It doesn’t matter if a lover leaves you on good, bad or ugly terms — there’s an inevitable and universal feeling of longing when a relationship ends. We quietly medicate this longing by clinging to the leftovers: photos, the scent on a pillow and clothes that never quite made it back to an ex’s home. This post-breakup feeling has been beautifully captured in a new photo and written-word series.
Photographer Carla Richmond Coffing and writer Hanne Steen created “Lovers Shirts” to explore the tendency to wear exes’ t-shirts even after they’ve left us. “There is something about [ex-lovers’ shirts] -– even old and torn, they feel special, different than any other piece of clothing,” Steen told HuffPost.
“My last boyfriend had a stack of old t-shirts, worn and soft and full of holes that I used to love to wear… When that relationship ended, I somehow neglected to keep any of his shirts, and I missed wearing them, because I missed him — his smell, his arms around me,” Steen explained in an email to HuffPost. “So I decided to do a project that looked deeper into this phenomenon, as a way of exploring my own feelings of longing and attachment, and ultimately, detachment. I was curious whether or not other people felt the same way.”