For a while I had a certain reverence for clothing which I didn’t have for other items. I would bemoan the fit of something, leaving it in my closet for ages as if one day the threads would magically re-align themselves into something that flattered my body. Or I would sigh because the texture or pattern was so gorgeous – as if that would override the reality that the garment overall was lacking in style.
And then I was introduced to the concept that clothes like this are better off not being considered clothes at all. There is value in thinking of them as simply “used fabric” – material which is ready to be turned into something else. Yes, this is fabric which has been cut into odd shapes and attached to other things, but in the end it’s just a resource for a new creation. Such is the way with all “found object” materials.
And so out came the scissors. And new buttons. And paint. And contrasting thread.
And suddenly I didn’t always have to give the gorgeous material to Goodwill. I could dismantle its current form and reassemble it into something else that did work. Yes, this was easier to do if I bought it in a thrift store to begin with or if it was otherwise already worn – but sometimes I haven’t waited that long. There are many items of clothing which might just need a little something to make them distinctive and interesting.
Years ago I amended and/or altered much of my wardrobe. I’m happy to report that I have started doing it once again. Yesterday an ill-fitting pair of pants which were made of a fabulous material have become a signature Burner accessory: boot covers/leggings. And I still have material left with which to fashion something else. Who knows what form that used fabric will take next?