Sunday, February 12, 2012

Closet Space

In April, I'm going to have a roommate. I haven't lived with another human for almost 5 years. This is requiring stages of closet purging and quick updates to the house. These are all things I should have been doing along the way, but life tends to get in the way of all that. About an hour ago I found myself staring into the closet of the guest room and having a Katherine Heigl moment. I keep sweaters stored in there on those fabric shelves that hang from the rod. Extra linens and window fans share that space. The majority of the closet is consumed by dresses that were worn once, for, at most, 6 or 7 hours. The collection includes my prom dress, a couple of winter formal dresses from college, and 7 bridesmaid dresses. No, it is not 27 dresses, but still. What do I do with these?

For a long time, I figured that when I finally got married, I would have all those lovely ladies in my wedding, just like in the movie. They would get to wear the dress I wore for them, and we would have a grand time. The older I get without having found that person who will put up with me and the more obsessed I become with getting rid of stuff, the more I look at those dresses and think, "Uh, what do I do with these?" I try them on every once in a while to motivate me to take them somewhere to donate. I try to find a reason to keep them, an event or party I might be invited to someday. The truth, however, is in my reflection: Bridesmaid dresses are pretty, but they are bridesmaid dresses. From the length to color, it is usually obvious that particular dress was bought to match 3-4 other girls and a pair of shoes. Whenever I start to think that I could shorten them so they might be a bit more wearable in real life, scenes from "27 Dresses" come to mind. At least I can close my closet doors.

I wish I could say I'm not a pack rat, but I do have a difficult time getting rid of sentimental things. I look at each one of those dresses and am reminded of how much fun I had while wearing that dress, how much money I spent on it, and the fact that I got to stand up with a good friend while she promised to love and stay faithful to the man standing across from her. It makes me tear up a little bit. It makes me not want to get rid of them. I am able to justify keeping them for a little longer. Why am I such a wuss when it comes to getting rid of these things?!

Reminders of another person taking over the biggest closet in the house come to mind, and I know the dresses are taking up valuable closet space. That and good hangers! In the almost five years that I have lived in this house, I have only worn two of them an additional time. Yep, I need to get rid of them. But then, it happens. I find an empty garment bag. It is large enough for all of the dresses, minus the iridescent blue princess style prom dress. That's the solution! Whatever doesn't fit in the garment bag has to go! I didn't have that great a time at prom, anyways; that is a story for another post, another day. Consolidated in that single bag, I feel better. I feel good about my decision. I'm keeping the sparkly and puffy and just different enough colored dresses.

While I don't know if I'll ever have a special day for my friends to wear the dresses I got to wear for them, I know that they don't take up much closet space and I can look back on them and smile. Now for an event in which I get to wear them, and prove that it was a good idea to keep them...and a man wouldn't be bad either.


  1. As a non-traditional, now once-again singleton (still under wraps), I really think you should ditch the bridesmaid dresses (and the prom dress). Sell them on ebay. When and the time comes, you will want your girls to wear something fresh and awesome that reflects who you are. And if the time doesn't come, that's totally okay, life will be great no matter what! Don't be bogged down by silly dresses. Those dresses represent someone else's dreams..not yours. Yours will be amazing.. Just give it time. Love you.