In paying so much attention to clothing, I consider Dostoevsky to be doing a couple of things. First of all, Dostoevsky in Crime and Punishment clearly presents issues of class and poverty, of which clothing can be a direct reflection. Secondly, I think that Dostoevsky is also exploring the relationship between an individual and society, which is a larger theme of the book with several manifestations. Particularly in relation to Raskilnikov's theory of extraordinary and ordinary people. Being extraordinary or ordinary, for Raskilnikov, has nothing to do with social status or outward social legitimization, but is an inward and individual characteristic. Similarly, Dostoevsky appears to glorify destitution in some ways. Those characters with stronger character are the poorer, less well dressed characters on the whole.
Mostly, I just get the sense that Dostoevsky's attention to dress is not coincidental, but is a major aspect of his overall project in the novel.
Have any of you also noticed Dostoevsky's attention to clothing? Do you see other connections or larger implications between his description of clothing and themes of the novel?