I made a big mistake when I was dating my wife. I bought her an outfit. Not just any outfit, but a hideous black jumpsuit that looked like it was made for the Keebler Elves. Of course I didn’t realize how awful the outfit was until I presented it to her on Christmas morning.
I expected her to be so impressed by my exquisite taste that she would get down on one knee and propose to me. Her countenance let me know that she was underwhelmed with my selection.
“Um, thanks,” she said as she held the outfit at arms length. No screams of joy. No professions of eternal gratitude. No dousing me with Gatorade. All I got was a friendly kiss on the cheek as she tucked the outfit back into the box never to see the light of day.
It’s taken me nearly 20 years to muster the courage to buy my wife another outfit. During this period, I’ve learned a few lessons about shopping for my wife that I’d like to share with you. I recently purchased some clothing from Sears for myself and I was impressed by their affordable fashion. I decided to see if I could find my wife a stylish Mother’s Day Gift.
7 Tips for Buying Your Wife an Outfit
Since my first shopping debacle, I’ve learned to pay closer attention to my wife. I’ve become a student of what she likes and dislikes. Whenever she buys a new outfit for herself, I make a few mental notes. I also observe how she accessorizes her outfits, styles her hair, and applies makeup. Understanding your wife’s style is the first key to success.
I’ve spent much time in my wife’s closet. Not in a creepy way, but as a spy. I searched for her sizes, color choices, and style preferences. My research uncovered that she liked bold colors, sparkly things, long, summer dresses, structured blazers, jeans, and tailored pants. Doing your research is crucial and will help to verify some of your initial observations.
Although I felt as if I had accurate information about my wife’s sizes and preferences, I’m no idiot. I still asked her opinion. She appreciated my getting her input before going on my shopping excursion. I recommend that you do the same. This is perhaps the most important step.
With my research complete, I made a list of items I thought my wife would like. I considered using spreadsheets to track my progress, but I figured that would be overkill. Regardless of your method, make sure that you develop a plan of attack before going to the store.
Like many guys, I walk into a store, find what I need, and walk out. Shopping done. I realized that this mission didn’t call for a quick, precision strike. Instead, it required some reconnaissance and strategy. I walked around the entire Sears women’s department to get a lay of the land. I made notes about styles that my wife would like and photographed several outfits. After nearly 20 minutes in the maze of women’s fashions, I selected a few items. When shopping for your wife, you must be patient. Schedule at least an hour to fully execute your plan. You will need every minute.
After making my selections, I asked some of the salespeople for their input. I explained what I was looking for and they were able to guide me to some things that I had overlooked. I really needed some help when I ventured into the women’s shoe section. The sales reps lauded my bravery and assisted me as I attempted to navigate this minefield. Don’t be shy about seeking advice from salespeople or other shoppers. Their insight and recommendations could be priceless.
Although I was confident that I had made some good selections, I didn’t want to have another jumpsuit disaster. Therefore, I texted photos of two outfits and asked my wife which one she liked better. I was pleased when she chose my favorite outfit. I felt as if I had just won the Hubby MVP. You may be concerned about spoiling the surprise, but it’s better than buying something that your wife will not wear.
Twenty years later, I’ve finally bought my wife an outfit that she isn’t embarrassed to wear. This has to be a Mother’s Day miracle (BTW- I purchased the dress, shoes, and accessories for less than $60).
Question: What shopping advice do you have for guys?
Disclosure: I am a member of the Collective Bias® Social Fabric® Community. This shop has been compensated as part of a social shopper insights study for Collective Bias® and Sears. #CBias #ad #ThisisStyle.” All opinions are my own.