Kate P wrote:
Disposable clothes are cheap, there's no doubt about that. But you get a season out of them, a year at most and then they have to be dumped - not donated - because they're unusable. Now maybe it's true that people have far more clothes/items than they might have in the past. High St clothes are expensive and not great quality. Principles used to be good. Warehouse, River Island, Next - all charge well for 'cheap' clothes, Dorothy Perkins (particularly), Penneys (even more particularly) and Dunnes sell generally very poor quality clothing.
I don't know why the quality of clothing is so bad in this part of the world. My practice for the last couple of decades has been to take empty suitcases to the states every couple of years, and buy armfuls of inexpensive, decent quality clothes. They used to be all made in Mexico, but they're more likely to be Indian these days. At any rate, the cloth tends to have a bit more heft than here, and quality and durability is generally much better. (I'm not a New York shopping weekend kind of person, and admit to being pretty much fashion unconscious). Anyway, my point is that it's more than possible to get decent, cheap clothes, although we seem to be a bit shortchanged in Ireland.
I reckon Men's clothes are tougher than women's. My wife buys something once a week from Penny's, and it may never be worn, or if worn, not for very long (There's a fairly sizeable collection of shoes and bags, and a high percentage of those are never used). It's usually unloved quicker than it's worn out, so making it more robust makes little sense from the manufacturers perspective. I tend to wear stuff out, even if I try to stay reasonably fashionable. I usually buy something once a month, but I spend quite a bit more than herself.
Two suits I had made up in Thailand in 2005, perfect. A Banana Republic coat from four years ago, fine (pity I don't have a Property Pin brand to go with it
). Magee trousers still grand after two years. I still have a few shirts from more than five years ago.
The pattern of destruction is jumpers/coats/jackets losing shape. Trousers getting frayed around pockets/ankles. Shirt collars/cuff's wearing out. Shoes getting too scuffed, or the soles getting loose. Two pairs of Aldo shoes were unwearable after six months so I'll never buy anything from them again. The secret is not to keep wearing clothes day in/day out, and you'll usually get a couple of years from them.