Flipping through the October Harper's Bazaar in an attempt to catch up on all the magazine reading I've missed while away, I came across an article titled "Growing Into & Out Of Fashion" and was intrigued. Rita Wilson discusses a closet purge in which she debates her changing tastes and decides there are some things that she just can't let go of, regardless of how dated they may be.
Since the weather has finally dipped into the tweed-wearing 60's, I took Rita's words to heart as I began the daunting task of switching my closet from summer to fall. (I say daunting because I live in a studio apartment, where one season at a time has the luxury of living in the double door closet, while the other seasons must cower in cedar lined garment bags under the bed, waiting for their day in the sun.) Rita Wilson admitted that among the pieces she can't part with are those with 'sparkle', as in blinged out t-shirts and dresses (the word 'bedazzled' was even used). I admire a woman that knows what she likes and isn't afraid to rock it, regardless of its popularity. (Also notable is the ability to recognize the humor in such taste, rather than believing that the look is universally flattering and timeless. Maybe Rita Wilson can have a chat with those who insist that Uggs and spandex are fashionable.)
So I stood in front of the open doors, parted like the sea, to reveal a season's worth of silk tops, airy dresses, wedge sandals and linen blend pants. All of it was neatly folded between tissue and laid to hibernate for the next 9 months. As the winter/fall bags emerged from the depths under the bed, the more perplexing questions arose. Though I've been in the City for 5 years, thick, woolly remnants of my years spent at Colgate University in Central New York still lurk in the piles. Always loyal to those items I once loved, I have a hard time letting go. But this time, in the spirit of growth (and lack of space) I decided to say goodbye to the chunky knits with funnel necks and oversize buttons, showing signs of fatigue with large pilled nubbs under arms and along hems. For the thin, 12 gauge cashmere cardigans in delicious shades of candy that are forever fresh, I cleared space in the cedar lined hanging shelves where they could rest like the queens they are. (A tip I picked up from Lucky Magazine: if any wool sweaters appear to have moth holes after a season of storage, place them in the freezer overnight to kill any lingering larva, then have the holes repaired by the dry cleaner. Dry cleaning alone will not kill larva, so the freezer is key. I did this last night, and realized I forgot to mention it to my Husband when I heard a loud 'what the hell?' ring from the kitchen as he was going for some ice cubes for his martini. Oops.)
Perhaps if I had a closet the size of Rita Wilson's, I could afford to hold on to those old nubby friends, but in the age of studio, Good Will benefits.