Investment Pieces :: Trench Coat & White Shirt

A cheerful “Hello” on a sunny Friday, my friends! Today we are going to talk about money! Uh-oh, some might see clouds gathering when I brought up the $, but hold on to your horses, this is the good money talk, I promise. 🙂

“Oh, I love XX, it is an investment piece, you will wear it forever!” sounds familiar? Sales people would say whatever to get you to spend your hard-earned cash but is there any truth to that statement? What is an investment piece? Let’s look at the literal definition of “investment” — Process of exchanging income for an asset that is expected to produce earnings at a later time. Quite the opposite of what we are discussing here, isn’t it? Buying clothing items and accessories is, pure consumption. The investment we are referring to here is “spending a larger than average sum of money on a single item” that could potentially produce pleasure, confidence and self-esteem, which, are rewards that cannot be measured by $$$.

Now that we have established “investment pieces” are “items that will bring the wearer enough satisfaction to warrant the expenditure of a considerably large amount of money”, the next question is: how big an investment? That is the harder question. I have to introduce another fashionable term “Cost Per Wear”, a.k.a CPW. CPW is the average amount an item will cost each time it is been worn. Say, a coat that costs $1,000 has been/ will be worn a total of 100 times, CPW of that coat is $10/wear. The same coat, if worn 1000 times, CPW will then be $1/wear. Do you want to spend $1,000 on a coat, maybe? How is $1 each time for wearing a $1,000 coat? Most definitely!  Aha, I see the math has deceived you! Get real, folks, it is a bit more complicated than a single division.

We have to dive deeper into the contributing factors of total number of wear over the life time of the item in discussion. Take the trench coat I had on for example, its heavy usage occurs between April to June, then September to November each year; Assume this is my only spring coat and I don’t mind wearing the same coat everyday, only to take a break over the weekends, the maximum number of wear each year is 6 months x 30 days(per month) x 71% days(per week) = 127 times. Providing this is the high quality trench that has no strict requirement on waist line, with the heavy usage but proper care, it probably can last 5 – 7 years without looking like a mop, let’s use the higher number for good measure, the total number of wear of this trench over its life time could be 127 times x 7 years = 889 times. For a $1700 trench coat, my lowest CPW would be ~ $1.9 / wear. That is if I wear it 5 times a week half of the year for 7 years. What if I only wear 3 times a week, only 4 month out of a year, that is more realistic for most, CPW will go up to $3.15 / wear. If you are a fashionista like me, most likely you will have multiple coats and your trench will be lucky to be worn once a week, 2 months per year (’cause you will have different colors for different seasons), and after seven years you no longer want to wear it and sell it for $300 (only if it is a classic in good condition) and get to keep $150 to yourself, what would be the CPW now? $28! Will that be the amount you are willing to “invest” in looking good in this trench?
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Thank you very much for reading!  We covered a lot of grounds today. Next time we will talk about affordability and how to maximize your fashion investment. Would love to hear your thoughts! See you in my next post!

:: Outfit ::

Trench Coat :: Burberry / Kinsington ( here & similar here );
White Shirt :: CH Carolina Herrera ( similar here & here);
Tweed Shorts :: Proenza Schouler (here);
Lace-up Oxford :: Celine (similar here);
Accessories :: Hermes bag; J Crew socks;
heirloom gold collar necklace (similar);

Disclaimer: No bag or shoes were harmed during this photo shoot. ;D


9 comments on “Investment Pieces :: Trench Coat & White Shirt

  1. Danxuan


    1. petiteflower

      Close enough, hehe. 😀

  2. Cher He


    1. petiteflower

      Haha, the bag has to be tough enough for a little rain drop. I did, however, wipe them off immediately after.

  3. brighting

    🙂 Nice outfit, my typical match is ankle pants with trench coat, maybe next time I should try skirt..

    1. petiteflower

      Definitely, trench can go with many things, try bell bottom pants as well and a wide-brim floppy hat for early fall, you might like it, too! 🙂

  4. SWQ

    哈哈哈。。。 俺竟然全篇看完了! 你绝对是CPA出身,不用问了。。。最后倒卖300闷,还美其名曰“有150充公”(1550/8/7),可谓“精打细算”到了极点呀! 呵呵。。。 估计现在大部分徒众都在忙着计算自己的CPW; 一快六? 三毛五? 八分半?到厘的都有,你信吗?! :)

    为什么 $1/day 听着比 $30/mon 更让人觉得便宜捏? 这就是销售的技巧。。。 看来,你不仅是个时尚倡导者,你更是个精明的会计和聪明的销售! 还可以试试律师。。。 😉

    不过,我倒是同意你对 “INVESTMENT” 的理解。如果这样东西真的可以给你带来发自内心的快乐和自信,甚至增强了自尊,且不会影响你下顿饭钱,这个投资就是值得的!!!

    1. petiteflower

      Impressive, I meant, you finished reading the whole thing!

      1. SWQ

        , and did not disagree with you!!! 🙂