Do you ever get stuck on repeat while shopping?

On my shopping list for fall, I had "silk camisole / tee" and "new boots" and "boyfriend jeans". I think I forgot to cross things off as I went! Over the past two months I ended up with not just one but:
4 silk or velvet tops
2 nearly identical pairs of boyfriend jeans (and a pair of high waist jeans, another goal)
2 new pairs of boots (and another pair of nice shoes)

I love all of them, and I was very picky about what I kept, so I don't really regret it. I didn't keep anything outside of these categories. But now it's time to stop shopping for the season. I did end up with more than I needed, perhaps. Three new pairs of shoes is quite a lot. And four fancy tops for someone who lives in tees and buttoned shirts -- good thing I've been going to a lot of parties. My goal now is to make sure I wear everything often.

I've posted photos of many of these over the past month -- I'm just amused (?) to see it all in one place.

1. Equipment tee from NAS
2. Grana camisole
3. Acne silk top found with tags on at Wasteland (amazing consignment store) in LA.
4. Gap silk velvet top 

1. Uniqlo men's selvedge jeans - these are amazing.
2. Everlane boyfriend jeans! I finally got them, after my whole saga!
3. AGOLDE high rise button fly jeans

1. Dr Martens Danica boots, more delicate than the usual Docs, and shaped like Birkenstocks for my wide toes! I think they'll be really useful though wearing them, I feel like I have clown feet. I'm sure I'll adjust.
2. Paul Green Margo flats from Nordstrom. They fill a huge wardrobe hole for comfortable, professional flats. A pricey splurge at first. But after sending the wrong shoes in the right box, they eventually tracked down the right pair for me and by then they were marked down to $110!
3. Frye Campus boots -- I found these today at a consignment store in perfect condition. They're more retro than my usual look, but I like the clean lines.

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • rachylou replied 6 years ago

    Uh... yes. I realised I have two pairs of velvet slip on sneaks and two dusty pink sweatshirts with 'interesting detail' and a zillion billion I-don't-know-what-to-call-them fish-taily knee-length skirts. Remind me to cancel the order
    in my head for any more of these things...

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    Oh don't get me started on skirts! My Achilles heel. Do I wear skirts? No. Do I wear professional clothes? No. So why do I have something like 12 skirts including two lovely businessy ones with tags still on? (I do wear denim skirts fairly often but even so 4 denim skirts is overkill.) But the skirt weakness isn't costly, at least. Until recently, skirts always fit me perfectly and they're cheap at consignment stores for some reason. So I'd buy too many. No more I swear!

  • replied 6 years ago

    I am the Queen of Duplication.   

    I love everything you bought thought.  The tops and shoes are to die for.  

  • cindysmith replied 6 years ago

    I have no idea what you mean


    I also have no idea why there are so many oversized, long tops in my closet. Nor do I understand why there are so many pairs of (non-returnable) brown and tan shoes in various phases of the shipping process headed my way. Why there are so many pairs of slim fitting, black pants hanging in my pants section.

    I think you've got yourself some great pieces that it sounds like you'll get lots of use from; even the velvet tops, since we are heading into peak holiday season which means lots of parties :-)

  • Muffin replied 6 years ago

    Looks like great personal style to me. I tend to get stuck on repeat too particularly for fall /winter when I like streamlined outfits. I have a bunch of the same jean style simply because of the difficulty in finding ones that flatter, the same merino wool sweater because it layers so well under the same basic blazer... Summer is when nothing looks really cohesive but it's still all me.

  • LaPed replied 6 years ago

    Yep, this happened to me with sandals this summer! I wanted one pair of casual non-gear sandals, and ended up with three -- all very different, but still waay more summer shoes than I expected, or needed. Sometimes you purchase with the expectation of returning all-but-one, and then everything turns out to be too good to part with. Luckily we've had a mild fall, so the sandals are still logging wears!

    Anyway, three pairs of shoes for the season doesn't sound unreasonable to me, since your have a nice variety here and they all fill different niches. 

    I love that your Finds read as a cohesive capsule. And the shirts look so luxe -- definitely good for holiday season!  

    Btw, what size did you take in the Agolde Jamies? I've been looking at this style since last spring and can't figure out from the reviews if I should order my "usual" size. 

  • skylurker replied 6 years ago

    Yes. I keep shopping and trying on things, even after I’ve found what I was looking for. For instance, I needed a trench coat, I bought a trench coat at the start of the season, but I’m still looking at trench coats (and just bought another one).
    Or, I discover something that works for me, and want to add more immediately, without taking the time to road test the first item.
    I’m better at stopping the second loop, than the first one.

  • viva replied 6 years ago

    All is I know is no matter what I do, I keep purging and buying jeans. It never ends.
    I love everything you've bought - and your little capsule here is killing me. It's like the perfect black wardrobe! I want it all!

    Quick practical question: can you tell me about the Everlane jeans? I think I need to purge (for real, this time) all of my jeans that are on the lower side of midrise. I seem to have a real sweet spot for rise that is around 9-10". The Everlanes are described as 10" which is great, but how loose are they? And how are they in general? Please tell!!!

  • Angie replied 6 years ago

    This makes me laugh.

    Greyscale, nothing wrong with maximizing your options. I'm impressed with the disciplined end result. Good haul.

    To answer your question: I used to carry on shopping for an item after I had found it. Like Skylurker. But over the years learned to stop doing that. Instead I road test and decide whether I need to duplicate - especially when it comes to wardrobe essentials.

  • replied 6 years ago

    Joy once said to me.  If you buy this item, will you continue shopping for the same item in the future?  The answer was an emphatic yes.  Thus, the amount of duplication in my wardrobe.  

    Angie's suggestion of road testing is one I need to consider in the future.  

  • RobinF replied 6 years ago

    Hmm, interesting question. I think I look for something and think if one is good then more is better right? Obviously not true but it's a hard habit to get out of. 

    I like your finds. They seem to have a lot of variety as far as shape and style.

  • replied 6 years ago

    I do. I'm only capable of shopping for jeans, sweaters, and boots.  But on another note - I want all of your pieces here. Please and thank you :)

  • Stagiaire Fash replied 6 years ago

    I agree with everyone else that these look like great pieces for you. Are you planning to remove an equal number of items from your closet? If you have room for everything, and wear it all, I see no problem with letting it just space out your wears.

    I posted once about one way I've done this--blue dresses. Lots and lots of blue dresses! I also decided at some point that I didn't have enough pants, and that I should get more. I think I now have about a dozen pairs that could be worn in a professional setting.

  • JuniperGreen replied 6 years ago

    Such great acquisitions.

    I see this less as duplication and more as... consistency!  You've nailed your style and are riffing on it. 

  • JAileen replied 6 years ago

    Exactly like Angie used to do: keep looking for something after I already found it. I need to stop doing that.

  • Christina F. replied 6 years ago

    It used to be long sleeved bretons for me. Now I'm down to two, as I've moved away from that a bit. Plus a couple of other striped tops/sweaters. I started going the same way with Lucky Brand peasant tops (suddenly plentiful at TJ Maxx), but realized what I was doing and stopped before it go too bad.

  • Laura G replied 6 years ago

    YES! It's one reason I wound up with more clothes than I need when shopping this spring, even though I was starting from near-zero. It's like there's a program running (Need New Clothes) and no individual purchase has any effect on it. If I had it to do over, I'd do a session of outfit-creation (with photos) for every new item before I allowed myself to resume shopping. Allow the program to really "register" that I now have this many new outfits and therefore don't need as much as I did yesterday. 

  • DonnaF replied 6 years ago

    If I ever decide to buy tall boots, Frye Campus boots look like they might be an option. Thanks for the idea!

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    La Ped - the agolde Jamie jeans size seems to vary by fabric content. These are cotton with 12% lyocell (breaking my usual rule). I am a 27 or sometimes 26 in Gap jeans and I got a 26 in these for a slightly more fitted look. Yesterday I tried on a different color of the Jamies in 25 and 27 (they were out of 26). The 25 was only a tiny bit small and the 27 was huge... But agolde's skinny styles are too small on me in a 27! Sigh.

  • replied 6 years ago

    I’m a duplicator - especially on shoes.

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    Viva, the Everlane boyfriends have a bit of a dropped crotch (at least, when I sized up to a 27) so they don't really feel higher rise. But if I'd bought a 26 they wouldn't sit as low and would fit more like mid rise straight jeans. I'll post a photo some day soon.

    I love these jeans - I wrote about my fit test adventure here (they changed the sizing for the final version):

    But I don't know if they're everyone's style.

  • Firecracker (Sharan) replied 6 years ago

    Yes. I do. And I think it's amusing. I do think I pretty much shop for the same things over and over, all the time.
    Your collection looks cohesive to me!

  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Well, yes, I do this. Again and again, as can be seen in my Finds, which are mostly versions of the same 5  things. 

    And I LOVE all your new items!! You made superb purchases. (That Gap top is really tempting!) Some years are just better for shopping than others. I also take that into account. 

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    Update: wore the Equipment floral tee for the first time today. Walked into my lab and a grad student went past, did a double take, and turned back to say "I like your top!". Then walked into my boyfriend's office and he said, "Wow, that's a really cool top." I think we have a winner.

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    Muffin, you're so right about seasonal differences. Fall is always my shopping season, with my black color palette and mild climate.

    Fashiontern, I did do a mini closet purge to free up hangers for these. The silk cami is replacing one that's worn out (a friend passed it on to me) and the velvet top, I suppose, replaces a lovely Maria Cornejo silk top bought on consignment that is just a bit too big and I've only worn once. Luckily it has resale value. A few button downs that were dated or never get worn. A linen shirt was demoted to the "play clothes" drawer - it's fine for campouts and outdoors things but not really my style. I think the purge was all good decisions but a bit more aggressive than usual. I should reflect on which purchases were passed on without many wears, and how to improve that.

  • Stagiaire Fash replied 6 years ago

    Sounds to me like you're doing it perfectly. Are you being the A student knocking herself because you didn't do some kind of extra credit?
    Btw, I bought another blue dress today

  • anne replied 6 years ago

    Not much of a repeat shopper here in clothing, though I am certainly drawn to the same things.
    With groceries though, I'm beginning to think I should have a little side list saying do NOT buy for those items that we keep getting (at the moment onions and timtams) until we use them up.

  • Jaime replied 6 years ago

    I find it almost impossible to turn down a loafer. Your purchases looks excellent!

  • minimalist replied 6 years ago

    Interesting sleeveless tops, black or charcoal, in natural fibers. White denim. Numbers limited by availability of what I like, fit, my pickiness, and time.

    I might need to raid cindysmith's closet for some slim black pants.

  • Kari replied 6 years ago

    Yes. Down to buying something, or nearly buying something, without realizing I have a near duplicate already.

    This is why I do a lot more "shopping" online to compare what's out there with what's in my wardrobe already, and only buy when I'm filling a hole, adding something new, or replacing a look-alike that's getting on in age and might wear out.

  • Greyscale replied 6 years ago

    Ah, but the online browsing has its own downside for me and my obsessive nature. I'm always trying to upgrade to the more perfect version. This is how I ended up with three black denim jackets. My purchases are usually very deliberate, but that doesn't mean I actually need the thing. (Though honestly 3 black denim jackets isn't unreasonable for my particular wardrobe and life.)

    I'm working on your "only buy when I'm filling a hole" rule and it has to be a real hole, not an upgrade. My clothing spreadsheet and shopping list have helped a lot with this though.

  • rachylou replied 6 years ago

    Ha! Yes. The upgrade thing. I find one thing and then think but this other thing is even closer...

  • approprio replied 6 years ago

    Heh. This can be a danger zone when I get into the habit of wearing something easily available and worth repeating. The blazer/concert shirt/oxfords standard is responsible for a large portion of my wardrobe.

    But. It can get really interesting when I hit on a less obvious formula made of things which are harder to find. Exhibits: three plisse skirts, two vintage kimono jackets (haori) and two pairs of George Cox creepers. It's always worth holding out for things like this, in my opinion.

    And my friend Brown's crash pants. Don't think I'll ever have enough of those.

  • LaPed replied 6 years ago

    "online browsing has its own downside for me and my obsessive nature. I'm always trying to upgrade to the more perfect version." This goes back to the idea of Maximisers and Satisficers that was discussed here a long while back. Some people are able to find satisfaction by acquiring a good-enough version and then crossing it off the list for good; others won't be satisfied until they find the perfect version, and will continue searching til they've found it, even if it means acquiring several no-go's in the meantime.

    Re: the Agoldes, that's what I figured. I may just have to order two or three sizes and see if any of them work.

  • Janet replied 6 years ago

    Gah, yes, like Skylurker says. I find what I'm looking for, but somehow in the process forget that I found it and keep looking. To wit, I resumed my search for lace-up tall black boots to replace an old beloved pair from years ago. I ended up with a fab replacement, but also added tall burgundy boots (which are also replacing old burgundy boots with too-high heels). And then stumbled upon OTK taupe suede boots on sale that I could not resist. 

    The good news is that I've worn all three very happily already, and foresee lots more wear from them. But yeah, a search for one pair of boots yielded three. 

    I have to stop myself from duplicating a new item before I've really road-tested it, and sometimes even AFTER I've road tested it. I'm always afraid I won't be able to find anything better later on and feel like I need to hoard the good stuff that works for me when I find it, especially when it comes to difficult-to-find for me items. Truth is, even though I have a hard time finding good dresses, jeans, etc., I manage to find one or two a season that work for me, and that is plenty. 

  • replied 6 years ago

    A friend asked me to help her organize her closet.  I discovered, all hung neatly, one after another, no less than 12 white tee shirts, a few with the sale tags still attached.  She had no idea she had picked up that many.  She loves white t's and keeps searching for the perfect one and then she'll buy 3 of those.

    I do a version of it.  This Fall, for example, I bought 4 tops to wear with jeans and leggings when I could have done just fine with 2 of them.  I will get a lot of wear out of them and did need them but prolly not 4 of them.   At least they are all different styles and colors.

    I am 'considering' those burgundy born boots if the Ugg black boots don't pan out.  I will choose between the two, I hope!

  • Stagiaire Fash replied 6 years ago

    White Ts are one of the few items I’d say it makes total sense to have multiples of. White gets dirty fast. T shirts can wear out fast. Add em together & what have you got?

  • The Cat replied 6 years ago

    No, I seldom do nowadays. Having a rather small shopping budget, and a priority list on my cell phone, help a lot. But of course, I do have my weaknesses/temptations: mainly inexpensive accessories. I am always a sucker for another scarf or another pair of ballet flats.

  • Janet replied 6 years ago

    The Cat, I manage to justify new scarves and jewelry even though I DO NOT need any more of either.

  • lyn67 replied 6 years ago

    But yes! It happens to me especially when shopping  one particular brand online where I like some timeless classics which they keep in stock from year to year, or for the next season- and then I completely forget I've already ordered and sent  back (for no fit or else:-)).
    Embarrassing, I know, but I keep liking the same things- and they delete orders within changing seasons, so now I print my orders (including color picties) so I can look back, for more than a year:-).

  • Laura G replied 6 years ago

    lyn67 -- I've started saving pictures of my returned items along with the others in my wardrobe software for just this reason, along with notes on what size I ordered and why I didn't keep it. (The software allows me to "hide" these items so I'm not faced with them every morning.)

  • Style Fan replied 6 years ago

    I love everything that you bought.  Perfect for your style.  I keep buying brown T-shirts, olive green T-shirts, jeans, brown cardigans and Chelsea boots.  If it works why change it.  I do occasionally branch out and buy something else.  I am into uniform dressing these days.

  • 3style replied 6 years ago

    My remedy for this is to focus on cost per wear. I like to keep a larger wardrobe over many years with low turnover. I aim to get everything down to less than $1 per wear over the course of about four years. If I can't do that, then I better have a very special reason for spending more, like for example the tall boots with narrow calves problem.
    This method works better for me than a budget because there is too much effort into tracking carry forward otherwise.

    I also duplicate at the same store if I find that something works especially well, because I don't want to spend time looking for that type of item in the immediate future. I love crossing items off my list because it is so difficult for me to do that in many other aspects of my life which involve complex ongoing projects.

  • jill58 replied 6 years ago

    Black boots an booties--different design details. Also black dresses--I don't need another black dress!

  • Stagiaire Fash replied 6 years ago

    I’ve just remembered another way I’ve done this—black “backgrounds”. I like to wear bright colors, but not exclusively, like a parrot. Towards the beginning of my recent 2-year buying spurt, I realized that they go well with the black things I got while living in Berlin, and that many of those things are wearing out. So I got more. And more. Whenever I saw decent-quality black separates for a low price, I got them. Getting more was logical, but getting that many more was not!

  • Joy replied 6 years ago

    at least your item are different from each other, says one who bought 7 black sleeveless summer dresses in one season.

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