Monday 9 January 2012

Z is not the snappiest dresser

I meant to consider buying some new clothes this winter.  It hasn't happened.  I don't enjoy shopping and I'm quite uninterested in what I wear.  My mother and I had an air of mutual bemusement about this, because she loved clothes.  Mind you, I suspect that this didn't help me at all because, rather than involve me in what suited me and what I might want to buy, she took the path of least resistance for years and chose most of my clothes herself.  I suppose she had to or I'd have kept wearing the same things until I grew out of them or they wore out.

Now, if I'm in the mood for shopping and find anything I like and fits, I buy it at once, whether I need it at the time or not.  I might buy whole lots in a day - but then I won't shop again for the rest of the year, very likely.  The autumn before last, I bought two pairs of shoes and two of boots at the same time.  None since.  My coat was my mother's, actually.  She bought it about three months before she died and it was expensive (she knew she was dying, but she was feeling pretty well and cheerfully defiant, so went ahead).  Anyway, it seemed a pity to waste it.  So it's nine years old now (I have had another coat in the meantime, I haven't worn the same one relentlessly all that time, I give it a couple of years' rest and then haul it out again) and still going strong.

When Weeza and Al were little, I didn't have much spare money.  So, when I did go shopping, it seemed a waste to spend what I had on clothes for me.  I bought books instead.  My mother, in despair, used to give me her cast-offs.  When Weeza entered her teens, I wore what she chucked out.

Now, I do have to buy myself things to wear.  But it's so dispiriting.  Rows of stuff I don't like, then I find something I do and I have to go and take my clothes off and try the damn thing on.  And if it doesn't fit and I want to go up or down a size, the assistant has always vanished so I have to get dressed again and go and find it - because I never go shopping with anyone.  That's an even worse penance, for them as well as me.

Once, I had a suit made.  Never again.  Apart from having to make choices, when I didn't really know what I wanted and having to act as if I cared, I then became pregnant, so the project was put on hold, then I had the baby and became really thin (rake thin I always was within months of having a baby) and it had to be taken in.  And the cost.  Blimey.  Mind you, I got my money's worth.  Wore it for decades.  Unfortunately, the moth got it in the end or I'd be wearing it yet.

Anyway, I had to go to Norwich this morning for a meeting, so I thought that afterwards I'd go and have a delve and see if either there was anything remaining at the tail end of the sales or if there was anything new in.  But I couldn't be bothered in the end.  There's wear in what I've got yet.  Maybe next year.


LẌ said...

I have similar indifference to buying shoes and clothes for myself. I order most of my stuff online from LL Bean. Meh.

Anonymous said...

Some of the worst memories from childhood involve clothes shopping with my dear mother. Terrible hot shops badly aired, tiny cabins, put things on take them off nobody around Oh Gott. Years ago I managed to buy shirts, vests and jackets. I know that they nowadays show the wear; I know that things are better in shops today - I even managed to buy trousers (I penned down the size once - HA!) last year, but for me it is still hell on earth.
On the other hand I very much like good quality clothes and if I can afford I happily buy some.
Shoes are different - good shoes stay with you a long time. In earlier times I always bought a cheap pair of black slippers for summer and some stronger (brown) ones for winter. Now I have a pair of black ones that fit both and simply are indestructible. They surely came at a price, but it was worth it.
Anyway, as long as the three pieces fit together, I wear it. It's the person that counts, not the wrapping.

(And as european ethnologist I can tell you that it is all the opposite: But we fit our roles.)

savannah said...

i'm with all y'all! i hate clothes shopping (which i know makes me an anomaly in the south) and shoe shopping is even worse! *sigh*

dharmabum said...

i love it the way in cold places they have dresses to suit the changing weather. am sure you know that in madras, you don't need all that. in fact, the lesser you are clothed here, the better of one is :)

Z said...

There's such togetherness on the internet!

Oh Dharmabum, I wish I was in Madras right now (not too hot!) In fact, my sister is talking of going to visit her friend, maybe next year. If I do, I'll surely let you know.

Blue Witch said...

I'm with you on the clothes shopping!

When I find basic clothes I like that fit I always buy at least two. Standards are dropping all the time and the quality and finish make it impossible for anything to last (no mattter how much it costs or which once-good shop one purchases from).

I'm considering going back to making my own actually. Just need to sort out my pattern-making skills.

I have long wide feet so shoe shopping is even worse. Given that navy hasn't been in fshion for about 5 years, I'm also going to have to start making my own shoes before long...

Rog said...

I LOVE clothes shopping and spend any free time I have scouring the boutiques for new fashions!

Not really.

Actually I did make a clo (singular of clothes) decision recently when I took out my beloved Frank Thomas Argentinian Hide black leather Motocycle jacket which has been my pride and joy for about 25 years. I caught a glimpse of myself in a mirror and suddenly thought - NOOOO!!!!....I've passed the magic age for wearing such a thing.

My son James (30) was visiting the next weekend so I decided then and there that it should be handed on to him like Excalibur or some ancient tribal symbol of male coolness.

He duly tried it on and it looked great on him but his face looked very pained. "I'm far too old to wear this", he said as he politely declined.

Z said...

That's very true, BW. I keep what's in good condition for years and it's always the oldest clothes that are the best made.

Oh Rog. Maybe he saw my photo of Augustus wearing his super-cool pleather jacket and realised that 4 months is the ideal age. He probably will beg you for it in another five years, once he's re-seeking his lost youth. Not that 35 isn't extremely young, just that he doesn't know it yet.

Tim said...

Funnily enough I was having a conversation on this very topic yesterday evening, with some compulsive clo-buyers, and thought 'I might blog about this'. I might blog about this.

Z said...

Splendid, Tim. We do keep doing this, don't we? Inspire each other, I mean.

Liz said...

I love clothes and shoes but hate shopping for them. It's just so...difficult. Nothing fits!

mig said...

I love clothes but not shopping. I get loads of clothes from charity shops without trying on and if they really don't work, I give them back the following year. As for shoes, I'm sure my feet were given to me as a punishment for something wicked that I did a long time ago. So when I find a pair that fit I'm tempted to buy the whole stock immediately in the hope of never having to shop for them again.

luckyzmom said...

I love clothes shopping./