Out of all the gifts you can think of, why would you consider buying someone clothes? While the intention is pure, there are so many pitfalls that you can fall into. You have to know what brands they like, what silhouettes they enjoy wearing, what fabrics, materials and textures they prefer to wear and what trend they are obsessed over—just a small list.
There is nothing worse than receiving clothes that you don’t want to wear. You have to pretend that you are happy with the clothes. You have to try it on in front of your gift-giver, with and fake a smile. The worst is when you are asked why you haven’t worn the gift yet, forcing you to wear it against your will, while in the back of your mind all you want to do is donate it to charity.
Style is never static, with the fashion calendar in constant rotation, it is a difficult task to pinpoint someone at that moment and buy them clothes. Despite this immense difficult challenge, I have outlined the things I do if I have the impossible task of buying clothes for someone.
Here are four things you should consider when buying someone clothes as a gift.
Ask about their fashion.
I would never buy clothes for someone unless I knew about their relationship with fashion. The best way to do that is to have a conversation. Ask about their clothes. Get them to describe their personal style and what inspires them. This is the foundation of understanding how the person approaches their fashion which will help you when you are browsing through endless fashion brands. Make sure you interrogate them well before the occasion not to raise suspicion.
Go through their wardrobe / Instagram.
If you can’t have a conversation, an easy way to get a sense of someone’s style is to shuffle through their wardrobe. Keep an eye on the colour palette, the fashion labels, the state of the clothes. Have a look at the silhouettes and fabrics in the closet.
If you don’t live with the person, social media is a great tool to get a sense of their style. What are the most common pieces that they wear? What brands are they tagging? Instagram stalking at its finest.
Buy classic pieces.
A safe entry point into buying clothes is starting with classic wardrobe pieces. You will make fewer mistakes as clothes that are timeless will always have a place in any wardrobe. While it may be tempting to take a leap of faith and buy a trendy piece, you have to have done your homework to know that that person will love that trend long after it has gone out of style.
Go clothes shopping.
If you have the luxury of spending time shopping with said person, shadow them and pay attention to their every move. What pieces to they try on? What do they pick up and put back? Which clothes end up at the checkout? Seeing someone interact with clothes will help give you a sense of the things they pay attention to when shopping.
By following these four tips, your gift will be welcomed with open arms. If not, you tried your very best. Maybe stick with a gift voucher in future. What are some of your tips on buying clothes as a gift?