7 Apr 2016

Investment Dressing: The Strategy #3, Mix & Match

There is a strategy to investment dressing.

Investment involves time and considered thought. Investment is about the return, whatever the commodity.

Fashion and finding personal style requires serious investment as we age. There is nothing inexpensive about looking good, on any budget.

The key to a wise fashion investment is putting our faith in a solid designer and making sure our choices stack up on a cost per wear basis.

Cost per wear is one of my most successful “investment” strategies and helps when considering future purchases. Designer wear is expensive and justifying a buy on a cpw basis gives the answer without too much emotion standing in the way.

I am less about the I-have-to-have-it-because-I-can’t-live-without-it sentiment than how-many-times-will-I-wear-this practicality. Age may have something to do with this way of thinking.

I find fads don’t work as successfully as they once did and nothing says style better than quality and the classics. This is not to say that age equates with boring fashion style; far from it. A certain age means having the wisdom to invest in fashion and the knowledge of where to place “wardrobe” importance.

Experience allows the luxury of selecting pieces to compliment and make dressing easier.

“Investment strategy” makes looking good sound seriously legitimate. Don’t you think?

Joking aside, investing in fashion and in the right pieces is important. Investment pieces should work along side each other, both independently and together; a mix and match approach.

When investing in a new item of clothing I want to be sure the piece will marry well with others. A shell style blouse should work under several jackets and a pair of pants must fit with the blouse and the jackets also.

I want to be able to create several looks from one investment piece and I want to use them to “dress up” the non-investment pieces in my wardrobe.

The best way to mix and match with investment pieces is to forget the “top to toe” designer idea and apply a mix of fashion. Wear the superb blouse with the boyfriend jeans or the fabulous blazer; try the elegantly cut trouser with the Gap tee.

Add a field jacket over the same trousers and it is a whole new game.[/one_half_last]

The same applies to beautiful dresses.

Invest in a sheath style dress and wear it in multiple ways. Try it with sneakers for a casual, every day look and don’t save it for best. The cost per wear really kicks in when a piece can be worn on many occasions.

Test the dress with all shapes of jackets; the evening 3/4 coat, the blazer and the field jacket. If the dress is well chosen it can be worn in so many “mix and match” ways.

I include 5 investment mix and match pieces in the wardrobe; the dress, the shell blouse, the pant, the jacket and the coat.

There is a variety of each but when I analyse the pieces I buy repeatedly and wear most successfully it is these 5.

Skirts have fallen behind over the last years in favour of dresses and pants. I still like them and wear them but am less inclined to “invest” in them.

Many of my mix and match investment pieces are from St John.

Classic and well-designed pieces that stack up on a cost per wear basis. They are timeless so endure, simple and classic to appear elegant and of the moment. The beauty of this clothing is I wear it and not the other way around.

Interpreting our own style at this stage and age must be our main game; I don’t want to be a walking advertisement for someone else.

There is strategy to investment dressing; it is simply a question of thinking it through. xv

Investment Dressing: The Strategy, Mix And Match

the must have shell

fine gauge jersey  //  **liquid satin  //  tie neck crêpe de chine  //  liquid crepe and georgette

the mix and match jacket

izza fringe trim // **double breasted boucle  //  tache knit  //  houndstooth knit

the this goes with that dress 

milano sheath  //  **milano fit and flare  //  milano elbow sleeve  //  silk sculpture  //   milano sheer yoke

the pant

the jennifer  //  the emma crepe marocain  //  **the emma liquid satin  //  the ponte knit ankle

over the top

**floral cloque topper  //  duchesse satin topper

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