Yesterday was my birthday, so I didn't post even though Monday is a post day. Happy birthday me! I am now thirty-one, and therefore very sensible and grown-up. With that in mind, some practical analysis!
Having spent some time thinking about the way I want my wardrobe to look, I now need to deal with why it doesn't currently look that way. I went through all my clothes, both handmade and shop-bought, and I found four main problems, which I am now going to analyse and make commitments to fix, because I am a massive bore. Here we go!
Issue one: Reluctance to throw out stuff I made
I have got rid of maybe two things I ever made. I think part of me is worried that I've wasted time, money and effort if I get rid of something I made, and I'm reluctant to give any of it away because I don't feel the construction quality is high enough.
Me-made things I would get rid of if I had the balls:
- Dance Party Hollyburn (not substantial enough. Should recycle for lining. Shame, because I love that set of photos and Dance Party Hollyburn is the best name for an item of clothing. Maybe I should have a dance party wearing something else)
- Red Vogue 7910 (this is a great colour and a great shape, but it wrinkles SO. EASILY. I am not and will never be the kind of person who irons her clothes every morning, so it just doesn't get worn anymore, especially now that I have another red skirt)
- Teal kimono jacket (exactly the same as above)
- Green Butterick 4443 (never worn because it needs serious altering, and I just don't know if it's worth it)
- Floral wrap top (this goes with absolutely nothing, but I can't bring myself to get rid of it because it's so damn photogenic)
- 80s Wren (I will never wear this, and I should just take the top part off and recycle it into a skirt)
- Black floral Vogue 1395 (I love the idea of this dress so much and I really want to be able to wear it, but if I lift my arms the whole thing ends up round my ass)
There are also a few things I don't wear right now, but might do if I got around to fixing them. My stripy flared skirt with the broken zip, my purple circle skirt with the fucked-up-even-for-me hem, and my red Butterick 4443, which is as full of errors and weirdness as one might expect of a first dress.
I am making a commitment that this stuff won't come with me in August unless it's wearable, by me, in whatever its current state is.
Issue two: None of my stuff goes together
Buying separates as outfits is something I always mean to do and then forget about when I see something I sort of like. I managed it once a little while ago - I bought navy and white spotty cropped trousers and a navy and white stripy T-shirt - and it was great. I always had a summer go-to that I knew looked good and I'd feel happy in. Then I ruined the T-shirt in the wash, and I had no outfits. That was a sad day.
I am making a commitment that from this point on, any separates I make will have an intended partner separate in mind, either that I already have or already have the fabric, that is not a black top or pair of jeans. I am going to go through all the separates I currently own and work out what needs partner pieces (don't worry, I promise not to subject the blog to this one).
Issue three: Too many things not appropriate to wear to most of the places I regularly go
Here are the main things I do:
Go to work (hopefully)
Lounge around the house
Potter about running errands
Go out to shows, dinners, cocktails
Go on random three-night holidays with only hand luggage
I've made a lot of things I can't really wear to any of those. Too showy for work, too restrictive for dancing/eating/lounging, not versatile enough to take on holiday. It's also not fabulous enough that I can say, "well, yeah, but I made something UTTERLY FABULOUS" and prance around my room in it feeling smug.
I am making a commitment that 80-90% of everything I make will fit into my regular day to day wardrobe and I will know which category (or categories) it fits into.
Issue four: Making or buying things based on bad criteria
A lot of the reason my wardrobe has been so disjointed is that I don't have the right things in mind when I'm shopping. I think about things such as what I liked four years ago, things I wish I liked, and wanting not to wear things that get me noticed. I'm starting to get over this, by virtue of really paying attention to what's coming into my wardrobe, but there's still some older stuff - and older attitudes - in there that needs to get gone.
I am making a commitment that if I haven't worn something between now and August, it can't come with me (notwithstanding swimsuits if I haven't been on holiday yet and other such occasion-specific stuff).
I've said these things in public, so now they're real. Next step: working out what gaps there are in my wardrobe as is, and ways to make getting dressed easier for someone who is bad at getting dressed. Yay!