Monday, October 22, 2012

The Clothing Experiment

by Kate Collins

I read an article in a newspaper about a woman who had a hard time getting rid of her old clothing. She hung onto things for years, even decades, because she felt a sentimental attachment to them. She finally decided that the only way she was going to be able to cull her wardrobe was to wear every single item in it for one day each.

So she did. Some things she found so uncomfortable, that it was an easy decision. Some things were so out of style she felt foolish in them. Other things she was able to repurpose by combining them with newer articles. She was so attached to one particular item that she decided to put it in a box and store it. But then she had to ask herself, what good would that do? Would I ever take it out of the box and look at it? Does having it stored make me feel better? If her answers were yes, she kept the piece. If not, buh-bye.

I can so understand her feelings about her clothing. There are a lot of items in my closet that I haven’t been able to part with because my husband picked them out. I have other pieces that were fashionable in their time and cost a pretty penny. They, too, have stayed.  But I’ll be moving soon and need to condense my clothing to fit in a smaller closet, so I’ve decided to try the experiment.

Having to wear the items all day is a real endurance test, let me tell you.  But three days into it, I’ve got two tops in the donation pile and one shirt that’s staying. Up for tomorrow is a pencil shirt in light blue that I always thought looked a little sloppy on me. If I’m able to keep it on all day and feel good in it, it’s a keeper.  

Actually, the experiment is kind of fun. Would you be daring enough to try it? Do you hang onto clothing for sentimental reasons?