Sunday, January 30, 2011

Ripped jeans.

This morning as I was hanging out the washing I was relieved to find a hole in Miss Pepper's jeans. You can see it there, just under the red flower.

Bren's Mum bought these jeans for Indi waaaaay back about eight or nine years ago. All three of my girls have worn them. They've been hemmed, let down, patched and repatched many times. Loved. The other day I noticed that they were a tad too short for Miss Pepper, my littlest and last.

So what do I do with them now?

I was relieved to see the hole because it narrows down the options and some of the guilt.

I am so happy to hand most things on to friends or op shops when we are done with them if they are in good condition, but there are some things that I just can't.

One of my friends has recently inherited a suitcase of baby clothes that her and her sisters all wore and then all her nieces and nephews wore and now its time for her own babies to be dressed in these white hand knits and nighties.

I love the idea of keeping clothes my kids wore for their kids to wear but most of the things I want to keep are well worn items I made, my girls wore and wore and wore and will realistically never serve any purpose but the sentimental one ever again.

So far I have two and a bit boxes of clothes Miss Pepper has outgrown and I have put away. Two and a bit boxes of little hand made bits and pieces I have made, friends have made, or bought or knit by a grandmother no longer with us. Each has its own story.

These little patched up jeans will be carefully folded and added to the contents of the boxes this afternoon. Maybe one day the girls will take them to school for show and share, maybe one day we'll sit together and go through the boxes telling the stories, maybe one day I'll tell them to their kids or maybe one day I'll come across the boxes and see that I've kept way too much and chuck them out. Who knows.

Its a little bit sad to think of these jeans not being worn again and put away in a box, but they sure have had quite a life...well you know what I mean.

Do you keep many of your kids' old clothes? How many? How do you decide what to keep and what to give away? Has anyone actually made one of those quilts out of all their baby clothes? And if you don't have kids yet, have you started a collection of clothes for when you do?

I hope you are having a wonderful weekend where ever you are.
Bye now. XX


  1. When we were living in NZ my children were similar ages to their cousins so everything was passed around...I have kept an assortment of clothing from each one ranging from their coming home outfit to special things made for them.
    When we made the move across the ditch I had to be ruthless and get rid of alot.
    I have actually been thinking alot lately of making one of those quilts :)

  2. My daughter is in her early 20's and I have saved some of her clothes as well. I may pare it down as time goes by. I do have infant, toddler,...all of the stages. Not only is it nice for my own memories but she enjoys seeing I saved them and can easily recall where and when she was wearing many of them.

  3. Lovely that you are keeping these for when your daughter's grow Kate. I have a quilt that my Mum gave me for my 21st birthday. It is made using scraps of fabric that she saved when making me dresses when I was a little girl. It's not exactly made from my outfits but given that we moved to seven different countries whilst I was growing up, I find it incredible that she kept all those bits for me. It really means a lot to me now.

  4. What a lovely post. I am guilty on passing on clothes as I was the eldest and my 2 younger sisters have no choice but to wear hand me downs. Interestingly though, they were able to send over their old wearable clothes for my daughter. Karmic.

  5. They are the cutest jeans, I love the line where they have been altered, they really tell a story.
    I've got so many things like that that I've kept. I try and make sure I have a photo of them wearing some of their favourite clothes too. I loved going through the old baby clothes of mine that my Mum kept and hearing the stories so I'd love to do the same.

  6. Why don't you turn them into little shorts?


  7. I am thinking quilt.


  8. I have kept everything! but if there is never another I will keep some things that are just really sentimental.

    I think it is nice that you are keeping them.

  9. I think its a great idea to either keep these special items or to make them into something else.
    Once they're gone - they're gone.
    I have regretted getting rid of some things.

    The girls made their own stuffed toys from their Great Grandads very soft wool jumper. They got to know him when we moved to NZ. (and had met him in Poland once too)

    I want to frame some tiny shoes each of them wore when they were very tiny too!XX

  10. How sweet that those jeans have manyh stories to tell. I gave all of Lachie's clothes to my nephews when they were born so they were put to good use. Isabelle never really wore out her clothes as she grows too fast to keep up with them. I am sure you will have lots of stories to tell all your grandchildren one day!

  11. They are very sweet jeans. I've kept some special baby clothes but I don't think anything past that time. Little clothes are so sweet to have and remember good times over. Our girls play dollies with most of the baby clothes. I would love to have a quilt of them, but they are usually knit fabrics and not really the same as cottons.

  12. I've never faced this dilema before because I always planned on having three. But now that I have my third I'm starting to have to think about what I can part with without bursting into tears.
    I'm guessing I'll have to hang on to quite a few pieces (at least in the short term) until I can come to grips with really moving on from this stage :-)

  13. I have important clothes packed away, the expensive and those bought for special occassions and also the pair of the daggiest ugly stripey leggings, and lime green cords with no knees left at all...because they were the most loved!

  14. Maybe you could make a jean bag from would look great...or keep them to make a jean quilt.

  15. When we recently moved house my husband (who is so not sentimental) said that there was NO way his shed was going to be full of stuff. And by stuff he meant my stuff.
    So I decided that I would buy some plastic tubs, the one's with lids, and that I would have one for each of the kids - only keeping the clothes and dress ups that I just couldn't let go of. Knowing that I only had a certain amount of space actually made me think about what I wanted to keep and so far it is working out just fine. I still have room in each box for all of the things yet to come. And I figure in a year or 2 Hubbie wont even notice if I add a couple of extra boxes .... well, fingers crossed he wont!

  16. I keep heaps, esp stuff like those loved up jeans but I have another special bag each called the birthday clothes bag. I have the outfits my kids have worn on every birthday in those bags. Including the dressup outfit Lill wore one year!
    I think you should leave those jeans as they are. You could add a frill or slice through the middle and add fabric panels to make them longer, but they have been so loved just the way they are.

  17. I am generally not a 'horder' but I definitely keep memories. I have a few select clothes for each of my children. Things that are super loved and spark memories straightaway.

    These cute jeans are a perfect example. x

  18. OH Ioved reading about the story of the jeans, and love that you've kept them all. Each is special and each is a small part of history.
    While I don't have kids, I'm exactly the same with my own clothes even really holey ones which were the most loved, as well I can't bear to throw them out, and well I don't want to upset them ( again my nutso side where clothes have feelings).
    SO if I have kids I know I will be exactly the same. I know my mum has kept some of Hannah and mine, and I love seeing them.

  19. Oh Kate, I know just what you mean! I put the first box of outgrown baby clothes back in the cupboard today. Clothes that all my girls have worn, and some that my sister and I wore also when we were tiny. Some I will save, some I won't. I just can't bear to part with any of them yet, so I'm putting them back in the cupboard... just in case ;)

  20. I think you could quilt or... make a wall hanging it has all the colourful qualities required...,. I have a box filled with thing I just have too keep the tiny clothes and there is a bag of knits from my granny too!! I I have nearly a bin bag filled with clothes I plan to make a couple of quilts with then. xx

  21. I don't have babies yet, but have a little stash of goodies I have found over the past few years ready to be worn. Some of it is stuff that won't fit until they're 5 or 6, but I still bought it anyway.

  22. Good questions, Kate. but I'm afraid they're questions I struggle with so I don't have very helpful answers! I am so sentimental and indecisive. I've got more boxes of clothes than my cupboards can hold!

    There's lots of my Grandma's knitting but with three sisters who haven't had kids yet, I can't bear to part with it. I keep good brands, practical, favourite and timeless things (ie denim and cord pinnies). Surely one day there'll be a niece to benefit. Your jeans would be in my favourite box. I pass cheap, non-special things to friends.

    PS I would be in trouble if we moved!

  23. We had kids before all of our friends so we passed a lot on but there are a couple of things I have kept because I just couldn't part with them... not as many as I would have though though! ;) I love how those jeans have the lines on them from the hem being let down! :)) Well loved! Kx

  24. I'm not much of a horder - there just isn't enough space. I've recently passed on most of our baby clothes - won't be needing those any more. But I did hang on to all of the lovingly handmade and handknitted items made by Granny and Grandma - those things are special and I know whoever they get passed onto just won't have the same appreciation.

  25. I have two file boxes for each of my girls. But my newly minted 4 year old has started telling me recently "I want to keep this for my little girl when she comes out of my tummy when I am a grownup." It's hard to say no when she explains it like that!

  26. I have two huge bags of clothes saved from my girls - only the special things though. I have saved woolies (jumpers etc) to turn into softies and kept the rest of the clothes to be made into quilts for them. I've made a start and have embroidered the middle sections of what will be the quilts but I just need to cut up the rest of the clothes and get sewing. Hopefully for Christmas my girls will each have a new quilt but as it was on the list for last year I might not get round to it..... :)

  27. I'm not really a keeper of clothes! I have the "coming home" outfits for each of my kids and a tiny pair of dunlop volleys that K wore when he was 3 mths but apart from that i hand them on. We have the oldest kids in the family and I'm just waiting for my SIL's to have a girl so I can ditch the 4yrs worth of girls clothes I have in the cupboard.

    When my kids have kids these clothes are not going to be cute or cool so someone else might as well enjoy them while they're still OK!!

    But those jeans have such an amazing story being worn by your 3 girls - I can understand why you need to keep them.

  28. I think it's lovely that you'll keep them. They are funky looking jeans.
    Our space is really limited, and my boys keep growing out of everything. Baby clothing is taking up a lot of room. I can't quite seem to get rid of it though, it seems so symbolic... yep, that's it no more kids for I ready for that? *sigh*

  29. I definitely keep clothes. My daughter (now 14) always loved to wear a super fancy dress for Christmas and I have every one of those dresses kept in my attic. I also kept favorite Halloween costumes and anything that had a special memory. They grow up way too fast!

  30. such a lovely story Kate!

    i do keep special sentimental clothes because I love to think that one day they will open a suitcase & we'll giggle at how small they were and I'll remember when they used to wear them.
    I found an old pair of maternity jeans yesterday and took the band off and sewed it into a hair elastic for Aidan's enormous amount of hair. I love that I used to wear that & now he wears it on his head.

    I am just going to be a total mess on Monday...

    Amelie is looking better, cream has worked..yay!! but she still scratches it when it's itchy.

    hugs to you for a very happy February lovely girl ♥

  31. I have saved some of the special clothes, but lots of the (2) boys things are worn out. The long pants were passed on to the younger, and because he was slimmer, most eventually became shorts because they were too short but still fitted. Lots of my daughter's things have been handed down to her cousin. I get a real kick out of seeing her in "our" old clothes. It's lovely seeing them put to good use.

  32. We ar still in baby stage so clothes are still making their way down the line of kids and will be for at least another year! I do have some special knitted jumpers and little dresses that will be kept for my daughter's girls. I have hug two dresses from my childhood on my little girl's bedroom wall, my granma made the smocked beauties when I was little and I adore them!

  33. your box sounds like it has similar contents to my bag. Stuff I have made, stuff my mum made for us when we were little, stuff my grandma made and aunty knit for us also and the odd favourite piece. My problem is the bag is too big and I am running out of places to store it.

  34. kate i have a box of little frocks that belonged to miss 29 when she was wee. I kept them believing that one day i would make them into a quilt. as is often the case my plans have not come to fruition. maybe i will make them into a quilt for my grandbabies if i am ever lucky enough to get some. i don't suffer with too much guilt over it though, as miss 29 has not got a sentimental bone in her body. i am certain if i showed her the frocks she would scream "you actually made me wear that, chuck it!" oh well

  35. I had a box of baby clothes under my sister's house in Brisbane (I moved to Melbourne two years ago and under her house was the dumping ground for "stuff") that I planned to go through and pick out the sentimental, "keep for my kids' kids to wear" items next time I was up there. My sister's house was flooded to just below her ceiling in the recent floods and that box was one of the few things that wasn't rescued before the waters rose. Miracle of miracles, however,on the day of the big clean-up, my Mum found, in that same, dirty, muddy, ruined box of baby clothes, a little cream lacy dress she made for me when I was a baby, that I had photos of my baby girl taken wearing, that I wanted to keep for her baby girl to wear one day. A couple of days in Napisan and it is as good as new, albeit more white now than cream. That made me very happy.

  36. I don't have kids yet but my Grandma has knitted a big box full of garments for me. Little white jackets and different coloured bonnets and many pairs of bootees and knitted Mary Janes. I can't wait to pull them out some day, although I think she has predicted I am having boys as all the things are in white or blue or baby green! not sure how they will look in Mary Janes though. I love the idea that you have kept clothing of the girls, I'm sure they will love looking though it when they are older.

  37. I keep some bits and pieces. The special items - handmade or gifted by someone dear. The bits and pieces that have been put aside for sentimental are no more than a handful and wouldn't fill a box.

    I've kept lots of other bits and pieces to either re-use or pass on. Haven't really looked at keeping bits to make a quilt ... but maybe next time I go through things I'll keep this in mind.

    I am, however, careful not to keep too much to pass to my children when they're older. I am mindful that whilst somethings have a very high sentimental value to me they might feel like a burden to my children.

  38. My mum kept a little dress that I wore when I was two - it was very special and I think she ordered it from a catalogue from France (this was the early 70s). My eldest and youngest nieces have both worn it on their 2nd birthdays. I hope they will keep it and maybe pass it to their kids in another 30 years. There is nothing like family memories. I say keep it if you love it.

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Kate XX

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