I love reading all these responses! I love my wardrobe and own very few things that I don't wear, so I was hoping I could contribute to the "confident answer" pool, but I am definitely more hazy about it.

When I find a wild card, RunCarla is right--the heavens open up and the angels sing.

But sometimes when I am buying something that I need it is more of a quiet "like" than a "fall in love" and even sometimes I wonder if I won't end up wearing it because I'm not mad about it like my more flashy and unexpected purchases. And sometimes the things I only like end up being things that become workhorses. I bought a black cashmere turtleneck this year and it wasn't cheap (see: cashmere) and I wasn't madly in love at first try-on (boring! a black turtleneck!). But I loved how it felt, it fit perfectly, and I could imagine the outfits I'd be making. I have loved it more than I imagined.

And I, too, have had that experience of a dainty floral looking excellent at the store that comes home and suddenly looks like a hospital gown. If I have *any* nagging doubt it goes back before the tags come off. (Someone wise, perhaps Angie? said once that you like an item the most the day you bring it home, so if there's any doubts return it to look for other fish in the sea.) I'm happy to report it rarely happens, but it happens. I know on some level this seems to contradict my above feeling about not being totally in love at first wear (see, complicated!) but it's more like a little voice deep down thinks something's going to bother me about it as opposed to trying something on and thinking, "It's not my favorite thing, but it's kinda perfect anyway."

Things I knew immediately, that it was love at first sight? A handful or two. Not this year, but my life. I put them on, or saw them, and I KNEW!

So, most of my purchases I purchase or keep because they work for me. They fit well enough. They look good enough. They are comfortable enough. The color doesn't wash me out. They feel like me. And without these, I would literally be naked.

Often enough, items I am unsure of become workhorses; well loved often worn items in my wardrobe. Sometimes they are wildcards. Then it's fun to figure out why they work so well.

The hard ones are the ones that are almost perfect but I know what the problem is. I have one I am still pondering. It is very comfortable, fits well, works in my wardrobe, is flattering. But I question that for an item that is comfy it has bracelet sleeves when I want the warmth all the way down my arm. And it is black and gray and I don't seem to be wearing those colors this winter. But I have a hunch that will change and it would be a workhorse next winter.

Last years mistake- a red scarf that's just a bit too bright and maybe cool a red. A possible mistake-hard to tell as it's more of a warm spring/summer top so I haven't played with it enough yet-a leopard print popover lightweight polished cotton top. I've been looking for a few years for more of that style and weight and for an animal print but the base of the print is a bit beige for me.