Are ‘investment pieces’ the Emperor’s new clothes?

I think the time has come – I need to look into this “buying clothes for an investment” malarkey.

This alien thought has crept into my mind this week after two Twitter conversations I had with perfectly normal, sane women who said they bought items of clothing each season as an investment.

Any mention of “each season” leaves me cold. I don’t get excited by the new collections in the stores.

Is it time to "invest" in clothing? Photo by Creative Licence) Flikr

Is it time to “invest” in clothing? Photo by Creative Commons Licence. Flikr

I’ll happily read about Spring/Summer 2013, A/W 2013 in magazines and I may like one or two items but in the main I look at the photos, mutter “how ridiculous”, and then take a sharp intake of breath as I eye the prices.

£200 for a jumper? Are you kidding me? £350 for a skirt? £800 for a dress that you would wear to the office?!

I don’t add up what I buy every year because a) I can’t be bothered and b) I can’t be bothered but I imagine my total wardrobe expense for a year is significantly less than the £350 skirt I spied in Selfridges.

As I sit here, head to toe in the finest Giorgio George (don’t judge me), possibly from its Spring/Summer 2011 collection, I appreciate I’m getting to the age when I should spend a little more on key items: jeans, black trousers, half decent tops for when I work in an office.

It’s not that I’m a skinflint (I’m a skinflint), I just genuinely don’t get the fuss and simply cannot be bothered. Except if I go to an office to work, naturally. I do make a bit of an effort then.

So. Is it a case of Emperor’s new clothes or should I start to think about quality? If so, where do you suggest? When I talk about “a little more”, I should caution that wouldn’t dream of spending more than £75 on a pair of trousers – and that is significantly more than I have paid for anything in a very long time.

Oh – and I hate shopping and stores’ lousy dressing rooms. And buying from anyone online that demands you pay the postage and packaging to return items (I’m looking at you, Joe Browns). And Gap. And M&S. And Boden (way too yummy mummy for me).

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