Manolo for the Big Girl Fashion, Lifestyle, and Humor for the Plus Sized Woman.

February 11, 2008

Mission Monday: Tragical History Tour

Filed under: Mission Monday — Miss Plumcake @ 5:05 pm

Y’all. There are a lot of bad clothes out there. I know, I own some. We ALL own some. This week the Big Girl mission is to get rid of something that plagues our closet. Don’t hold onto it because you spent a lot of money for it or maybe it will come back in style. Ugly clothes — much like venereal disease and step children you drop off in the woods– always come back. And guess what? They will still be ugly.

So this week I will finally toss that gold lamé toreador outfit with the matching black satin capri pants (avec bugle bead fringe. Alluring, no?) that I’ve been storing in the back of my closet with the idea that some day I could maybe turn it into some sort of burlesque costume.

What will you be getting rid of? If I could make a suggestion, anything that makes you look like you’re wearing the drapes from Holly Hobby’s vanagon should be first on the pile.


$370 at


  1. If it was a Pucci-esque print, I could deal with it. But it’s too 70s for my taste, and I am a customer of Saks Salon Z (…when the stuff ends up at the Off Fifth in Ontario, Calif.)

    Comment by OCCaliAKA — February 11, 2008 @ 8:09 pm

  2. No toreador outfits here — I’ve already gotten rid of everything from my purple-haired punkette phase — but I still have a pink empire-waist dress with a button-up bodice. I usually look good in pink (largely because I *am* pink), and it looked so cute in the catalog!

    But I am very short-waisted, something the empire only emphasized, and I am rather busty, which the button front made all-too-abundantly clear. Additionally, the dress is tall, and I am short.

    So, at Plumcake’s urging, off it goes to Goodwill — with a sigh. It is so nice! But, alas, not on me.

    Comment by Bridey — February 11, 2008 @ 8:47 pm

  3. Saks is charging $370.00 for my grandmother’s house coat?!? Watch it kiddos! I’m heading for the Salvation Army and starting my own designer line….Oh wait, I forgot…William Good Designs already did! But I don’t think they have tapped into this recycling of polyester house coats from Roses….

    Comment by Jennie — February 11, 2008 @ 8:51 pm

  4. Well, there is the 1980’s long jacket with the linebacker shoulder pads. I suppose it never will come back in style. But you know, as soon as I pack it up for goodwill, it will be featured in next fall’s fashion show. OK, perhaps not.

    Comment by AquaMarine — February 11, 2008 @ 9:02 pm

  5. Oh dear. That’s…unfortunate is the kindest word I can come up with.

    As for what I’m getting rid of, I finally had the nerve to just throw out the extremely dead flannel man’s shirt my husband didn’t want when he got it for Christmas ten years ago that I’ve worn ever since to do grungy housework in.

    And the next time my husband goes out of town, I’m finally going to arrange to take the silk tank and miniskirt with the gloriously outrageous print of golden cupids and red hearts on a purple background to the consignment store. It’s four sizes too small for me, and even if I ever did get that thin again, I just don’t do minis at this point in my life. But I have to wait for Mr. Twistie’s back to be turned because every time I’ve tried to pass it on in the last eight years, he’s insisted on hanging it back in the closet because he likes it. I just want someone else to enjoy it.

    Comment by Twistie — February 11, 2008 @ 9:20 pm

  6. Hmmm there’s so much to get rid off but doing it without hurting the feeling of the giver is a challenge.

    The fuchsia wrap dress, a whole load of loud print dresses, pants and skirts all many sizes, all from my sister who is in denial that any female family of hers could every be more than a size 10.

    The Chinese traditional outfit, gorgeous embroidery, split up to there that makes me look like an overstuffed sausage, but my love had it made for me on a trip to Shanghai, and I know he wants me to wear it.

    Lots of skinny, stretchy jeans from my mother. I love you Mom but they are not slimming no matter how much you want them to be. I look like a carrot in these.

    The brocade sari from my friend from play school – yes we go back that far and she still can’t admit that I look like a badly wrapped present in this thing. Plus it scratches and is stiff and I just can’t handle it. I’ve wanted to turn it into a wall hanging but she was aghast, so it is still hanging there.

    The leather dress with cut-outs that I bought in a fit of madness. I still don’t know what brought it on.

    And 5 pairs of almost new platform shoes – I can’t walk in them although I crave that 4 to 5 extra inches.

    Oh Lord, give me strength – there is so much more.

    Comment by shiloh — February 11, 2008 @ 10:50 pm

  7. My closet (yea, I’m blaming the closet) is so schizophrenic I don’t know where to start…. I need an intervention…Help me! OH! Aquamarine, I looked thru one of the runway shows (Milan?) and they were saying wide shoulders were coming back just like metallic shoes and belts, beehive hair a la Amy Winehouse. So just in case, if it still fits, the color isn’t heinous, and the fabric is decent you may want to hold on just a little longer…

    Comment by Jennie — February 12, 2008 @ 5:44 am

  8. Lord, do I need an intervention. My boyfriend’s clothes are relegated to hanging on the canopy bed. This isn’t really my fault, since he just moved in and I had already taken up all the space. BUT. My clothes often stay in laundry baskets (and half the time they aren’t folded!) I don’t even know where to begin, although I do give away plenty of clothes each season. AGHHH!

    You know what? I think maybe I will start with the drawerful of bras that fit like crap. And the two peasant blouses that I got SOOO cheap last summer but I never wear because of the weird seams.

    Comment by kristin — February 12, 2008 @ 9:34 am

  9. Shilo, google “Local Theater” and donate those fantastic sounding ethnic dresses to a theatre! Costumers will kiss your feet all day long.

    I just went through my closet. It’s hard. BUT – I keep dresses that I love and interesting clothes because
    1. I throw costume/theme parties. All. The. Time. So, if I demand my friends dress up, then I’ve got to set a good example. And I always win Halloween costume contests.
    2. My love of fashion, costume, and theatre is all traceable to my love of playing dress-up. I hated it if I didn’t have proper shoes to finish of the look. I loved dressing in my mom’s 70’s dresses and imagining where she wore them. Those stupid pre-made dress up kits came out when I was a kid, and they were the lamest things in the entire world and if any little girl (or boy) that is even remotely related to me has to resort to playing dress up in clothes made of cheap plastic crafted by children their age in some country with no unions, then I will consider my life to have been a waste. So I keep the cool clothes for the children. THINK OF THE CHILDREN! But I get them out of my closet – I have them cleaned (or clean them) and wrap them up in acid-free paper, toss them in a huge tupperware tub with a few cedar chips and throw them in the basement. Every year or so I go visit them.

    Comment by Leah — February 12, 2008 @ 12:41 pm

  10. Oh, I am so guilty of this stuff, but got a big push to clean out when I had to clean out my parents’ house. I took away: Things I was holding onto because they belonged to a loved one who had left them to me(if I’m not wearing it NOW, I never will – out it went). Things that were “so good – I can’t get rid of them.”(what am I doing – establishing a museum of “clothes made well?”) Anything I had not worn in a year. No matter how much I liked it. And then, I made the pledge to not buy anything that did not fit perfectly in the try-on room, did not go with at least one other thing in my closet that I’m wearing currently, and that did not make me feel/look fabulous. The amount of money I am saving this way is amazing.

    Comment by Toby Wollin — February 12, 2008 @ 1:28 pm

  11. Toby, do you do life coaching? I need you or Tim Gunn and about 6 days to go thru the dreck that is my bedroom, wardrobe, floorobe, dedicated shoe closet (linens got kicked to a shelf. I only need 3 sets of sheets and 8 towel sets but I need 47 pairs of flip flops) and various dressers….

    Comment by Jennie — February 12, 2008 @ 2:31 pm

  12. i love that dress its very retro love it

    Comment by crystal — February 12, 2008 @ 2:56 pm

  13. I’m gonna have to say I like the dress too. With some opaque black tights and some fierce black shoes (perhaps a subtle platform heel?), it would rule. But only if it were $300 cheaper or I won the lottery. Heh.

    My closet crap includes a bunch of suits from the early 90’s, a bunch of skirts I haven’t worn in years, and a variety of shit I bought on sale which I have perhaps worn once. I’m moving, so it’s all gotta go.

    Comment by GoingLoopy — February 12, 2008 @ 5:57 pm

  14. … “Aquamarine, I looked thru one of the runway shows (Milan?) and they were saying wide shoulders were coming back just like metallic shoes and belts, beehive hair a la Amy Winehouse. So just in case, if it still fits, the color isn’t heinous, and the fabric is decent you may want to hold on just a little longer” …

    Oh Jennie, I just KNEW it! Oy vey. Whatever am I going to do???? Just don’t let the new runway collections be rayon/silk blends in black and white buffalo plaid. It was so fab 20 years ago!

    Comment by AquaMarine — February 12, 2008 @ 8:41 pm

  15. Shiloh – I’m sure there are certain women here who’d be happy to take a few size 10 fushia wrap dresses and sisterly-denial skirts off your hands. *cough*

    My mom still thinks I’m a 4.

    Comment by Tk — February 13, 2008 @ 11:55 am

  16. Jennie – I gotta tell you something, Sweetheart…NO ONE NEEDS 47 pairs of flipflops. I’m wondering if you have “fear of shoe buying and wearing” – the fear of putting anything on your feet that actually have a sole and a heel or which tie or buckle close. Or, if you have the super-wide feets (as I do also – I wear a 6D) and are tired of putting your feets into shoes that are painful. We need to talk. We need to take a shopping trip. We need to get you out of 47 pairs of flipflops.

    Comment by Toby Wollin — February 13, 2008 @ 1:31 pm

  17. Toby, there is a significant difference between need and want. Actually, I blame my pedicurist. She always had a huge supply of decorated (NOT designer) flip flops and would discount them to 1 to 4 dollars. So I have pairs to match or not anything in my closet. I’m a southern girl and wear them around the house, (I work out of my home) to the pool, and occasionally to the grocer or “wally world”. That said, shopping trip! Magic words! When, where, how! Yes, I do have real shoes including a pair of Prada boots, and Elman 4″ heel sandals but I really want a fierce pair of red 3″ heels…and OK, I need to thin the herd in my shoe closet. I guess just because it’s on sale, I don’t need to buy it (hence the Home Depot Orange pointed toe, princess heels)…. I need to concentrate on quality verses quantity….

    Comment by Jennie — February 14, 2008 @ 12:32 am

  18. I guess I could also get rid of any shoe over 15 years old unless I can legitimately declare it a classic…

    Comment by Jennie — February 14, 2008 @ 12:36 am

  19. Shiloh, and anybody else with a Sentimental Garment (especially one Beloved by someone beloved to you): do consider what else can be done with the garment. Twistie, I suspect Mr. Twistie sees you as an absolute hottie (of course!) and is just waiting for that appropriate occasion when you can wear that outfit. Suggestions: Look for the same/similar fabric, and have the outfit made up, this time to fit you (you may choose to have a longer skirt made, with An Interestingly High Slit, the mature woman’s replacement for the mini-skirt). Or, take the fabric in the two garments, and combine them into something you CAN wear; how about turning that skirt, for instance, into a very hot Worn for Personal Time Only Easy-Access Vest? Just because you don’t wear minis outside anymore doesn’t mean never, you know…. And if Mr. Twistie has to spend some time stent-recuperating (doG forfend), why can’t he lie back on a soft, comfy pillow made out of that beautiful silk, if you don’t want a vest? (Although you COULD make a bra out of it. Seriously.)

    Shiloh, ditto for your treasures. First of all, I would mug you for the sari. Um, did I say that outloud? Anyway, I have a collection of them, all destined to be Made Over – but they give me pleasure, just to look at them. And the sari CAN be treated to hang/display without screwing it up; just do some research first. It can also be folded (and refolded differently periodically, to prevent fibre breakage) and displayed on a couch, or even a table. If it’s brocade, it’s possible a Benares sari, and darned valuable. Do NOT donate it to a local theatre! (Sorry, local theatre. You get the brand-new length of brocade draped to look like a sari.) If you get a little freedom of movement, you CAN have the sari cut into a garment more suited to your tastes and lined to prevent Teh Scratchies. Your cheongsam can be altered so you don’t look like Teh Sausage, either; have a professional seamstress put a panel of coordinated brocade down each side, so that you can wear it. And seriously, I’d look for a collector for ethnic clothing before it went to a theatre – and I’ve spent my life involved with the theatre. Most theatres, unfortunately, will beat a valuable treasure to death in no time. If nothing else, see if you can have the sari restyled into a ghagra – a full, ankle-length skirt- think half-circle or full circle. It’s also an Indian garment, and you might get more use out of it.

    I’m also kicking myself for the leather minis I gave away when I disciplined myself to do some Cleaning Out – any more that turn up are going to get made into some fabulous leather totes. That’s a LOT of leather that can be repurposed – have you seen the price that leather totes command? Ugh!

    And, um, yeah – I’m all about the Museum of the Well-Made. I have a Valentino suit that I don’t wear, but I got, and keep, because it’s just so damned Well Made. It gives me pleasure every time I look at it.

    I know it’s hard sometimes to part with things that have a sentimental value; they fit into your life, but not ON you or in your wardrobe. Sometimes, with a little thought, they can be made to fit into your life again.

    Maybe there should be a Swap Option through Manolo for The Big Girl, so that the readers here can send their treasures to new homes; the size 10s to the girl who is no longer a size 4, the size 16s to the girl who is no longer a size 10, etc.

    However, bras that fit like crap? Need to die. Or, you know, go live at a thrift store until they find someone to fit.

    Comment by La BellaDonna — July 9, 2008 @ 6:25 pm

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