossible to scroll through Instagram without seeing influencers tagging their latest outfits. Ultimately my Instagram, Youtube, and chosen degree are all fashion-orientated, which adds to the temptation. Despite the weeks of continuous “another parcel!?” jibes from my parents, I hadn’t noticed how much I’d purchased until recently. A double wardrobe, two boxes and set of drawer… I needed a walk-in wardrobe!

It was time for a change.

My wardrobe is full of items which I’ve only worn once, or a handful of times, whilst some particular items shamefully have the tags left on. A Missguided aviator jacket (pink, obviously). A paisley print dress (you’ve guessed it, pink). And some black trousers from Asos.

Which is why my goal for 2019 is to make the most out of the clothes I already have.

It’s only 11 days in. To say I’ve struggled would be an understatement. For me, the daily morning ritual was drinking a cup of tea whilst browsing the ‘new in’ section on various fashion websites. For now, my coping mechanism is purchasing presents for other people very, very prematurely. A friend’s birthday in April – Organised. Mother’s Day gift – in and wrapped. Come summer, I’ll probably be all in for Christmas!

As I give this experiment 100 per cent, why not try it yourself? Next time you’re about to purchase something, check your wardrobe first. Do you really need it? Chances are that you will already have something suitable that can be reinvented by adding accessories or pairing with different items. Although iconic, was Carrie Bradshaw right? Wouldn’t we rather spend our money on experiences rather than have it hanging in our closet?

Meanwhile, I’m trying to fill my time with a new “hobby.” Reading? More Netflix? But I must confess it’s a daily struggle.

Watch this space. I’ll update you on my progress.


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