Thursday, 17 January 2013

Wardrobe Stories


Preparing to move flats has given me ample opportunity to reassess the clothes I own: what to keep, what to donate, what can be 'up-cycled' and begin again as something new. This dressing-gown is a keeper for sure. Normally my wardrobe stories are about clothes that have been with me for a while - things that have earned their place. But this is an item I love largely because of the future I imagine for it.

I adopted it recently out of necessity. Staying at my parents' house on the morning of my sister's wedding I needed something to wear whilst running around dealing with bridesmaid duties before getting all dolled-up. This had been lurking in the back of my Mum's wardrobe for close to three years - a seldom worn charity shop purchase that very nearly suffered the indignity of being cut up and turned into a fancy dress kimono costume when we went to a 'world themed' party at her work.

Maybe it was the glamour of the occasion when I first wore it, or the fact that I'm currently watching Mad Men box-sets and being inspired by a more sophisticated fashion era, but somehow this dressing gown suddenly makes sense in my everyday life. I love throwing it on over joggers or pyjamas and feeling instantly presentable and polished with minimum effort. I love that the scent of my cocoa butter lotion has irreversibly seeped into the fabric and the freedom of the birds in flight across the print.

Its labels were cut out before it came my way so I'm not sure what material it's made with or the shop it originally came from. Even though I know very little of its history, it feels like an heirloom in the making. It reminds me of my Mum, my sister, of intimacy and comfort. I feel so well within myself when I wear it that I can't see myself getting rid of it anytime soon. And I wonder whether its distinctive pattern and scents will lodge themselves in the early memories of any children I might have one day - in the same way that certain 'house clothes' my Mum wore repeatedly when we were young are indelibly impressed on my own mind.

Beautiful thoughts.

'Wardrobe Stories' are a string of posts helping me to appreciate the clothes and accessories I own in an atmosphere where it's easy to end up taking things for granted.

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