This week Slow Fashion October is all about love: your proudest accomplishment, your most frequently worn item, the thing you saved up for, the thing you worked on for a long time, or your oldest piece that's still in rotation.
I might not have mentioned this before, but I love old things. Whether it's old houses, old china, old jewelry, or old clothes, I find it all fascinating. So for this week's Slow Fashion October post, I'd like to talk about my two oldest pieces: my Dad's Pendleton shirt, and my engagement/wedding ring. Both of them have been in my life for a while now, but they've each been on this earth longer than I have.
It has a couple of holes in it, and it's been through the wash a time or two so it's slightly felted. The tag on the inside still has a price on it, handwritten in red pen, for $27.99. As old as it is, that was probably the going rate for this shirt when my Dad bought it in the seventies.
I rescued it from one of my mother's KonMarie-style closet cleanouts - which she was doing long before KonMarie was a thing. She had good reason to want to throw it away - besides the holes, Dad had put on a few pounds since he bought it and couldn't fit into it anymore.
But I could.
As a law student living in a drafty old house by myself, this shirt was perfect. I wasn't alone when I wore it. I was loved. And I was warm.
This shirt hangs on the coat rack in the entryway to my home, and I still wear it - around the house, walking the dog, hiking in the mountains. And I love it because it's warm, and hardwearing, and because it's a link to Dad, who lives on the other side of the country.
While I've had the Pendleton longer than I've had my ring, the ring is easily twice as old. It's an antique, not passed down through the generations but purchased at an antique jewelry store. The engraving is dated 1942, so I like to think someone wore it and loved it for fifty or sixty years before me, and now I'll wear it and love it for another fifty or sixty years.
I love this ring - it's a beautiful piece of jewelry - and I love what it means. I love my husband, of course, that's the most important part. I also love that no new materials were mined to create this ring, and that by buying an antique I actually got more bang for my buck - more carats, a better cut, and better craftsmanship than if I had purchased a new ring.
There are many pieces of clothing and jewelry that have come into my life, and I'm sure there will be plenty more. But Dad's old Pendleton shirt and my wedding ring are daily reminders of the love that surrounds me.
What are yours?