I’ve spent the last two days photographing every piece of clothing I own.
One of my goals for 2017 is to make better use of my clothes so that I don’t keep buying new ones. 2016 saw a complete overhaul of my closet – which wasn’t entirely unwarranted, since the summers are so humid here – but now I need to break the shopping habit.
To help me visualize the clothes and outfits that I have, I’m using the StyleBook app. Stylebook stores a photo inventory of your closet and different outfit combinations that you put together.
Here’s what one of my outfits looks like:
Ideally, I’ll see different combinations that I didn’t notice before and get more use out of what I own. The outfit above is something I’ve never worn; I never thought to combine those items before Stylebook.
Stylebook tells you:
- How many items of clothing you have (mine came out to 86)
- The clothes you wear most
- The clothes you wear least
- The cost per wear (assuming you entered in the cost you paid)
- The colors you wear most
There’s a calendar that creates a visual grid of the outfit you wore each day, so that you don’t keep wearing the same outfit over and over (something I’m prone to do, especially on the weekend).
The biggest hassle with Stylebook is taking the photos. As you upload each item, Stylebook wants you to use their tool to erase the background. This was time-consuming, and I had inconsistent results. In the end, I decided that I didn’t care about removing the background. I photographed everything on a white background – an IKEA tabletop – to make the images uniform, and I used my DSLR, not my cell phone.
Stylebook does allow you to search online for items you already own and import the photo from the manufacturer. I didn’t do this, since I wanted an accurate picture of what my not-so-new clothes look like. For instance, I bought a skirt from Loft that has always been wrinkled, no matter how much I try to steam it. The image from Loft would show a pristine skirt, whereas mine looks like it was crumpled in a ball. Every time I see it, I think, “I hate you.” It’s destined for the Goodwill pile. I just can’t do it yet.
I’m hopeful that the app will make me realize how much I already own and give me pause when I think about buying something new, especially since I’ll need to photograph it (a process that involved me removing the tabletop from the desk and dragging it into the bedroom, where there’s better light).