Thursday, October 29, 2015

Time Marshes On...

You need to try everything on
I'm always amazed that something I enjoyed wearing one year can look so terrible the next.

It's closet switching time. Though still warm and muggy in south Texas, the days are shorter, turkeys are piled high in the supermarket, and Christmas ornaments for sale in aisle 6. There's not enough closet space in this little bungalow, so I keep half my things in giant plastic tubs behind a screen in the bedroom. Twice a year I haul out the containers and start the process.

A girl can dream

I never hang everything, because of course I can't fit into it all. I'm a firm believer that unworn wardrobe will shrink of its own volition while resting. Some things are hard to give up, but after a year I realize it will be "never again". Out they go— with a sigh.

But there are other things that made me happy just nine months ago. These still fit, but are the clothes for another person. Those ruffles? That full skirt? A bolero jacket? Some of it is Style. I'm as finely attuned to that as a sommelier is to wine. Maybe 20014 wasn't such a great year. Did I change that much? Did fashion? Who am I now?

As I try things on (and you have to do that) I ask myself: Is this appropriate for a 73-year-old woman? It's a bit like playing with a hang-nail. I can't resist the urge to inflict a little pain. It still surprises me I am how old???????????? I want to embrace this gift with dignity and a sense of fun but don't want to look silly. I have to ask the question, even if I am giving myself the answer.

A bunch of stuff gets donated and some taken for resale. The resale shop doesn't give much (not a consignment set-up), but I've found some goodies there myself in the past. I like the idea of giving someone else a chance to enjoy mine.

Don't worry; I'm not getting the least bit ascetic. I couldn't leave without hauling home an ankle length faux-fur black Mongolian lamb vest for $14.

Add 12 inches


  1. Hi Michelle,
    I,too, am 73 years, and I can't believe it ! I did donate clothes this season. Some items I kept for several years thinking I will wear them---now they will go.
    I don't want so many choices anymore. I'm simplifying as much as possible so I can focus on fun things, family, and good times with good friends.
    Love your posts.

    1. A kindred spirit! How nice to hear from you. And wasn't it actually easier to let go of some of that stuff? I'm also looking forward to less "stuff", less stress and better shopping decisions.

  2. Hey, Michelle, we've reached the age where we can do whatever we please! You sound so much more disciplined with your wardrobe than I ever manage to be. I'm not good at discarding, always hopeful that a style may become fashionable again or that I might lose a bit of weight and fit into an old favourite - I keep my clothes for YEARS! If I know that an item of clothing is an absolute no-no then I bag it up and take it to my local Oxfam shop and feel very virtuous! But mostly I'm trying just not to buy stuff because in retirement my life is mostly concerned with grubbing about in the garden in a pair of old jeans.

  3. Just had to laugh because I dedicated this morning to making that seasonal clothing switch myself (bins stored under bed). My big achievement was bagging up a huge load of clothes and shoes for my favorite charity thrift store. The further away I get from working full time, the less apparel I seem to require.