Happy Wednesday! We’re still talking about “out with the old” as we make room for new things this year. And there’s nothing I love to purge more than clothes – mostly because that means I usually give myself permission to buy new ones. But we can talk about that later…
Wickeds, how often do you purge your closet? How old is the oldest piece of clothing you own?
Edith/Maddie: I’m overdue for a closet purge, but the oldest item is easy. I have an indigo-dyed Japanese shirt I brought home in 1977 after living in the greater Tokyo area for two years. A friend gave it to me, and by some miracle the shirt still fits. In spring and fall I wear it around the house over a three-quarters sleeve shirt for one more light layer. It’s been much repaired and has only a few buttons left, but why get rid of something I love and can still wear? About cleaning the closet, I think we need to have traveling closet-purging parties. You come over and be ruthless in mine, and I’ll exchange the favor. Any takers?
Julie: I tend to purge once a year, around this time. My sisters call it shopping at Julie’s. Working from home has been tough on my clothes. I have a tough time letting go of work suits, but I really don’t need them as much. The oldest thing I own? Some scarves my grandmother gave me that were hers. A couple of show jackets from the 1980s. I so wish I still had some of my clothes from the 80’s, but alas…
Jessie: I purge my wardrobe fairly frequently, probably quarterly. I am trying to winnow it down to only pieces that I love and love to wear. It isn’t always an easy task, but it is very satisfying once it is done! I would say the oldest piece of clothing I have is a vintage coat that I wear when it rains. I am not sure of the age, but if I had to guess would say the 1960s or 1970s. It has a label from a Boston clothing store I do not recognize sewn onto the lining. It is orange-red, is long with beautiful seaming, andcapacious hood. It is just the thing to lend some cheer to a bleak day!
Sherry: I love the sound of your raincoat, Jessie! I’ve been doing a lot of purging the past couple of years. I swear I think things are growing in my closet because it always seems crowded. I have three shirts from the 70s — two sorority shirts that are tucked away in the basement and a shirt I saved for the daughter I hoped I’d have some day. It’s lime green with a colored rhinestone lightning bolt on it. It’s itchy so I don’t think my daughter ever wore it. I should have kept the acid-washed denim jacket from the late 80s for her.
Barb: I’ve always been good about purging my clothes. Someone told me years ago that there were never enough work-type clothes for larger women in charity shops and that has spurred me on. I have to switch my clothes winter and summer, due to storage issues and that’s when I get rid of stuff. I admit to being at a loss during the pandemic when I’d look at outfits and think, “I haven’t worn this–but then I haven’t been anywhere!” The oldest piece of clothing in my house is probably my great-grandmother’s wedding bloomers, from April 26, 1900.
Liz: I love these answers! I purge A LOT because I buy a lot…but I do have some vintage concert T-shirts – Goo Goo Dolls, which I think is my oldest from sometime in the 2000s, and Stevie Nicks from around that same time.
Readers, how about you? What are your closet-purging habits? Tell us in the comments!