Jacket Challenge and Purge-atory (long)

A new month is upon us! Time to reflect on the past month... since I haven't been posting new outfits, you may have already forgotten my quest to wear all my jackets, but it was there, and I feel I've learned some muy importante things about my relationship with jackets.

First things first: I'm not really the Chronic Jacket Hoarder I thought I was. As mentioned in a previous post, practical use has taught me that blazers are NOT jackets. They don't provide full chest coverage, they're thinner, and they're not really appropriate for my current job. So far, they've only been practical for DFS once it cooled down (it was far too hot to wear a blazer inside most of the month). Conclusion? My jacket collection is still practical, however I must keep a wary eye on my blazers. If they don't get used, I'll have to purge a few and keep the ones that do double duty as toppers for fancy occasions and interviews.

Just as it turns out jackets are different from blazers, it also turns out that Summer jackets are different from Fall jackets. Sounds like a big "duh," right? I blame it on our difficult-to-discern seasons - who knew we had Fall, let alone Fall jackets?? Although many of my jackets are technically warm enough for Fall, they do not fit my Fall/Winter style persona, which is more militant and less playfully tomboyish.

Finally, one of the big kickers this year has been my work uniform, which precludes indoor jacket-wearing 75% of the time. This has put a huge lifestyle emphasis on outdoor-weight items rather than decorative, indoor items. It just is what it is and, while I may one day get to dress sans uniform, I have the current reality to deal with.

After all this, I do have a few items lingering in jacket purge-atory. Note that these aren't items I'm *planning* to purge. They are jus the items that didn't get wear and, thus, pieces I will keep my big, hairy eyeball on in the future. Some of these surprised even me!

1 - Allsaints leather jacket - yes, I'm clutching my heart, too, just thinking about it. But the banded waist and not-cropped-yet-not-full length is hard to style now that I'm not wearing sheath dresses every day. I'm also suspecting that the color is not the best on me. I was much more drawn to my warm medium brown steampunk jacket and chocolate brown trench. I don't currently have tons of leather-appropriate destinations, either. I'm not rushing into things, but it could be possible I should liquidate this asset...

2 - If the last pic didn't give some YLFers a heart attack, this one will. I LOVE this jacket... but I didn't reach for it once. I need to make a concerted effort to style this in a casual way. At the very least, I'm leaning toward keeping it in hopes of a new work environment - hopefully it won't be woefully dated by then.

3 - I've mentioned this one before, and it really makes me sad just thinking about giving it up. The F21 faux shearling bought at the first annual socal YLF meetup. I still love it! But it *looks* too wintry to wear in our warm Falls, and it doesn't keep *me* warm enough to wear much in Winter, and it doesn't look that good zipped up over a tunic. But it's very sentimental!

4 - Many of you won't like this one, anyway, but I love the pseudo-gear look and triple zippers... and it was a present from DH. I still love everything about it... except for the fact that it doesn't breathe worth a damn. Seriously, I sweat like crazy in this thing. No idea if saving it for travel to cooler climes would help at all, or if it I would just end up in a frozen bubble of sweat instead.

So, dear friends, any advice for an emotionally-addled would-be purger? What would you do?

This post is also published in the youlookfab forum. You can read and reply to it in either place. All replies will appear in both places.


  • Suz replied 6 years ago

    Rae, I loved reading your reflections here. And you have come to some important realizations. I think this is very much in line with what Ornella discovered about her new lifestyle and climate; her needs changed, and it was sad to stop wearing some of her old favourites, but the reality of what she was doing each day dictated some changes. She still managed to maintain a very consistent style persona.

    I have also come to some shocking (to me!) seasonal realizations in my year on YLF. I could smack myself in the forehead for being so dumb, but YEAH...I live in a four season climate, and some things just don't feel right in all seasons!! Recognizing that has made a big difference.

    Then yesterday I actually sat down, and if you can believe it, for the first time ever did the math. How many actual weeks of winter?? HOw many of fall? Etc. I figure this should help to guide buying decisions in future in a pretty handy way. Angie has been telling us forever, buy for your dominant season....but I really didn't understand exactly how to translate that into practical shopping advice. Now I am thinking....well....if I have 16 weeks of winter and 10 weeks of summer, maybe it makes sense to have a few more sweaters than sleeveless tops....

    In your case, here are my thoughts for what they are worth: purge the last two jackets; it seems like they are more bother than they are worth.

    Hang onto #2. It might get more wear in the spring. And you have a fairly long spring.

    As for #1, if you could buy something else you really would wear and enjoy with the money you would get for this one, I would let it go, perhaps after a decent period in a holding zone while you reconsider.

    Those are the thoughts for a rabid purger, so take them for what they are worth!!

  • Angie replied 6 years ago

    Don't purge #1 and #2. Just let them hibernate although you don't reach for them.

    Let go of #3,

    I like #4, but if it doesn't breathe - that's a problem. Pass it on.

  • Mo replied 6 years ago

    OMG - hold on to #2! It may not work right now, but you are in transition and may find a way to wear it yet, that is not office and not casual.

  • catgirl replied 6 years ago

    Agree with Angie 100%. The f21 moto (which I know as my niece bought it) is bulky and seasonally confused - not warm enough for winter but too wintry looking for your climate. #4 is not that exciting. The other two you may come back to someday.

    In light of confessions, I don't wear my Allsaints cropped moto nearly enough to justify the purchase. *shudder*.

  • ironkurtin replied 6 years ago

    Yes, ditto Angie. Shed #3 and #4. Not breathing is a dealbreaker, even if DH gave it to you. I'm sure he will understand!

  • replied 6 years ago

    I like what Angie said. My stomach went into knots over #1.

  • Transcona Shannon replied 6 years ago

    Fascinating to read this Rae - seems there's alot of reflecting going on on the forum these days. It's hard when our lifestyles/work environments change drastically and give our wardrobes a new kind of challenge.

    Please don't get rid of #2 what ever you do - that jacket is beyond perfect on you and will be reached for another day.

  • Caro in Oz replied 6 years ago

    #2 looks so fabulous on you, imo it is a big keeper. I hear you on the others.

  • replied 6 years ago

    Great post Rae! I loved reading your thoughts. I agree that you should let #3 and #4 go (and I apologize for personally talking you into buying #3). Sentimentality will get you a whopping big wardrobe. Take some nice pics of yourself in each of these and then put them on eBay.

    I love the first two, but I agree with Suz because I'm a rabid purger myself. The minute I start wanting to consign something because I'd rather have the money for something new than the item I own.....well....that's the beginning of the end for it!

  • replied 6 years ago

    If you have the room, let 1 and 2 rest for a while. I think 3 and 4 should go also.

  • Janet replied 6 years ago

    I'm not even reading the other responses first because I feel strongly about this one. Don't you dare purge #2! Or #1 either. Trust me. Look at that old periwinkle leather jacket that I posted recently -- I let sit for years and wondered if it was too dated to keep, but I got some great feedback and ideas to give it new life. And those jackets of yours are much more classic moto style and should age even better. Especially the white one -- you look so great in it.

    I'm a bit more on the fence about 3 and 4. #3 looks bulky for your climate, but will you live there forever? Is it worth a little hibernation closet space to keep the sentimental item that may come back into useful life someday? I have one or two things like this myself (for instance, a very warm olive corduroy jacket that was, I believe, my sister's in the 70s). It sounds like 4 may be in that category as well.

    I enjoyed your insights from your challenge, and I'm working on learning more about my wardrobe needs too.

  • shedev replied 6 years ago

    I'd pass on #4. It's cute but sweaty is a dealbreaker. I'd keep 1 and 2. Not sure about 3.

  • modgrl replied 6 years ago

    Must not purge the first two. Oh no. If you do, I will buy them from you to keep them in the YLF family.

  • dizzys replied 6 years ago

    I am more of a purse gal than a coat gal and I always say that if it sits in your closet for more than a year and goes unused you should strongly think about purging it for something you WILL use. Just be SURE. :-)

    All that being said, that leather jacket is lovely....so classic yeah...I would strongly consider keeping one and two.

  • Lisa replied 6 years ago

    I like the idea to keep 1 and 2 for now. If you haven't worn them in say a year or so maybe then consider moving them on to a new home. These two fit you really well and it sounds like your job recently changed and therefore so did your daily uniform. I think you should wait a tad longer, maybe 6 months or a year, until you purge these pieces.

  • Marley replied 6 years ago

    Fall Jackets are different than Summer jackets. Yep - I know what you mean - but I still have a really hard time sorting them out when our Fall temps are so much hotter than our summer temps! So, we need light Fall jackets that can be incorporated into our fall/winter style personas. Thanks for pointing this out Rae!

    As for the jackets - well, #1 and #2 I think are still possible contenders for wear in your wardrobe - I wouldn't get rid of them just yet. I was with you when you bought #3 so for sentimental reasons I want you to keep it - but you've seen pics of my closet, so you really shouldn't listen to me! LOL. #4 - will DH be OK if you get rid of it? If so, the sweating is a deal-breaker for me and I'd purge that one for sure!

  • Diana replied 6 years ago

    Agree with everyone else - keep 1 and 2 (especially #2!), and purge 3 and 4.

  • CocoLion replied 6 years ago

    I see others are voicing the same opinion of purging 3 and 4 but keeping 1 and 2. If you decide to sell either 1 or 2, please contact me first, I will buy them (especially 2 which I wanted so badly).

    I think #2 is a great jacket for Jan-Feb-March in CA when spring is in the air and you're feeling lighter colors.

    #1 looks like a classic moto to me.

  • goldenpig replied 6 years ago

    Ack! Don't give me a heart attack. You must keep #2. You will wear it once you're itching for spring to arrive. #1 is so fab too. Any room to keep those two?

  • Zapotee replied 6 years ago

    i would cry a little if you get rid of #2 and I'd gladly take #1 off your hands, if you decide to sell it, but I love both.
    As for the last 2, I do like 4, that's a true Rae item, right there. #3 is a YLF meet up purchase... eee... I tend to hold on to those...
    I'm no help, uh:)

  • rae replied 6 years ago

    Thank you so much for all the feedback, ladies! The consensus to keep 1, 2 and purge 3, 4 is what I was leaning toward. 2 is an almost 100% keep, unless it absolutely isn't worn in over a year (sorry if some of you were hoping to rehome it soon). Like I said, they are in purge-atory... kind of a limbo state where I hold onto them and decide later.

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