I’ve finally said goodbye to my two 1980s blazers and it’s only taken 31 years. It was hard to give them up. I really liked them, I paid good money for them, and they still fit — though I hadn’t worn them in years.
They had been in a box under the bed in our extra bedroom — where we keep other sacred garments: my wedding dress, my first communion dress, and my husband’s 1981 Rolling Stones concert t-shirt (Cedar Falls, Iowa, Nov. 20 at the UNI Dome).
Blazer number 1 was purchased with gift money from my godmother in 1985 at a shopping mall in Eau Claire, Wisconsin. I bought it for half price at an after Christmas sale. I called it my journalist jacket because it was tan corduroy with a suede leather collar and elbow patches. It reminded me of the jackets that reporter Billie Newman wore on the Lou Grant TV show. At the time I was employed as a farm news reporter, and when I wore that jacket I felt that I looked like one, too.
I purchased blazer number 2 in 1986 at a Bermans Leather store in a Twin Cities mall. It was brown leather, smooth and supple. I’d never had a leather jacket before. I bought it the same weekend I attended a concert by the Moody Blues, my favorite band.
Other than their 80s shoulder pads, the blazers were of classic styling, and I wore them regularly for a dozen years, most likely. Then they hung in the back of my closet for several more years and finally I put them in the sacred garment box. I knew I probably wouldn’t wear them again, but I couldn’t give them up. Until now.
The blazers don’t fit my daughter and they’re not her style anyway. They show signs of wear and I got my money’s worth out of them. So now they are on their way to what I hope is a temporary home at a secondhand shop, where a vintage-clothing-loving millennial will find them and claim them as her own.