Greetings and welcome to blog #6. Not a lot happening at this time of year, is there? The week after Christmas, the days leading up to New Year's. The Diva emailed me this week and used the word indolent to describe her and Terry's approach to life at this time. So true - it's an indolent time of year. Not sure if that will catch on in a new song in next year's wave of Christmas CDs ("well, the weather outside is balmy, the garden is full of palmies, we are feeling indolent... let it sun, let it sun, let it sun" - hmmmm, catchy? I think not...) but it does capture the mood in one economical word. At least for some.
Me - Indolent? Including me! Not a lot been going on. Some days I feel like my biggest achievement is I have saved money. In that, I haven't gone anywhere where money could be spent (including my office where lots of money can be spent tap-tap-tapping on the keyboard attatched to the world wide web). None of these lunatic Boxing Day sales for me! They're crazy - people lining up from 5am outside department store doors, contributing to the overall stampede feeling usually reserved for major league football matches held in enormous stadiums. And the odd assortment of items purchased (well, those reported upon) - a silver evening top, gumboots, the Twilight trilogy on DVD and a Breville mixmaster. Who are these people???
Instead, I've stayed close to the homestead. I've been doing some home cookin' -- something I'm as surprised as anyone to note how much I have enjoyed (and those on the eating end seem to be, too). I've done some holiday reading (why it's "holiday reading" I'm not sure as the books are remarkably similar to non-holiday books - it's reading and I'm feeling on holidays, so maybe that's why we can call it "holiday reading"?). I've even gotten into our pool (Dan felt that evidence was required of me actually being in the pool as it is such a rare occurrence (too cold for me usually, even in our hot climate) so we have photographic evidence that what I say is true - to be supplied on threat of death only). Since we have guests, a swimsuit was in order and it was then that I discovered - gasp! - that several of my swimsuits have had the richard, gone to swimsuit heaven, lost their vavoom (well, their elastic, and in key places too) and needed to be chucked out (as we so elegantly say things). And I've only had them for 6 years!
Chuck out Bag. Which got me thinking about how and when and under what circumstances I let things go (euphemistically more elegant than 'chucking out', but same result - it's bye bye baby). I can't remember the last time I got rid of an item of clothing (except said swimsuit) because it had worn out. Julie was visiting us recently and was saying that that is probably her #1 or #2 reason she gets rid of clothing - they're done, finished, reached the end of the line, kaput, had it. They've been worn to death.
Why do I get rid of clothes? Mostly because I don't wear them any more, and it's not because they're worn out. It's because the style doesn't seem like 'me' any more, or I've discovered something about the fabric (it scratches or runs in the wash, for example). I don't feel good in it anymore is another reason; or I'm just tired of it. I keep a "chuck out bag" --- that's the photo above, posing with said elastically-challenged swimsuit now residing safely inside it, beside our pool with our dog Indigo behind the pool fence in the background keeping an eye on proceedings --- in my walk in closet. Whenever an item of clothing needs to be let go, made redundant, pink-slipped, downsized - into the bag it goes. (yes, even my chuck out bag is animal print, how did that happen?!?).
Seasonal chuck out time. Around this time of year, fashion magazines will usually run an article about how you need to do a Serious Review of your wardrobe at least once, preferrably twice, a year (spring and autumn are the ideal seasons). Whilst I like that idea and in general think it's a good one, I have more of an all-season approach. I keep my chuck out bag permanently in my closet, and the very moment an item has been branded as Had It - into the bag it goes. Unless it has yet to be brought to my attention, there's nothing hanging or folded in my closet that I don't wear. If my friend Helen (image consultant extraordinaire) is visiting from Melbourne, we'll usually spend a little quality time in my walk-in room of a closet and she'll watch and comment as I parade a variety of clothing items in front of her. This constitutes a Serious Review in my book, but it rarely happens at the turn of the season.
So what I'm wondering is how many items of clothing I'll wear through in the coming 11.10 months left of the challenge. How many things that I'll wear to death - that no amount of soaking, re-stitching, hand-washing and towel-drying (away from direct sunlight) will fix. To go shopping to find something I actually, truly ruly, madly, deeply need -- as opposed to buying something simply because I want and desire it. To feel I am fully using and enjoying what I already have rather than perpetually topping it up. That's the essence of what Shopping My Closet means. Right?