Style Sleuth. Single-Minded Shopping: Pursuing the Perfect Outfit

August 27, 2008 • Fashion


Rachel Yeomans for Second City Style Magazine

Wandering the discounted aisles of Saks Off 5th, swooning over discounted Armani and St. John, I found myself caught up in the discount shopping surge — throwing everything in my cart because it all was just that
good. I met up with my girlfriend in front of the fitting rooms — my
cart overflowing. However she arrived sans cart with two sole pieces
over her arm. I was immediately skeptical — isn’t going (a bit)
overboard part of discount shopping? After my friend tried on her items
and decided on a gorgeous blue cowl-neck wool dress, I left the fitting
room performing the price debate: “I love all of them but what do I need??” [Translation: What am I willing to spend?”]

Fast forward — still debating my friend led me all around the store
to find the ideal accessories to her new dress — earrings, shoes, and
an exhausting search for a belt. During her search, I asked her why she
was concentrating so hard on finding the whole outfit versus pieces
that may work with others she already owns.

Her response: “If I don’t, then I won’t have an outfit — just pieces.”

Dear readers, after reviewing my wardrobe consisting of many-a piece
without an outfit to contribute to, I learned that day to appreciate
the power search for the perfect outfit.

For guidance on changing my shopping habits — I look to the most obvious place I can think of: the runways. Alexander McQueen’s Spring/Summer 2008 line
reminds me that a simple dress can be jazzed up merely by adding a belt
and pumps. Then I took one more step outside the box — this Marc by Marc Jacobs trench
on the runway was the sole source of focus. For me it can be the
perfect piece tying my jeans and some chunky jewelry together for my
“Saturday errands” look.

After researching my new epiphany, I embarked on my hunt. My task: a work ensemble that can transfer into evening cocktails. The ingredients: top, skirt, pumps, and the accessories to pull it together.

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