October 5, 2010

An Abomination

Oh, this is bad.  I'm not exaggerating - this is just really, really bad.

Take a look at this photo.  Yes, there are FIVE garbage bags there (one is kind of hiding).  They're full of clothes.

Oh, go ahead and yell at me - I deserve it.  How did it get this bad?!  I'm trying to think of the last time I made a Goodwill run with donated clothes - I can't remember the last time.

I was in one of those moods today where I just decided that I'd better clean out my closet and drawers, or it may wait another year.  It's a daunting task, but today I felt like being realistic.

"Were clothes REALLY made right here in the US, Mommy?"

What do I mean by that?  Well, as sad as it is, I'm pretty sure I'll never be a size 10 ever again, considering the last time I was that thin was back in '95, when I was 27 years old.  Time to throw out that plaid skirt from Express.  Oh, check out this tag:  it's from a sweater I bought at the County Seat (remember them?) back in - wait for it - 1985.  Yes, I said 19-EIGHTY-5.  It's 25 years old.  How can you tell?  Well, when's the last time you saw "Made in U.S.A." on a clothes tag? (I also have to laugh at the "virgin acrylic" material - must be from those petroleum-based sheep!)

Now, those of you that know me personally and have seen my taste in clothes know that I am, by NO stretch of the imagination, a clothes horse.  I will wear something until it wears out (I must've gotten this trait from my Depression-era dad - mustn't waste ANYTHING!), regardless of whether it's in style or not.  I haven't gone so far as to buy "separates" yet, but that's probably because I'm only 42 and I don't need elastic-waisted pants (yet).  So if I'm not a fashionista, how on earth did I get FIVE bags of unwanted clothes?  Well, if you count pants that I've grown out of (or bought thinking every 14 is the same and then was too lazy (or too optimistic!) to bring them back), there's a bag right there.  If you count clothes I hung onto for sentimental reasons, there's another bag and a half.  If you count gift sweaters, that's a half bag.  If you count Target t-shirts, for which I had one of every color, there's another half bag (but they're pretty poorly made, and those were on the verge of wearing out, yet too good to throw away).  If you count dresses and skirts that I wore once to some Christmas party or other, there's some more.  Et cetera, et cetera, et cetera.

Strata of clothes, ranging from 1985-2008.

I'm pretty sure that my generation (and possibly the Boomers) is the first generation to have this problem.  Seems to me that before all of our disposable income (and cheaply-made Chinese clothes) people bought a few well-made items and then mixed and matched them.  Something tells me that, save the richest folks, people didn't have a completely different outfit for every day of the week.  And did anyone really care if you wore a shirt twice in one week?  Would anyone really notice today?

I have bought very few clothes this year - firstly, because I really don't need any now that I'm home all the time; and secondly, for budgetary reasons.  I remember, in the past, going to Target and just throwing a pile of shirts in the basket because, hey, they're cheap, so why not?

What I'm going to try and do this year is: a) Buy American! and b) buy less.  If I can find a couple of classic pieces (like a good white shirt and some nice pants) and pair them with sweaters I already own, so much the better.  I don't ever want to have to clean like this again.  But there's always Brian's closet....


  1. At least you came to terms with it all! I have a walk in closet full of clothes, and about 5% of them actually fit me. Many of them still have price tags hanging off of them! I am holding on to the dream that one day I will need them again.

  2. The only reason I don't have as much stuff is because before buying a house, I moved every five years or so (so check back with me in 10 years time ;o) I do still have the Outback Red shirt I bought in the '80s (remember the Australian fashion trend?) It's is actually marked MADE IN ITALY - can you imagine buying Italian clothes at the Limited? :D

  3. lovely to find your blog via a comment on vivienne's.

    i love a good closet purge. ah, the feeling of accomplishment.

  4. Thank you for your supportive comments, ladies! It is quite comforting to know that I am not alone and that this seems to be a very common problem! :D

    PP - I know EXACTLY where you're coming from!

    Carolyn - Outback Red! A ha ha ha - I had all those Limited clothes too! :D

    Tammy - thanks so much for stopping by from Viv's blog! Nice to see you here! :D