When do you throw away clothing?

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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:15 pm
We are B"H doing more or less okay financially, but there isn't much wiggle room in the budget for clothes, and what there is usually goes to the kids (who B"H get lots of hand me downs but often need supplementation and underclothing).

We did worse in the past, so it's been like 15 years or so since I was regularly buying myself clothing. I got one or two pieces periodically throughout the years, but still most of my stuff is pretty old.

The problem is that much of it is getting somewhat worn out and threadbare. Small holes, stretched out shirts, small bleach stains, seams unravelling and edges shredding. It's not majorly obvious so I usually force myself to ignore it and hope others do the same.

Is that normal/acceptable? Should I be throwing out clothing with small (smaller than cheerio sized) holes not in obvious places, or if the edges of cuffs or collar are starting to wear out? If an otherwise decent black skirt gets some bleach spots on it do you get rid of it? What about a white shirt with some pale stains?

If I am supposed to be throwing all of this stuff out, I will be left with nearly no clothing. That means purchasing a completely new wardrobe and I have no idea what is normal for a wardrobe budget and if we could afford it. I find it hard to shop used clothing. It takes forever until I find something tznius and not completely opposite of my style, and then I try it on and need it in a bigger size... with used clothing that means back to the drawing board. (New clothing at least is usually available in a few sizes.) I B"H have a houseful of kids, I don't have that much time to shop in stores. I'm also a terrible seamstress.

So is it okay to wear what I have, or do I need to replace everything? If I do, how much is reasonable to be trying to save up for this?
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:19 pm
Bleached, holes and stains get thrown out- I’m sorry.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:20 pm
Why do you have to replace everything at once? Start with one or two pieces. Maybe you can buy inexpensive stuff that wont break your budget.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:22 pm
It sounds like your stuff is long over due to be trashed. You can try posting here if someone is looking to give away good clothing in your size.
If you buy new, then 2 shabbos dresses and 5 weekday dresses could cost $1000 or even less if you know where to shop.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:36 pm
I'm sort of in the same boat, not so much financially but because I hate shopping and have a hard time finding clothing that fits me. I still have shirts from 8-10 years ago that are getting quite threadbare yet I'm having a hard time letting them go.

Replacing a whole wardrobe at once is daunting and expensive. I suggest carefully updating your wardrobe a couple of pieces at a time. Pick classic items that won't go out of style so quickly and made from good materials that will last longer. Keep your older things to wear at home while cooking, cleaning, dealing with the kids, or any other activities that will cause stains or holes.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:50 pm
I am in the opposite boat. I was hoping this thread was my problem.

I have way too much clothing. Most of it is in good condition. I buy classics generally. I don't know when to get rid of good clothes because I often don't wear them for more than a year because there is too many. But I just culled out a box.

OP, please post your size and general location. I would love if we have a shidduch. I need to get rid of these clothes.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:53 pm
OP please post size and location.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 3:55 pm
OP, clothes with permanent stains and holes should be thrown out.
I wear hand me downs. But most often I shop at places like Burlington, TJ Maxx and Marshalls. I don't spend more than $20 per garment. So if I find a skirt and nice top it costs max $40 per outfit. I do keep shells that are stained and make sure to wear it with something that will cover the stain.
You can look very nicely dressed with these $40 outfits. Because tops are usually around $15 I treat myself more often. If I had to shop in a Jewish store one outfit would be the price I spend on an entire wardrobe.
You can also find nice stuff on sale in Macy's , Lord N Taylor, Century 21 etc. Look at the clearance racks and you will be surprised at what beautiful pieces you can find for literally $20.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 4:19 pm
In Lakewood there's Serendity which I am told has brand new and very gently used clothing. There may be something similar in other locations, or wonderful imamothers here who would gladly mail you some things.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 4:21 pm
I think a lot of what is considered normal/acceptable depends on where you live, the standards of the people around you and also how conscious they are of clothing and appearances.

It’s good to appear dignified in your appearance as a reflection of your tzelem Elokim, but if your reality is that you can’t afford a whole new wardrobe right now then there’s no shame in that! Especially if you can hide the small holes and stains somewhat with careful dressing. I’d look at it as a long-term project, as others have suggested, to slowly build up a collection of newer clothes.

Personally I find Kohl’s has some really affordable, pretty clothes that have lasted me a while.
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Post  Thu, Sep 13 2018, 6:18 pm
Agree with post that said to wear well used clothes at home. I shop at Fox's and like their prices and quality. Take a look at their Mostly Modest collection.
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Post  Fri, Sep 14 2018, 1:02 am
I updated slowly - a black straight skirt (I wear both shabbos and weekday) two weekday things.....
Dress barn has cheap prices for decent clothes - especially when they have sales
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Post  Fri, Sep 14 2018, 1:45 am
Macy's has major sales at the end of the season, as do most stores.
You can also search online for secondhand clothing stores in your area.
Anything stained or ripped gets thrown out immediately in my house. No need to hold onto it.
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Post  Fri, Sep 14 2018, 4:33 am
Thank you so much for all of the responses.

I have kind of mixed feelings, on one hand I have been bothered about wearing clothing that is admittedly not in the best shape, on the other hand it is familiar, washable, and comfortable!

I'm probably not the best candidate for hand-me-downs, because I'm between sizes (M & L usually), still postpartum pudgy and funny shaped, nursing, and place a much higher value on comfort and easy care than looks! (Which might explain why I didn't toss the raggedy shirts a long time ago.)

I live way out in the boondocks, and a shopping trip to a place like Serendipity, with oodles of TZNIUS!!! secondhand clothing is a pipe dream. (Which, do not fear, I will certainly make sure to have that dream. Smile) Locally we don't have too many stores, although I may at some point convince my poor DH to watch the gang and let me spend a few hours shopping at the mall in the next big town/city. Otherwise I'll have to be brave and shop online (I HATE returning.)

I did buy myself a lovely size large Daisy top from Esteez before Yom Tov, and will probably get a few more of them since they are kind to my 5 month pregnant-looking belly and should look good when I get back to a more normal shape too!

Thanks for the link to Fox's, there are some really nice pieces there! I think I will take [plural] your advice and try to start slowly. It's hard to be in the in-between stage of caring about how I look and deliberately ignoring it, but I'll do my best. Cuz once I say to myself that I am trying to look nice, it will be hard to wear the shredding shirts and bleach-dotted skirts.

As far as clothing to wear at home, I'm not the kind of gal that differentiates too much. If I dress better, I will dress better all the way, whether I expect to be with just the kids all day or have company over. I will also say that it is more for me than for DH, because he is happy whatever I wear B"H. I do think I look too shlumpy and ragged than appropriate, but really needed some external confirmation that I should try to change that. Thank you, all of you. I do think this is the right thing.

Here's to a new year where I make a Kiddush Hashem IY"H in how I dress!
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Post  Fri, Sep 14 2018, 7:31 am
Jewish stores often have good sales so for those who believe that they are automatically higher priced, I hope you will check it out first.
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Post  Fri, Sep 14 2018, 9:45 am
I hate throwing away clothes, so I try to salvage them. First, they get demoted from the work and public clothes department to house clothes department. If they are too shabby for that, it's garden clothes.
Little holes I mend with thread, same goes for seams. Bleach stains - If they are small or blend into the pattern, I ignore them. If they're huge, well that's that. If something becomes worn so thin and threadbare that it can't be fixed, it's also good-bye.
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