Okay, let's talk about Cost Per Wear.
Firstly...what really is it?
Cost per wear is a simple concept that directly relates an item's cost to how much you wear it.
Cost of item & maintenance cost / How many times you wear it
= Cost per wear (CPW)
Well, why is it important?
Let's think of it this way: if you invest $400 into a pair of boots and wear them 150 times, spend $80 in maintenance to have them resoled, protection spray, etc, and wear them 150 more. Your total cost is $480 and the total number of wears is 300, which means it costs you $1.60 every time you slip into them. Compare that to a pair of boots that cost $190, but you bust through the sole after 75 wears and because of the quality, the sole can't be repaired –that’s $2.50 a pop. Even though the first boots cost more, they delivered much more utility and were thus “cheaper” in the long run.
To me, this is one of the most important things I think about when I am buying all the styles for the store as well as anything I buy for myself. If you can get your cost per wear as low as possible, then it means you have made a good investment in whatever you bought and well, isn't that really what shopping is all about?!
You go shopping to find pieces that on some level speak to the inner 'you' that you want to express to the outside world. At the end of the day, you don't want to end up with a wardrobe full of things that don't make you happy, so having the concept of 'cost per wear' in mind really helps.
Yes, some would say that CPW is just a justification method for your purchases but really when used for good, it is a powerful tool that can really help you consider the longevity of your purchases. In turn, it steers you away from cheap, ill-fitting, fad based fashions and more towards quality, thoughtful pieces that truly speak to the inner 'you' that you want to portray.
When it comes down to it CPW is more of a way of life than just some formula. It is a valuable tool to help combat fast-fashion and the "quantity over quality" mindset. In this day and age where sustainability and being environmentally responsible is more important than ever, using this thinking process can help to point you in the direction of pieces that will be with and serve you for the long haul, thus decreasing landfill.
Below are some of the questions that I personally ask myself when I am purchasing not only for myself but for The Nowhere Nation too. For someone who values quality very highly, this idea of CPW has been something that helped me to transform my wardrobe into one that I really love and is a driving factor in the buying decisions I make for The Nowhere Nation.
CPW Shopping Tips
- Quality materials ensure not only longevity but a great fit. I love leather and suede for the fact that they feel great on the foot, breathe nicely and wear in beautifully over time to accommodate the shape of your foot. The use of high-quality leather is especially important in the inside of the shoe for those reasons. If you are opting for fabric upper such as velvet, it's a great idea to find a style with a leather lining (as all of ours do) as you are going to feel the difference against your skin and reap the benefits of breathability and subtle give around your foot.
- Quality construction is paramount. Look at things such as stitching, where the various parts of the shoes meet each other and any embellishments such as buckles, zippers etc.
- Ask questions - get as much information as you can about where the product is made, what its made from and any designer info. At The Nowhere Nation, we are so proud to know extremely detailed information about each and every single style and are thrilled to be able to help educate you on quality shoes.
- Trans-seasonality/Multi-event wearability. Are you able to adapt this style to multiple seasons? Can you wear those boots with jeans and a summer dress? Can you dress those heels up for a wedding with a cocktail dress but wear them on the weekend with jeans and a nice blouse? This kind of thinking is super important as you are maximizing the time you can wear your pieces which in turn keeps your CPW down low.
- Fashion trends -you can't escape them completely but it's a great idea to invest in them wisely. Since they change so quickly, anything that is too "trend based" can easily become redundant in your wardrobe meaning, you guessed it... your CPW is at an all-time high. Instead pick pieces, colours, textures and shapes that flatter you, work with your style and truly make you feel a million dollars. No one is going to care if the shoes you are wearing are in the shade of Rose Quartz from 2016 if you are pulling them off with confidence! If you aren't sure what colours to go for, jewel tones are always a winner as they are timeless and suit all skin tones.
- Buy for the wardrobe that you own - really think about how this new item can be worked back with clothes, shoes, and accessories that are already yours. When I pick a new pair of shoes I like to think of at least pieces in my wardrobe that I can immediately match them with so that I know I can get the wear out of them.
- Invest in great quality cleaning products. This includes waterproofing/stain protector spray, leather conditioners, suede brushes and a bunch of other things as these will prolong the lifespan of your item drastically.
But lastly, the best piece of advice is to find pieces that make your soul sing because fashion should be fun and when you truly love something you will find a way to wear it, time and time again!!
If you have any questions about prolonging the life of your shoes or would like to talk about any type of repairs or adjustments please email us at firstname.lastname@example.org or call/text us on +61 480 139 161 and we will be more than happy to help.