Monday, October 8, 2012

The Potential Frenchification of Me - Blogtoberfest (8)

So today is technically the first day of KCWC, but I have decided to blog each day's achievements the following day (so today's accomplishments - enormous and varied as they are bound to be (!) will be blogged tomorrow).  I could blog what I did yesterday, but I decided to give myself Sunday off and do other stuff (boring housey stuff).  I probably should have got more organised for KCWC, doing some cutting out and sorting out; but I decided just to hang with the dudes and do stuff I needed to do.

The only thing I did do on Sunday which is of relevance was make a resolution of sorts.  I decided to become more French.  Or technically, more Parisian.  I should warn people here this borders on (or indeed strays wildly into) the massive stereotyping of a whole city but I found the stereotype to be mostly true when I went there, and it's a good shorthand for what I want to achieve.  Which is be more well turned out.  More like a French woman.

Although perhaps not this French woman....
What I am getting at, is that I have noticed that I don't look after things how I would ideally like to.  I saw Craig Ferguson and Kristin Bell do an interview with Christian Louboutin on The Late Late Show when they were in France and he said something about how the female relationship with shoes is really odd because they love them, but they never polish them and look after them.  I saw that and I thought:  YES - why the hell don't I polish my shoes ever?

I should probably click through on this pin sometime...

I totally respect the things I have sewn, but I hardly ever mend clothes, take up hems which are falling down or wash delicate stuff in those bags you are meant to use.  Why don't I respect the things I have more and look after them?  The last time I went to France (about four years ago now) we went to Paris. I noticed how most of the Parisian women looked wonderful and over time it occurred to me that it was because they looked like they took care of themselves and their things.  And this didn't come across as some sort of pressure to look amazing, it came across as respect for themselves.   They didn't go out with rips in their clothes and ill-fitting pieces they bought because they were cheap.  They probably didn't send their poor kids to school and childcare with hems falling down and rips in the knees of their trousers while spending hours sewing other garments for them!  This article sums it up well, if a little tritely.

I am hoping that this new resolution will lead to lower consumption of higher quality stuff, which will last longer and I will be more willing to repair and respect.  The exception is that I am likely to still buy a modicum of disposable clothes for the small people (particularly the three year old boy) as they wreck their clothes with disturbing speed and at this age I don't want them to spend their lives worrying about their nice clothes rather than playing.

In summary then:

  • I would like to buy fewer things, but buy things of higher quality
  • I need to invest in the things that I have, and look after them better
  • I have not adequately prepared for Kids Clothes Week Challenge and am instead procrastinating with lofty musings
  • This resolution applies to more than clothes - am sitting in my very much in need of decluttering house... 
  • I am full of good intentions but probably need some sort of action plan otherwise I might be reposting this again in several months time with no change.

So, that's KCWC preparation cleverly avoided (and also my tax return, so double points there!).  I may regret that tomorrow :)

See you then!


  1. I bought an Anthea Crawford jacket over 10 years ago and it is still going strong. I agree that investing in clothing and shoes and making them last is the way to go, where as accessories can be cheap nasty and crafty.

    Good luck with your decluttering goal!

    1. Thanks! It's super slow progress right now as I am KCWC-ing all over the house :)

      Good to hear it's not just me that keeps things for 10 years plus :) Definitely moving towards classic pieces that won't date rather than trend driven cheapy stuff is the way ahead, I agree!

  2. A brilliant post. I struggle with staying on track with this but always feel so good when lots of repairs have been done. I also read not long ago about the fact that European clothes have so much more texture than ours do - whether it is the add braid/frogging or the great linen/cotton it is made from. Thanks for the reminder to care about our belongings. Cherrie

    1. Thanks! Even writing the post made me feel better about how heavily this has been weighing on me :) I have started to make some small progress, though KCWC is rather getting in the way. Your comment about European clothes is interesting - am going to think about texture a bit more (both in what I sew, what I have and what I purchase) and see what I discover :)

  3. Oh this is another fabulous post. I need to take better care of my things as well. Loving these missions your on.