The first pair of jeans I wore until the bum busted open I had in high school. I loved them, though I couldn’t tell you the brand or where I bought them. (All signs point to TJ Maxx, the place where I did nearly all of my high school clothes shopping.) I can tell you they had a button fly. And that they’d started out a deep blue but slowly faded to something closer to the color of the sky. I patched them, mysteriously enough, with a pale purple, fine wale corduroy that I found in my mom’s fabric stash. The patch job was messy and before long that gave way, too. I took to wearing them with black spandex bike shorts underneath. The hole just kept on getting bigger, but at least I didn’t have to worry about anyone seeing my underwear. I finally stopped wearing them when the thighs also wore through, but I never stopped loving them.
Last fall, I spent every last available penny on this pair of vintage Wranglers. They’re older than me. (My parents, too). And though I think previous owners are at least as much responsible for the bum wearing through this time around, I’ve worn them so much in the past year that this summer I noticed a bit of a breeze on a morning walk and discovered they needed patching. Lacking purple corduroy, I decided to take them to the seamstress down the street for reinforcements. She matched the pale blue of the worn-through bum and patched them with about a million tiny threads. They’ll last forever this way, she assures me. I’m hoping for until death do us part.
Karen Templer interviewed me for Slow Fashion October. I shared evolving thoughts on growing a sustainable wardrobe, finding clothes you love, why it matters, and why it’s tricky. I hope you take a look.
More about Slow Fashion October and how to get involved.
For the curious:
I found my vintage jeans with the very thoughtful help of 9th Street Vintage in the city.
My blouse was a gift from a Dôen.