Shopping of 2014

Monday, January 05, 2015

For the third year running I kept a tally of my spending on clothes, shoes and accessories. My goal for 2014 was to get my annual spend under £1,000, and I'm pleased to say that I did and by some margin too.


I bought 76 items in total, 46% of these where pre-loved items which is less than last year (58%) but I still have a higher percentage of these still in my wardrobe. Last year I found that a lot of the pre-loved items I bought had been discarded by the end of the year - showing that I wasn't being very selective in my choices. This year I bought 35 items second hand, last year that figure was 75, so I'm chalking that up as a win. Also, of the 41 new items purchased only three have been discarded (given to charity, given away to a friend, taken to a clothes swap).

I do still have a number of not yet worn items. Looking at why the reasons vary from having no occasion to wear them (which begs the question why did I buy them in the first place?), they need altering, I have nothing to wear them with, or I bought them for an occasion and then changed my mind.

The outfit that never was

One such outfit was for a wedding in September. I'd won a French Connection dress on ebay for £18.04. I then had to buy a lace vest top to wear underneath to protect my modesty (I find French Connection very low cut), a pair of wedges so I could wear them all day and be comfortable and a clutch bag as I had nothing else that worked with the rest of the outfit. All in all this came to £49.52, which would've been bit of a bargain for an entire outfit, if I'd worn it. But I didn't.

An ASOS dress that ticked all the boxes

I tried it on a few days before the wedding and decided that I didn't like it. I loved the dress, just not on me, so in a panic I ordered four dresses from ASOS. Thankfully I found one that I loved for £42.00. It was perfect - it fitted well, was a nice length, just wedding-y enough and not only that I could accessorise with items I already had. But what a waste of nearly £50 on the first outfit! Maybe I'll get the opportunity to wear the dress another day when I'm feeling less body conscious.


My most expensive purchase at £64.00 was my very first pair of Irregular Choice shoes for a (different) wedding, I subsequently wore these when dressed as a fairy. I love these and think they're worth every last penny.


My most expensive pre-loved item was a French Connection maxi dress, £45.00, for a ball in May. When this first arrived I put it on and loved it and knew exactly what I'd be pairing it with. On the night of the ball I put it on and felt really uncomfortable. I made us late by faffing and fussing trying to make it 'work'. After a couple of glasses of wine and a G&T or two I didn't care about what I looked like and was dancing like no one was watching but boy! did I feel self conscious when I walked in. I don't know if I'll ever wear it again...


My favourite item is a top I picked up in the New Look sale for £9 and a pair of Tommy Hilfiger jeans (by far the most worn of the year) that I got from a clothes swap - I see these as free as no money exchanged hands :) Of course I have many favourites from this year but it's seems to be the ones that didn't work that stand out in my mind. I guess clothes that make you feel good are easy to wear and you can just forget about them and get on with things. Which is exactly how it should be.

Can't do a post about clothing purchases without a mention of my cat jumper.

For 2015 I want to reduce the overall spend again. I want to only buy things when I need them and be absolutely sure that I like it! I'm going to ban myself from buying anymore scarves or PJs and I want to end 2015 with nothing unworn in my wardrobe. If it's unworn by the end of the year, it goes.

I think I did pretty well overall. Most of the decline in spending, I think, has something to do with working from home and not feeling the need to 'dress up' everyday. I'm also chuffed that having seen how much I discarded of 2013's pre-loved items, I was more aware this year and more selective. Last year the total of items discarded was £240, this year it was £91.47 - you can't argue with those figures (although still room for improvement).

Do you keep track or have a monthly clothing budget?

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11 comments

  1. I should do this. I dread to think what I spent on clothes last year! I think you did very well!x

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    1. Thanks, it's easy enough to keep track. I kept all the labels in a jar on my dressing room table until I had a chance to put them onto a spreadsheet. I'm such a dork.

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  2. Congratulations - what an amazing achievement.

    Lizzie Dripping

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    1. Thanks! It's going to be a challenge to reduce it further this year.

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  3. I love that we are jumper twins :)

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    1. Yay :-) I don't wear it nearly enough.

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  4. Some fabulous items and what a great saving from your £1000 budget.

    I have the green version of the French connection dress and I love it, but you are so right abut the cut, it's very low.

    The New Look blouse has to be a favourite, it just looks so pretty.

    X x

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    1. Ooh I bet it's lovely in green too!

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  5. I actually started doing this last year and I keep meaning to look it over and see what my spending habits are actually like! I love the shoes and your white top, very pretty :)

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    1. I'd love to know the outcome of your spending! I'm so nosy.

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  6. I think this is a fab idea! I'm trying to do a 'no clothes from the high street' challenge this year, I do already use charity shops a lot anyway but I'm going to keep track of what I've spent and see how it all adds up at the end of the year :-) xx

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Thank you for taking the time to comment x

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