I recently made the decision to leave my beloved job, and finally take the plunge to try living as a freelance writer and artist before I’m burdened with a mortgage or offspring. I’m technically still employed until next Wednesday, but I’ve had this week off (holiday to take) – so this is the beginning, really! A new beginning, and a new life.
To celebrate this I decided to take a closer look at how I run my home, from the coffee I drink to the way I wash my clothes. It’s a space not just for sloe gin and bananagrams, but now my office too, and since I’ll be spending so much time here, writing, painting, cooking, keeping warm and keeping the flat tidy, I thought it would be the perfect opportunity to revamp my living/working space and make a few more ethical choices.
I decided to start easy. The other day I was trying to get dressed for the pub, and I became so irrationally enraged at not finding something to wear, I declared there and then to revamp my entire wardrobe. Over the last few months I’d been running, cutting down on sugar and booze, and generally trying to feed my belly good stuff, and consequently my body was now smaller than yesteryear. Great! But it also meant lots of my old clothes didn’t fit or flatter my shape, and I’d had enough. Enough of clinging onto horrible old jumpers for nostalgia, and keeping endless pairs of tights because I just couldn’t be bothered to sort through the ladders.
Last weekend, I went through every item of clothing I owned and took two thirds of my wardrobe to the charity shop in big, delicious bags. I won’t pretend it wasn’t hard, trying to decide whether I still needed my lime green Duke of Edinburgh polo shirt from secondary school (NO). But afterwards, with just a few beautiful garments left on the shelves, I felt wonderfully free. I’ve always tried to follow this pearl of wisdom from William Morris: ‘Have nothing in your house that you do not know to be useful, or believe to be beautiful.’ I had rid myself of every item I would never wear, and now I could start anew.
Upon squashing the bags into the arms of a fragile old lady in Sue Ryder, I then enjoyed an hour of guilt-free charity shopping as I closed the loop on my wardrobe revamp. I had given my clothes away to someone who would appreciate them, and could restock with second-hand, well-loved clothes from someone else. Each week I now wander into town and hunt for another bargain, rather than feeding the fast fashion monster we are all inevitably drawn towards.
Today’s treat (above) was an ivory Zara shirt in Moroccan print for £4 from Dog’s Trust. Divine!