IN HONOUR OF UNCELEBRATED LAST TIMES BY LAUREN BRUMLEY
PHOTOGRAPHER: DANIEL GOODE @THE ARTIST GROUP
STYLED BY: NATALIE TURNBULL @ART BOX BLACK
WRITTEN BY: LAUREN BRUMLEY
When habits vary or trends fade, we’re not always aware of the change. Tastes may shift, but there is still a finality to them. We just may not notice the transition.
I’m interested in last times that go unnoticed as, ‘last times’. Technically there has been a ‘last-time’ for many things throughout my life. Take playing on the playground for example. Did I just stop one day? Or perhaps I eased my way off seeking out more mature past times. Either way, I can’t remember. The last time I wore platform Sketchers to school. Now, that is an occasion I can recall. (It was admittedly a poor choice to match my year six uniform. One could so easily make a fashion faux pas as a twelve year old.)
When subtle change takes place, we may not notice until years pass. One moment my favourite pair of pants were a part of me. Years later they’ve gone onwards to the past (or the back of the wardrobe). They remain only as a vehicle to take me back to a time, a certain song, or a place I once travelled.
If we amount all the little last-times together, we’ll find the slow passing of a trend or a shift in behaviour. Less letters sent, is the accumulation of many final pens to paper. A switch to the more immediate, medium of email, a planned phone call or perhaps a swift singular emoji flung to the recipient and intended to say so much.
As tailors increasingly opted for shirt design and construction as we know it, they formed slow shift of taste. Shirt and collar once sat side by side one another as two different items for daily dress. Slowly these collars sat unworn upon the shelf in favour of the simpler single-shirt option. I can understand why – the task of selecting a shirt seems enough without picking the perfect starched detachable collar for the occasion.
As habits go somewhere new, they leave behind objects and behaviours to take on a new life as relics of the past. We simultaneously crave the new, and yearn for the old. But we don’t always honour the smaller shifts along the way.
So, here’s a moment of celebration for final letters penned, marbles rolled and old favourites lying hidden in the depths of the wardrobe, allowing space for the new.
As we say goodbye to habits gone and objects unused we dive into the new. We may not know it at the time, but by doing so we make a small space for nostalgia as a way for us to always plan a (re)visit. – LB.