Growing up my mother made us go through a process that, to my childhood brain was cruel and unusual. It was called spring cleaning. Each and every year, twice a year (in fall too), we cleaned the house from top to bottom. Ironically, I didn't have all that much responsibility until I was older, but it did mean I had to clean my room and separate my clothes for the season.
My mother, being from the East Coast, was a fervent believer in the idea of splitting your wardrobe between the warmer seasons and the colder ones. This meant that part of my responsibilities was to put away my winter clothes during spring cleaning. And this practice taught me something about products and cycles.
Every product we own has a number of uses that have been built into the design, but all too often we get rid of our things before we capture the maximum number of uses. If an item is not damaged, then we might simply get tired of the items before they have given all they can. What I remember is that every fall I felt like I got an entirely new wardrobe and they were already my clothes.
Nowadays we may not all be putting away our winter clothes each year but we still have the opportunity to get new feelings from old things. If we take the time to clean out our spring wardrobe, and drop something off at the local thrift store, we can make space for items that are new to us. What's more is that winter clothing is sold at a cheaper price in the warmer months because it is in lower demand.
The other thing that occurred during spring cleaning was the chance to take a look at the items that might be beyond their use. Whether it was because they would no longer fit us or the clothes were starting to show wear and tear, once we cleared out the old stuff, we bought discounted winter clothes during spring that we brought out as "new" in the next season. My mother, though I didn't know it at the time, was quite the economist. We were learning to reframe how we looked at items we viewed as old, sustainably pass on the things we no longer needed, and purchase new things at a lower cost due to market demand. Those lessons still apply, and I am still benefiting from them. Thanks Mom.
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