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CrunchyBread in Bremerton is doing 7 things including…

simplify my wardrobe

14 cheers


CrunchyBread has written 6 entries about this goal

a comfortable relationship with my clothes

I haven’t looked at this goal in a very long time, but I’ve been working on it’s principals in theory and practice.

I’ve gotten into the habit of wearing basically one outfit per week. I change clothes if I’m going out, especially if I will be seen twice in a row by church friends. But for daily wear around the house, or running to the store, or even going out to lunch with a good friend who hasn’t seen me yesterday, I will tend to wear the same outfit all week.

I know it sounds risky. But I carefully check my clothes every day to see whether they’re acquiring any smell, or any stains. If I’ve worn an apron faithfully in the kitchen, I rarely get stains. Probably in summertime in the garden this would not be feasible, but right now it is winter, and cold in my house because I don’t like turning on the heat. So I wear an undershirt with long sleeves, and a sweater most days. If I’m going out I might change the undershirt, which is the first (probably only) thing to begin to have a smell. But if I am clean, wear deodorant, and do not sweat much due to exercise then there is no reason to consider myself dirty just because my clothes have been worn before.

So in this manner I have cut down on the number of laundry loads I must do for myself to about one per month. I’m happy about that.

Another side effect is that “dressy” clothes (by which I mean anything I’m not schlumping around the house in) stay cleaner too, because I only wear them when I want to fool my friends into thinking I’m normal. I change right back out of them when I get home, and put on my cozy sweater and same underthings again.

Skip this paragraph if you’re afraid of too much information. I also have found that strangely one of the LAST things to need to be changed is my underwear. I can wear the same panties or spandex shorts (which is my favorite form of underwear) for WEEKS at a time. This is because I wear clean tissue daily, tucked where it keeps things clean. Therefore, there is no way my private odors can really accumulate. They just do not come in contact with the material. And the rest of that region (hips, etc) are not known for producing any odor at all, to speak of, compared to places like underarms. So I’ve been very happy with that experiment. Which I would NEVER share with most people, so consider yourselves privileged in the knowledge!

So, little tricks like that are proving very useful to me. I’m able to simplify my wardrobe down to two sweaters, three jeans, four undershirts, five pairs of socks, one pair of sneakers, and then my “going out” clothes include four other blouses, two coats, a choice of slacks or skirt, simple black shoes, and dark leggings. All of this fits in less than two feet of closet space and one dresser drawer, with plenty of room to spare.

I’m liking the simplicity of this system. It suits me, though I can see it wouldn’t be for most people. I keep my look somewhat fresh by changing my hairstyle in a few dramatic ways, which I can do because my hair is long. Also I wear bold jewelry, which I think helps attract attention and fools people into thinking I take trouble with how I look.

Everything I wear is wash-and-go. I iron NOTHING. If it is fragile or requires fussing it is given away. Most of my wardrobe are simple solid colors, but many of my shirts have bold color or patterns on them, which keeps me from looking too boring. Nobody I know has ever commented about my clothes in any way except to say how well-dressed I always appear.

So this works for me. This was an awesome experiment, and will probably be my method of dressing for life, unless something in my life drastically changes. I enjoy living in such a forgiving, comfortable relationship with my clothes.

making space

Thanks, RM, for giving me a cheer on this! Sometimes I forget about some of my goals, and it helps me to get a reminder now and then that I’m still supposed to be thinking about them.

My new home will include a 40” closet for me. I’m lucky that it is deep, so I can fill the back with shelves and move the rod to the front. But 41” of clothes cannot fit into 40” of space… and I think I still have several feet more than that which I’ve never gotten around to deleting. Even if I maximize efficiency with a second rod, I simply MUST make some choices about what to keep and what to toss.

But I’ll do that after the move. I don’t have the mental space for it right now. It would be efficient to do it now, but I’m not that good.

What I have done since my last entry on this goal is that I have learned to reduce my laundry a whole lot by re-wearing items several times until they actually seem dirty, rather than automatically washing after each wear. I get away with doing laundry for myself only about once a month now. That was my goal, so I guess I must be proud!

I have gotten disgusted at myself for gaining weight. Lots of my favorite clothes suddenly don’t fit any more. Of course I don’t want to just throw away all of my smaller clothes. I’m sincerely hoping that I’ll find ways to exercise this summer which will help me fit into them again. So naturally, holding on to some clothes that I can’t wear takes up extra space. What I need to decide is that it doesn’t have to be CLOSET space. I’ll at least take the initiative to put any clothes I cannot wear TODAY into a spacebag or a bin or something, and store it out of the way under my bed.

Continuing to winnow unwanted items, being stumped by the need to wash things.

Still working on this.
My continuing “Next Action” here is to see to it that all my clothes (including ones in hampers and crammed away in strange places I haven’t looked at in forever) are all washed and tried on so I can determine if I want to keep them.

I keep getting stumped because I may decide I want to get rid of something, but if it’s not clean of course I want to wash it before donating it. So in the wash it gets mixed with all my wearable clothes, and that slows me down and sets me back.

I should come up with a way of flagging unwanted items so I’ll know I already decided I don’t want them. Maybe I could put a big safety pin through the label or something.

drafting my shape

To learn to sew, I must first be able to take accurate measurements of myself. I therefore grabbed my trusty tape measure and did my best.

Rather than just writing the numbers down as a list, I decided to plot them on graph paper, to get a 2-D representation of what I’m shaped like. It was very eye-opening.

On the one hand it’s very cool to see that this is working! It’s neat to see myself drafted on paper. It’s neat to see the numbers appear to mean something other than just … you know … numbers.

On the other hand, I didn’t realize how little shape my body really has. Since I’m so large all of my curves seem to more or less round out. Yes, my waist is 8” smaller than my hips, so technically I have an hourglass figure, but when the hips are 54” and the waist is 46” that doesn’t really equate to “shapely”.

I’m trying to sketch some simple ideas onto tracing paper laid over my basic shape. I’m realizing how much I’m really NOT an artist. I’m having a hard time coming up with anything interesting. Of course it would help if I had colored pencils and fabric swatches and lots of patience for drawing fine details, or even an artistic eye that could do those elegant designer swoopy looks that they draw so effortlessly. My sketches all look like a six year old did them. But oh well. I yam wot I yam, and I’ll just keep on doing my thing. It’ll turn out all right.

Next thing I really want to do is make a dressmaker’s dummy out of duct tape. I need a partner for this job, because nobody can tape up their own backside. I have a few supplies to buy, and then I guess I’ll ask my daughter to help me. It should be a great assistance when I’m trying to fit clothes carefully and make them flattering.

How to make a dress form
This article shows how to use paper tape, but other articles show using duct tape. I’m not sure which would be better.

Sub-goal: Learn to Sew

I want to be able to produce most of my wardrobe myself, instead of having to shop for it. I HATE shopping, and I’m usually disappointed with what I find because it either doesn’t fit or is the wrong color or is poor quality fabric or construction. I just want simple, basic things I know I can rely on.

One of my new favorite YouTube gurus is Evange. She has simple instructions for how to measure yourself and sew leggings as well as a knit pencil skirt and other things. I feel very happy to understand how to draft an easy custom pattern!

I’ll update this goal as I find other good instructionals.

copy/paste other entries

Already have some entries about this, and my progress so far.

1. Minimalist Wardrobe

2. Three Bags Full

3. Simple Wardrobe

CrunchyBread has gotten 14 cheers on this goal.


I want to:
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