Not a Sweater Girl

Emma Peel (Diana Rigg) in The Avengers:  Was that the idea?

Emma Peel (Diana Rigg) in The Avengers: Was that the idea?

Everything in my wardrobe is black or gray.

Because I can wear that little black dress anywhere and be au fait?

Because I’ll look like Emma Peel (Diana Rigg) in The Avengers?

The effect is, alas, nunnish.  I look pale.

I must replenish the wardrobe.  Just look at this sweater drawer.

  • Black turtleneck, with hole in shoulder.  How did it rip?  It’s not on a seam; it’s just a gap. Must make gap look intentional.  With scissors?  Bad idea.  Can’t wear black in house because it attracts cat hair.
  • Black cardigan, with strange little flower sewn at top button. So much cat hair clings to it that I will have to de-cat-hair with a whole roll  of masking tape.
  • Old black turtleneck, once size medium, now so stretched out and boxy it still more or less fits.  But can’t be worn in house because of cat hair.
  • Gray cardigan, with same strange flower as black sweater.  Thank God I have something to wear.
  • Then there are the thick Fair Isle wool sweaters that I’ll wear when it’s five below.  They’re too hot most of the time.

And so I go to the department store to replenish my wardrobe.

I tell my ride it will be five minutes.  I shop fast.

Oh, no.

No!

Hundreds of baggy cardigan sweaters without buttons hang on hangers.   What is the point of a cardigan without buttons?  The point of a cardigan is to button up if cold, unbutton if warm.  I want a sweater, not a thing to wear over a silk top.

If I don’t want to wear a cardigan I can wear a…cat sweatshirt!  Or a pumpkin sweatshirt or a Thanksgiving sweatshirt.  My mother gave me many such comfortable sweatshirts.  But I have one rule:  NEVER WEAR THEM OUT OF THE HOUSE.  Last time we went out for pizza, a group of elderly women were wearing cat sweatshirts.  I desperately cling to middle age and have decided that even black sweaters with holes are better than cat sweatshirts.

All right, I find a few sweaters.

I try on a fuzzy shawl-neck sweater which gets tangled in my earrings.

I try on a fuzzy turtleneck that seems to be made of intentionally linked diamond-shaped holes, and it also gets tangled in my earrings.

I try on a vaguely ’80s-looking gray sweatshirt with studs sewn on the front.  It falls off the shoulder, not a good look for me.  I realize somebody in a heavy metal band might have worn it in the ’80s, or  Jennifer Beals in Flashdance.

Finally I buy three warm heavy cotton zip tops that are not fashionable but at least look warm and anonymous.

Then I wander through the handbag department and almost buy a $395 Coach bag, which I can’t afford, and then almost buy a $165 Sak Bag for 40% off, which I also can’t afford.  Neither bag suits my bicycling needs, so I get out of there before I’m hypnotized and open a new charge card so I can get 20% off and…

6 thoughts on “Not a Sweater Girl

  1. Stay out of department stores. Everything there is for 15-year-olds or the very wealthy — nothing in between. I shop exclusively on line: Lands End, L L Bean and eBay. Oh, and Amazon. When my husband lost his favorite baseball cap no local store had anything acceptable (polyester blends are not acceptable), but I found a good replacement on Amazon.

  2. Thanks for the advice! Yes, I idiotically thought I would find bargains at a dept. store, but the clothes are not very well-made, not made for warmth. I love mail order. Strange that in a big dept. store I only find things I DON’T need (like expensive handbags).

  3. I’m having the same issue with comfy shoes. I just want a sturdy pair of Mary-Janes – can I find them locally? No! Thank goodness for online shopping….

  4. I, too, buy shoes online. Sizes are a problem, but the nearest good shoe store is in another town so it’s almost easier just to order. I must buy books out of town, shoes out of town… or get everything on mail order!

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