Recently I stepped into a very old closet and the things I learned there surprised and delighted me in an unexpected way. Never before have I experienced a “keep only what you love” moment quite so powerfully.
You see, one of my clients had the job of cleaning out her parents’ house after both of their deaths this last year. As you can imagine, (or some of you know) this is a physically challenging job but the hardest part is the mental challenge. Looking thru years of someone else’s life can be exhausting but it can also be a window into messages to ourselves.
As it turns out, my client’s mother had an extensive collection of designer pieces which were now taking space in my client’s bedroom in Seattle. Gucci, Judith Leiber, Balenciaga, Ferragamo were the main pieces with Gucci taking the lead by far. The thing is, my client had no knowledge that most of these things had existed in her mom’s wardrobe. Some of them had perhaps never been used. Over the years her mom had become accustomed to buying a lot of “stuff” and holding on to it as she continued to buy more. The house was full and these items were packed away, here and there, only to be discovered by my client and her friends as they were cleaning and preparing the house to be sold.
As I started examining and touching these beautiful pieces, many of them vintage and nearly all in mint condition, I started asking myself some questions. “Why did she buy these things and not use them?” “What was she thinking when she purchased them and what was going on her life during the time she bought them?”
“Where was she going?” Literally and figuratively. And my personal favorite: “What, exactly, was she waiting for?”
Why is it that we purchase beautiful things and then don’t use them or wear them? What in fact, are we waiting for? As I stood staring at all of these beautiful designer pieces, my client declared her new goal of using these pieces in her wardrobe on a daily basis. And of getting rid of much of her closet that didn’t work for her anymore, with no guilt and no reservations.
I love that this was the message she got from seeing choices her mom had made along the way. What a beautiful, final gift. In return, my message to you is: Use what you buy. Buy what you love. If it’s designer pieces, fine. If it’s not, that’s fine too. What matters most is that you love and wear what’s in your closet today and everyday. Helping people find the joy in their closet is one of my goals. Wearing and using your beautiful items on a daily basis should be one of yours.