office outfit
Shirt, cardigan & belt, J. Crew Factory; pants, Banana Republic; shoes, J. Crew; bag. MbMJ

OK, let me start by stating the obvious (?): there is nothing horribly wrong with this outfit. Nevertheless, I didn’t really enjoy wearing it, and the culprit was the shirt. It’s fine; nothing horribly wrong with it either. But to borrow a phrase from Marie Kondo, it doesn’t spark joy for me. So I’m letting it go.

Getting rid of clothes has often been a fraught process for me in the past, but I’ve been increasingly feeling the need to let go of “dead weight” in my life – both in my physical environment and in the emotional realm. I was grappling with just this issue when I came across a couple of posts from Gretchen and Adrien on Marie Kondo and The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up, and they resonated like crazy. So, going forward, if I ever end up with an outfit that feels “meh”, I’m going to figure out the reason, and let go of whatever element is not working for me anymore. Hopefully, that process will help me work through lot of the guilt I associate with “wasted” clothes. If simplifying your life (or your closet) is one of your goals for 2015, I encourage you to check out Gretchen’s and Adrien’s posts (linked above), and consider how you might apply the same or similar principles to help you figure out what sparks joy in your heart.

One thing that definitely sparks joy in mine? This cotton candy pink wool coat.

pink wool coat
[insert pink-related play on words here]

9 Comments on The Test

  1. I try to rationalize giving clothes away by thinking that this piece could be someone else’s favourite piece, so I need to get rid of it so they can have it! Also, life’s too short to be bogged down by stuff that doesn’t fit/don’t like/etc. Just move on! (Actually, that seems to work better with books – I’m not enjoying this book – put it down and read something else.)

    Anyway, I do love the coat though. It is gorgeous!

    • That’s a really nice way of thinking about it. I have an easier time of letting go of other things, but clothes (and books!) are really hard for me. Maybe because I invest more in them, emotionally? Gah, I’m not trying to turn this into psychoanalysis hour, I swear!

  2. oh! i’m so honored you linked to my posts 🙂 thank you!

    i had SUCH a hard time getting rid of things for the longest time. i just had to be in the exact right place in my life, and just “over” all the extra stuff and clutter that i was ready to make the “final” change. but still…i felt so guilty getting rid of things, that i’d hold on to them way too long.

    and i’ve been trying this year to make myself wear things i don’t normally just to see if they “spark joy” – and if they don’t, or i don’t otherwise feel comfortable in them, or like “me,” then they hit the donation pile. that’s made the biggest difference to me, i think – being really conscious of how something makes me feel when i wear it, with thoughts towards whether i want to keep it or make room for something else, or nothing at all…

    • Thank you for writing such thoughtful posts! I find myself going through a similar process of reflection this year, which is why your posts resonated so much.

  3. My problem is trying to get a reasonable cost per wear out of an item before I donate/consign the item, gah! Just let it go…. (not even going to make the movie reference…oops!)

    • Hahaha! I have the same problem, sigh … Which is really bad when you consider that I don’t pay a lot for my clothes to begin with. I’m working on it …