Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Wholesome Wednesdays: A Frugal Closet

This Wednesday i'm going to ever so briefly touch on a topic other than food or health that is also an important part of living lightly.

Headband i made w/ fleece i've had for yrs
If you know me, you'll most likely hang out with me and notice that i'm wearing something you've seen before. If you've never seen it before, it most likely came from the back of my closet, i just made or altered it, or it was recently given to me by a friend or family member. When it comes to clothing, i hate shopping and i do it so rarely i can count on my fingers the number of new garments i've purchased for myself in the past 2 years. I do not give up on a garment, often wearing them past the point of 'social acceptability' which is just a silly concept anyway since i spend most of my time at a drafting table in my studio or out in the garden. When i do buy clothes i try thrift stores or TJ Maxx, seconds type stores before stepping through the doors of a new-clothes retail shop (though i am obsessed with Target's excellent selection of knee high socks.) The one consumable garment i go through about every 6-9 months is sneakers: i spend 1-2 hours at the gym or on the trail every day and need fresh support for my ankles and knees to avoid injury. My 'used' sneakers go to goodwill or get reserved for gardening/mucking about or get handed 'up' to my mom or grandma who refuse to allow shoes to be thrown away.

Awesome new jacket and knitted headband made by my sister in law
Christmas is the one time of year i occasionally allow myself to splurge on brand new clothes. I received a super awesome jacket from my M.I.L. that will last me forever and acts as a fluffy, a wind breaker, or a warm coat (it's a 3-in-one from LL Bean) and several new outfits from my mom for the gym and for looking presentable, whether i'm in public or not. I had to exchange one item and ended up leaving Title Nine with 3 things! I really did splurge, but i love what i got. Horny Toad is a great brand and uses organic cotton in a lot of their clothes. When i do buy clothes that aren't already recycled (from a thrift shop, etc) i try to choose clothes made from organic cotton or responsibly grown fibers like hemp and flax or even recycled plastic bottles. I chose a really swell skirt that i'm sure will be worn to a frazzle, and noticed this super awesome tag on the inside that i just had to share with you all because it just screams my philosophy on clothes:

So great. I always wonder why people feel the need to wash a pair of pants after wearing them once. Unless you work in a ceramic studio, just butchered some animals, were slinging mud all over yourself, or did some massive sweating, i really just don't see any need for washing pants until they get visibly soiled or have stretched beyond fitting. Thus, i am still wearing clothes that i bought in high school and college, and am proud to sport shirts that were my Grandma's, Grandpa's and Mother's from the 70s or earlier. I even have undies that i've had for 10 years - that may be pushing it though.

So: wash less, wear more, buy used, pass on to friends and family, and don't give up on a garment, even if it's 'out of style.' The garden doesn't mind if you don't match current trends.

This post is also found at Simple Lives Thursday

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