Saturday, October 18, 2014

Book review & Contest - Tim Gunn's Guide

This book was such a fun read! The tone is incredibly casual with lots of quirky anecdotes.

More importantly I read it at the perfect time because I have a secret. While I've worked to only keep what I know to be useful or beautiful around the home I hardly ever parse my clothes closet. Sure, I'll binge purge sweaters once a year or donate a random top but a real purging? Nope and I sure need it!

You see - I used to work at Liz Claiborne and we had sample sales all the time. We could buy garments for $1 but there weren't changing rooms. I'd come home with trash bags full! Trash bags. Full of clothes I hadn't tried on. Disastrous.

This was a few years ago and while I have pared down most of what I bought (I had to!) I was still lugging around brand new items I never wore. These were invariably items which needed some kind of alteration, were oddly colored or just purchased because they were cheap enough and I might wear them "one day."

So back when I lived with my roomy I bought them. Then I lived alone for two years and now I've been married in this house for over a year and those clothes? Still being lugged around.

This is what I I want to store until next summer. Four tanks and three pairs or shorts.

These are what I'm keeping. Tanks on the left get worn under cardigans (my favorite), jeans, short sleeve, long sleeve, cardies. Since I was putting away summer I bought out the sweaters. Around the house I wear long sleeve cotton tees and keep those in drawers. While I know I tend towards burgundy and soft fabric I hadn't visualized it until my closet was organized.

Reading about a fashion icon's spartan clothing collection really made me look at mine - something I haven't wanted to do. It was easier to continue sorting rather than minimizing. The book guides you through different questions in order to help find what you should be keeping/buying more of.

This huge tub is full of summer tops I don't want or haven't worn. Somewhere in that stack are brand new tank tops I purchased at the sample sales because they were cheap. They are generic cotton tanks in different colors but I prefer clothing with adornment or sheen so never wore them.

and dresses!? HA! See all those wonky colors? So Liz.

Oh and do you want to know how many little black dresses I own? More than 10. Want to know how many I wore in the past year?

Just the one I purchased THIS SUMMER for a wedding.

There are two reasons for this - I loved black in my 20s and back in high school I had the best English teacher - Mr. Mullen. He would intersperse all sorts of advice into daily lectures. One day he talked about fashion and emphasized how important it is for a woman to have the perfect little black dress.

He didn't say we needed a dozen of them.

"Clothes do not exist to humiliate their owners."

I love the illustrations by Laine Roundy.

I always hear about vanity sizing but didn't realize it only happened to lower prixed items.

So yeah - I really liked this book and am grateful it finally got me to organize my closet.

Instead of donating this book I'd like to mail it to someone interested in reading it so let's have a contest! Its been years since I held one!

To enter - leave a comment and make sure I can contact you if you win. If your name links to your blog that's fine. However if your e-mail address is a big secret make sure you leave it in the comments. I will run the contest until next Sunday and mail it Monday.

Good luck!


Kim@Snug Harbor said...

Throw my name in the hat for the giveaway please. And why aren't you selling some of those clothes?

Protector of Vintage said...

I'm a big fan! I would love a chance to win a copy of his book! Thanks much.

Margaret said...

Sounds like a fun read. I'm in, if it's not too late! But I do have a library membership and could probably get it there nevermind. LOL

Debby Chandler said...

I just adore Tim Gunn. I love his advice on Project Runway

blew415 said...

Looks like a good book