Over the last couple of years I have really been working on paring down my wardrobe. I had a full closet plus a dresser that was always overflowing, yet I never knew what to wear. Decluttering your closet can be overwhelming so I’m going to share my favorite way to simplify your wardrobe below. Most people will tell you to take out items you haven’t worn in 6 months or a year, etc. but I find that emptying my closet and starting fresh works best for me. You will need to set aside a couple of hours to do this, especially if you have a lot of clothes, but it will be worth it to save you time and frustration.
Empty Your Closet
Take everything out of your closet. I mean everything, even the clothing you know you want to keep forever. This will give you a fresh, clean closet to work with. In fact, while it’s clean feel free to do any cleaning like vacuuming, etc. while it’s empty. I usually pile it on my bed (see photo above) based on type so I can see how many of each item I have pretty easily.
Can’t Live Without
The first thing you need to do is go through your piles and take out the items you absolutely cannot live without. These are the non-negotiables, not the “I think I really like this, but I’m not sure where I can wear it”. Hang those back up in your closet. Looking at the pile that’s left there should be a clear divide in your mind between everything left and everything you have in your closet, you LOVE everything in your closet, everything else has varying degrees from “hate” to “damaged” to “hmmm” to “i like it”.
Maybe and Rehome Piles
This is the hardest part, but you’ve already hung up what you can’t live without so you can really scrutinize your options here. I will usually take inventory of what I hung in my closet and use that as a guide. You can do this mentally, just noting in your mind or you can actually mark it down. If I already have 30 tops and I think that’s enough, I’ll be tough on the pile of tops and maybe only keep a couple of them. Your best bet will be to go through each category at a time and sort them into “Maybe” and “Rehome”. Anything damaged that either can’t be fixed or you have let sit around unfixed for months, or even years, should be in the “Rehome” pile. Anything you really just don’t like that much should go in the “Rehome” pile. Don’t think too hard, have second thoughts, just quickly go through without emotion and your clothes in one pile or the other.
Evaluating the Maybe’s
Once you’ve separated the “Maybe” and “Rehome” piles, go through your maybes and really consider each piece.
- Do you have anything to wear it with?
- Do you already have several tops like it?
- If it were in a store today at full price would you buy it?
- Try it on. Do you like the way it looks and fits?
I really recommend trying everything on before putting it back in your closet. If you don’t like the way it looks or fits now, you probably won’t like it later either. Don’t hold on to things hoping they’ll fit again later. Don’t hold onto things because your boyfriend’s mom’s best friend gave it to you.
I always like to actually create a maybe pile instead of putting them back in my closet so I can see how much I’m keeping. Usually, I’ll go back through one or two more times to take more out once I see how much I’m trying to keep.
Rehome: Toss, Sell or Donate
Once you have gone through your “Maybe” pile and have sorted them into “Keep” (back in the closet) and “Rehome”, it’s time to sort the Rehome pile into three piles:
- Toss: throw away or repurpose. These items are too worn out, damaged, etc. to even give away. I personally hate throwing stuff out so many shirts turn into rags for cleaning/dusting or I even use a couple of my husbands shirts to cover the smaller dog beds in our house. I just hate throwing stuff away!
- Sell: these are items that are on the nicer end that you don’t want to donate because you’d like to get some money back. For me this is usually higher end brands or items that are brand new with tags. Usually if I can confidently sell it for $10 I’ll do that. If you’re looking for a place to sell I really love having virtual yard sales via Instagram. More info on how to sell on instagram here.
- Donate: Most items will probably end up in this pile. Clothes that are perfectly fine, but aren’t exactly sought after and will be better off used by someone else or sold at a thrift store for a few bucks.
- Getting rid of an item someone gave you doesn’t mean you don’t care about that person!
- By selling/donating, any items you don’t keep will make someone else happy!
- Having a wardrobe full of clothes and accessories you like and can easily access and manage will make you happy!
Getting rid of things is hard for a lot of people, but you will thank yourself next time you put away your laundry and have space to put it away without shuffling around. I hope this helps you get to a closet and wardrobe that makes you feel happy and peaceful.
If you’ve got some items you’d like to sell check out my How to Sell on Instagram eCourse, a step-by-step guide walking you through setting up your account, taking and editing photos, how to price, how to figure out shipping and more? Click the image below to learn more about my
Over the weekend Venice got adopted and while life pretty much went back to normal, my heart aches every time I find a picture or find something that reminds me of her. Her new mom is amazing and I’m sure will be a better home than I could’ve given her, but after having her in my house and heart for four months it’s tough. I’ll definitely do a proper post about my experience with her like I have with my other fosters shortly.
The rest of the day on Saturday was spent hanging out in my sisters room watching scary movies and eating. I sound like a teenager when I say that, but I needed it. We joked that we were depressed about Venice leaving so it was entirely acceptable. Sunday was spent cleaning and sorting and organizing as usual. One day I might have a house that I won’t have to constantly be working on, but it won’t be anytime soon!
Today we leave for our anniversary trip and I’m so excited!
LAST WEEK’S WISHES
- Launch eCourse!!! Success! You can check out my How to Sell on Instagram eCourse here.
- Sort through donations & stuff to sell Yep! Still in progress, but I got a lot done.
- Take donation to the thrift store This didn’t happen yet. Will definitely as soon as we get back from our trip, though.
- Get 2 weeks ahead in posting. My goal is to post 4-5 days per week, but it can be a struggle if something comes up and I don’t have the next few days scheduled already. I’d like to get 2 weeks ahead in posting in order to avoid this issue.
- Start my Holiday shopping. We don’t have quite that many people to shop for, but I like to get done early so I’m not rushing when the malls are crazy and spending more than I need to. Starting early means being able to look out for the best deals and maybe even some DIY projects for gifts.
- Finish Design Site Updates. I’m kind of revamping some of the pages on my design site. While I still have links to work with me on this blog, I think it’s important to have an official design site so while I’m not changing the design really, I’m just touching it up and making sure it looks better, is effective and flows nicely.
THIS WEEKS WISHES
- Enjoy our anniversary trip! This is my only wish this week. We’ll be gone all week and I just want to enjoy some relaxing time with Blaine.
What are you hoping to achieve this week?
I’m so happy to report that things are going really with with my Declutter 500 in 2014 challenge! I wrote about it at the beginning of the year in my goals for 2014 and I’m going strong. My updated numbers are below, but I just wanted to give an update as to how I’m feeling about getting rid of so much in one year.
Our decluttering really started probably about two years ago. Blaine and I have both seen our parents get buried in stuff (not literally) after a lifetime of accumulating. We both agreed that we didn’t want to spend out lives trying to shuffle around the boxes that take up 95% of the garage or having to move something over here to access something over there. I always say, we are nowhere near where I want to be yet, but we are definitely getting there.
We, all of us, bring stuff into our homes all the time. I don’t physically go out looking to buy stuff, I probably shop much, much less than the average woman my age, but somehow I still end up with more in my house than I intended. Seven thousand pens (exaggeration), two dozen jars I might need, that one white blouse I haven’t worn since probably high school that I insist on keeping in case I ever have to go to a job interview. You know what I’m talking about.
Every time I have to move something to clean under it, every time I have to figure out how to get a drawer to close or need to clear off the dining table again I get frustrated. Wouldn’t it be nice to just have a home that you can live in without shuffling stuff around all day? A simple home means spending less time cleaning and managing items and more time doing things you love to do. That’s my dream!
As of October 24th I have decluttered 324 items! Bonus: I earned $852.50 selling some of it!
These numbers are actually low because I know there are things I didn’t record and I estimated low for a couple of garage sales we had since I didn’t remember (or really want to) count everything that got sold or donated. Now I have two months to get rid of 176 more items in order to meet my goal and I’m feeling so good about this challenge I want you to join me.
Next week I plan on posting a mini challenge: 200 Item Holiday Declutter Challenege. With the holiday’s coming up you know even more will be coming into your house and adding to the chaos. Join me in not only removing items from your home to simplify your life, but also giving away or selling these items to people who will be happy and thankful to have them.
Would you like to join me in a mini Holiday Decluttering Challenge?