wear the cashmere sweater Mary!

Noah appreciates it too

This winter I discovered cashmere. I had heard about it but never payed much attention…. some sort of wool isn’t it?  Oh no…cashmere is like a cloud…soft, warm cozy, and expensive. I bought my first cashmere sweater this winter. It is like wearing a hug. I wore it everyday after I bought it. I even wore it to bed one night. Then, don’t ask me why, I went on-line and looked up the brand TSE. I found out it was a VERY expensive cashmere sweater…sold in some stores like Bergdorf Goodman for $400 and up. All of the sudden I didn’t want to wear the sweater to do everyday activities (like cleaning the kitty litter or god forbid sleeping in it!) I needed a special occasion…a whole week went by and it stayed (neatly folded) in my dresser.

Oh, you might be wondering how I didn’t know that it was expensive when I bought it? It came from my favorite place to shop, The Manchester (VT) Thrift store. I paid $2 for it. When I didn’t know how much it originally cost, I loved it “up close”…was not too worried about cat hair and spilled coffee…I even threw it in the wash!…in other words, I “lived” in it. All of the sudden, when I learned its “value” I put it away for a “special occasion”.

The scene in It’s a Wonderful Life came to mind when Harry is going to the dance and says he wants a couple of dozen plates. His mother is horrified and says, “Not my best plates Harry!” and George, who is sitting at the table with his father, says, with a smile in his voice, “Oh mother, let him have the plates.” This is the last scene in the movie that we see George’s father. He dies that night.

What does this have to do with cashmere sweaters and “good” china?…I wonder what Mrs. Bailey would have said had she known that this was the last meal she would eat with Mr. Bailey? I like to think she would have said to Harry, “Oh honey take the whole set and take your brother with you and don’t come home early…if you know what I mean!”

Life is for living. Life IS the special occasion. Clothes are for wearing, and wearing out and getting new ones and not grieving the old. Someone once said to me, “Don’t cry over anything that can’t cry over you.”…..I love that. It has been a policy of mine not to own anything that, if broken, would be a tragedy…after all, I have 6 cats, a big dog and a husband who tends to drop things on a fairly regular basis.

I started wearing the sweater again…almost every day.

14 thoughts on “wear the cashmere sweater Mary!

  1. We have a Goodwill store that has some really great stuff in it, some of the most expensive designer brands for $3.50 for sweaters, tops. I have found some pricey hand-knit sweaters that retail would have been $400. I just love it when I score like that. I’ve only found one cashmere item there, it was not my size. I’m still hopeful. I have a cousin who is into expensive labels. It’s funny to get her something from GW, and let her think I paid retail for it. Thrift shopping is a great way to save money. Cats, dogs, and significant others are more important – worth spending extra on.

  2. Mary, I became aware of your blog via Jon Katz (don’t we all just love and appreciate Jon!) and was instantly interested in your writing. Question? Are you going to compile them all into a book? If not, why not? :o)
    Have you written a book that I need to know about? Thank you, Kay

  3. I love your blogs – never fail to come away from the daily post without a little gem to mull over during the day. Thanks!

    Mary N.

  4. This entry has given me freedom to enjoy many things I have kept “safe” for fear of “using them up”. Now I will enjoy them. Thank you!

  5. I’m newly following your blog after reading about it on Jon Katz’s site. Your words, like his, give me perspective and optimism over my morning coffee each day. Thank you.

  6. I have a pair of diamond earrings my parents gave me for my 21st birthday (diamond is my birthstone), and I used to “save” them for special occasions. Consequently, I hardly ever wore them. Now, I wear them several times a week, with jeans, sweats, shorts & flip-flops… whenever I want to feel sparkly! 🙂

  7. I can absolutely relate to this post. It might sound funny, but my brother bought me a pair of rainbow colored socks for christmas one year. They had cat faces on them and I loved them so much, not just because he gave them to me, but because I was so impressed that he chose something that I would have chosen for myself and not a lazy giftcard or something because he was in a rush to get me a present last min (which I think is terrible). I never wore these socks because I wanted to keep them forever! Then finally I was out of clean socks one day and just decided to wear them…and I got over my fear of ruining them and just decided to enjoy them. It sounds so silly when I share it but I have had other clothes and items I didnt want to “wear and ruin” when in reality, why buy things you cant enjoy? You can’t get caught up in being attached to “things” like that (in my opinion). And every day IS a special occasion!

    I would never spend $400 on a sweater but how cool to find a soft cashmere sweater for $2. Glad you are wearing it and enjoying it! My kitties would be trying to sleep on me all day! lol

    I think I might enjoy a cup of tea in our “nicest tea cups” tonight. 🙂

  8. Yay! Sounds like a wonderful sweater. Glad to hear you are wearing it again. I collect old Blue Willow dishes like it’s my job. But I do use all of them. Last year my husband broke a very nice tea pot that I used everyday (while he was washing it). I could tell he felt really bad. And even though I said it was okay, inside I was upset. And he knew it. How silly for me to be so attached to a “thing”. It’s one of those times that I should have just said “thank you!”. Thank you for sharing this important reminder.
    p.s. that movie is one of my all time favorites! I watch it every year after I put up the Christmas tree. I remember in that scene his father also says something like, “and no gin tonight son, not a drop …”

  9. Thank you for reminding me to enjoy each day. I will use the good dishes tonight. I also am wondering about any books you have written.

  10. Yes, wear it. When going through my MIL’s effects, we found beautiful things we had given her to enjoy – all still neatly in their box. I am not sure what she was waiting for, but I always, now, take the ‘good’ things out of the box and wear them. Remember, this is no dress rehearsal, it is the real thing and meant to be enjoyed!
    The only thing better than wearing cashmere is knitting with it.

  11. I’ve been following Jon Katz’ blog for ages and over the years I’ve come to feel as if I know him personally. But having read your blog for just these couple weeks I already feel as if I know you! I only wish I lived a bit closer and could actually become a client! (But you’re a looong way from Louisiana!) Your writings are an absolute inspiration. Thanks!

  12. a few years ago I went thru my ‘stuff’ and as my life style had changed, and I wasnt entertaining as much or in a way different fashion, I gave away the good china and all that went with it to the dear friends I would have left it to…they love it, it gets used, and I have nice empty storage places.
    its all good….

  13. Yet another stowaway from the good ship Katz…(and Wulf!)
    Years ago, when I declared my own personal freedom from the expected, I began to outfit my cupboards with individual plates, silverware, cookware, etc. with a single piece from yard/garage sales; nothing matched. My then-young stepkids thought I was just weird. I told them each piece was special, with its own story to tell, and every dinner place- setting was a chance to create a new story every day; everybody got to have a personal favorite.
    Now, when they return from school for a visit, they tell me they love and miss the ‘mis-matched-ness’ of dinner at home. It made them question the ‘oughts and shoulds’ of life. Every day is a special occasion; wear that sweater into oblivion!
    cheryl b. by-the-sea

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