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FEATURES Nov 29 2012 7:58PM

Fashion “Two-Fers”: Shop Your Closet

By Morgan Thompson, Beating Cancer While Staying Fabulous
Ok, I’ll admit it. My closet is packed. Overflowing. Stuffed. Yet somehow I still have those moments where I will push the hangers aside and claim that I have nothing to wear. So cliché! I’m a self-proclaimed pack rat and often I have a hard time purging items that I am convinced I could possibly, maybe, probably wear again. That skintight gold dress I wore as Beyoncé for Halloween in 2007? I held on to my “Goldmember” dress for three years before I finally realized that the dress had it’s moment, and that moment was gone.
Like most women, I have my favorite key pieces that I love and wear often, but I’m always on the lookout for something new to add to my collection. Much to my husband’s dismay, I have a penchant for late-night online shopping (it’s so easy!), and when he sees those packages in the mail, he simply shakes his head and asks me where I’m going to hang another dress in my already packed closet. So this year I have decided to make a concerted effort to shop my own closet, and find new ways to wear items that I already own.
This past spring I was inspired by the debut of NBC's Fashion Star, the competition design show where contestants create a new collection each week and present it to buyers from Macy’s, Saks Fifth Avenue, and H&M. The buyers decide which pieces they want to purchase for their individual stores and immediately after the show airs; the selected items are available for purchase in-store and online. (Ok, yes, I may have made a few purchases from the show). I was intrigued when Jessica Simpson (one of the three fashion “mentors”) labeled one designer's skirt as a "two-fer" after the A-line skirt unzipped to reveal another sleek skirt underneath—two skirts for the price of one!
Who doesn’t love that idea? I love a good deal, but an item that can be worn several different ways to create a completely new outfit is even better. This is a great way to make the most of your own closet—and your pocket. Here are a few ways to shop your closet and turn one-note pieces into a “two-fer”
The sexy body-con dress
  • That form-fitting dress you usually wear to turn heads at your fave bar/club/lounge can be made work appropriate by slipping on a pair of wide leg pants or a knee-length skirt over it. Choose a dress with a simple pattern that isn’t too low cut and transform it into a stylish new top.
The strapless dress
  • Get more mileage out of a summer strapless dress by wearing it over a turtleneck or long-sleeved boat neck top. Voila! Instant new winter dress.
The bright summer scarf
  • Bright colors can still work during the winter months, but use them as accent pieces, rather than a major focal point. Take your favorite bright scarf that you rocked all summer, fold it in half and tie around the smallest part of your waist, letting the ends fall like a sash. Wear over an A-line dress or skirt as a belt.
The lightweight trench
  • Military fashion is a huge trend for fall and winter, but instead of purchasing a new dress, button your lightweight spring trench coat and wear it as a dress. Add a pair of chic booties and dark tights to bring the focus to the dress.
The sleeveless top
  • Sleeveless tops can transition to winter when they are placed over a button-down shirt as a vest. Layer a black sleeveless tank over a patterned button-down shirt for a preppy schoolgirl look.
Bonus: winter socks
  • While winter socks aren’t exactly a fashion “must-have,” they can become a “two-fer” buy using one sock to create a fabulous sock bun. Thick socks work best; make sure you use a color that matches your hair color. Here’s how you do it:
  • Pull your hair into a high pony on the top of your head.
  • Cut the toe off of one sock. Take hold of the sock from each end and roll it together to create a doughnut shape.
  • Take the doughnut and place it over the ponytail, pulling your hair all the way through until the sock is at the base of the ponytail.
  • Create the bun by folding the loose hair over the sock and tucking underneath the shape, using bobby pins to secure the ends.


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