Saturday, March 31, 2012


I think I'm having an identity crisis of sorts, at least as seen through the evidence of my clothes. Recently, I decided to give up the ghost and accept the reality of my new body shape. I wasn't heavy exactly, but things have shifted around. So I gave away a small bag of my tiniest clothes and bought some sad elastic waist pants. Haha. And then, voila--the last of my post-baby weight melted away and the pants sag every time I wear them. The other of my 3 purchases so far this year was also a failure, a pair of Eileen Fisher pants. The brand fits my demographic, but not me, which is a lesson to me in rule-making when it comes to fashion. In my defense, I couldn't try them on because I had a sleeping baby strapped to me at the time.

But all in all, I'm not entirely dissatisfied. The pants themselves were only a dollar and a half each, and it's super easy to give away clothes on FreeCycle and thus avoid the landfill while making some poor student or resident hippie happy.

But I haven't written much lately because I haven't had much interest in talking about clothes, though I still like reading what other people have to say. I wonder if it was the acquisition of things that kept the obsession going. I haven't gotten a lot, and every time I think about getting a new thing, knowing that I'll have to record that purchase--at least for my own sake if not on the blog--keeps me honest.

But I've just been interested in things rather different from the style world. I've been trying to make more things from scratch, like bread, yogurt, and even laundry detergent;, moving on to using cloth diapers;  planning our next foraging trip (the wild leeks should be coming up soon!), and otherwise making tiny incremental changes toward a more simple, unadorned life. We'll be moving in August to a new space, a 2-bedroom with loft in what used to be a turn-of-the century pottery mill belonging to the university's founder. I'll be one block from a waterfall and gorge. It'll definitely be nicer, though in some odd way I'll miss our current dwelling and our hermit pothead upstairs neighbor, who likes to hang out his window in fine weather and herald all our comings and goings.


  1. In response to your first paragraph, I wonder if what we perceive as the 'reality' of our bodyshape could ever be considered fixed. Of course there are the obvious alterations during and after pregnancy, which is something I cannot comment upon......but I suppose it might suggest a difference in actual shape as opposed to body weight? And regardless whether this is positively (which I hope it is!) or negatively accepted it would still take some mental adjustment, and a period of uncertainly seems perfectly understandable.
    I recall certain (natural) bodily changes during my twenties which affected me in a somewhat similar way, with regards to clothing myself. I actually continued to purchase items which were the wrong size/fit because my mental perspective had not caught up with the physical reality, if that makes sense. I would even stand with a garment held up in front of me and judge it to fit correctly only to be shocked when actually trying it on. It took a long time for me to adjust mentally, to adapt to the way my body had decided to ....evolve. Thankfully, for the sake of my equilibrium my bodyshape settled to where it is at present, but I am certain that there will be a fresh period of adjustment to prepare for somewhere along the line. It is inevitable.
    And similarly, I have suffered a few disillusions with purchases recently, too. I have had to rethink a couple of the brands which I had previously felt very comfortable with, particularly concerning quality and fit. Interesting how you mention demographic also - I have literally no idea who is even supposed to cater to me at present, I am at that 'funny age' where brands kind of prefer not to mention you, yet expect you to still make up a large portion of their actual demographic.

    Personally, I appear to be steering away from the concept of luxury - not that I had specifically focused upon it previously - for some of the most expensive clothing I had purchased turned out to suit me the least in retrospect. I think that it certainly does pay off to take a step back from web related influence, and quite often the relentless exposure to luxury brands has the opposite effect of actually turning me off them. The quality does not always satisfy, I can rarely locate a decent fit, and the oversaturation of overpriced goods with vague sourcing info has resulted in me feeling somewhat confused, even wary. As much as I should prefer to shop ethically and with a focus on higher quality, I am still rather uncertain whether any well known brand (or at least the usual, heavily hyped, so-called luxury brands) are a wise choice for me. The internet influence is pervasive, it can appear to normalise what I may once have considered extortionate.

    I guess the more we are concerned with issues and projects outside of the consumer driven element of the web, we are able to gain a much clearer impression of what we actually need - as opposed to what we may idly desire? I suspect this is what has been happening with you - and something which I definitely notice in myself when I am taken up with work deadlines, home concerns and more urgent, real time issues.

    Apologies for the mammoth reply!
    The new abode sounds lovely - an exciting time indeed.

  2. Your new place sounds lovely. Congratulations on losing the baby weight. Like you I've been uninspired by clothes lately--I'm not sure if it's the exhaustion of working on the book or if it's just the supremely uninspired clothing out there. I think it's a bit of both but as I'm on an extremely tight budget these days, it's all just as well.