Your Oldest Piece of Clothing

As I dressed today I realized that the span of years covered by the garments still in my regular rotation is at least five to ten years wide.

Between the clothes I bought last month and the oldest piece of clothing that I still regularly wear there must be at least five years. If you count the clothes that I only occasionally wear, it is easily ten years.

That seems like quite a spread in age for the clothes I wear, but I bet some folks have me beat by a long shot.

When you buy clothes, do you feel like you can predict which ones you’ll have for a long time and while ones are ‘short-termers’? I suppose to some extent educated guesses are possible, based on our prior experience, but I bet every one of us would find some surprises if they looked back and thought about how old some of their garments are.

In my case, team jerseys tend to stay with me for a long time because the material and color of the garment tends to be durable.

What’s the oldest piece of clothing you own that you still wear?


  1. As I really detest clothes shopping I’m not surprised to find my dresser and closet filled with clothes going back some time. The oldest still-in-use would be a pair of long-sleeve shirts purchased for me by my then-girlfriend’s mother.

    I was moving to Chicago from Tampa in early March 1994 and had no winter clothing at all. Her gesture was nice, but probably meant to say “Don’t come back!”

    However, I do regularly update my sock collection as I hate it when they get all thin and worn. New socks a couple of times each year. And shorts too as I wear them year-round (living in SW Ohio) and that tends to wear them out a bit too quickly.

    And I still have a Bayern Munich kit jersey from probably 1989, but I couldn’t fit into it if I tried.

  2. Thanks for your thoughtful comment on my blog! This is a really intriguing post. I don’t have many clothes older than 4 years because of a flood I experienced in ’08. But I do have several pieces (especially my shoes) that I hope to keep for years.

    You had asked how I manage to not leave the building to get to work and your guess is correct; I do live where I work. The nature of my job with university residence halls is that with a living space provided. I have a private apartment separate from my office. It is probably a 45 second commute. There are some inconveniences from living where I work, but a perk is not commuting in the snow!

  3. Milling about in my closet last night I came across a sweatshirt I still wear regularly (during the winter that is) which I purchased in advance of a trip from my then home in Tampa to the mountains of North Carolina (ASU in Boone) around 1992. I think that makes it my oldest piece of clothing.

    I have very fond memories attached to it.

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