Wardrobe simplification: a challenge

Back in January I set a small challenge for myself.  No shopping for clothes, or shoes for 6 months.  I’d love to do a whole year but I’m a bit chicken.

A few weeks into the challenge, a special date night came up.  That is typically the kind of thing that sends me running for “something new”.  Sure, “new” might mean thrift shopping or resale but it’s still adding something to my closet that was previously not there.  Resolved to stick to my challenge, I hunted around my closet, got myself dressed and headed out to enjoy an evening with my husband.  My “date night” outfit was nothing special yet, I felt beautiful and very myself: black jeans, white t-shirt, black blazer, and shoes, that are older than my first born child.

We sat down to dinner with beloved friends, chatting and laughing through each course, then as I was leaving the bathroom, the heel of my shoe caught on the bathroom door.  There was an audible “snap” and my previously buckled sandal, slid off my foot.  Hmmmm, I’m in the middle of a restaurant, do I try limping back to the table and keep my shoe sort of on my foot, or do I just grab it up and walk with one bare foot?  (I went with limping, it was awkward.)  I returned to the table with a frown thinking my night was now over.  My husband assessed the situation and successfully MacGyver-ed my sandal back on my foot with some handiwork and a band-aid!  Our evening continued with two shoes on my feet the entire time.

Not ready to consent to the death of my sandals, I later set off to the cobbler to see what could be done.  It was an easy, inexpensive fix and my 13-year-old, resoled twice, sandals continue to trot on.

Without this challenge, I undoubtedly would have purchased something for my date night, would have tossed my old, broken shoes, and then spent hours looking for something new.  Thanks to this challenge, I had a nice conversation with the cobbler, saved myself the time and frustration of trolling the internet for sandals and realized my date night clothes don’t need to be very different from my daily clothes.

Anyone else doing challenges like these to reduce their consumption?