Post by Victoria Brockett from The Style Mission
How do you spring clean your wardrobe without losing interest half way through?
As soon as the first day of September arrives, I find myself getting a burst of motivation to “do stuff.” I suddenly want to rearrange my house, start baking, cut my hair, exercise…and a week later I’m totally over rearranging my house, baking, cutting off my long-ish hair and exercising.
But there is one thing that I never lose focus doing and that is cleaning out my wardrobe. I like to show that wardrobe of mine who’s the boss. And these tips should help you stay focused and not get distracted along the way (no matter how important cleaning our the lint filter of your dryer suddenly appears)!
1. Ensure you allow yourself at least three uninterrupted hours to complete the clean out, probably more if you have a large wardrobe and still have pieces from 1983.
2. Arm yourself with a number of large plastic bags and label them according to how you want to edit your wardrobe, eg KEEP | DONATE | SELL. Try not to have more than 3 different categories as you will only get more confused and make the decision process more difficult.
**NOTE TO SELF AT THIS POINT** If you know you really don’t have time for selling on eBay (many of us don’t and they’ll sit in a pile in the corner of our room for ages!) maybe donate them to someone that will sell them so it minimises the waste. Everything else can be donated to charity as long as they are clean and in good condition.
3. Start with one section of your wardrobe and using your 3 categories, consider every piece and decide what you would like to do with it. If you’re really unsure, you can create a “Maybe or TBD” pile, but this is very much a Get Out of Jail Free card and not to be used lightly.
4. To help with deciding whether to keep or get rid of something, first consider if it’s in wearable condition and still fits (don’t fall for the old “but I’m planning on losing some weight” trick). Then, ask yourself this.
This is a great way to cull and yes, it’s pretty ruthless. But it works. I know some of you are squirming because you know you might not be left with much, however I bet these are the things that you wear all the time.
5. From the wardrobe cull you should be left with a good amount of staples. If you don’t have much left, you may want to start writing a list for what you do need.
6. Pull out your favourite 10 pieces of clothing, from the wardrobe that is left. Use these pieces to help define or identify your current preferred style. It’s unnecessary and very expensive to be a fashion chameleon and change your style weekly, so be true to what you really like and feel comfortable with. This will help with completing the next step.
7. Continue this process with every section of your wardrobe including socks and jocks! These areas are often overlooked, but I bet most people still have underwear in their drawers that are far too disgraceful to ever wear! Be sure these go straight in the rubbish.
8. Once you’ve finished going through your whole wardrobe, revisit your “Maybe or TBC” pile and get ruthless. If you really can’t decide, keep it. If in another 2 weeks you haven’t worn it, say goodbye.
9. If you’re still feeling super motivated and punching the air, your next steps are to re-organise your remaining wardrobe and to identify any gaps. For example, pieces you’re missing that could benefit add to your wardrobe.