First I want to say thank you all for such sweet birthday wishes! I’ll share more tomorrow about how I spent the day and my 24 before 24 recap from the last year.
In the meantime, I’ve got one last 30×30 related post, kittens! I promised a full recap of the challenge and my experience, so of course I didn’t want to let you down. Above, I thought it would be cool to organize the outfits by overlapping items to see how I wore similar things totally differently (I got the idea from one of Jessica’s 30×30 recaps). I think I like this collage even more than seeing what I wore in order of posts. Clothes can be so versatile!
Here’s a little hindsight I’ve gained on the other side of the challenge.
> Most worn item(s): navy polka dot skirt (5), chambray (5)
> Least worn item(s): polka dot blouse (2), navy blazer (2), denim vest (2), black boots (2)
> Favorite outfits: sixteen (floral skirt + red striped shirt) and twenty-one (floral skirt + gingham shirt + utility jacket)
> Least favorite outfits: six (orange dress + denim vest) and nine (black polka dot skirt + grey tee + utility jacket)
> Items I plan to get rid of: purple blouse, black polka dot skirt, raglan tee (to be replaced), polka dot pants (they don’t fit anymore), and maybe the orange dress (it wrinkles sooooo badly, which makes it basically unwearable for more than half an hour. I want to replace it with another one!)
> I have bought some really awesome things, and a lot of them have (and will) last me a really long time. Most of the items I’m getting rid of are things I bought on a whim, rather than putting a lot of time into deciding on them or knowing that they were filling a hole in my closet. I love that I have this knowledge (or, confirmation, really) to take with me into future shopping adventures.
> I’m even less accessory savvy than I thought. I have a few outfits that, when I think them up, I have accessories in mind. For everything else, I either don’t know what to do or don’t own anything that works.
> Going with the obvious almost always pays off. I frequently won’t try an outfit because I think it won’t be interesting, and then instead I end up with something weird that I don’t really love. The times in this challenge where I “resorted” to doing something I thought of as obvious (eight, twelve, and twenty-two) ended up being some of the more comfortable and better looking outfits.
> Time to get cheesy–I learned that I really can do anything I put my mind to, and that I have a really amazing system of people who will support me in whatever ways I need to make it all happen.
> Make a list of outfits ahead of time (in case you missed it, here’s how I did it). I think one of the reasons bloggers don’t finish this challenge is because life gets in the way and they don’t have time to come up with outfits every day. Life has never stopped for blogging, so it certainly won’t just because you commit yourself to a challenge. Doing everything you can to prepare yourself makes a big difference in what you can accomplish.
> But be open to changing up the list as you go. After I made my initial list and got started actually wearing outfits, I started editing. Editing what I was wearing on my body, as well as editing as I looked back at my outfit equations. Maybe a look ends up not working the way you imagined, or maybe the weather changes and you realize you need to adapt. Editing is such an important skill for anyone with an interest in style and building outfits, so don’t be afraid to change stuff up.
> Also don’t be afraid to try crazy things. At first when you’re making outfits, you might be like “Wow, I’ve already come up with so many, this is easy peasy,” and then you get down to the last 7 or so and things get a little weird. Let that inspire you! My two favorite outfits are ones I never would have come up with without doing this challenge because I wouldn’t have thought certain patterns or shapes could be paired together. Maybe they can’t, but it’s worth a try.
> If you plan to blog your challenge, set up a photography schedule that works. I am so immensely grateful for Briley waking up early on the weekends, dealing with my night-before texts asking what her plans were, giving up time on her days off, meeting me in all kinds of weather. etc.etc.etc. so she could take my photos. I literally could not have done this without her. If you have someone who takes your photos, set up a plan ahead of time for when you’ll take the photos, whether it be every morning or night on the day you wear the outfit, or ahead of time/after the fact on the weekends. This helps you feel more prepared, and it helps your photographer have less work and stress. If you take the photos yourself, come up with a plan for days you don’t have a chance to take photos or the weather isn’t working, etc.
> If you’re not sure you can commit to a whole 30, try a smaller challenge first! I really want to do a 7×7 or 10×10 next. I love that instant gratification, and it would be cool to remix a smaller number of pieces and complete the challenge more quickly.
Whew, that was a lot. I probably learned other things and have other tips that I’ll remember, so I might end up updating this post. I’m really grateful for all of you who followed along and I hope this recap was at least a little helpful! I’m not an expert obvi, but if you have any questions or you’re thinking of doing a 30×30 yourself, let me know in the comments!