Friday, January 21, 2011

What's the Oldest Thing in YOUR Closet?

We just finished my closet makeover--well, paint and carpet.  In going through all my stuff, I got to thinking what was the oldest item in my closet?  Most of us who are older, will have our own clothes that could be as old as 50 years old--maybe even older!   

This may be one of the older items in my closet.  Its a vintage piece--probably from the 20's or 30's, which I bought at a vintage store in the 70's.  It is starting to fall apart, so I can't wear it anymore, yet, I will keep it.  It's so pretty, don't you think?

The sequins are starting to fall off and loose their color.  The threads are starting to break.  Clothing is very hard to keep~it is very effected by heat and humidity.  The best thing I can do is keep it in a box, with tissue to help absorb any moisture, and hope for the best.    From my work at a local historical society, clothing is one of the costliest items in a collection to keep and the costliest to display.

What is your oldest clothing item in your closet and how do you keep it?


  1. Well, if I was standing in my closet...I would be the oldest thing in it. I do have a dress in a basement closet (where it is cool) a great dress from the 40's that I got 20 years ago and love to get out and wear.

  2. I have some shoes and hats from the '30s and '40s, and a couple of '40 vintage clothing items. I don't actually do anything special - the hats and shoes are displayed on the top shelf of my closet, and the clothing is hung on padded hangers in another closet. I've actually done a photo series on my "Never Seen" clothes (there's a link in my sidebar) if you're interested.

    I love your closet makeover! It looks fantastic! I want to see a picture when it's loaded up with all your lovely clothes!

  3. OK, Lise, stole my line...I was so excited to type it too!! This piece you found is gorgeous! I am not sure what is the oldest...i have a couple of things I bought in my 20s and i still have! And i have several things from my mom that are true vintage!!

  4. Hmm. Up until December, I had a sweater that was at least 25 years old, but I think it is likely some of the baby clothes I kept for my daughters. I would love to read posts on the preservation of clothing and what different fabrics might require.

    So envious of an empty closet!

  5. I think the oldest thing right now is a new acquisition from Salvation Army... a fur jacket I blogged last week. I have a LOT of random thrifted crap though, so it's hard to say for sure.

  6. God I wish my closet was that clear !!!!!
    Can u come over ?
    You could get a mint for that vest on Etsy!
    How's the link goin'?
    e-mail me if you need to :)
    the oldest stuff in my closet?
    definitely. Possibly dust balls or cat hair.

  7. I have some dresses from the 40s that I wore in the 70s and 80s. But the old est thing is my grandmothers feather boa from the 20s. Its totally unusable, but how can I get rid of it?

  8. I am not a keeper of anything
    I have a few pieces of jewelry from the 80's and the oldest thing in my closet is a belt from the 90's.
    Possibly an item of clothing from the 2000's LOL

  9. My jaw dropped when I saw this sequin number! I love it!
    The oldest thing in my closet is a Mexican-inspired floor-length dress in orange, brown and cream that my mother wore and gave to me. It's about 100 sizes too small, but I won't part with it ever!

  10. Oh, that sequin bolero is beautiful! Such a shame that it is falling apart, but it's definitely a special piece!!

  11. Lisa, you crack me up! I didnt even think of that, and I think I am older than you!
    Sheila~I will check outyour sidebar~I should have guessed you'd have a collection!
    Pam~ the stuff from your mom must be cool~
    Terri~I thought of the baby clothes first because so many people keep them--On the preservation end, I'm not an expert, but I did learn some tips. And of course, sun is the worst...
    Freeda~I remember that fur--could be 60's--what do you think?
    Riva~My old dirt is gone! And there was some old dirt--the carpet was 25 years old...thanks on the tips...btw
    Kathy~ and the feather stuff crumbles away, too bad. Imagine your grandmother wearing it??
    Silvergirl~ No vintage for you? That's good too--sometimes keeping the stuff is a burden
    Vanessa~Could you (or someone) make something out of the material? But you probably wouldnt want to. Do you have memories of that dress?
    Artful~ It is so special, and I could do some repairs, but I wouldnt want to wear it!

  12. That piece is stunning. The oldest thing is my closet is a sweater from Germany is only 20 years old, I tend not to keep many things but maybe I should consider it. I know my mom has some from my childhood but that is her closet and I'm glad she still has it cause I probably would have gotten rid of it and regretted it.

  13. My oldest piece is a pair of Bruno Magli shoes from late 1970´s. I am saving them for my younger daughter. I don´t have anything inherited nor anything vintage from someone else in my closet. This suites me fine.

  14. I think that the senior member of my closet is a pair of nine west pointed toe booties that I purchased in 1987 right after I moved "to the big city". I can still remember how cool and grown-up they made me feel. It was so much fun to live close enough to a real mall to shop on a whim and not have to pack a lunch. Hmmm, I think I'll unearth them and try to make them work with an outfit.

  15. Thank you for sharing this wonderful bolero! isn't it funny how some pieces are so gorgeous they look better falling apart than most pieces do new?

    the net is so transparent maybe you could mount it in a frame to display? just an idea. it looks beautiful on your fitting dummy, too.

    my oldest is probably this 40's wool crepe jacket with ceramic 'sea shell' buttons. it's held up amazingly well - i've only had to re-sew some of the seams. my sister got it from a friend back east who was cleaning out the attic.

    great post and wonderful comments! steph

  16. You have inspired me to start my own blog. It's just in it's baby stage but I'm already having a lot of fun.
    Stop on by sometime!