A few months ago I decided to brave cleaning out my wardrobe. I think the wave of sanity (*cough* insanity?) came about for a few reasons:
1) Money. I wanted to make some money for my then upcoming NYC holiday with the parentals and pay off a few too many sneaky purchases on my credit card.
2) Boredom. I wasn’t getting many shifts at work and was going CRAZY in our apartment.
3) Genetics. I finally realized that de-cluttering could be fun. It appears my Grandma’s ‘a-place-for-everything’ genetics finally started to kick -in, YAY!
So like any other bored, research fanatic female – when faced with a task and too much spare time I Googled. I YouTubed. I scoured Bloglovin for any hints, tips and tricks I could find. And then finally I got mega-inspired to tackle that beast that was my over-flowing wardrobe, and make some extra space and cash.
Some of my favorite inspirations came from: A Pair and A Spare’s wardrobe strategy; the ‘And Then We Saved’ blog and many a cheesy housewife YouTube video (my secret obsession).
My research said I needed to do the ‘clean out’ more than once, for best effect. I found inspiration late one night when my boyfriend was snoring his heart out and dead asleep. I on the other hand was WIDE awake and stuck in the middle of a Googling frenzy.
It turns out that having minimal light and a desperate need for sleep, makes for a ruthless clothes-culling combination. I ended up grabbing about 20 items and dumping them into the spare room as definite ‘NO’ items. I also made a pile of 10 ‘MAYBE’ items. These were to be tried on again in the morning (AKA in proper light…) and my strategy was to be realistic about if I would wear them. If in doubt the item had a Pair and a Spare’s wardrobe rule applied. Could I make at least 4 outfits with it from what was already in my wardrobe?
This process in my tired state helped me come up with a few priceless rules.
1) If the item doesn’t make you feel good when you wear it, toss or donate it.
This includes items that don’t fit as well as they used to. i.e. those jeans that you haven’t fit for 6 months, or the blouse that you pop the bust button on every time you wear it!
2) Its OK to keep a select few sentimental items.
But they should be stored clean and out of the way of your regular, everyday clothing items. Otherwise you will keep wondering what you have nothing to wear during the week!
3) Each garment should be able to be made into 4 different outfits.
This was inspired bythis article. I find I tend to get lazy with my outfits, particularly if I wear the item to work. This process is perfect for trying out some fun new styles with old and new garments that you own = equaling more bang for your buck!
4) Play with how you store/ display your clothes.
If you can actually see the items you have you are less likely to a) repurchase an item you already own + b) can find new outfit combinations more easily! I’ll post more on this later….
5) Mend items that need mending straight away!
6) Do the “cull” 3 times.
By then you will be (hopefully) more ruthless and realistic about what you actually wear and what looks good on you. Hopefully by cull 3 you will be reaping in some successful eBay sales $$$.