Don't let the spring trends give you the blues

For those of us keeping very busy schedules managing home, work and family and who are doing our best to know what is happening in our own homes, let alone the fashion universe, be of good cheer.

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  • Spring is here again. As we go into the season of color and beautiful fabrics, let us remember our personal message.

  • As I attend every fashion show known to man during the spring season, I am reminded of how easy it is to get lost in the excitement of the latest trends. Retailers woo you with the latest and greatest and show you why you MUST have certain items as the season is in full swing. If you wish to be a slave to fashion, by all means, get out your notepad; pull out every article in the fashion magazines which tell you the top five must haves and shop until you drop!

  • For those of us that keep very busy schedules managing home, work and family and who are doing our best to know what is happening in our own homes, let alone the fashion universe, be of good cheer. You do not need to know the hottest fashion trend of the season each year. It really doesn’t matter. Can you believe I just said that out loud and in writing? Yes. I did.

  • Clarity, relevance and return on investment (ROI) are always in style

  • Here are some tips you can use while wading through the in’s and out’s of what is in and out.

    • Create a mission statement for yourself. Know who you are and why you matter. This is always in style.

    • Clear out that closet. If it does not fit, you must acquit. I will frame closet cleaning in some shape or form in almost every article I write. There is a reason for this.

    • Organize your wardrobe by category and by color. (i.e. tank tops all together, short sleeves all together, pants all together) Sort each of these categories by color, light to dark.

    • Now, look for holes in your wardrobe and areas where you have too much. You will see some interesting patterns. Do you really need that many pairs of black or khaki pants?

    • Look for a balance of prints and solids.

    • Create a budget. How much money can you spend on clothing this spring? If your budget is tight, then commit to only one thing that will add maximum value to what you already own. For example, choose a color for a bottom piece, either a pant or skirt that you do not already have which could be worn with at least five of your tops. By adding that one piece, you have at least five new outfits. If you have more bottoms than tops, add a top instead that will go with all of your bottoms.

    • To add exponential value, make sure that the new item you choose can be worn in multiple venues, meaning that it could be worn in the place of jeans, in place of a dressy casual pant, and can also be worn very dressy. Now you have one pair of pants, skirt or top which can take you anywhere depending on what else you put with it.

    • Create a pie chart which tells how much of your time you are spending in each category of your life. Work, home with family, attending functions and dates. Your wardrobe investment dollars should be allocated to proportionally represent the reality of your lifestyle needs. If you are clever, you will be able to overlap 80 to 90 percent of your clothes. This will help you be more efficient with your capital.

    • A high ROI is always in style. Make your clothes work for you and offer you real returns. A wise and well placed investment will keep you and your wardrobe fresh and in style for several years.

    • Be relevant to who you are and where you want to go. Clarity is also very much in style!

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  • If you have the ability to hire a personal stylist who does not make their money by selling clothing and does not work for a retailer, it would be well advised. A little bit of money spent on a knowledgeable image consultant will pay for itself within the first session. Find someone that comes with references who are willing to share their experience with you.

  • Managing it all as a single parent is not easy. By taking the time out to be strategic and create a wardrobe that is a true reflection of yourself, your goals and your authentic lifestyle, you will always feel fresh and current.

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Joanne is a principal and co-founder of Pittman, Lamitie & Assoc, an expert in image consulting and developing workshops. She writes for HopeAfterDivorce.org, FamilyShare, LAFamily, and CupidPulse. Visit Joanne's site at www.pittmanlamitie.com.

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