So four weeks in, and I am still absolutely loving every day of this project. Here's why:
(1) It has totally tansformed my morning routine.
Some days I would try on two or three outfits before finding something that I was happy with. I would frequently run out of clean underwear or socks, or discover that the shirt I wanted to wear with that jumper was in the wash, and have to pull something out of the dirty laundry basket. No more. Now I know that everything is laid out, clean and pressed, and it just takes me a matter of minutes to put everything on. No more stress.
(2) I dress more professionally.
Some days I would end up going to work feeling underdressed. Often I would pull out something at random in the half-light of a winter's morning, crumpled from the back of the wardrobe, and discover tomato juice stains down the front after I got to work. Now I plan my outfits in advance, everything is hung up or folded neatly, and my work clothes are ironed regularly. I am also wearing my smarter clothes more (full suit, button-down shirts) simply because they are among the items I kept in by 333. (Ironically, I used to have three full suits in my wardrobe and never wore any of them. Now I only have one, I wear it almost once a week.) I've received on average one compliment a week from colleagues about looking smart/pretty/nice, which has never happened before.
(3) I dress with more intention and more variety.
Most weeks I would wear the same pair of trousers every day, and sometimes the same shirt or long-sleeved top as well, just rotating the jumpers on top. Now I have a variety through the week and a variety each day - I make sure one of the items I'm wearing has a pattern or texture, I rotate through my trousers and shirts, and never repeat a full outfit more than once a fortnight. I never normally wear jewellery or scarves as accessories but I'm starting to reach for certain items, and I am quickly learning which are the most versatile pieces.
I thought I might share some examples of outfit combos I have never tried before this project but which I really, really like:
This is the shirt I replaced the buttons and buttonholes on - looks loads better. The subtle stripes and dark buttons work really well with the pale blue-green jumper.
The scarf was made for me by my lovely friend Kaylie, and the colour and texture really bring some depth to this otherwise rather boring outfit.
(4) I am more on top of the laundry.
I'm doing one load of normal clothes a week with one load for gym/running kits, leaving me plenty of time to wash towels and bed sheets during the week, so I'm changing towels and sheets more frequently too. I never used to do ironing and always put off folding clothes and putting them away until the next load came out of the laundry. Now, simply because the volume of clothes going through the system is less, the work is less daunting and less stressful.
(5) I am becoming more picky about wearing warm, comfortable and feel-good clothes.
In fact, of my 33, three items have not been worn at all, and three items have been worn only once so far this month. One pair of court shoes gives me sore feet because the heels are too high. I've known since I bought them that they were a mistake but I couldn't bear to get rid of them because I paid a fair bit of money for them. But if they cause me pain, why wear them? I need a pair of court shoes for work but I should get a comfortable pair with a lower heel. These shoes will not make the cut to the next set of 33. Another item is a thin long-sleeved top to be worn open over a strappy top. It's lovely but far too thin for this time of year, nowhere near warm enough on its own and it doesn't layer well. All lessons for my next selection of 33.
In conclusion, I am a definite convert to Project 333 and have already started to think about which items I might carry over to the next set, and which should be swapped out, and which should go altogether (I'm looking at you, painful shoes). I realise I could definitely give myself more variety out of 33 items than I have this time around, but even as it is I am enjoying it. It even seems to be catching - my boyfriend asked me to help him go through all his suits and shirts, and we donated a huge bag full of clothes that didn't fit him any more.