There are two kinds of wrinkles that make an appearance. There is the wrinkle in your shirt that comes when you don't iron thoroughly, and there is the wrinkle in your shirt that comes only after being worn all day. It is the wrinkle that sits in all the perfect, natural places. It is the wrinkle that can't be achieved in an hour or even a few hours. It takes all day to work it's way in, and then finally when we take our shirt off at the end of the day, the process begins all over again.
Of course, a freshly pressed shirt looks impeccable. After you do your ironing, when you put your shirt on, there is a certain feeling of preparedness, cleanliness and freshness that comes over you, as your shirt does. This feeling is wonderful, fresh and clean. Morning. New-ness. Yet, on the other side, at the end of the day when all the wrinkles have come to be, and nearly all of the day is behind you, there is a different sartorial beauty, sense, essence that comes.
What comes is a relaxed, natural elegance. Organic. Life. The wrinkles on display at the end of the day show where you carried this or that, how you moved your arms, and how you sat. These natural wrinkles are the signs of life lived. How boring would life be if we always looked like mannequins, or mummies? As if we have been sealed off in a tomb never to be disturbed? Nothing moving, no sign of life. There is a time for everything. A time for freshly pressed, and a time for worn-in.
I used to love the feeling and sight of the freshly pressed shirt above all else. No wrinkles, no imperfections. Clean, pressed, fresh, perfect. As I have grown and some time has passed, I have moved in the opposite direction. I see the beauty in the worn-in, organic, life lived now more than before. Natural and true without a feeling stiltedness or overly rigid protection. It's not sloppy, it's not unkempt, it is natural, organic. It is true.
The picture at the top of this piece is a shot taken from a video my wife was shooting Thanksgiving 2020. It was the end of the day, the food was all put away, our son had gone to bed, and it was just us, at the end of a long Holiday.