Thursday, March 24, 2011

I hate most of my clothes

It's been almost 11 months since we got rid of almost everything we owned in preparation for our move to the UAE. That included getting rid of most of our clothes - you know, all those shirts hanging in our closet or clogging up our drawers that we never really wore anyway. I kept only the clothes that I loved wearing, and got rid of anything that didn't fit or was out of style (a loose definition; we're talking about ME here), or that I just didn't like wearing.

Well, of those clothes, a few shirts have recently bit the dust and I am left with two pairs of jeans, four dresses, and what you see here:

That's 10 blouses and two shirts. That's it. And I am becoming more unenamored with each and every one of them as the days go by. Let's take a look.

 (Purple). I bought this one in Damascus in 2005. Its butt-covering powers are unrivaled. That's why I keep it around, because you never know when you're going to need a good butt-covering shirt in the Middle East.
 My newest shirt - GAP, spring of 2010, right before we left for Egypt. I still like it but since it's my go-to travel shirt, it has taken quite the beating.
 This shirt is from Japan, circa 2000. I actually love this shirt beyond all reason but I'm starting to realize that maybe, just maybe, it doesn't look so good to everyone else.
 Jeremy bought me this shirt in London in 2006. He likes it (on me) more than I do. That's why I still have it.
 J. Crew, 2002. I think this may be the last vestige of my J. Crew days in my possession. I almost never wear it, though - why did I keep it? Maybe because it's the last vestige of my J. Crew days in my possession.
Old Navy clearance, 2010. This shirt has a hole in it along the neckline so its days are numbered. Which is good, because I am more tired of this shirt than perhaps any other I own.

I just realized I have a white one just like it, purchased from the same clearance rack. It is so ragged and beat up from a summer of handwashing in Egypt but it is still in my regular rotation. Maybe it shouldn't be.
 Mountain Hardware, 2008. I'm tired of the way this looks on me, i.e., not that good. But the pattern is pretty, so.
 Another Old Navy clearance gem. I like the color and not much else about this one.
 Old Navy (but not clearance! I don't think), 2008. I bought this one to wear in that awkward stage between giving birth and not fitting into any of my regular clothes...and then never gave it up. I like this shirt, but it's too big on me.

Another Jeremy's-trip-to-England gift shirt from 2006. I used to love this shirt but I have worn it to death.

The other two shirts
were purchased at Costco, 2006ish. The one on the left is one of those PregnancyWatch alert shirts because the bottom of it is very free-flowing. The black one is old but still in my good graces.

So, there you have it. I think I'm in for some new shirts sometime soon, but jeans have got to come first. Wearing two pairs of jeans for a year gets old (and stretched out and unflattering and faded in odd places) fast. Believe me, I know.

Looking at this list, which does not include old t-shirts I wear only for exercising, my oldest item of clothing that I still wear a lot is my Japan 2000 shirt, followed closely by J. Crew 2002. Not too bad. But also kind of shameful.

How long do you keep clothes for? And what criteria do you use for deciding when to get rid of them?


Jen said...

I see where you're coming from. And you're a girl even, so that makes it more amazing to me that some items have such tenure.

The problem is that I seem to add 2-4 shirts a year (not even t-shirts, which have their own "growth" rate) yet the older shirts don't get worn out, so they don't get thrown out. Thus my closet has crept up to like 40+ shirts. I have some I know I was wearing in 1995, much to Jen's chagrin. I started a system wherein freshly laundered shirts go to the middle of the rack and un-worn ones move toward the wall. If a shirt stays close to the wall too long, it apparently belongs in a charity/yard-sale pile. Still, some of my favorites are my inheritance of {polyester or otherwise exotic} shirts from the 70s from my great-grandfather which I added to my collection circa 1997. They get repaired when the seams go loose. :)

Jen said...

{Ahem, it's Joe's comment.}

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Liz Johnson said...

Oh, man. I have the same problem - I am SICK of my clothes. I just checked - there are at least 4 shirts that I obtained either freshman or sophomore year in college that I still wear regularly. And some of my jeans (that are now getting holes) are probably from 2005. It's getting ridiculous.

Maybe it's time for both of us to hit H&M. :)

Nemesis said...

I try to tell myself that if I haven't worn it during the year then I shouldn't keep it. Usually I end up taking stock while switching out the summer/winter clothes, since that gives me the chance to evaluate each piece. I make sure to hang on to clothes that get me compliments, and am trying to get better about letting go of things that are "problematic"--that fit in a funny way, or that can only be worn with this one other thing, etc.

Nemesis said...

Oh! And I've done a recent splurge on accessories to try to dress up my own stuff because I can't afford all new things--I got a cheap chunky necklace, a couple of belts, a scarf, and created a couple of flower pins. So far that's helping a lot, especially since my clothes tend towards solid (read: drab) colors that could use a bit of sprucing up.

Sherwood family said...

My new criteria: if I didn't take them on evacuation, I left them to be burned/looted and so obviously didn't want whatever clothes I left. I figure if I don't wear them, they don't deserve packing space, and so clothes get left whenever we move. And it gives me an excuse to buy new ones. Which I now do because I want to, not because I need to. I love good employment.

Cori Keller said... not get rid of the shirt from Japan.. it looks beautiful, I love the color. All your shirts look pretty and delicate. I suggest getting a couple new ones and then going through these one more time. The ones that do not make you FEEL comfortable and fabulous are not worth keeping, because if you do not love them now, you will not love them later. The Japan one though, you should keep... you love it. Just get some new ones and so you don't wear it out!

Kat Clark said...

Please selfishly use 100 dollars and buy yourself some new tops.
Then take 100 more dollars and buy two pairs of new jeans.
Then take 100 more dollars and buy a couple new skirts/dresses.
Lastly, use 100 more dollars to buy new shoes and accessories and then feel proud of yourself for getting a whole new wardrobe with 400 dollars. Why? Because you're worth it.

Crys said...

I don't mean this to be catty at all so I hope it doesn't sound this way but girl don't you live in the shopping Mecca of the Arab world? I know there are girls at your school pulling of the modest chic! Ask where they shop and go buy five new shirts you love! Kill the frugal grad school wife mentality just this once...when there is only one shirt left that you can say good things about you know your are ready for an intervention ;)

Bridget said...

All right, shirt from Japan stays, and then I'm heading to H&M. They have cute clothes AND accessories so it will be simple. Right.

Now I need to get a babysitter so Jeremy can come with me as fashion consultant.

Susanne said...

and we want to see the new stuff,please! happy shopping!

Suzanne Bubnash said...

Jeremy as a fashion consultant? Wow, wish I'd thought of that! Can't wait to see your new wardrobe!

Kelli said...

You should post the new clothes you pick out. I love H & M but there isn't a store near us.

OSOS KAHLA said...

You should post the new clothes you pick out. I love H & M but there isn't a store near us.

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