Shopping During The Sales

During the time I have spent as an image consultant I have seen the contents of many men’s and women’s wardrobes. Very often the items that stand out are the items bought in the sales. Why is that the case? Well usually because something happens to us in the sales when we are faced with the bargain of the century. We imagine ourselves a different person, leading a different life and purchase the item that we think we will be wearing in it. Only to discover some months later that our lives haven’t changed, we’re still the same person – and we’ve not worn that sales purchase.

I can remember doing this myself in pre-image consultant days when I decided that a summer weight aqua two piece skirt and top was what was missing from my wardrobe – and my life. It fit beautifully, more to the point it was a wonderful bargain, so despite there being a loud floral print shawl adorned with purple and yellow pansies attached to the top which wasn’t removable, I bought it. Any of my friends at the time could have told you that I wasn’t a pansy woman but that didn’t stop me, after all it was a bargain. Every now and again I used to take it out the wardrobe, try it on, marvel at the great fit and promptly put it back again. As a women who can count the number of floral prints she has ever worn over her lifetime on one finger what was I doing purchasing an outfit with a huge print attached? Let alone purple and yellow pansies! Utter madness!

Since then I have realised that I was not the only one and other people make strange purchases particularly during the sales that they never wear and which clog up their wardrobe and they spend a long time regretting the impulse which caused them to spend their hard-earned cash on the wrong thing in the first place. My advice to anyone who can think of these items in their wardrobe now is to bite the bullet and throw them out – yes, gents that includes the Hawaiian shirts, the cardigans you will never wear because they make you feel like your dad! And that roll neck sweater you bought thinking it’d look cool under your suit which you can’t quite bring yourself to put on.

And ladies that coat in orange when you never wear orange and have nothing to go with it! The skirt you fell for and bought because you thought you were going to change from a lifetime of wearing trousers etc. The party outfit of chiffon and sequins when you don’t go to parties.

My advice for buying in the sales is know your colours and your style, what your body’s shaped like and how you like to be seen. Buy second items of sweaters and trousers which you’ve bought before and hammered or buy those items in a different colour-way. Avoid high fashion colours or styles as these won’t last more than a month. Go for your neutral colours – if there’s a bargain pair of black shoes or trousers which fit well then go ahead and buy them if you know you wear black a lot and they are a classic style so will be usable next year.

In fact good advice with any sales purchase is to look at the item if it’s near the end of the season for that particular purchase and think whether you will want to wear it in ten months time because the likelihood is that you will get 2-4 weeks wear out of it and then have to put it away as the weather changes and makes it inappropriate. Do this and you won’t go far wrong.

Happy sales shopping!