Chic Chicks: Sentiment found in flannel

Amber Plunkett

Recently, I helped my best friend purge her closet.  

We spent a Friday night going through her wardrobe, piece by piece — each garment, a special memory, hung nicely on a hanger.

We made piles: items to keep, items to donate. And after hours of laughing at poor decisions, we hung what was remaining neatly back into what is now her perfectly organized closet.

It was a prime example of consumerism. We buy clothing only to discard it and then buy something else.

And while that’s not a bad thing, I found myself with a closet full of clothes that had no sentimental value or true meaning.

They were just clothes. Hanging neatly in a row, only to be worn a handful of times and then trashed.

This didn’t really affect me until someone asked me what my most treasured article of clothing was.

Surprisingly, I could not think of a piece of clothing that I treasured.

Sure, I’ve got blouses that I love and dresses that I think are perfect but my affection toward them and obsession with them always tends to wane.

They, like most of my wardrobe, end up like Lauren’s clothes did — in the donation pile.  

So I thought about it and thought about it. (I had to think outside my closet, literally.) And then it hit me.

My favorite piece of clothing isn’t trendy. It’s not fashion-forward and it’s not something any customer would ever be able to purchase at the their favorite store.

But, it’s mine. And to me, it’s my most treasured piece of my wardrobe.  

It’s a baggy, black-and-red flannel button up. It belongs to the man I admire most — my dad. And to be honest, I took it from him just so he wouldn’t wear it out anymore.

And especially so he wouldn’t wear it with his matching jacket.  

It’s pilling on the surface, the seams are bowing, the torso is torqued, and the plaid design doesn’t really match up anymore.

It smells like a combination of a man who works too hard, a car-filled garage and cigar smoke. But I love it.

I wear it around my house. I wear it to sleep. And, although I’m embarrassed to admit it, I have even worn it in public before. (Just don’t let my dad know, because I’m sure he’ll  decide he wants it back.)

I don’t want to part with it. Maybe the wrinkled, old and discolored flannel shirt isn’t stylish, but that flannel shirt embodies everything that my dad is.

So, Chic Chick readers, this week I challenge you to dig through your wardrobe and find what means the most to you.

Maybe it’s in your closet. Maybe it’s in your parents’ attic buried deep into a storage container.

Wherever it is, whatever it is, find it and cherish it.

Hopefully, it will fill a void in your wardrobe like my dad’s flannel did for me.