Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Taking Stock of Gentle Stockpiling


In today's volatile marketplace, even a best-selling item may not be available in its current form within a few years.  This means that it can make sense to buy a small cache of backups of favorite clothes to keep unused.

Buy Hard, Wear Easy (If one buys carefully, picking out clothes each day to wear requires no effort.)

37 comments:

  1. I go to my closet knowing I'm about to put on khaki pants and an OCBD almost everyday. The questions are really about which belt and shoes are best for the day? Muffy, you are so right. I wish I had a new stack of Mercer shirts at home too. GLH

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  2. The only downside to the above photo is our weight. For me it's a constant struggle.

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    1. That was my immediate reaction, too. I used to buy several of the same beloved items for later ~ only to outgrow them. How I envy people with no weight fluctuations!!

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    2. Same challenge with me... so I keep extras in the sizes I fluctuate through. Not as many in one size, but a few in a couple sizes. Whew!

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    3. Yes, I hear you. Constant struggle.

      - Anonymous Too

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    4. I adopt the same strategy as Mrs Hutchinson as I put on weight during the winner. To keep costs down, I stock up with multi-buy offers and take advantage of sale discounts.

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  3. What type of wallet do I spy on the desk? I'm in the market for a new one. My wallet of 20 years is just about beyond repair.

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    1. Thank you. That is my next wallet.

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    2. I have just purchased a new wallet with RFID protection. It ensures that credit and debit card details cannot be stolen by scanners and other electronic devices. I hope that Lotuff offers such protection.

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  4. I was gently stockpiling Bass Weejuns until a few hours ago to be exact. I will never ever shop at Bass ever again nor buy their shoes after the horrific way they treated me today.

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  5. Agreed. When you find something that fits well and is of good quality, why not stock up?

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  6. Slight caution against keeping the stockpile in the original cardboard and plastic. Canvas totes work nicely and don't discolor.

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  7. I see little need to stockpile anything at retail price except hiking shoes. If you find a pair you love (Inov-8 Roclite 295 here) , get a second and third pair because they will be discontinued or re-lasted before you know it. I am happy for my sale priced reserve of Bill's Khakis and Pantherella Egyptian Cotton Lisle socks, but these are a matter of price, not necessity. I wish I had a deeper stash of the Ribbed Tee cotton Undershirts that have been discontinued. These are the best ever.

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  8. It would be nice to have an extra special car stashed away somewhere, like a "new with tags" 240 or something like that. As for clothes, I have a plentiful supply and a number of dress shirts that are only used for special occasions. They're almost too good to wear.

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  9. I'm still looking for the 100% cotton women's khakis that WILL wrinkle, with NO stretch and no toxic chemical finish. Any ideas? Ready to stockpile!

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    1. I too am in the market for those....and I can't find anything without spandex. I'm exceedingly envious of how easy it is to find well-made men's clothes and how "fashion" dictates poorer quality for women

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    2. I'm also looking for 100% cotton women's khakis. I need a slim fit. I don't mind ironing. I do mind the addition of spandex! Ready to stockpile too.
      Thank you.
      SKK

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  10. Ordinarily I would comment on this topic of stockpiling decently made clothing, a topic which is near and dear to me. Recent headlines, however, turn my attention to checking stockpiles in my larder..

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  11. I was just wondering, speaking of nice clothes, especially of the all-cotton variety, if others here send them to the cleaners to be laundered or if they do their own laundry? I realize that it's a lot more work to do your own, especially if they're not wash and wear, but commercial laundries can be so hard on clothes.

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    1. I do all of my own laundry. I don't trust my clothes with anyone else. I try to steam what I can because I usually don't like to iron. Although when I'm in the mood it can be somewhat therapeutic.

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    2. I do my own laundering and pressing.

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    3. I truly admire doing your own laundering. Anonymous wrote, "I try to steam what I can". At the risk of sounding a fool, how do you steam your clothing? Does it get rid of the wrinkles? My skill at ironing leaves much to be desired or learned or something. I would love to learn a new method!

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    4. Anonymous my ex-husband was an active duty Marine who did all of his own ironing....and mine. ha! However I've been ironing for decades, specifically vintage linens that I buy, sell and collect. It's not difficult to iron when you remove the articles from the dryer (if not line dried) while they are still slightly damp. If line drying, I do the same. That always works for me as opposed to using the iron steam.

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    5. Yes, steaming can get rid of wrinkles. I try to take my OCBDs out of the wash and immediately put them on hangers and steam them as they dry. I have a small handheld steamer. It is much easier than ironing, but it doesn't work well on bad creases. I wear my shirts pretty rumpled (not wrinkled) anyway.

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    6. A steamer is what is usually used in a clothing or department store instead of an iron, which would not be desirable for brand-new clothes put out for display.

      I actually do my own laundry and ironing, too. Everything except that which needs dry cleaning. I wash a lot of things in cold water, too, if I'm the least bit worried about shrinkage. A few things are even hand-washed, although I don't mean delicate things, just things that wear rather badly in a washing machine. Filson dry-finish "tin cloth" garments should not go in a machine but washed in cold water in a tub or large bucket, agitating the water as best as you can. Otherwise, they and other canvas garments will come out with strange marks that looks like it had been sandpapered in places. But I've actually had them dry-cleaned, too, with good results. Get to know your local dry cleaner.

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    7. Thank you, Anonymous and Blue Train - I just received an education! Now to find a good handheld steamer...

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    8. I know! So many reasons I LOVE this blog. Thank you SWNE.

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    9. I had to buy an iron when traveling recently and snapped up an iron with a steamer attached. I enjoy having the steamer and iron in one. I was fortunate to send the steamer off with my daughter to college.

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  12. Such an interesting topic.

    On occasion, when I've found an item I love at a very good price, I've bought two of them. Usually I don't regret it. But I'm not particularly hard on my clothes, and I've noticed that most items don't usually stay in style more than 5 or 10 years. Even if it's a classic piece (flannel shirt, for example), there are slight changes over the years--slimmer fit or looser, dropped shoulders or fitted ones, wider or more narrow collars, and even color trends. If one shirt easily lasts me 5 or more years, then I probably don't need more than two.

    I've only ever used laundry services when I've lived in a foreign country and didn't own a washing machine. (Although one year, in Russia, I did wash everything by hand--including jeans and bath towels!) On the whole, I trust myself with my clothes more than I trust others.

    I don't mind doing the laundry, and I like having control over how our clothes are handled. I add Borax to the wash when I have to get out very bad odors--like my husband's work clothes. I grate FelsNaptha soap when I need to dissolve body oils on clothing/linens. I add baking soda to soften the water with more delicate items... It's interesting to figure out how best to tackle each problem. I've recently acquired some handwoven silk and linen, and it feels so much safer to wash it by hand myself, rather than hand it over to be doused in chemicals at a dry cleaner's. Besides, there's a kind of affection that grows when you care for pieces yourself.

    I hang our laundry to dry on the line outside, unless the weather is so humid that it never dries completely (like right now). Our life is pretty casual, so we don't have many things that need pressing, especially when it's dried on the line. A little touch-up with the iron now and then, that's all.

    I recently bought an inexpensive handheld travel steamer (search on amazon: they run about $20 to $40) It's great for linen, getting out the deep creases without losing the soft body & movement of the fabric. Also good for delicate silks, tee shirts, and sweaters. Very easy to use: just fill with water, plug it in & turn it on, then hold it upright and move it so the steam goes over the piece of clothing (usually have the clothing hanging up so gravity helps it relax.) Of course, you can buy much larger, more professional steamers if you have a lot to do at one time.

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    1. Marisa, you are brave - hand washing your typically dry cleaned clothes. Do you ever hand wash a 'dry clean only' item? I agree that dry cleaning is problematic due to the chemicals. If indeed you've had success hand washing dry clean only clothing, I would love to hear about it. Thank you so much for including information on handheld steamers. I'm off to Amazon right away!

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    2. I once heard that clothing manufacturers are only required to put one recommended method of cleaning on a label. Considering many people don't have a clue about fabric care, they cover themselves by opting for the safest method by using the 'dry clean only' recommendation. While I never wash woolen woven fabrics used to make suits, separates and such, I handwash every knitted woolen fabric I own in addition to silk and linen with great success and then air dry. I love to iron it all but steamers are great for last minute touch ups.

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  13. LOL... My wife complains all the time. "You must have at least a 100 of those old Brooks Brothers shirts still unworn in your closet."
    Actually, it's only about 24 and yes, they are the good ones.
    Now a friend of mine tells me thinks he's starting to shrink in size and it's scarring me.

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    1. One of my uncles who practically never wore anything but work clothes his whole life once said, "As you get older, you waist size and your inseam switch places."

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  14. After 33 years of marriage my wife finally understands that when I need a new shirt. I don't need an 'New' shirt but I need a new shirt just like the same one that's worn out!

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  15. These are not my people.

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  16. As a young girl, in Ohio, my father would take me with him when the traveling sales man from Brooks Brothers would come to town – the salesman would set-up shop in one of the downtown hotels. My dad would order his shirts and suites and he would order the boy’s 100% cotton Oxford shirts for me (total tomboy prep growing up) – I loved these outings with my father. Even though I'm from Ohio, I have been a classic East Coast dresser. My uniform has been khaki pants, oxford shirts, blue blazer, loafers, pearls and pink lipstick. Sadly, BB has gone down hill – I’ve complained to them, but they don’t care about the input of a 50+-year-old prep – so sad and so out-of-touch with reality they have become. But, I still have the memories though.

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