‘Such Stuff as Dreams are Made On’: Encountering Clothes, Imagining Selves
In a personal essay, Ida Hattemer-Higgins describes the discovery of a decrepit store in Athens brimming with designer deadstock from decades past. The clothes she finds therein are the stuff of dreams for any fashion enthusiast, as is the store itself, a dim, forgotten place where garments are concealed like buried treasure under layers of dust, and where the author herself drifts into a state of semi-consciousness. What Hattemer-Higgins describes is the sensual pleasure of finding beautiful clothes, and the future self that she imagines being when she wears them. This article considers the relationship between the garments we wear and the selves we imagine into them in trying them on, buying them, and wearing them in every day life. These modalities are explored through a phenomenological discussion of dress, with reference to Hattemer-Higgins’s essay as well as my own lived experience of dressing.
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