Financial Priorities: Price vs. Value of Retail Fashion

Daily Origami is a way for us to record our off the cuff thoughts, feelings and observations about the world around us. Published every weekday, Monday through Friday.

Jennie here.

I used to be someone who would base my clothing purchases on how deep the discount was.

It was how I was raised; when you’re poor - you don’t have a lot of choices if you wanted to keep up with the latest fashion trend. But when it came time to move out of my home, I realized how much clothing I had - hundreds of items I didn’t actually need or use.

And it got me wondering - how did I end up with so much?

I realize now that I had accumulated these items during times when I was bored, stressed, or unhappy. I’d casually stroll into an H&M or Forever21 in hopes of filling a void.

After this realization, it made me completely change my outlook and pare down my wardrobe. I began making my decisions holistically, based how I valued things - and not on retail pricing strategies:

Personal value/ cost

Financial value/cost

2. Personal value/cost:
Will it actually change anything in my life?

  • Am I replacing an item of clothing or buying something new? If the item isn’t a for a specific replacement or need, I should rethink the purchase.

  • Is this something I’ll wear regularly? If you I can’t see myself wearing the item on a regular basis, I need to rethink the purchase.

1. Financial value/cost: 
How much does it cost (before and after the discount)?

  • Can I afford this?
  • What value does it add to my wardrobe?
  • What price would justify the value I get?


I have the choice to stop chasing a fantasy - the idea I can buy my way into a better version of me. But of course that’s not how it works at all.

Fashions fade. Clothes wear down and fall apart.

In the end, I’m still here.