A thoughtful response by Jenni on one of Fashintern’s recent threads https://youlookfab.com/welookf.....ts-dresses had me thinking about ‘enclothed cognition’ or the symbolic meaning of clothing.

The term is used around concepts like ‘dress for success’ or ‘wear bright colours to lift your mood’, but I haven’t seen ‘old’ or ‘older’ clothes addressed as an issue.

I know that when I did a big edit in 2018 - about 8 months after I retired - it was more than an edit, it was a purge! It wasn’t only clothes associated with my job/work, but also older garments associated with a younger me, and more poignant - clothing from my Mother’s early adulthood and clothing-as-gifts from her. (She is the only person who tries to dress me, or form my appearance on the regular, and our relationship is *complicated* )

I believe that with the purge of the items I decided against keeping, I shed clothing that was about conforming and compromise, and not reflective of the authentic me going forward at this time, and my age, and stage in life. Two years later, I have zero regrets regarding the items I jettisoned. It was freeing, actually!

I’ve kept (and wear) a few old(er) garments. I think the oldest might be 10-15 yo. Most of my clothing, shoes, bags, etc. are 5 > years. I haven’t qualms about vintage garments or shopping thrift, so it’s not the idea of old clothes, but more the psychological import of garments that I had been holding onto for reasons other than having something to wear.

Do you have any thoughts on old/older clothes? Are they good friends, or skeletons in your closet?