Disreputable trousers

I used to have a high-powered job
– smart blouses, skirts and suits
wool coats, court shoes, silk scarves, cashmere
and pairs of high-heeled boots

Lots of coats and hats in my wardrobe now!

Lots of coats and hats in my wardrobe now!

But management was not for me
Nor cuts, nor staff, nor stress
So I gave it up to work from home
although the pay was less

And now inside my wardrobe
the fancy clothes are few
but there are some saggy cardies
and flowery tunics too.

The shoes I wear are flat, not heeled
my coat is waterproof
I dress for warmth and comfort
sometimes a bit uncouth

But clothes last so much longer
because when a tear appears
I simply stitch it back together
to last a few more years

I have got clothes to party in
that are new and never torn
but many of the things I wear
are very much well-worn

It’s part of being sustainable
to make things last and last
wearing disreputable trousers**
whose smartest days are past

So, don’t throw all those garments out
you don’t want your friends to see
wear them in the garden
or while you’re drinking tea

Textiles and clothes, yarn and fabric
are sources of pollution
so cut your use and buy less new
and be part of the solution

Reject the fashonistas, who
tell you to keep buying
minimise your purchases
you can if you keep trying

Choose natural dyes, organic fibres
good quality and then
repair, reuse, recycle
and only throw out when

there’s really nothing else to do
with those clothes you own,
but you’ll have made less impact
on the place that we call home


** This phrase came from Snuffkin’s blog post here, and thus she inspired me to write this poem

Leave a comment


  1. love the poem 🙂 have a nice weekend!


  2. Oh what a lovely, clever poem!!


  3. Lovely! And I love the name of the poem!


  4. lovely poem – it mirrors my own experience! and i have plenty of disreputable trousers myself, so i love the phrase.


  5. The older I get the more I like things that are comfortable and sustainable. With age comes wisdom.


  6. I love it! I’ve only just seen it and it made me smile.


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