A few weeks ago, I began reading The Tao of Leadership: Lao Tzu's Tao Te Ching Adapted for a New Age by John Heider. I should say first that this is an excellent book that invites readers into new spaces of contemplation. Unfortunately, the version I purchased - I'm not sure if there are other versions - is littered with typos, which can take away from the experience, but if you can get around them, you're in for a treat. The book was recommended to me by a member of the talented group Roomful of Teeth, which creates some fantastic and unique music. The book was doubly enticing to me as a religious studies major. Reading - no, more like processing - this book made me feel, among other things, more detached from my belongings. I wanted to be simpler, less cluttered.
Meanwhile, a friend of mine told me that he was preparing to purge his closet, narrow his wardrobe. When he did, he sounded quite pleased with the results. Mom also found a newspaper article about a woman who narrowed her closet to just a few items. The signs seemed to be pointing me in a similar direction.
While I by no means emptied my closet or reduced my wardrobe to the bare minimum, I did clear out many large bags full of clothing. Some were items that no longer fit, were unflattering, or were worn past wearing. Others were items that I didn't wear that I had clung to for too long, telling myself that I would wear them eventually but never following through. And some pieces were simply not favorites and not necessary.
Among the items pulled from my drawers and closet were a number of knit t-shirts. Though I initially packed them away in bags with the other clothes, the crafter in me dug them out again and began cutting away to create one of my favorite materials: t-shirt yarn. I had a full bag of rolled t-shirt yarn by the time I was through, and I determined to make more t-shirt yarn bags, as I've done before. Upon laying out my treasures to choose color schemes (I had enough to make two bags), I decided to make a rainbow bag and a softer toned bag (pink, white, cream, etc). The rainbow bag is pictured above. The second, softer-tone bag gave me some trouble and is slightly disproportionate at the bottom.. Ah, well, 4/5 well-shaped bags is decent. ;)
So, maybe I didn't completely get rid of as much clothing as I intended, since the t-shirts are now living new, reshaped lives (that seems a bit Taoist, even). But I'm glad I was able to part with some of my material attachments and find some space for creativity.