I have two chaise lounges by the fireplace in our bedroom.
A fireplace we’ve only used once.
The same with the lounges. Rarely do we use them.
My closet is so full that I pile the clothes I wear every day on them.
The drawers in my closet are filled with what I don’t wear.
Haven’t worn for ten years. At least.
For one thing, my weight is always fluctuating. I hold out hope that what those drawers are holding may someday fit.
Plus, I’ve been known to jump on the occasional new fad. Style trends that don’t go the distance.
Short silk onesies that snap in my crotch. I have five of them.
There was a time I’d do that. Snap. No more. Too much work. Plus, I can’t see my crotch as well as I once could.
Spanx. No way. I have seven variations. Above and below the waist. The last time I wore one I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t eat my soup. Had to get up during a dinner party, take it off and stuff it in my purse.
Panty hose. Rarely do I wear those. Because I’m always wearing pants. And the combo of pantyhose and pants is unnecessary and looks weird together. Again, in the crotch. And for the few times I wear a dress in the winter I don’t need twenty-seven pairs of black tights.
It goes on.
Earrings. During covid I stopped wearing them. I’m just getting back to it. Of course, most of my earrings I’ve lost or can’t find. And a lot of the others are a little weird. Hoopie. With things hanging down. Like little shells. That I bought in the Caribbean.
Long sweaters that I thought elongated me, covered my hips and made me look skinny. I’m sick of those. Never elongated me anyway. I counted four, ribbed black ones.
I have a drawer of belts. I don’t wear belts. There was a time thirty years ago when I wanted to call attention to my waist. Those days are gone.
A drawer of old passports with holes punched in them. Cash from weird countries I’ve visited and won’t go back. Old credit cards. Fabric buttons.
And shoes. You can never wear the shoes you wore ten years ago. After fifty your feet grow. In all ways. Your toes puff up. You have a bunion. You don’t want Manolo skinny heels or terrifying platforms. Last week I ordered a pair of new winter boots. Size twelve. My shelves are full of shoes I will never wear again.
Why do I live surrounded by things I don’t need and no longer use. Cluttering up the space in my closet for things I do need and do use. Necessitating my fireside lounges to be covered in the clothes I do wear. And my closet filled with what I don’t.
Am I afraid to discard the past? Accept the present?
Create space for…and accept…the version of who I am now?
There’s something mysterious in the story of the closet occupied by the me that no longer exists.
I may have to conjure up my inner Nancy Drew and figure out what it is.
Join the discussion 3 Comments
About the closet…I do not like shopping, hence I hold on to things in case I need them. I do like finely made things, hence those I hold onto those too. And the things I bought by mistake just hang there—the best looking item from a small store is not necessarily the best purchase!
I hired a shopper to help
a few years ago and bought all the things she liked. Sigh. And ultimately gave them all away, I could not find myself in the “get ups” that seemed chic but later felt absurd. I pivoted and bought things from Lands End and felt like a lumpy old girl with no style. Next I bought floral silky blouses and patterned cashmere and recoiled at the intensity in the mirror. And the shoes! Ouch.
I will start editing, I swear. I did my sock drawer, my bras. I put aside all that needs tailoring. But the aspirational “well dressed, creative, put together” separates are just that —separate, disconnected. Should I have another go with a professional stylist!?
Love to hear your thoughts on that!!
Loved this piece. Just had this same problem. I emptied the whole closet and carried everything to another room. Then i had to bring all of it back in. I had lots of piles to find a new home. Seemed to work. I think some of this keeping stuff is inherited from parents, but now I have decided that my kids don’t need to deal with my indecision. So it’s now …out it goes. If I don’t LOVE…it goes. I wonder how long this will last.