The 80/20 Fashion Ratio to Help You Save Money & Define Your Style

Posted On Friday, January 5th, 2018
Filed Under: Style Guide, Try It Wear It Love It

I’ve made a lot of fashion mistakes along the way. From wearing flesh-tone leggings {eek!} to buying thrifted clothes just because they were cheap {I’m sure I’ve wasted hundreds buying tons of cheap stuff}. Luckily, I have a blog and Instagram where I can look back and think, “Patrice, why did you buy/wear that!!!??”

And one thing I noticed repeatedly was that I didn’t have a proper ratio of classics to trends. Once you reach a certain age, for some people that’s 30 years old, you should have fashion staples or classics that can be worn for years to come. That doesn’t mean you have to spend a ton, but there should be a solid foundation. Remember when I did that massive closet purge and clean out and got rid of a fourth of my wardrobe?

That’s because I didn’t follow the 80/20 fashion ratio.

looking-fly-on-a-dime-fashion-ratio-vintage-dressMaybe for you it’s 80/20 or 70/30, but the general rule is your closet should have more wardrobe staples and classics versus trend gear. The majority of the pieces should be clothes you can wear on a regular basis and that suit your daily lifestyle. This sounds pretty obvious, right? But you’d be amazing at how many people don’t do this.


I failed miserably at this and that lead to the feeling I had every morning of “I have nothing to wear.” If you have a closet full of clothes and constantly say that, then it means your ratio might be off. Way off. And not only is it killing your style but also draining your wallet.

Once I realized I had it all wrong {I had seven sequin jackets but only one black blazer. What?!}, that’s when I did my major closet clean out. I still love bright colors and sparkly items, but I had to understand that those pieces won’t get a lot of wear if I don’t have a foundation {i.e. wardrobe staples!} to wear with them.

The 80/20 Fashion Ratio to Help You Save Money & Define Your Style Click To Tweet

Your closet should always reflect you {your occupation, lifestyle, weight, even your hobbies, etc.} and the remaining 20 or 30 percent can be the fun, trendy pieces that top off your look or stuff you don’t wear that often.

Getting dressed in the morning can feel like groundhog day and something you do subconsciously, but there should absolutely be major thought and even strategy into what’s in your closet and the pieces you add to your wardrobe. Because what’s the point of a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear? Or spending your hard earned money on clothes you have no idea *how* to wear?

Closet full of clothes and nothing to wear? Your fashion ratio might be off. Here's how to fix… Click To Tweet

One of the goals of the Try It, Wear It, Love It style challenge has been to really make people evaluate their overall closet. Does your wardrobe work for you? Do you stress every single morning over what to wear? If someone looked in your closet, would they be able to accurately use three words to describe your style?

Try It Wear It Love It Looking Fly on a DimeThe 80/20 fashion rule is a quick way to evaluate where you are in the moment. If the majority of your wardrobe reflects you, great. If not, take a few minutes and don’t be afraid to get rid of what you don’t need and make a list of the items you desperately need to find that balance. It’s seriously a game changer.


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