The magazines and style guides will tell you that you must clear out your wardrobe every year, that less is more, that you can get by with a skirt, two t-shirts, a derby hat, four plastic bangles and a pair of riding boots.
I am not like that. I like to have lots of things in rotation and lots of things in storage up in the attic. On particularly dreary afternoons, or when I am not quite at ease with the world, I go up to the attic and do some shopping. When I say shopping I mean rummage through bags of stuff and find dresses and skirts I'd forgotten about. I am a simple woman.
I'm always surprised at how something can be quite new again after a few months' rest. Or how I can buy something and not be ready to wear it for two years. Most of my favourite clothes have had spells in the attic.
There is a notable exception.
This dress has vexed me. I bought it at Zara in Madrid in September 2007. I have not worn it once. I keep it in my wardrobe and get it out every couple of weeks with quiet despair. It is such a great dress. In the picture it looks transparent but that's the early morning Sydney sun - the dress is made from very durable white denim in a perfect clotted cream colour. There's pockets, buttoned sleeves and excellent large pockets. It is a trapeze shape but nicely fitted around the chest and arms. Eminently forgiving around the digestive system. The square neckline is so flattering. It is the perfect length. I could store robins in the pockets if I needed too. I just can't work out how to wear it.
I love this dress but it's starting to grate me. I'm not going to live forever. I need to start wearing this dress and I'm damned if I can work out how.