Recently, I’ve noticed some interesting observations about the 30 for 30 challenge that 337+ bloggers are currently participating in. From offhand comments like “I don’t need a challenge to be creative” to people wondering what the impact of the challenge is, sorry to say, but some people are confused.
Kendi explains her reasons for beginning the 30 for 30 challenge on her blog. “By April 2010, I’d run out of funds and had lost the original intent of my blog: to remix the contents of my closet. I introduced the idea of remixing what was in my closet by the idea of the 30 for 30 Remix. ’30 for 30′ simply meant that I would take 30 items and remix only those items into 30, (hopefully) stylish outfits.”
Well, that sounds like a pretty good idea to me. But Kendi goes on to add insult to injury, restricting shopping during the time of the challenge (which can be about 6 weeks, if you only do it five days during the week).
Why? Because, Kendi says “of two reasons: 1) so you’ll learn to shop your own closet and 2) so you’ll appreciate it. So many times I’ve run out and bought a new dress for one event or I bought something because I felt lacking, not what was in my closet. Obviously, this is not the best solution to a problem. I have found that when I limit myself with shopping, with 30 items, I become so much more aware of what I have versus what I need.”
The first 30 for 30 challenge Kendi did by herself, in the spring of 2010. In summer 2010, she opened it up to her followers. Loving her reasoning and knowing I needed to challenge myself, I joined. Little did I know what I was getting myself into.
I’m a pretty creative person to begin with, but when forced to only wear/remix thirty pieces; your mind goes into overdrive. I was pairing things I’d never thought to pair before. I refined my love for all things printed and colorful, and even found a nice balance of wearing all black (which is so not me).
But, I was ready when the challenge was over. I needed to get back to the rest of my closet. In those thirty days, I proved that I could live with only thirty pieces, although I don’t want to.
This time, when Kendi opened up the challenge to her readers again, I jumped at it. I wanted to do it again, with different pieces than last time and prove that I still had the ability to do it, and rock it out. Plus, my favorite part of the challenge is that we don’t shop.
In a perfect world, there would be no waste. Clothing would only be purchased and worn to cover your naked body. But this isn’t a perfect world. There is waste. People purchase clothing to add to their wardrobe, to make themselves feel better or because they have no idea what they really own. I am a big believer in purchasing secondhand or used clothing, because we don’t need more waste. Just because someone else didn’t want it, doesn’t mean it still doesn’t have value. I’ve purchased secondhand cars, shoes, clothes, even pets! I think that the 337+ bloggers involved in this challenge are proving that we don’t need to shop at a store to be creative. We can shop in our own closets and showcase our fashion ability without needed retail therapy.
I work for a nonprofit. We do donation drives. The number one thing people donate? Clothing. The number one thing we don’t need? Clothing. There is so much of it. People buy things and wear them once, then get rid of them. By forcing yourself to remix what you own, you’re proving that you don’t need to buy things.
There are many bloggers who have already gone the route of not shopping for a specific length of time. Alyson, Angeline, Beverly, etc, etc, etc. These women prove that you don’t need new pieces to make your closet work for you. There are also bloggers like Marissa who take $1 each day and revamp an old piece of clothing she finds at thrift stores, garage sales or discard piles.
So why do the 30 for 30 challenge? Because, dear friends, it’s about proving to yourself that you can do it. It’s not about the not shopping, or the time commitment. It’s about proving that you can master the remix and work with only thirty pieces in your wardrobe.
If that’s not enough for you, continue to be mystified why 337+ bloggers would jump on the same bandwagon and attempt the challenge. Sure, some people are naturally creative, but that’s not what this is about. This is fun, challenging and a way to force yourself to think outside the box and prove that you can do it.
Did I think I would ever wear purple, pink and red together? No! But did I do it? Yes. And that my dear friends, is reason enough for me.