So many of us hold on to clothing after losing or gaining weight. We do it for various reasons: (1) we think we may get back into them, or (2) we don’t want to spend more money on clothes, or (3) we see dollar signs when we get rid of said item(s). Whatever reason you have, imagine losing over 75 pounds, that is a lot of sizes by the way, and not being able to fit into any of your clothing anymore. Sure, that is a wonderful feeling, but then, your entire wardrobe is gone. You definitely need clothes, and most people don’t want to spend a ton of money to replace everything they once had.
Assessing the Need for a Rebuild
Being a self-proclaimed minimalist, I (Shannon) feel as though I had a pretty great capsule wardrobe, with a few statement pieces. As I started my wellness journey at the beginning of covid, I started noticing that my uptick of walking and eating more healthy meals to compensate for my anxiety (I can get into the wellness journey in another blog post) began paying off in the waist line. My pants began to get a little loose. Being the planner that I am, this totally threw my capsule wardrobe game off, due to the fact that I could no longer wear some of my items, but, thanks to covid (ahem, that really feels wrong to say), I was living in yoga pants and leggings, so it didn’t matter so much.
As the pounds came off, the dollars came in. Cha-ching! As I began losing weight, I told myself that I was not going to hold on to those pieces I could no longer fit, because I was not going to get back into those clothes, so, I sold them. One by one, I put each item online to sell. I wasn’t looking to get rich, but I did want to get a few bucks for each item. Some of the pieces were higher end, since I make a concerted effort to buy quality items that will stick around for a while, so I started making some decent cash. That was motivation enough for me to keep going on my weight loss journey. Plus, it’s not as if I needed those clothes. I was working from home, and again, living in leggings. Each time I saw how much money I would make by selling another item, I would go back to the closet and look at what else I could sell. Every few weeks, I went back and sold more.
Making Money From Your Clothes
When selling, I recommend Poshmark. I have tried a ton of online consignment shops and resale websites. I could list all the reasons to not use most of them, but I don’t want to waste time on all of the negative experiences. Let’s just say, I’ve had a lot of them. Poshmark makes it super easy, and my time is more valuable to me than the fees they take out of my sales, so for me, it is totally worth it.
If you have items like t-shirts, or lower end clothes that you don’t think will bring in any money, just donate it (if it is still wearable) to your local community assistance program. If it is not wearable, or damaged, you can donate it to non-profit textile companies like Planet Aid, where it will be recycled for good use.
The Reason You are Here- How Did I Get New Clothes?
That is the big question, right? How did I rebuild my wardrobe without spending any money? Well, you know all of those clothes I was selling along the way? I allowed the balance to accumulate in Poshmark. You have the choice to allow the balance to accumulate, or you can cash out and transfer it to your bank account. I just kept letting that balance pile up.
I didn’t buy anything new for a long time. You’d be surprised at how long you can wear leggings, even when they get baggy. It wasn’t until spring rolled around, and we started getting visitors, post-covid vaccine rollout, that I started realizing that, “oh, yeah, I guess it really isn’t all that cool to wear clothes that are super baggy anymore.” Quarantine gives you a false awareness, I guess. You don’t lose all 75 pounds at once, so little by little, you just realize your clothes are getting roomier.
By the time shorts season was here, I had nothing. I began planning my capsule wardrobe for summer- staple items, and a few statement pieces. You know the drill. I searched on Poshmark for items people selling, gently used, or new that they never wore, and purchased them at 60%-90% less than the original cost of the item, with my balance. My bank account never once was touched for any clothing items during the entire time I have lost weight, which is amazing, especially for a weight loss of over 75 pounds. I plan to not use any of my own money, since I still have a Poshmark balance, even now, and still have items to sell, as of the date of writing this blog.
We have even used the balance for items that Gerry has needed, so technically, we have added items to his wardrobe from selling items I no longer wear. Win-win, with whipped cream on top!
The wonderful thing is that this practice, not only has made us realize how easy it is to sell clothes, and make them available to someone else who can use them, but how accessible other items are when I need them. It reduces our carbon footprint, keeps items out of the landfill, and fulfills our guidelines for our no-buy year. This is something that we hope to continue past this journey.
The other great thing is that so much of the Poshmark community is eco-friendly. For example, when I have received items, I often see that the packaging has been reused and will have a note written to “please reuse/recycle packaging”, which I love. For my packaging, I always reuse packaging I have received, and when I cannot, I use paper grocery bags that I have stored, and/or tie items with twine, writing a kind note to enclose with the item, asking the purchaser to do the same with the packaging. It’s such a sweet community that I am happy to be a part of.
If you found this blog post because you searched about rebuilding your wardrobe, and have questions, please don’t hesitate to ask away. This has been a fun journey for me. It has been challenging, but also exciting to cultivate a new capsule wardrobe from scratch, and I have loved every second of it.
If you are wondering about the weight loss journey, and found this by searching for that, I know that has been a big question from many. It’s really not that big of a secret. I will post a blog about it soon, but it really all comes down to the fact that I have a ton of anxiety and decided to combat it during quarantine/covid with walking, eating healthier, and a bit of intermittent fasting. More on that later, stay tuned. 😉