Save Stylishly: Tips to Revamp Your Closet Without Spending

By Bertrand Cheng
Photos: The Wearist,, Glamour

0712-cher-horowitz-clueless-closet_faIf only there was such a counseling fellowship along the lines of “Shopaholics Anonymous,” I would be the first to admit to the neurotic tendencies when it comes to my shopping. Guiltily, the obsession does not root from a necessity, but instead from an acquired habit of desiring the newest fads and staying current with dynamic trends.

My hoarding became such a dilemma that my walk-in closet’s bar (that all my clothes hang from) splintered in half from the buckling weight of my colossal wardrobe. Possibly a divine intervention or just a manifestation of my own irrationality, I finally realized it best to divert from stifling my bank account and figured out beneficial methods in filtering through one’s own attire by eliminating the bad and sprucing up certain looks to rejuvenate the closet.

There will always remain several raggedy tees or worn-out jeans that start accumulating dust at the bottom of your drawers or never see the light of day by being cast aside to the dark abyss of your closet. To this issue, I suggest purchasing a fabric cutter akin to the one’s glamorized on Project Runway and turn your apparels into DIY projects. Fabric cutters work miraculously better than sheers and become worthwhile investments when they transform shirts into racerbacks and tanks.

b303ec07de4d77d54ac0ee3dacc1b9fa1Likewise, jeans have endless possibilities with regards to editing and modifying their style. If they begin running big from seasons of wear, turn them into boyfriend jeans by cuffing the length and gently tearing apart the thread with sandpaper and tweezers to garner that distressed frayed appeal. Take, for instance, those heinous flared belt-bottoms you once thought were fashionable. Using a fabric cutter, slice off the excess and turn your atrocities into decent jorts. If you’re feeling extremely adventurous (and only if you are), dabble in the process of acid washing a pair and see where the creativity takes you.

Sometimes, all your closet needs is a bit of reorganizing. Take a lazy afternoon to clear out your shelves and drawers and see exactly what pieces you have attained over time. You might be surprised as to the items you might rediscover. Use those items and challenge yourself by pairing a combination you normally would be adverse to or feasibly switching up your look with a play on textures or colors.

DSC_2776One advice is to go through your clothes and each time you wear a certain article of clothing, switch the hanger’s direction so by the end of year/season, it is visibly apparent which pieces never get worn by the way the hanger is facing. Instead of having them perpetually take up space, donate them or bring the clothes to a thrift shop and see what you can nab from your reject pile.

I also constantly seek inspiration through my surroundings. Study up on fashion blogs and see what street style you can gather influence from. I lavish in the looks found on The Man Repeller, Caroline’s Mode, WhoWhatWear, and the ridiculously addicting Tumblr. Peruse through and update yourself on the latest runways of fashion week. After watching a film, take a gander at the designs and costumes and draw on those ideas. Pick up a good read and whisk yourself into the thick of the text. For example, after devouring Kerouac’s On the Road, I fascinated myself with the styles of the post-war Counterculture and Beat generations and the simplicity things were thrown together.

There lies veracity in whoever said money can’t buy happiness didn’t know where to shop. But for those meagerly living as sparse college students, rather than fighting off temptation when walking through the Prudential Center and Newbury Street, look no further than to your closet first. In most cases, the elements are all present. And best of all, it will cost nothing at all (besides your time).

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