A Wardrobe Spring Cleaning
Yesterday I began tackling a long-overdue closet clear out. I’ve learned over time to avoid doing this when I’m feeling:
- distracted, stressed out or overwhelmed
- frustrated with my wardrobe or style in general
Both of these tend to make me too reckless about getting rid of items, and I’ll often come to regret not having kept some things. I wanted to wait until I had a quiet day without a lot of construction going on.
I’ve also learned to go through my wardrobe in increments. While some people find the Marie Kondo all-at-once approach effective, it’s always felt too overwhelming for me.
Above: some of the tops that made the cut.
My closet is actually pretty well-organized. I keep types of pieces (tops, sweaters, pants, jackets) together, and arranged by color. It was just overfull in sections, with too many unworn items cluttering up both my physical and mental space.
Working one section at a time, I take everything out and put it on a portable folding rack. Pieces that I wear regularly that aren’t worn out or damaged go right back into the closet. I then evaluate what’s left.
Following A Pattern
Other than a few worn-out items, I culled several pieces that I’ve either never worn, or have only worn once or twice. (A few of which I’ve had for years.) I tried everything on first, just to gauge my current reaction. I realized there were a couple of common denominators with the items that I let go.
First, they were almost all pieces that had been intended to make my wardrobe more “interesting.” Patterns, shapes, and colors I almost never wear. I felt awkward in them. (I think in my rush to add more Show Ponies to my wardrobe, I lost track of my style.)
Second, every single one of them was something I’d either talked myself into or allowed someone else to talk me into. None of them were pieces that I’d loved the second I put them on.
Style Reminders From Those Empty Hangers
- Trust your taste. It doesn’t matter if everyone else loves it…if you don’t love it, pass it up or pass it on.
- If you’re wavering about a piece, try it on at home by yourself before removing the tags. Go with your gut and very first reaction when you look in the mirror.
- Don’t hang onto something just because you spent good money on it. If you can’t return it, you can consign it, give it to a friend, or donate it.
- Our tastes, bodies, lifestyles can change. Shop for who you are *today* and don’t let your closet become a time capsule.
- We all make bad choices sometimes. Live, learn, and let go.
I’m fortunate in that I’ve built up a good wardrobe of basics over the years, and between those and my accessories have just about any situation covered. I can afford to be picky, and hold out for those “love it immediately” pieces.
Styles I’m Wearing On Repeat:
Here’s a quick tutorial on how to hang a sweater without stretching or “shoulder bumps.”
These are the hangers I currently use.
Has clearing out your closet provided any insights that have helped refine your style?