solstice shopping haul

As I've mentioned more than a couple times here recently, my body has been a changing, and that means my clothes aren't fitting the same anymore. Unfortunately, it's gotten to the point where they weren't fitting period. I gave away my last pair of too-small skinny jeans and I've been staring at a row of dresses and blouses every morning that made me feel both too big and inadequate. That's not a positive or fair way to start the day.

I've been trying to do a little shopping here and there, on Instagram, local thrift shops, and Forever 21, trying to slowly rebuild my closet. Well, after too many tears in the mornings last week, I decided I was rebuilding too slowly and needed to kick it up a notch. So I did what any (credit) card-carrying shopper would do. I went to the outlets. What better way to celebrate my body in its current form that buying pretty new clothes, and what better time than the solstice?

(Hopefully) you're all familiar with the greatness that is J.Crew Factory, which has crazy-good sales, like, always. My local outlet mall also has a Gap Outlet and a Banana Republic Outlet, and I received and email Friday morning for 40% off in each of those stores. Because money is especially tight, but so are my wardrobe choices, I went with a mission. A pair of jeans, versatile work dresses, and a couple of blouses. Since I spend 40 hours a week at work, I really needed to focus in on things I can get a lot of wear out of each and every week in the office. Weekends feel more sparse these days, so I can make do with what I've got.

Anyway, here's what I got, not including a perfect new pair of skinnies from Gap. I went two sizes up from my old/current pair, and I'm so happy I did, because they fit really comfortably and I still have room to eat a sandwich. Can you tell I was really feeling blue?

june-shopping-haul
sorry for the turrrible photo quality--took these at night. womp womp!
Have you ever had to pretty much start over with your wardrobe? What made it harder or easier on you? Any fun new buys this month or solstice celebrations to share? I wanna hear it all!

17 comments

  1. I was hoping you'd show off your new buys! I LOVE all of those dresses. I stopped by JCrew Factory because it's on the way home/I'm obsessed and I was sad that I couldn't find the striped one you mentioned. It's super cute!

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  2. These are all super cute! I especially love the dresses. I think I own the two top sweaters that you purchased-from Jcrew outlet? They are my fave!
    I can totally relate to the weight gain/body changing stuff you're going through. I was always a solid size 10/12 pant and large top from 9th grade through my senior year of college. Then graduate school (and the stress eating that comes with it) and I gained about 40lbs and went to a size 14/16 and wear an xl or xxl shirt. I couldn't fit into any of my old clothes and would totally stare at my closet and cry in the mornings when I tried to squeeze into some garment that would barely go on and make me feel like I was wearing a sausage casing.
    After I bought new clothes (ironically also from the gap, Jcrew, and banana republic), I felt a lot better. Just having clothes that fit you feels SO much better. Torturing yourself by hoping that your old clothes will fit accomplishes nothing.
    I am so glad you decided to get some new items that make you feel better and more confident. You're beautiful, lady!

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  3. Totally in the same boat. I am going through some body changes as well, and it has been really disheartening trying to put on my summer clothes that don't fit anymore. So glad you found some cute pieces! I definitely need to hit up J. Crew factory.

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  4. What you just did is exactly what I had to do. For about a year, no matter what I did I gained more weight. A diagnosis and 30 lbs later, I'm trying to fix the damage that was done, but in the mean time I had to find some items that made me happy about my new shape and size. Not that you should always find happiness in clothes, but what you put on should make you feel good about yourself. For a long time, what I was trying to squeeze into was not doing that at all. I was uncomfortable and looked it. Also, it didn't help the emotional side effects of the meds I was on at all. I had to break down and just go try a million things on, forget about sizes and shop for comfort. After about a year at this new size, I'm happy with my wardrobe and myself and feeling better on all fronts. Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do.

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  5. Girl, I've been there a couple of times. When I first moved here, I was still wearing pretty young, college type clothing, and when I started teaching (and got in a serious relationship with a guy who had a pretty grown up style), I started shopping for more professional clothing, and as my size has gone up and my personality has gotten more grown up and professional, my wardrobe has really changed. Along with style shifts, I've jumped up in sizes a couple of times, and each time there's been a culling of clothes that don't fit anymore. You learn to look for clothes styles and fabrics that are more forgiving to weight change, and to finally invest more in shoes and accessories, which you don't have to toss out with a size change. I'm so glad you went out and bought yourself some nice things. It's feels fiscally irresponsible, but it's emotionally (and professionally) necessary. A lot of people refuse to buy new clothes until they're the size they want to be (for example my mom her whole mom life, basically) or get new cheap clothes that are placeholders so that they can invest in nicer clothes when they size down. That just doesn't make you feel good about your body. I think I talked about this in my closet cleaning post ages ago, but I really try to only keep clothes hanging up in my closet that I know fit me today. I get rid of stuff that I'm sizes (or years) away from being able to wear, and keep a box of stuff that I think I could fit in if I lost/gained a couple of pounds or don't love now but would like to try again before getting rid of. The last thing you need is to start your day by saying I can't wear that because I'm too fat for it. Take an afternoon, try everything on, and only leave up the stuff you feel good in right now. It might give you fewer options, but the stuff that doesn't make you feel good isn't a real option anyway.


    -Jen
    yourstrulyjen.com

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  6. yes! i did this on sunday! i finally put a bunch of dresses and tops i've been holding onto, but not wearing, in the sell/donate pile, and moved all the pieces i love and want to keep but that don't fit in our guest room closet so i only have things i can/want to wear right now in front of my when i go to look. that always feels so good! i feel like my whole closet got a much-needed refresh, and so did my self-esteem. i think i'm going to do a post on this actually--thanks for the inspiration! i'll definitely be linking to yours.

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  7. girl, i feel you with the feeling and *looking* uncomfortable. ignoring the number on the garment was the best thing, because every store really is different. people see how the garment fits your body, not the size on the tag, anyway!

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  8. yes! j.crew factory and the gap/banana outlets are so good for replacing staples in your closet without spending an enormous amount of money. go on a weekend! they always have crazy good sales then.

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  9. sausage casing is such an accurate way to describe how i've felt in most of my clothes recently. i already feel so much better and start my day off in a better mood and mindset with a closet full of clothes that fit. moving out the stuff that doesn't fit was a big help too!

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  10. I'm so glad you found some cute things! I feel like when I am on a mission to find things, and willing to spend some more money - I usually strike out! I hit the "+20lbs, nothing in my closet fits" about a year after I got married and had force myself to go up a size. Now I tend to shop quite a bit on a regular basis, so my closet is ever evolving. The nice thing is that the too small things tend to get pushed to the back of the closet before I realize that they are too small. And then when I do a cleanout, they go and I don't feel too bad about it. I still need to lose about oh, 50lbs, but I'm trying to dress the body I have right now and not wait to get into smaller sizes. It's tough, but I'm glad we have internet friends to encourage each other!

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  11. good for you, girl! honestly, I think it's brave and self-accepting to just say, hey, I need to buy things that fit me NOW. I am definitely guilty of hanging on to things that are just too small, hoping I'll be small enough to wear them again! I'm sure having stuff that fits you really well is a relief, AND a much better way to start your day, like you said.

    and oh my, what cute choices! with these + the jeans I feel like you have an awesome springboard for almost an entire new closet. an outlet trip is totally the way to go. I kept telling myself I would go to some outlets nearby when I got my adult job, but unfortunately the time or the money was never really there at the same time. anyway, I applaud you. can't wait to see how you style them. hope you are well <3

    ♥ perfectly Priya

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  12. J. Crew Factory love!!! Represent!

    I started going through this last fall, after bebe #2. I'm glad I started right away and didn't wait for things to "go back to normal" because I'd still be waiting, 9 months later. This way, I have pretty much a new wardrobe, and I feel pretty damn good ... about it, and about my post-baby, rest-of-my-life body. Pretty clothes are a good cure for the body blues, in my books anyway.

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  13. I'm heading to the outlet mall this weekend. I know how you feel with needing a completely new wardrobe. I also recently changed sizes and need to start all over again. This post really makes me feel like I'm not alone in this! Thanks!

    -Hayley
    www.lifeofhayley.wordpress.com

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  14. I'm glad you found some cute stuff! I've picked up some cute items this month as well - gladiators, toucan dress, pineapple shirt & earrings! i've never had to completely start over but I bet its hard.

    Maddy

    http://cassidylou.com

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  15. Oh, you have such fun outlet store. The closest outlet is.... well, I'm not sure. Not close. A day's drive and more, for sure.


    Glad you have items you are feeling confident about :)

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  16. They look like pretty good choices to me! You can never have too many cardigans :)

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  17. Hooray! You did a great job choosing some fantastic pieces that will looks amazing on your body and will work well for work and weekends! I have only been to one outlet mall, back in college...but I just discovered that our new house is less than 10 minutes away from a huge outlet mall! And...I just started doing a year of no shopping...so I'll have to wait to try it out until next summer! AH!

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