I find it hard saying goodbye to clothes. After all, you take a journey together. From box-fresh pride, through multiple washes and cleans (that never quite reproduce the original veneer) to eventual abandonment. At one time, every piece I bought, was my favourite thing. Fleetingly, they each had their moment – by virtue of being newfangled, or topical or simply unspoiled. Everything was once my favourite – my go-to piece for a night out. Some had a longer tenure at the top table than others. Some lasted little more than a single, disappointingly uncomfortable wear. But all, had their moment. All brought me joy. But now it’s time to say goodbye.
These clothes carry an abstract map of my adventures. Nicks, tears, scuffs and abrasions of all sorts have gnawed their mark. I remember the beach that coughed sand into those sneakers. I remember the door handle that snagged and tore that belt loop. I remember when things shrunk a little too much. I remember the sound of three pairs of identical white trainers banging around the washing machine. I remember the warm days I tried to dry them outside. And I remember feeling downcast, realising they’d gone a bit yellow.
These clothes did what they were supposed to do. For a time, they made me feel great. They made me feel that I looked okay. They made me feel proud and confident and happy. But as is the curse of the clothesman, they need to make way for the new. I need to bid them and this personal record of my history goodbye. And it’s sad. For as much as I left my mark on them, they also left their mark on me.