With the end of the year almost upon us, I tallied my purchases and was
pleased to see that all the planning and analyzing inspired by YLF has

Here’s how things shook out for a year in which I doubled my budget to
make some upgrades and to reflect lessons learned for my style preferences:

51% of my budget went to professional wear, where I wanted to invest the

  • Six (!) navy dresses and one black dress (navy and black dresses are my work uniform – make me feel polished and professional, look good with black tights in the winter, and only rare patterns strike my fancy, so I made a conscious effort to purchase this palette)
  • High-end cropped blazers (navy and black, worn almost daily)
  • Coordinating suit dress (worn with the navy blazer for my formal legal work)
  • Navy and black cardigans and a black cashmere wrap (worn when not wearing blazers)
  • Black pumps and wedges (worn daily year round)
  • New work travel bag (Lo & Sons, identical to one I’d worn out after years of use)
25% of my budget went to multi-purpose wear:

  • A double-strand pearl bracelet (worn at least weekly)
  •  Several pairs of Rothy’s flats (black, beige, plum:worn constantly, especially for commuting and long weekend walks, love that they’re machine washable)
  • Black wedges, tan flats, and black winter boots (lots of footwear replacements since I didn’t buy shoes last year during my pregnancy; thankfully, my feet stayed the same size)
  •  A black patent bow belt worn almost daily with work dresses (plus a duplicate)
  • A small wine-colored bag, already a staple, as I love burgundy and pewter bags with my predominantly navy and black wardrobe  
10% of my budget went to weekend wear, where I tend to prefer just a few options to throw on for errands when not dressing up, which I tend to do whenever possible:

  • Five navy dresses (yep, preferred uniform on the
    weekend, too)
  • A few pairs of sandals
9% of my budget went to dressy wear, which I adore but tried to purchase sparingly:

  • Two navy dresses and one black dress (both fit-and-flare dresses that can work for day or night, not cocktail-level dressy, as I’m covered in that category)
  • Graduated faux pearl necklaces that I wear together as a double-strand necklace
  • Metallic pumps that I had long been meaning to upgrade and replace
And finally!   5% chalked up to buying mistakes:

  •  A grey wrap dress and grey cardigan (revelation: grey does not make me happy; avoid!)
  •  A navy-and-black blazer (good idea, but my higher-end navy blazer looks far better with a black dress than this one; would reach for the navy every time, so on it went)
  • Scalloped blush flats (felt trendy instead of me, passed on after about a dozen wears)
  • Tan leather flats (these just wore out from use over the summer, replaced!)
So there you have it: I didn’t set out to achieve these exact allocations,
but tracking and planning helped me achieve my overall goals, and I learned a few things along the way.  A few of the purchases are illustrated in the finds below.  Looking forward to enjoying these purchases
and having a good foundation for next year.

How did things shake out, if you’ve been keeping track, with your