In At Work, Capsule Wardrobe, Discussions, Discussions, In my closet, Minimalism, Money, Shopping, Style, Style, Wardrobe Help, Women

Are women the only ones who really spend on clothing and accessories?

I am with someone who is really not into clothes.

He admittedly wears a limited amount of clothing in a limited amount of colours just like Barack Obama, because he doesn’t care about fashion and doesn’t want to waste his time thinking about it.


At play, the president wears red-white-and-blue Under Armor high-tops, but at work it’s strictly blue or gray suits.

“I’m trying to pare down decisions. I don’t want to make decisions about what I’m eating or wearing. Because I have too many other decisions to make,” he tells Lewis.

“You need to focus your decision-making energy. You need to routinize yourself. You can’t be going through the day distracted by trivia.”

Vanity Fair, September 2012

However, the ever stylish First Lady Michelle Obama retorts back:

“He’s always asking: ‘Is that new? I haven’t seen that before.’

It’s like, why don’t you mind your own business?

Solve world hunger.

Get out of my closet.”


BF is the same way, and I am SURE he is thinking that silently in his head: “Is that dress new? I haven’t seen that before.”

He owns 5 pairs of exactly the same kind of sock so he doesn’t have to hunt or match them, and wears the 5 of exactly same white button-up shirt to work each day, with the same suit, and one pair of shoes.

No variation, no colour.

No thought required.

He just doesn’t care.

Then on the flip side, you discover men in the background (on Twitter, no less!) professing their love for clothes and accessories, like DQYDJ here:



Note: MTM means “Made to Measure“, or custom-made. 😉

He also admits to owning 12 watches (there’s something about men and their watches, my brother is the same way), and has a lot of shoes, although his wife has more shoes than he does.


I tried to shame him into outing himself as a style-fiend on his blog, but he refused as it wasn’t “in-line” with his blog content.


My closet shot of JUST my dresses.. Some of them on sale here for 2013

Pshaw. Like that has ever stopped me.

Who has ever heard of a PF Blogger happily blogging about all the NON-ESSENTIAL stuff she buys each month? 😛

Since he won’t out himself, I’m doing it (with his permission) for him, and throwing the question out there:

Is it really only women who care about style and clothing?

You can’t tell me this is strictly a taught, gender-enforced stereotype in society, because even as a little girl I have ALWAYS loved clothes and shoes.


At the age of 5, I used to draw stick figures upon stick figures in dresses, and list out exactly what accessories they had to have with each outfit.

Of course, then I’d grab an old binder cover that looked like a keyboard (it was printed with an image of a keyboard), and I’d pretend to enter in all of the data from my designs into my huge (imaginary) computer system to catalogue everything.

…so that last bit with the fake computer wasn’t exactly gender-enforced-norms for most little girls my age, but it goes to show that no one forced those ideas onto me.

I naturally enjoyed watching and studying fashion.

Also, just look at metrosexuals and gay guys! They have some fierce style.

When did liking fashion or style become synonymous with being a spendthrift?

Couldn’t men AND women like style, but also have solid retirement savings, great personal finance behaviours and make smart money choices?

Couldn’t we also say that buying clothes off the rack and tailoring them to fit you perfectly, or having your clothes made-to-measure, be a sign of being the opposite of a spendthrift?

You’re buying quality for life.

You’re opting and re-soling great, expensive leather shoes is a lot smarter than buying cheap shoes every 2 years or so because they don’t last.

(I just brought in my heels to be re-done. For $40, I’ll have new, but broken-in heels all over again.)



Steve Maddens on the right are on sale here for 2013

Variety is the spice of life!

Clothes and dressing up (contrary to belief), actually does make me happier. It improves my mood, and extreme minimalism be damned!

I LIKE LOVE wearing my stuff, and it makes a genuine difference in how I feel.

Maybe you think that 12 watches for a man is overkill, but it’s kind of the only accessory guys have to play with, other than cufflinks and ties.

What say you? Fashion-lover or just couldn’t care less?

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Am my own Sugar Daddy. Am a millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using I have worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I have 11 side incomes that are on track in 2020 to make me $50K - $75K. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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  1. alwayshungry4

    I’m not a fashionista by any means, but I do like clothes, and think tailoring is a must. The only time I really don’t is when I work out – all of my clothes have wick-away fabrics, but mostly in black. I’ve never dated any metrosexuals, but my stepdad is a big one – everything is designer, and he has a special section in his closet for watches. So I don’t think it’s the case that all men don’t care, but I think for the most part women probably care more.

  2. MelD

    My husband spends more on clothes, but block spending. He likes the gentleman look with high-quality and is also taller/larger than you get in stores, so has suits and shirts made at intervals when the old ones really wear out. He will also pay a lot for shoes, and has a lot for a guy – he also looks after them and has them resoled etc. regularly. Even for casual he likes to look smart (e.g. sailing). He has also amassed a huge number of ties…!

    Until recently I spent little and often but I have now totally decluttered my wardrobe and spending a lot less on clothes – plenty to wear and will be wearing it (all those dresses!) That is, I am more prepared to pay for a classic item if I think the quality is worth it – mostly, even high-priced goods just don’t have the quality. So life is pretty cheap for me, now LOL.

  3. Sarah Li Cain

    Nothing wrong with MTM. I quite enjoy it myself when I’m in China. Yeah, it sucks it’s in China, but my best fitting pair of pants came from there! And I can’t avoid products made in China now that I’m going to be living there again….

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      No you really can’t avoid it..!

  4. Cassie

    Definitely a clothing lover here! Not that you can really tell based on the state its in currently. was never a accessory/bag/shoe girl when I was younger, but I was always sketching up fashion designs that I wanted to wear. I do get a fair bit of enjoyment out of pulling on a nicely tailored, well fitted article of clothing. Its hard to find those pieces! Not everyone gets that, and that’s fine.

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      BF gets it.. and doesn’t get it. Hit and miss, really.

  5. Sense

    I care less. I have an obsession with watches and coats, though! I love them! But I hate shopping for shoes and clothes. My job requires me to get dirty, so I can’t wear anything expensive most of the time.

    I met a (straight/nonmetrosexual) guy recently who dresses incredibly well. It was a very attractive quality. Opposites attract?

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      Something about a fantastic coat can make your day.

      Oo perhaps. I think there is SOMETHING about opposites attracting but not if your values (core ones) differ. 🙂

  6. Kara

    Funny … I’m a little of everything when it comes to clothes. I don’t actually own a lot of clothing (surprisingly) but I have a pretty even split of expensive classics that I’ve owned for years and years and cheap trendy stuff that I’m ok with getting rid of after a year or two. I don’t think buying a couple of inexpensive Target dresses and wearing them for a year is a waste.

    Then again, I don’t wear jewelry. I *sometimes* wear earrings (when I remember so the holes won’t close up) but other than that, nothing. No bracelets, rings, necklaces, not even a watch. So I figure what I’m saving on that, I should be able to spend (a little) on clothing.

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      Interesting.. I am more on the dressy side with clothes and jewellery, but in recent years I’ve been steering far away from cheaper stores just out of changing tastes (a lot of it is too trendy for me).

  7. PK

    Hey, way to blow up my closeted closet filling!

    In defense of watches, other than a wedding ring they’re really the only jewelry a lot of men own. If you only had one place to decorate daily, you’d put too much thought into it as well, haha. (Remember: you can’t wear more than one without getting awkward glances from police officers).

    MTM is a bit pricey – cheaper than bespoke, sure, but you can save money by (as Mrs. PoP points out) buying off the rack and getting it tailored. I have stupid proportions – I’m a drop 10″ or a drop 11″ on shirts and suits, and I’ve bought clothes either way (slim fit shirts can be drop 8″, so they don’t need too much tailoring). The issue is that the average OTR suit is probably a drop 4″. C’mon America, get in better shape.

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      Mmmm hmmm. 🙂

      You said I could!!

      I’d agree with watches being the only accessory. That and sunglasses but you don’t want to look like a douchebag.

      What is the difference between MTM and bespoke then? I am clueless when it comes to the nuances between these terms.

      I always tend to buy off the rack then tailor.

      1. PK

        MTM is generally from a pattern – there are a bunch of templates, but certain pieces will vary base dn measurements. Bespoke is like what you see when rich people go to a tailor in movies – they drape all the materials on their back and build it from scratch. Good MTM stuff gives the custom appearance at much less cost, but bespoke is necessary for the ultimate in pretentiousness!

        OTR and tailor is the way to go if you can – I support that decision. I’ve got probably an equal number of OTR and MTM dress shirts.

        1. Mochi & Macarons

          Can you really tell the difference between bespoke or MTM unless your name is printed on the pinstripes of your suit a la Mubarak?

    2. sense

      ooh, why do the popo ‘watch’ people with more than one watch? That is news to me. (also why would you wear two watches?)

      1. Mochi & Macarons

        It’s because they think you’re selling fakes and you’re going to open a trench coat and expose a range of fake Rolexes.

        Usually wearing more than one watch on your wrist is a tip off that you’re a seller.

  8. tomatoketchup

    I’m pretty similar to the description of your boyfriend. I have the same small set of shirts, pants, and socks that I wear to work every week. I do have an obscene amount of ties, but that is only because people buy them for me as gifts. I think it’s been a good 10 years since I’ve bought a tie for myself. Once I retire, it’s pretty much gonna be all casual. I don’t have a huge wardrobe of casual clothes, but what I do have is fairly expensive stuff (that I usually buy when on sale) that’s built to last.

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      HAH! Once you retire you’ll be just like my brother’s boss — flip flops and t-shirts all day long (he lives in the Caribbean).

  9. Mrs PoP @ PlantingOurPennies

    Currently Mr. PoP spends more on clothes and personal care stuff than I do. But that’s because he has two wardrobes – weekend wear (jeans & t’s) and business casual for the office. When I had to maintain two wardrobes weekend wear and business suits, I easily spent more. But now I work in an office where we have pretty lax expectations of how you dress, so it’s cheap. $50 in jeans lasts me a year. Then I usually spend maybe another $100 or so on random shopping trips where I happen to find a new blouse or skirt or something. That’s it. Mr. PoP on the other hand needs about $300 or so in new pants and shirts every year for work. And in PK’s defense, we’re definitely considering getting the next batch custom tailored. It’s so hard to find a nice Oxford shirt that fits Mr. PoP correctly!

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I need to channel your shopping energy. I spend a lot of money but now I think it’s starting to change in terms of a lifestyle for me.

  10. Tim

    Ok, I’m a guy so I’ll drop my opinion in. I like to look nice…heck I’m the one in my family that brought down the no sweatpants in public rule except when working out. Yet I’m not obsessed with clothes because I don’t buy most of my clothes. My wife, my mother and my mother in law buy the majority of my clothes and frankly I’m ok because they have great taste! Perhaps I could have been a clothes nut, but I channeled that energy into the house instead. I’ve picked the majority of the paint colours, art, fabrics in the house (my wife is ok with this as she knows if I’ll do it will turn out great). So overall I’m middle of the road, I like to look nice, but I’m not a fashion lover.

    1. Mochi & Macarons

      I agree with your no sweatpants in public rule. I haven’t ever worn them out, even as a college student. Seemed… odd to me.

      That, and tights as pants. TIGHTS are not pants. I hope you don’t wear them outside either.


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