Everyone has that one item in their closet that encapsulates everything about them. Mine is my Sass bomber jacket with gold sequin sleeves. It fits well, makes me feel confident and lifts a simple striped tee and skinny jeans combo to new heights. I’ve had some really great nights wearing that jacket, and as an added bonus, it cost me $20 at a warehouse sale.
But there are other items lurking in my wardrobe I love just as much as that jacket but, for whatever reason, I can’t bear to part with them despite their ill fit. From a dress I bought in Cambodia that hugs my middle tight than it did three years ago to beautiful dresses I bought online whose fit were slightly off and, after weeks of um-ing and ah-ing meant I could not return it any more, these clothes grow stale in my draws, unable to dance on the bodies of others who can really make them shine. I’ve kept them because part of me wants to believe I will be thin like I was three years ago or I will be able to look great in that dress once I lose that pouch. The fact is, they’re just reminders of what I’m not right now, and rather than move forward and enjoy being in the present, these clothes add aspirational pressure and drag down my self-confidence.
I stumbled across this blog post on Design for Mankind via pinterest. Blogger Erin Loechner said she culled her wardrobe down to 25 items she absolutely loves and wears on a regular basis. She was asked if she felt wasteful for culling so much but she thought it was more wasteful to let items sit in her closet for months without any wear. Inspired by this post, I decided to cull my own wardrobe. Liam mentioned this to his sister and she said she was happy to take any clothes I didn’t want, which actually helped me be more ruthless with the culling process. I guess, knowing some of the more expensive items were going to someone you know made giving it away easier than just putting them in a charity bin. Like Loechner, I nailed it down to 25 items, but I didn’t include shoes, “gym gear” and outer wear in this list as I am a sucker for shoes and coats.
I gave the clothes to Liam’s sister and she was ecstatic about my second hand offerings. My Juicy Couture coat and bevy of pretty dresses fitted her like a glove. I’ll admit, I felt twinges of sadness as I handed over the clothes, but a pressure also lifted itself off my shoulders. I’m no longer reminded of what my body is not, and I’m no longer dressing for what I will be, but what I am now.
Have you culled your wardrobe recently? What was the hardest item to part with?