You know about the old “cost per wear calculation,” right? The cost of the item is divided by the number of times you wear it. If I’m going by that, I have coats and bags that probably cost in the negative column per wear. I’ve worn them or used them so many times, they’ve earned their keep. These aren’t the items in my closet that necessarily cost the least. And then I have bought some items that may not have cost much, but shrunk immediately after a run in the dryer on delicate. The cost per wear of that item is way higher, even though I didn’t spend a lot. Make sense?
It doesn’t matter whether you say at home or work 80 hours per week, your closet needs a few investment pieces, or your clothing budget will suffer. Trust me on this one, these items will earn their keep:
A Good Pair of Jeans
My job allows me to wear jeans, so I have more pairs of denim than dress pants. When I made the swap over to premium brand jeans; however, I started wearing them weekends too. Why? They hold up much better wash after wash after wash. They fit better, too. Do yourself a favor, buy one pair of good jeans and try them out. I have had a pair of Paige jeans that are going on their sixth year. Buy them in a conservative wash (dark denim as opposed to a color) and with no embellishments (I never understood paying for holes in my jeans and/or bleach stains, anyway).
A Sturdy Black Leather Purse
A classic Black purse will serve you season after season. The more classic design, the longer it will serve you. I use my Kate Spade bag (purchased at the outlet for under $200). If anything breaks on the bag within a year Kate Spade will either repair or replace (provided you kept the receipt). Many of the better name brands do this, too (I know Michael Kors does, off the top of my head). An especially big purse is my favorite, because I always wind up holding everyone’s things (e.g. son’s water bottle, daughter’s Pokémon cards, husband’s sunglasses).
A Spring Trench
This a great item for when it gets a little warmer towards Spring, or on any rainy day in the Summer. I bought mine at Banana Republic for around $140 after coupons. Someday I will work up the nerve to buy myself a Burberry trench. I know the cost per wear will make it well worth the grand.
A Well-Made Wool Coat
Step off the beaten path and buy yourself a nice wool coat in a great color. Nothing warms you up on a cold winter day like a pop of color. These often go on sale right after Christmas. Mine is a J.Crew belted wool coat in pink. One of my favorite features is its rose gold lining. I also bought this one marked down twice a couple of years ago for under $200.
A Pair of Good Leather Flats
I feel sad when I see a woman in a beautiful suit with sneakers on. I get that you don’t want to run for the subway in pumps, but have some dignity! A pair of leather ballet flats in black or beige will be your go to item. Instead of turning to sneakers or flip flops, grab a pear of ballet flats. They instantly dress up your casual outfit. I keep a pair in my car (driving in pumps ruins your shoes, your car interior, and is not very safe).
Next time you’re looking for a little splurge, make sure you invest in one of these pieces. Your wardrobe will thank you.