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Top Closet Shelves Are for Sangria Pitchers

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Reviving My Robert Pattinson-Inspired Pea Coat

We asked our readers to tell us about what lives in their closets. Wanna tell us about yours? Email! 

Tell us about yourself.
Stephen, 24, a journalist living in Washington, DC.

What’s the oldest thing in your closet? The newest thing?
The oldest thing is probably the American Eagle charcoal peacoat I have from high school (I'm shocked it still fits well). I bought it during the peacoat heyday, a.k.a. Robert Pattinson's portrayal of Edward Cullen. After years of storage, I realized I missed it, so it'll see a revival this winter. The newest thing is a pair of chinos I got on sale from J.Crew. I'm proud of my clearance-plus-sale-plus-free-shipping-promo-online shopping lifestyle, especially since I got these for $15.

What lives in the “dark corner” of your closet? In other words, what do you continue to keep in there even though it never sees the light of day?
There's this thick-striped navy and slightly-less-navy sweater from Gap that I was gifted like seven or eight years ago that I've worn all of twice. I love who gave me the sweater and I keep it, telling myself, ‘Oh, yeah, put it over an Oxford,' but every time I try it on I'm just like, 'Ew, horizontal stripes,’ and then take it off. Maybe one day, Gap sweater. Maybe one day.

How do you have your closet organized? And what about shoes? Where the heck do they go?
I moved to DC around seven months ago and lucked out with a huge closet. Oxfords and work shirts go on the left, and then pants and light jackets go on the right. I keep T-shirts folded in a chest of drawers in my bedroom. Shoes have their own shelf above the shirts on the left, and my sweaters are folded or rolled and stored on the right shelf to avoid losing their shapes on hangers. Travel bags are tucked onto shelves wherever there's room, and my bookbag/everyday belts/ties hang on the hooks on the door.

Wax poetic to me about hangers.
I really need to bite the bullet and invest in actual quality hangers. You know, the wooden ones that are a little curved so my Oxfords don't get misshapen? I know, I'm not living my best hanger life with the rainbow array of plastic hangers from Walmart and Target. Maybe that can be my New Year’s resolution: stalk Marshalls and T.J. Maxx until I have an entire set of wooden hangers.

What’s the weirdest thing in your closet that’s just there because it has nowhere else to live?
There are two containers you use at parties for punch or lemonade — or in my case, sangria. There's just nowhere else in the apartment for them, so they live on the tip-top shelf in the closet (I told you this thing was massive). But the fact that I have two designated sangria pitchers that each hold around five gallons of liquid should give you a clearer indication of who I am than my clothing does.


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To be fair, “Lmao wait one minute” is an apt response to this particular pair of sneakers. A grungy pinky-gray shade reminiscent of worn pointe shoes, these sneakers resemble a Twinkie in that they look not so much made as extruded. They’re scuffed and grimy, and they’ve got these dull burnished silver strips of duct tape wrapped fore and aft; their frayed laces, knotted like lies, promise to snap. Coming from Italian company Golden Goose, the sneakers are brand new. Barneys New York was selling them for $585, believe it or not.

All the IG famous are wearing the “distressed look;” it’s the hot way to greet the Tyler Durden apocalypse that glimmers on our collective horizon. Kim Kardashian was spotted wearing a cavemen-hemmed denim mini skirt; Gigi Hadid was caught wearing jeans that are more holes than fabric; and Justin Bieber was throwing the shaka sign in a shredded houndstooth jacket. Everyone who’s anyone is “distressed.”

Fashion writers are committed to calling this school of fashion “street.” Slashed, repurposed, mended, patched, and abraded — these clothes, magazines would like us to believe, are simultaneously authentic, elegant, and easy. It’s clothing that’s not supposed to look as if it costs $900, which is the price of the Fear of God jeans favored by Yeezy and Russell Westbrook, and it’s fashion that’s not supposed to read like it’s $1,450, the cost of the patchwork Vetements jeans that are sold out, like, everywhere. But selling capital-F Fashion is never as simple as a price tag, a label, or even a silhouette, and there’s a mass political weight hiding beneath the visible marketing tip.

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Just One Thing
This Is By Far the Best Hand Cream for Your Reptilian Winter Skin
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L'Occitane Dry Skin Hand Cream, $12

My friend Sueanne is the type of person who makes little goodie bags for everyone on trips. She also has impeccable taste and is a francophile to boot, so you can generally expect there to be good things inside.

Two years ago on a trip to Colorado to ski with old college friends and their families, these goodie bags included travel size tubes of L’Occitane’s hand cream. Now, I had brought my own hand cream (which was vastly inferior and shall remain nameless), but it wasn’t cutting it. If you’ve never been in cold, dry mountain air, it can turn your hands into cracked, bloody, useless appendages.

I opened the cream, which, yes, is made in France, and smeared it all over my tortured cuticles. The relief was instant and I’ve never looked back. While I certainly try all the hand creams that cross my desk this time of year, at home I have tubes of L’Occitane handy all winter long. I’ve become convinced that its magical ratio of shea butter and glycerin is perfect. It also comes in several different scents, but I prefer the original, which smells like, well, nice hand lotion. —Cheryl Wischhover, senior beauty reporter

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