Changing the Wardrobe: Transitioning From Round 2 to Round 3 of Project 333!

Round 2 of Project 333 is over. Round 3 begins today.

How did I do in the last month? Well, I cheated a little bit. Here’s how:

Horton Hears A Who!
March 2nd was Dr. Seuss’ birthday. I remembered that one of my items in storage was a zip-up Horton Hears A Who! hoodie. I knew the staff and students at work would love it so I pulled it out and wore it for his birthday. It was a hit! I put it back when I was done. That hoodie is also the only hoodie I have now, after I streamlined my wardrobe a few months ago and donated the others – so I was OK using it.

New Scarf.
One of my dear coworkers gifted me a lovely off-white, lacy scarf that I love and have been wearing instead of the green scarf originally on the list. Ironically, the green scarf was also a gift from a previous co-worker. Perhaps it’s a symbol of transition?

New Shoes!
This is the first pair of shoes I have bought myself in the last two years and I’m pretty darn excited about them. They’re a pair of super-comfy black flats that go well with anything. I didn’t like the black heels I had on my list – uncomfortable, and I needed something without heels. I went out shopping with a goal of finding a pair of flats and fell in love with one. I’ve been wearing these for the past two weeks in lieu of the black heels.

Other than those few steps off the path, the last three months went by well!

As for the next three?

This might be difficult for me. The first two months will be significantly different than the last two months. I need to dress professionally in April and May. Once June rolls around, I’ll be spending most of my time outdoors (including a week-long sleep-away camp that I am beyond excited about!). Most of the items I wear in April and May won’t be worn during June. I need to find a balance between professional and unprofessional clothes. I also have a few clothing items that I love but packed up because they could not be worn as more than one outfit: my favorite multicolored striped dress pants and a flattering, vintage skirt – just to name a couple. If I had the money, I would buy a few things to match my favorite pieces of clothing, but I have to make do with what I have, which I’ve been doing for years anyway.

Here’s my list of clothing for the next three months:

1. Purple dress
2. Pink dress
3. Black and gray dress
4. Light gray button-up dress
5. Gray cardigan*
6. Gray long-sleeved shirt
7. Green sweatshirt
8. Plaid shirt*
9. White t-shirt*
10. Fuchsia tank top
11. White tank top*
12. Black tank top*
13. Pink tank top
14. Axis t-shirt*
15. Plain white t-shirt*
16. Fuchsia t-shirt
17. Gray t-shirt
18. Green t-shirt*
19. Brown t-shirt*
20. Woodstock t-shirt
21. Dark blue jeans*
22. Gray skinny jeans*
23. Light blue jeans*
24. Black dress pants*
25. Light gray dress pants
26. Black dress Bermuda shorts
27 Denim Bermuda shorts
28. Black leggings
29. Black flats
30. Black Converse All-Stars*
31. Black flip-flops
32. White fashion scarf
33. Black belt

*indicates items staying from Round 2.

Three extra items in closet: dressy sandals, light blue skirt, dressy top.

Items not counted: slippers, pajamas & robe (which doubles as in-home lounge wear), volleyball gear (gym shoes, spandex, shirt), bathing suits, underwear, socks, hearing aids, glasses, jewelry (a couple necklaces, a couple earrings, rings – not that I wear much anyway).

I didn’t include a coat. My sweatshirt or cardigan + scarf will be my outer, warm layer.

OK. Here I go!

Previous posts about Project 333:

Project 333 on December 29, 2010
My Project 333: Phase II Update on January 5, 2011
One Month Into Project 333: Phase II on February 1, 2011
Wait, I’ve been wearing the same few outfits for the two months already? on March 1, 2011

Wait, I’ve been wearing the same few outfits for the past two months already?

When I opened my closet a few days ago and selected a shirt to wear, that’s the thought that popped in my head.

“Wait, I’ve been wearing the same few outfits for the past two months already?? Huh. Interesting.”

See, the thing is, I forgot about Project 333.

I forgot about it because now I just do it.

I no longer fret about people looking down on me for wearing the same clothes, week after week. My brain has been wired to believe I don’t own more than five pairs of shoes. My gray cardigan is a staple that is comfortable and goes with anything. I take no time getting ready in the morning. I forgot that I had two bags of clothes in the basement.

Having less clothes is a mindset for me now. It’s not a challenge anymore – it’s comfortable.

And can I tell you how much I love that everything fits in a small closet?

The only major thought that has crossed my mind regarding clothing is that I need new shoes. All the shoes I included in the project are at least two years old. They got some pretty good wear – I wore them almost every day before Project 333 – and are at the point now that I need to toss them out after winter is over. I am a little excited about this. It means that I will have less shoes taking up space in the closet over the summer and when fall rolls around, I can invest in one or two slightly expensive pairs with more thought into what I need, what goes with my clothes and the weather, how I can make the shoes last, and what I don’t need to buy again.

The next month should go pretty smoothly. I can’t wait to see what’s next for Project 333!

And if there isn’t anything, that’s OK. I’m just going to do it on my own.

On another note, it’s March already?! Time speeds up as each day passes…

One Month Into Project 333: Phase II!

Today marks the completion of my first month as a participant in Project 333: Phase II, and let me tell you – it’s actually been pretty easy!

Laundry was not as much of an issue as I thought it would be, thanks to my wonderful fiancee who has taken the liberty to do my laundry when he’s home. I also realized that I don’t need to throw things into the laundry after wearing it just once, and have worn shirts a couple times before considering it ‘dirty.’ This has allowed me to expand the ‘wear time’ of my clothing. I actually haven’t worn everything I selected yet; some things have only been worn once.

Of the original 33 items I selected, there are still a few items I’ve barely worn:

  • Plaid shirt (yet to wear)
  • Red & Tan striped sweater (worn once)
  • Black tank top (worn once)
  • Black t-shirt (yet to wear)
  • Black dress pants (yet to wear)
  • Black Converse All-Stars (worn once)
  • Black dress shoes with short heel (yet to wear)

I don’t really want to wear the red & tan striped sweater again (I only included it because it is a warmer sweater and my fiancee loves it on me). It will be donated at the end of this winter season, along with my two brown shoes that have been worn way too much in the past two years. As for the three items I decided to put aside for “dress to impress” evenings, I ended up not wearing the gray suede boots and sticking with the brown sweater boots instead, which was a good choice during an especially cold and snowy evening in the city.

What clothing items do I miss?

  • My dangling brown earrings – these are the pair I wear when I feel like ‘dressing up’ a little extra. There have been a few days when I was a little tired of my simple pearl earrings.
  • Extra layering shirts. I have a few more that are put out of sight for the project, but I could use them. I would take out a few of the items I haven’t worn much and replace them with a couple more shirts, if I could.

That’s pretty much it. I love my gray cardigan and wear it almost every day.

The outfit I’m wearing in the picture is typical: gray cardigan, t-shirt, jeans.

That’s what I love about this project. It gives me the freedom to wear my favorites over and over without feeling like I have to conform to today’s fashion trends or the expectation that I need to have a lot of clothing. People haven’t mentioned anything to me about my repetitive outfits, and I love waking up in the morning knowing exactly what I’m going to wear.

Will I be sticking with only 33 items after the project is over? No, but I know I will be cutting down on my clothing until I am left with about a week’s worth of favorite outfits for each season and a few extras things for different occasions.

The great thing about this project is that I feel free.