This might come as a shock to some of you no one, but I like to break the rules.
That’s because a lot of rules are not hard-and-fast rules at all, but misinterpreted suggestions or theories. One of those is the need for eight glasses of water a day. Not true. Feel free to go back to drinking when you are thirsty. (By the way, if you’re one of those people who claims water makes you “full,” I think you’re full of something, but it ain’t water.)
I wasn’t always such rebel. I used to believe the closet-cleaning rules. You know the ones: “If you haven’t worn it in a year, you must donate it to charity!” “Clean out your closet every six months!”
Those are reasonable suggestions for a lot of people, including those who have:
- run out of closet space;
- changed sizes drastically;
- moved from the city to a farm or vice versa;
- bought quantity over quality;
- suffered from bad taste;
- grown to hate something;
- displayed an alarming hoarding habit;
- been unable to wash someone else’s blood out of a favorite t-shirt and need to get rid of it before CSI comes back with a warrant.
Not on that list? People who bought beautifully made and still-flattering (key qualifier!) clothes that have the misfortune of being “last season” — that no-woman’s land between “new” and “vintage.” I never think “last season.” I think “future vintage.” My home-grown vintage collection includes these crazy boots. Thankfully, it also includes the ruffled Byron Lars baseball vest that I got at a sample sale in the early 1990s.
Byron was one of those talented New York designers of the’90s whose namesake businesses didn’t survive the decade. As I cleaned out my closet over time (goodbye, Ann Taylor suits! I loved you but it’s over between us), I couldn’t part with the vest. I didn’t wear it for a year. In fact, I didn’t wear it for 12 years! I felt guilty for breaking the closet-cleaning rules but I was sure the vest would be very important to me some day. And, sure enough, a few months ago, I realized I needed to wear this vest a lot.
Every time I wear it, I rejoice that I kept this signature designer piece from one of my favorite fashion eras. That fact consoles me while I stalk eBay for the silver Todd Oldham t-shirt I foolishly gave away in a rule-abiding moment.
If you weren’t lucky enough to get your own Lars piece back in the day, take a look at this Byron Lars baseball vest in leather on Etsy.I think it’s a steal at $225. Zipper-trimmed leather ruffles from a designer’s most famous collection? Come on! The only reason I haven’t gotten it is because I’m holding out for the long-sleeved baseball jacket. I might change my mind so act fast if you like it.
While I was writing this post, I wondered what Byron was doing now. I realized I could do better than Google, and I did. Coming soon: my interview with Byron Lars.