Shopping Diaries: March 2018

After overspending on my wardrobe last year, I decided to track my spending. At the beginning of each month, I will review and reflect on the things I bought in the previous month. I hope the insights I gain from doing this will help me accomplish three goals: 1) avoid overspending, 2) shop smarter (quality not quantity), and 3) have a functional closet full of pieces I love to wear. 

March was an expensive month

I didn’t expect to spend as much as I did last month. I played around with the idea to do a shopping ban, but that clearly didn’t happen. Turns out, just when I had the idea, two of the things I’ve been eyeing for a while came back in stock. So, you could say that the universe interfered and I totally gave in. Anyway, let’s get into it.

Things I bought and kept

1. Doen Cardiff Cardigan

$358 + Cost of Shipping = $371.56

Why I bought it: I’ve been eyeing this cardigan since the fall when it was completely sold out. I thought I would have found something just as good for a fraction of the price by now. I almost bought this Rag & Bone cardigan because it was on sale and I was getting impatient. But I realized that even if I bought it, I would still be thinking of this Doen one. So I passed and kept looking.

Takeaway: No settling. In my personal experience, doing so has always resulted in me spending more money in the long run. Since I buy what I settle for, and then eventually pay up to buy what I wanted in the first place. Since the desire for it never went away.

So when this cardigan restocked, I decided to order it. My logic? If it’s as perfect as I’m imagining it to be, I wouldn’t need any other cardigan. Now that I have it, I can say that it is everything I imagined it to be. This is now the only cardigan I own and need.

Fit: I originally ordered the xs/s but found that it was a bit more form fitting than I wanted it to be. So I exchanged it for the medium and now the fit is perfect. Since I’m always cold, there are endless outfit possibilities with this all year round.

Final verdict: I know I’ll wear this piece over and over again for years to come. No regrets here.

2. AGOLDE Riley High Rise Straight Crop Jeans

$158 + tax = $172.02

Why I bought it: I’ve been looking for a pair of light wash jeans for a while. I tried the Everlane kick flare jeans and they just weren’t right for me. When I found myself wearing my medium wash AGOLDE jeans on repeat, I wished they also made a light wash version. Turns out, they do!

Fit: The AGOLDE site claims that these jeans are true to size. So I ordered it in a 25. The 25 is a bit baggy around my waist and thighs. Although it seems to fit just fine in the picture, I’ve had jeans in the past that fit like this and just get baggier and baggier with wear. So I ordered a 24 to see if it will fit me better. It hasn’t arrived yet, but I think it will work out since I already own the medium wash in a 24 (the site recommends sizing down).

Final Verdict: The denim and straight leg fit make this jean really comfortable. Hopefully, I’ll feel the same way about the 24.

Takeaway: If unsure of sizing, order it in the two sizes to save time.

Things I bought and returned

1. Champion + HVN Hoodie


Why I bought it: I realized I didn’t own a single pullover hoodie. I knew it would come in handy for my flight to Italy next month since I hate resting my head on anything other than my own pillow. I was really drawn to pink and white gingham Champion logo and the overall color of the hoodie. And, the oversized pocket of course. (This is part of the Champion collaboration with the brand, HVN, which is known for their printed silk dresses).

Fit: I ordered a small and liked how oversized it fit.

Why I returned: When I tried it on, pieces of the fleece were already falling off. They landed on my hair and the t-shirt that I wore underneath. This was a sign that it wasn’t going to wear or wash well. Then I went on the Urban Outfitters site and found that someone wrote a review about how badly it pilled after one wash. So, the decision to return was easy.

Takeaway: Quality matters.

2. Self Love Sneakers


Photo via Net-A-Porter

Why I bought it: I mentioned in a previous wishlist post that I have been looking for a pair of white sneakers. These Self Love sneakers are a collaboration between the brand Z Shoes and Net-A-Porter. They look a lot like the Isabel Marant Bart sneakers that I have been wanting, but have been sold out everywhere in the US. I also liked that instead of a logo, the back of the sneakers preach self love.

I ordered it through the Z Shoes site because it was $200 at the time with free shipping and no tax. It would have cost me about $216 on the Net-A-Porter site. The Z Shoes site has increased the price of the sneakers to $215 though.

Fit: They are definitely true to size. I ordered my usual size 7.5 and they fit perfectly. They also felt comfortable enough to not need any breaking in.

Why I returned: The quality wasn’t nearly what I expected it to be for $200. In the end, I still want the Isabel Marant ones. So I knew that if I kept these sneakers, I would 100% be settling. Luckily, they have great customer service and offer free shipping. They refunded me the day after my return shipped. I was pleasantly surprised by this since they’re still a relatively small brand.

Takeaway: Free returns and good customer service go a really long way.

The numbers

My total for March is a whopping $543.58. This brings my year-to-date spending to $850.26. I have now added two additional items into my closet (a total of eight for the year).

Final thoughts

Even though this was an expensive month, I added two classic pieces into my closet that I have had on my wishlist for a while. I don’t expect that I will be spending nearly as much in the coming months. With the possible exception that I finally buy the Isabel Marant sneakers that I have been drooling over. Why is it so hard to find a comfortable white sneaker that will look good with everything and won’t cost an arm and a leg? Or maybe it’s really just a matter of prioritizing where to spend more and where to spend less (or not at all).

I still want to do a shopping ban. I think I might be able to squeeze one in May or June. Or maybe all summer. This will require a bit of planning for sure. My next steps? Selling a number of things in my closet for a little extra cash. And, I’ll be planning out which versatile pieces I want to add to my closet for spring/summer. I put spring and summer together because they do tend to overlap. Versatility is key though since I’m hoping to not run out of options during my shopping ban. Hopefully, planning this out will also mean spending less for the next two seasons than I have this month. Maybe that’s a stretch. Guess you’ll just have to stay tuned 🙂

Have you done a shopping ban before? What did you do to prepare? Any tips for getting through it?

Thanks for stopping by.

See you in my next post!

Sophie 🙂

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