Shopping My Closet until mid-March

Okay, admittedly, this is not such a big sacrifice for me, who still doesn't really love shopping and has nowhere good to shop in any case! (See Angie's shopping weaknesses post today.)

I've hardly reached wardrobe nirvana. I still have a few glaring wardrobe holes. I also own a number of items that, while good in theory, are definitely showing their wear and need to be updated or replaced. And my closet doesn't completely reflect my style aspirations at this point, either (though it is getting increasingly closer).

And yet, on the whole, I have the clothes I need to get through this season in comfort and even some degree of style. Yippee!

(Thank you, YLF!)

But my reason for shopping my closet it budgetary. In mid-March, I'm going to London with hubby, who has a conference there. So I want to save my pennies for some shopping there!

Any advice on what in particular I should look for in London would be much appreciated!

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • replied 7 years ago

    What a fun reason to go on SYC! You can do it!

  • replied 7 years ago

    Haha! That's like me giving up anchovies for Lent (when I don't even like anchovies).

    Seriously, you certainly have learned how to make do over the years and like you said, your wardrobe is shaping up to be better than ever, even if it's not perfect yet. The reason for your SYC is very exciting. Definitely make a trip to Harrod's and see what they have.

  • Transcona Shannon replied 7 years ago

    Shopping in London??? You lucky duck! Best SYC reason EVER!

  • anne replied 7 years ago

    What a good reason. No shopping advice, but wish I could come too!

  • Joy replied 7 years ago

    A trip to London is great SYC motivation! I'll join you as we are planning a March trip to Japan to see DS.
    We did a March Spring Break trip to London once with DSs but travel with 3 males who only shop for tech stuff kept me out of shops. I just remember feeling the need for thick soled shoes with all the rain and wet pavement. Feet get wet. Also, a good really waterproof coat, not just water resistant.
    You will see mid to late spring blossoms and lovely platings and window boxes.

  • Karie replied 7 years ago

    That sounds like a good reason to shop your closet! I have never been to London, but have always wanted to go - can't wait to see what you purchase on the other side of "the pond."
    BTW, I don't think shopping YOUR closet is such a bad thing - you always look fabulous!

  • Tina.b replied 7 years ago

    What a fabulous reason to SYC! I love London, one of my very fav places to visit. I have a very British mother though, so I come by it honestly. I definitely have an affinity for British fashion as well. My favourite place to shop is Harvey Nichols.

  • replied 7 years ago

    London!! What great incentive.

  • lyn67 replied 7 years ago

    Amazing news, Suz-so exciting!!!
    I love, love English brands like Marks and Spencer(most of my clothes are from it), Next, New Look, Debenhams, Clarks, and so on...They all have different subbrands-for different target markets so I advise to look and study their websites before your trip.
    Oh, and pay attention to correct sizing! (they are actually up 1 or 2 sizes from the USA/Canadian sizes, I think).

  • celia replied 7 years ago

    Best SYC reason ever.
    In my opinion your style reached a point of it doesn't depend on how much you buy or how much you have, you manage to SYC and look fabulous. That is something I can aim for .

    I only have been to London once many years ago and the bookstores were what got me.I guess as in most parts of Europe the shopping experience is enhanced by the old buildings on which the big chains like Harrods and Printemps(in Paris) are housed.

    Are we going to have one more of your wonderful packing posts?Hope so :)

  • ManidipaM replied 7 years ago

    So very excited for you, Suz! Though, have to agree with Claire too --- it's hardly a hardship for you, I figure ;-)

    ETA 1: Though M&S is sort of the default high-street brand (along with Debenhams, ASOS and John Lewis, I guess?) and has lots of variety, I also like some of the smaller ones: Monsoon, East (okay, obvious soft spot for me), Whistles, Jigsaw, Wallis, Jaeger. Not sure whether you'd be as charmed by Dorothy Perkins or Laura Ashley or Cath Kidston; but I'm sure you'd enjoy making time for one of the classic department stores, whether Harrods or Sainsburys.

    ETA 2: Forgot another favourite: Boden! ETA 3: And Toast!

  • JulieJohn replied 7 years ago

    Can't wait to see your new combos as you SYC. I believe in London you should search for an Irish store called "Taupe of the Mornin". Just goofing around. Your trip sounds like a lovely reason for deferred gratification.

  • replied 7 years ago

    I would want to check out ISSA for sure. How is the exchange rate?

  • Carole replied 7 years ago

    You go girl! Good luck with SYC, such a great incentive with your London trip in the wings. I have never been to London so I have no advise about shopping there but you are sure to get some great ideas from YLF's worldly members!

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Ali, I haven't checked the exchange rate yet. Must do that!

    Thank you for the words of sage advice on weather, Joy!

    JulieJohn, I am laughing too hard now - almost spilled my tea! Then my sweater would have been stained taupe!!

  • rachylou replied 7 years ago

    Ooooh! Check out all the online city style guides - Lucky, Refinery... I wonder if Tatler has one? Things change all the time. London is apparently purging it's rep for really bad food. My doctor spent X-mas there, and she said she basically did a foodie tour of London and loved it (!!)

  • Mo replied 7 years ago

    Fun! Good luck :)

  • Thistle replied 7 years ago

    Excelelnt reason to SYC until then!

  • Inge replied 7 years ago

    That is THE BEST incentive for a SYC!! London is fantastic and I love all the suggestions here. Also: Celia is right, the bookstores can be VERY tempting too...

    A few more ideas: Ted Baker, Hobbs, Bertie (, and a store I really would like to check out myself: Tracey Neuls (

    I am so excited for you!!

  • catgirl replied 7 years ago

    Yay for shopping in London! I have a girlfriend living there - moved from AK to marry a postman! I should put you in touch with her, she'd love a shopping buddy.

  • Kristin SF replied 7 years ago

    So fantastic! Mid-March is not that far away, too!

    Can't wait to see your London travel capsule and hear your thoughts about it, esp after all that you learned with your China trip. Your China travel capsule was fantastic and I loved reading your recap afterwards as well.

    Pip Pip!

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Ooh - thanks, Inge, for these great links! I have a jacket from Hobbs that I love. (Got on consignment here).

    Una, that would be cool!!

    Thank you so much for the kind words, Kristin. I actually woke up last night planning my capsule! I feel pretty set for London, to my surprise! I will just have to check the weather reports before I go. I've been there once before in mid-March and it was unexpectedly chilly (colder than usual). So I know....LAYERS!! :)

  • kellygirl replied 7 years ago

    JJ cracks me up! Great reason to SYC. Good luck, Suz.

  • jenanded replied 7 years ago

    Primark! DD and I finally went there (near Marble Arch) and it is SOOOOOO cheap with so much of the latest styles but nicer quality I think than TopShop etc. Expect to stand in line out the door to get a change room... The tops we bought have lasted really well.
    I dribble outside the door of Wardrobe on Conduit/new Bond St where its all hand selected range from Italy with personal assistants to select your outfits. Handbags start around 3000pounds as you can imagine. It is interesting to see the type of women who are admitted. They invited me in one time and they are just lovely friendly people even though my budget would never stretch to something like that. But its lovely to see really beautiful clothes etc that aren't the mass-prestige 'luxury' brands which you see everywhere. Oh and look at Liberty in its old building! And I was chuffed to walk on Saville Road (Abercrombie and Fitch is there (more groan on mass produced 'luxury' brands...). Yes Jigsaw is nice - dont think that is in the US/Canada. A bit 'pretty' like a lot of English designs IMHO....

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Jen, thank you! Wow, I'm developing quite a list. Luckily, my hubby is busy for two whole days while we are there and I can go off on my own!

  • jenanded replied 7 years ago

    I will be in London a bit after you I suspect Suz - darn it would have been nice to meet up! Suspect I may be in Canada then... just waiting for some final details and will finalise a BIG trip... the wardrobe capsule will be the next big drama... Yahoo! Personally I find english clothes a bit twee for me... but I would love a Mulberry handbag!

  • jenanded replied 7 years ago

    Suz, and go to the V& A museum where they have clothes and jewellery collections... that is mightly drool worthy! I REALLY want Queen Victoria's ruby solitaire ring for example Lol!!

  • morethanbeige replied 7 years ago

    Very excited for you!

  • unfrumped replied 7 years ago

    This sounds like great fun and opportunity. The SYC savings will give you the room to really enjoy some new purchases.

    Developing a focus on some specific stores or items, plus the fact that you have a great sense of your own style, should help with optimizing shopping! Plus you might want to have the backup idea of clearlyclaire's "no purchase" success--not hoping you won't find cool things, but not feeling pressure that you would be a failure to be in London not buy a lot of stuff. Buy it if you love it and not just 'cause you're there and feel you have to come away with something.

  • Deborah replied 7 years ago

    Suz what a brilliant reason for SYC! No further suggestions to those above but I am so excited for you.

  • Ruby Tuesday replied 7 years ago

    Oh Suz, March will be here in no time ;-)

    If you are shopping solo and have a day to spend I would head to Covent Garden for sure http://www.coventgardenlondonu.....ear/page/1 once there you will have an arsenal of stores at your disposal.

    I think you may find Nicole Farhi a good match for your style Suz she is known for a simple aesthetic with luxe fabrics, her knitwear is divine.

    It may also be fun to watch the new drama series Mr Selfridge before hitting the department store on Oxford Street

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Ooh, Julie- thank you for those links - off to peruse!!!

    Unfrumped, that is sage advice. I aim to take it!

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    And Jen - you will be in Canada? Well....we must hear more!!

  • Mona replied 7 years ago

    This is so exciting, Suz. I got some really good pj's from primark there. So cheap and comfy. Do check out Zara. I loved their collection and Oxford Street is a must visit if you want to find a lot of good stores in one place. One thing I noticed while shopping in London was their shoe collections. They have tons of styles at every store. So much more variety and different styles. House of Frasers and Debbenhams are also good. Also Topshop, Marks and Spencer, Mango and TK Maxx.

  • Angie replied 7 years ago

    What Jules, said :)

    How exciting!!! I'm happy for you Suz! xo

  • Caro in Oz replied 7 years ago

    So exciting:)

    I kept this link for a link love & forgot about it until now. I haven't looked at them all but it gives you a feel for the types of things that are around.

    This one is an old one from 2011 but worth a look - couldn't link so I'll cut & paste below:

    Louis Vuitton's Maison (17-18 New Bond Street; 020 3214 9300) is a must-visit, if only to check out the impressive art collection and limited edition books. Selfridges (400 Oxford Street; 0800 123 400) recently unveiled its shoe galleries, home to everything from Kurt Geiger to Givenchy and perfect for a spot of retail therapy. When it comes to finding the newest names, head straight for the legendary Browns (23-27 South Molton Street; 020 7514 0000) or East London's Start Boutique (42-44 Rivington Street; 020 7033 3951). And, of course, don't forget a trip to Topshop's Oxford Street mecca.

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Oooh - so exciting - thank you all for these great links!!

  • Raisin replied 7 years ago

    Yay, that's a great reason to SYC! And it won't be so hard when you think about all the great things you can get in London, not too long away.

  • Mochi replied 7 years ago

    Sometimes it's good to step back and take a breather. The time will go by, and it IS possible to survive, even with gaping wardrobe holes (I'm doing it....)

    I wish I could recommend shopping in London. Have been a number of times and never so much as bought a t-shirt there! I do remember everything being quite expensive, so start saving. Can't wait to see what you bring back!

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    I know. i have been to London several times and love the city. But the only thing I bought there was books. I don't intend to do a lot of shopping, actually. I just hope to bring back one or two things that will feel unique and great to wear.

  • Atlantia replied 7 years ago

    Suz you lucky duck! I was just in London this past summer meeting my boyfriend's parents. I brought home two lovely scarves and a handbag. I did a lot of window shopping, and found some gorgeous things, but the exchange rate was killer for my meager shopping budget. To that end, I think you should think of a wardrobe hole that you really want to fill, and shop with purpose.
    And when in doubt, scarves. The scarves in London are gorgeous, well made, and cheap. Who could ask for more?

  • Suz replied 7 years ago

    Scarves are great b/c they pack up well. So I will do that for sure. But I am thinking a handbag...I REALLY need one. And that might be the spot. Also, perhaps, a jacket.

  • bj1111 replied 7 years ago

    launer, handbag purveyor to the queen

    or if you're a thatcherite

    of course...barbour is a classic. burberry is too chav.

    get the jacket with a suede patch against which you can rest your hunting rifle.

    enjoy london! eat lots, shop lots.

  • DonnaF replied 7 years ago

    Hooray for you!!! Plus, I was reflecting that you probably have the build to at least sometimes fit Euro sizing! Not everyone does. . .

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