Stuff and that.

Stuff. And yeah. That

Category: 2019

Kon Maudy reaches the end of the wardrobe

I am currently wearing the last long sleeved shirt in my wardrobe. It prickles and is stiff and a bit scratchy. And the collar goes in my mouth so I chew it. I don’t chew my clothes. I think that’s why it was the last shirt on the rack. I think it’s been stiff and scratchy from day one. And I’m also pretty sure I’ve only worn it maybe twice. Probably because of the scratchy.

It was interesting when I got to the last five or so shirts – there had to be a reason why they were the last ones left, and it got really hard each day to pick what I was going to wear. Aside from El Scratcho, there was another linen shirt that was a”needs must” purchase. Not something I’d usually buy, but I got rather wet on the way to work one day and had to buy a new skin out outfit (seriously, it absolutely pissed down for about five minutes, I got saturated to the skin. Wet t-shirts aren’t work appropriate attire). It did the job, but it’s short in the sleeves and, well just about everywhere else to be honest. Not a favourite.

There is another shirt which is best described as a top. It has raglan sleeves. I really don’t like raglan sleeves. Why do I keep buying stuff with raglan fucking sleeves, then? One of the mysteries of the universe I do believe. I also don’t know whether I like it or not. Eh, I think it might go. Or it might not. I’ll decide when it’s dry. The last two shirts are ancient oxford cloth shirts from Sportscraft. One is maybe eight years old, and the other one is pink. I don’t wear pink. Which is an abject lie. I don’t wear a lot of pink, and I don’t know if this shirt is a pink shirt that I will wear. Confused now. Will stop. I like some pinks I don’t know if I like this pinks. Ok. Backing away from the pinks.

I’m keeping the pink shirt and its purple mate for the time being. Basically, my requirement for a shirt (aside from it fitting), actually my requirement for all my clothes is to wear them and not be aware of them while I am doing so. If I’m aware of my clothing, that means there is a 99.89% chance it fucking shits me and I should probably do away with it. The pink shirt and the purple one don’t shit me, even though they were in the bottom five. I didn’t wear them earlier because the two pairs of trousers I had left clashed with pink and purple (it’s really lilac). Neither really went so well with ocean blue or brown stripes), so I had to wait until black trousers were available again. They’re staying. Well, definitely the purple one. Maybe not the pink one.

AND I FOUND A PAIR OF JEANS!!!

Aaaaaages ago, I bought two pairs of jeans, then promptly put on weight and didn’t wear them. I did pull out one pair but they were a bit jeez, I don’t know exactly. Suffice to say I was aware of them when I wore them, and I don’t enjoy that in a garment. And I assumed that the two pairs were identical. I don’t know why. Anyway, the too big ones were dirty, the nqr pair were also dirty, so I dragged out the other pair. And O.M.F.G. They fit. They’re flattering, go in where I do, out where I do, and they’re really really nice. Unbelievable. (Levi’s 312s, if you’re interested)

Now I have reached the end of my wardrobe, I have:

  • Worn 32 different long sleeved shirts, five short sleeved t-shirts and three long sleeved t-shirts
  • Worn six pairs of work trousers, two pairs of cargo pants and three pairs of jeans
  • Worn two skirts
  • Worn one dress

And I have…

  • Culled five shirts
  • Culled one pair of trousers
  • Threw out one cardigan (I stuck my thumb through a tiny hole. Now it has a yuge hole)
  • Potentially re-homed another pair of trousers and a shirt
  • Probably culled the NQR jeans
  • Realised I have Issues with polyester trousers (particularly when a) there has been an unseasonably warm autumn, and b) one has a window seat)
  • Ditto re tights. Not pleasing.
  • Also, I have a lot of clothes

I do have an effective immediate “Do Not Buy” on long sleeved shirts, and a smallish shopping list of:

  • Jeans (ordered a black pair of the 312s. On sale, too)
  • Navy blue cardigan to replace the one I stuck my thumb through
  • Non-polyester work pants
  • Black shoes
  • Work friendly jumper/cardigan(s)
  • Unicorn Pants (full length exercise tights with a reflective strip and full sized pockets.)

I reckon there’s a fair to middling chance I can accommodate my shopping list without completely destroying my bank balance. I just need to remember legs are only one really long. And I need to back away from the shirts for the foreseeable future. Maybe longer.

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Kon Maudy v the wardrobe

Of course you are all desperate to know about my clothes situation and my struggle with “nothing to wear”. A dive into my wardrobe revealed that, contrary to popular belief, I have quite a lot of clothes. I have maybe six pairs of trousers, two winter weight skirts (plus a couple of lighter ones) and a ridiculous number of shirts. Possibly thirty. That’s a LOT of shirts. That’s just my long sleeved ones, I only have one short sleeved shirt, and I think I have five sleeveless ones, plus a heap of plain cotton t-shirts that I wear all through summer. So, I’ve come up with a couple of “rules” to go along with this wardrobe deep dive investigation:

  1. I must wear every single (winter/cold weather appropriate) thing in my wardrobe at least once.
  2. It’s ok if I don’t wear warm weather clothes because it’s actually fucking freezing at the moment.
  3. I am not allowed to buy anything new until I have worn every single item in my wardrobe at least once.
  4. (Item two does not include under garments. And I am allowed to buy more socks)
  5. I am not allowed to re-wear a shirt until I have worn every single one.

So, after a couple or so weeks, how am I getting along? Have I resorted to public nudity? Have I binned the lot?

I have worn ALL my pants, two woolen skirts and I think about 20 ish shirts. I’ve also worn most of my knits, and all of my shoes. Plus, I’ve worn a few warmer weather items because Victorian weather is broken.

So far, I have culled one pair of trousers, and the jury is out on another two pairs. And, I’ve culled three long sleeved shirts. I am down to maybe six shirts that I haven’t worn yet, and the decision about which one to wear is getting harder and harder! I’ve worn all both my winter skirts, and most of my cardigans/jumpers.

The pants that went – They are probably the best looking pants I own, they’re a great length, flattering cut etc etc. BUT (there’s always one of those) they have the most ridiculously pissy little belt that I need to wear because otherwise they chafe awkwardly (a very solid crotch seam v an unfortunate bicycle related injury. Ahem.) The fabric has *no* give – which is not ace when one spends one’s day sitting on one’s arse. And it has the weirdest sort of three dimensional texture. Don’t love them. At all. I re-homed them.

The shirts were all quite nice white based and patterned oxford cloth shirts, but they all have weird stains and are all a bit tired and jaded for work. I think they’re all at least five years old, so probably have done their duty. Plus, I’d just recently bought three new shirts. (This explains why I’m not to buy anything else!!!) (Although socks don’t count. Obvs.) There is one shirt I think I really don’t like (the fabric is coarse) and there are three more that are older than the white ones I culled, and have seen better days.

The two pairs of pants I don’t know if I feel the love for are both wine infused online purchases. They are both simultaneously too long and too short at the same time. I am tallish*. I bought them from an overseas website that has tall people clothes, the plus side being they actually cut the seat properly so they’re not just “whack 5cm onto the hem and call it tall” pants, and the knee is in the right place, not mid way up my thigh. BUT, when I was selecting the size, I’ve picked really really tall instead of just a bit tall so, these pants are too short to be full length and too long to be 7/8 which is what they’re supposed to be. Awkward. I will either take them up or donate them.

Some of my shirts are – well. I don’t know what I was thinking when I bought them. Okay, I do know what I was thinking when I bought them. I tend to go up a size because I have broad shoulders and long arms. Unfortunately, that means I have more than a couple of shirts that are ridiculously big on me while fitting appropriately in the sleeve department. I have to decide what I think about that.

Shoes are a thing as well. Apparently, I have weirdly sized feet. I am between a 9 and a nine and a half, but for some reason, shoe shops around here don’t like to do the half size once you get over a size nine. This gives me the option of a nine which is painfully tight, and a ten which is ridiculously loose. Buying numerous insoles to make a ten fit a nine and a half is annoying.

I currently have three pairs of “work” shoes – two pairs of Rollie Nation Derby Punch (navy and tan), and a pair of NancyBird Mary-Janes (chocolate brown). And my sneakers, which I am currently wearing because I can’t be bothered. They are black. I have issues with ‘nude’ shoes. And I have issues with my tan Rollies because of their perceived nudity. They’re not actually nude. They are sand. Or tan. They look perfectly fine with just about everything I wear them with. (They are in my bag. This may also be contributing to today’s sneaker wearing.)

There is a pair of nice boots languishing in my wardrobe. Very nice boots indeed. They are size ten, so they are slightly too big. I get hot feet, so I don’t like wearing socks with them (which makes them fit), plus, lugging them to work won’t make me cheery. They might have to go out for adoption. Although I should wear them once first. To be sure.

I work in a dubiously heated office that varies from the Sahara at midday to Greenland in mid-winter, often on the same day. Also, I am a lady of a certain age and subject to Tropical Moments. Cardigans are my friend. However, I also walk to and from work in the cooler parts of the day, so jumpers are also my friend. I don’t hate any of my knits to be honest. I have a couple that I don’t really wear all the time, but I do wear them when it’s warmer. And my current faves are three really super over-sized jumpers I got from Country Road last winter, but they pill like absolute pilling machines. Glad they were on sale.

Thought I probably should go through ALL my winter clothes, because still can’t go nude even on the weekend.

Saturday is the chores and errands and driving around in circles day. So, I wore my “Mum Uniform”. Dorky af but practical and comfortable. Of course I ran into every man and his dog that I knew. Also, got rained on a lot. I forgot about rain. It’s wet and quite cold. I wore navy blue chinos – sorta heavy ones. Nice and warm. So, why don’t I wear them? Because they are strange. They have a really high waist, which I don’t particularly like, and a sideways seam just below my knee. I also cracked out the long sleeved t-shirts – I used to wear these to work all the time , and bought three (or four) a couple of years ago and they’ve languished in my wardrobe ever since. They’re on the thin side, but they’re fine under a flanno. I’m not trying to impress anyone when I’m at the supermarket!

I have jeans as well – one pair that is slightly too big, and two pairs that are slightly too small. I wear the too big ones mostly. I have to decide whether the too small ones are *really* too small, or just tight because I won’t wear them.

In summary – because we needs one of those…

  • I have quite a lot of clothes.
  • I don’t need any more shirts, even if I cull another five or so.
  • I do need black shoes.
  • I want another pair of mary janes.
  • I would really like another work skirt
  • I prefer cigarette pants to wider legged pants
  • And I mostly like my shirts to fit on the tailored side
  • Cardigans are better for work, because options.

(*ish is well, I’ve always thought I was 179cm tall; however, Chaos has had a wee growth spurt and is visibly taller than me. He reckons he’s only 177cm. One of us is delusional. I suspect it’s me. Once he is firmly in the 180+ territory (probably next Tuesday), I will reclaim my centimetres.)

Kon Maudy – part the second

Weirdly, about a year ago, I found myself in a similar situation to the one I am finding myself now. Contemplating the consequences of public nudity. Again.

I have nothing to fucking wear.

Well, I do. But I HATE IT ALL. Fuck.

Now, because nothing I currently own (particularly in the bottoms department) sparks joy, I should in fact ditch the whole lot and start again. But, the problem with that is simply I seriously cannot afford to replace every single item in my wardrobe.

Up until a couple of years ago, my work wardrobe consisted of a couple of nice skirts, four pairs of Eva Capri pants from Sportscraft – black, navy, silver and a random colour; plus a selection of shirts and cardigans and voila. Dressed every day. No thinking required. I would replace the capri pants every couple of years as they got a bit tired looking, switch out a shirt or two each season… Like clockwork. Then some bastard decided to new and improve them. They did not fit. Not even close. AND the size up was too fucking big. What sort of arsehole designer does that. Sportscraft. Obviously.

Despite Sportscraft bowing down to the wrath of a million angry middle aged ladies, and re-vamping my favourite pants yet again, I sort of cracked the shits with them and am yet to try out the new ones. So, I investigated some options. I now have a wardrobe full of pants that are eh. Ok. Ish. I guess. And I’ve also lost five of the kilograms that were giving me grief twelve months ago. This means that the pants I bought last winter are a tiny bit on the big side. Annoying. Much. Also, none of them were quite what I was looking for in a work pant. Much more annoying. I don’t want much in a trouser – full length, narrowish legs (but not strangle-y) decent pockets that will hold my mobile phone, id card and wallet so I don’t have to take a bag everywhere. Ditto for skirts. Well, the pocket bit, and fitted.

So, here I am. Hating my clothes. I can’t ditch them all because I can’t afford it, and it would be exceedingly wasteful to toss out half a dozen pairs of pants and a heap of shirts because I’ve taken against them. I could like them again next Tuesday. I am in a mood.

That’s another good reason to not throw anything out. Moods I am having. Not sure if it’s the ladypause or just having the shits on in general. However, I am digress. Pants I have some. Likes I have none. So. What to do?

I have decided that I am going to “review” my trousers (and some of my shirts as well) and see whether my feelings are valid or you know. Nuts.

I have tested two outfits:

  • Blue chinos and a cotton striped shirt, grey jumper – verdict. Shirt’s nice. It can stay. Jumper has sauce on it. Bloody bosoms. Pants need a belt. Might be too big. Wore them with my blue Rollies. Not the right shoes for the pants.
  • Charcoal grey pants, white shirt, red jumper. Love the jumper, that’s a no brainer. Pants were pretty comfy, they just skim my ankles, so I’m not sure if they’re too short or too long. Wore them with Mary Janes. The shirt is too long and annoying. I didn’t like it. Also, it was missing a button. I wore the shirt to pilates and my physio suggested a french tuck. Did it with my tights, and it looked ace. Fixed the button and yeah. Try it with different pants.

Tomorrow, I am trialling some blue dress pants, a different white shirt and a red cardigan. And probably Mary Janes.

So far, I’m not getting rid of anything. Only a million more outfits to go.

Kon Maudy

I’ve just had a wee hiatus. A fortuitous alignment of public holidays meant three days of annual leave gave me ten consecutive days off work. I did spend some of the days off doing family things with the family (as one does) but spent the rest of the time doing those pesky little (if you call five fucking hours of filing little) jobs that you blow off because they’re going to take five hours and when do you ever have five hours that you don’t have to spend at least two of them driving people to places and the rest of the time doing washing.

I also managed to watch the entire Kon Mari telly series on the Netflix before I went on leave. I didn’t know what to expect from the show, and I didn’t expect to discover what I did. As you probably remember, I did the half arsed KM business a couple of years ago, and stopped when I decided my house was tidy enough. So, when I watched the show, I think I was expecting everyone to be the full minimalist and super zen at the end of the experience. What I found was a lot more people like me.

The main thing though that I took out of watching the series, was that for the process to be a success, it had to be about “we” and not “she” (or “he”) – a joint process with everyone in the family taking their share of responsibility; and it wasn’t until that moment where responsibility became a “we” thing that something clicked. The other thing was it’s not about choosing what to discard, it’s choosing what to keep. Which is a different thing all together!

And I also discovered that my level of half arsed-ness really is/was enough.

Of course, when the series came out, all these self righteous wankers latched on to the “first world privilege” aspect where chucking stuff is the privilege of those who can afford to replace it with more stuff. While this might be true for some, eh. Not so much for me. I got rid of about a squintygazillion things, and didn’t really replace them. The process made me a much more discerning shopper, not just in relation to clothes, but to just about everything. And Lordy, the faux outrage about only keeping ten books. Now, I am a book lover. I am almost a book hoarder. I love my books. I love patting them and looking at them and reading them. BUT if I didn’t have the space that I have for books, say, I moved into a tiny house in a paddock somewhere away from everything that’s shitting me at the moment… you know, I reckon I would probably keep a couple of cook books, my recipe book, and maybe half a dozen other books that I really couldn’t live without. So, the idea of keeping only ten books is not as outrageous as it seems.

Which leads me back to the start – doing those pesky not so little jobs that I’ve been ignoring. When I did Kon Mari two or three years ago, I did in fact “do” paper, but like when you clean out the pantry and find that mysterious bottle of something that used to be green, and was past its prime five years ago… This time, I did “paper” properly. And decided I could in fact live without my mobile phone contract from 2002. And the one from 2004 and pretty much every second year between then and 2018. Much paper. Many piles. Several trees. Perhaps a forest.

And the pantry, fridge and freezer – only a bag and a half of rubbish – half used bottles of this and that, ingredients for recipes that nobody liked. It was a thing of beauty until I did the groceries. I cracked the shits when I threw out a bag full of meat from the freezer just before I had my week off. I meal plan on Saturday morning, go to the butcher and get meat, things change, meat didn’t get eaten when it was supposed to and got chucked in the freezer. And some of it shouldn’t have gone in the freezer. Nowt quite like defrosting a lump of meat that’s past it and having to re-write dinner plans on the fly. This week, I have delegated responsibility for meals to the other grown up in the family, so he’s had the fun of coming up with a delicious and nutritious meal for four people, none of whom like the same things. I’m loving it. Not sure whether the other grown up is loving it quite so much.

And I looked at clothes again. But that’s a story for another post.