40 Days of Sacrifice: Re-Invent Yourself!
I have tried many times to refrain from shopping. Last year, I said I would try for a full 365 days to refrain from shopping. I lasted three days. I decided this year that I would give up shopping for myself (notice the operative words here are “for myself”) during Lent. I mean, if I cannot do it for God, then … well, I guess, that is a problem between me and God. I was thinking what I will do to keep me “fasting.” I know a complete “wilderness experience” might include me not even tempting myself with trips to TJMaxx or looking online at Modcloth, but I simply will not go 40 days without stepping foot in TJMaxx, and it is unrealistic for me to not look at my online favorites. Plus, the real lesson in sacrificing is giving something up when it is in your face. I decided that every day for 40 days I could do something different with my wardrobe or with my person so that I look better in what I already have. So here are the first ten things or forty things that both I and you (should you choose to join me) can do for the next 40 days:
1. Tighten it up! or in my case, untighten- Instead of wearing tights with my dresses, I am going back to stockings. It sounds boring when there are so many trendy tights, but I wore a pair of flesh tone stockings and darn near did not recognize myself. If you generally wear stockings, try a fun printed tight instead. The point is to switch it up.
2. Get lifted– I am sure John Legend wasn’t thinking get fitted for a bra when he made that song. I went for a fitting and found out that I was wearing the wrong cup size. It is amazing how new your clothes look when you are wearing the proper undergarments. Because the goal is to not shop, I must wait until the 40 days is over to purchase any new bras, for now I may try slightly tightening the straps on the bras I do own.
3. Dye hard– I am thinking of getting rid of a velvet gray jacket I rarely wear, but I was thinking that if I remove the current color and re-dye with the Rit dye Scarlet, it will look so funky. Find one item you are about to get rid of because you are tired of looking at it, make a trip to the grocery store, buy a popping color and go to town. Make sure to get a color that will show i.e. if your item is red, then yellow likely may not show, go darker or buy a color remover.
4. Hemming and hawing– Don’t go hemming and hawing over what you don’t have. Adjust a hemline up or embellish a hemline by tacking lace or tulle to the hem.
5. Good cause– The Lenten season is based in sacrifice. Show your charitable side and clothing you haven’t worn in a year or more. I try to donate three to four times per year. There is no better time to do some closet cleaning than Spring.
6. Button it! – Take an older item an update it with new buttons. I had an old red suit with black cloth buttons. I took the buttons off and put on shiny gold ones and my suit was as good new.
7. Collar-less– A good coat is a good coat. No need to sacrifice a blazer or coat because it looks dated. Sometimes simple adjustments can make an old item look brand new. The coat I referred to above also had a black cloth collar and black sleeves. I opened the seams and took off the black cloth collar leaving the coat collarless.
8. Frame– maybe you think you need a new wardrobe when what you really need is a face, a completely different look. It could be time for a new haircut. If you don’t want to do anything drastic try some light layers around your face.
9. Create layers– I am a huge fan of shirtdresses. A great way to wear them is to slip a thin knit or slip dress on and wear the shirtdress atop the slip dress. Top both with a skinny belt.
10. Deliberate “tackiness”– Try breaking a fashion rule you once adhered to. I know you were told that black and brown do not go together, but I love to wear black skinny jeans with a black tee and then wear my cognac colored Frye boots and carry my cognac colored Cole Haan purse. Another one to try is to wear white before Easter. Shocking! I know. Many celebrities have made this trend not so daunting by pairing white dresses with black accessories- shoes, tights, belts, and swanky clutch purses.