Are you struggling with storage space for your clothes? Is your wardrobe bursting at the seams and you still feel like you’ve got nothing to wear?
It sounds like it’s time to declutter your wardrobe, this blog is going to help you with deciding what to keep and what to discard.
Did you know that there’s research that says we only wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time? I’m pretty sure in a year of lockdown I’ve worn 5% of my clothes 100% of the time!!
A cluttered wardrobe makes it much harder to put outfits together, so here are my top tips to tackle what’s in your wardrobe.
There are some basic steps to follow to declutter your wardrobe and make your life easier.
Preparation to declutter your wardrobe – let’s get organised.!
- Set aside plenty of time, when you declutter your wardrobe it is rewarding, but it can be time consuming
- Grab some bin bags and label them – Charity , mending, and another bag for selling – and maybe even one for rubbish.
- Make the bed so you have a flat surface to work with and grab the laundry basket for dirty clothes.
- Make sure you’ve got a drink to keep you hydrated when you declutter your wardrobe.
- If you’ve seen Marie Kondo’s Netflix show, you’ll know she gets people to pull everything out of their wardrobe put it on the bed and work through the pile one item of clothing at a time. That’s fine if you have space but not everyone does!
- Before you get sorting, get the hoover out and a duster, so you can clean the wardrobe or drawers out before replacing the keep items.
Now it’s time to get sorting
Depending on the space you have available when you declutter your wardrobe, it may be easier to pull out one section of a wardrobe or one category of clothes at a time for example collecting all your gym gear together and working through that first.
Think about the lifestyle you want after you declutter and organise your wardrobe. What is going to work for you going forward and what can you gain from having less to think about?
The previous advice of ‘if you haven’t worn it for a year, it should go’ are out the window! For many of us lockdown changed the way we worked and what we wore… does the good old zoom shirt, whilst wearing your comfy trakkie bottoms and ugg boots sound familiar? So, for some categories you may want to give them an extra year!
Ask yourself – do you love it? do you wear it? It should make you feel good and be a reflection of the current ‘you’. This will help you with the decision process to keep, donate or sell. If you are donating or selling put it in the appropriate bin bags
Before you put things on the charity pile
When you declutter your wardrobe consider the following: has it got a hole in it, does the zip work, is there a button missing?
If the answer to any of these is yes, then this is a sub-category called Ragging, charities may still accept the donation – but they will appreciate you sorting/labelling as such, as it saves their volunteers time.
Ask yourself if it’s good enough for a charity to sell. If the item is clean, in good condition then it can go to charity – if it’s got an spills or marks on it, you’ll need to put it in a wash pile first – did you know that charities spend thousands of pounds a year on waste disposal?
Let’s talk about other feelings you might encounter during your decluttering session.
My shape has changed...
Let’s talk about the clothes that no longer fit you. This is something I’ve been guilty of myself – a beautiful dress I absolutely loved but haven’t worn for 12 years! It’s because I love the fabric and love the memories associated with it … but it was 2 sizes too small for me.
I did exercise like crazy to get into this dress for a particular occasion and only wore it a couple of times after.
Parting with this dress seemed painful but it was the guilt of it taking up space and the realisation that 12 years had gone by since I last wore it that was playing on my mind, and it was still in really great condition.
So, I had it professionally cleaned, said thank you to it and dropped it off at a charity shop. I love the thought it being perfect for someone else’s special occasion.
I hope this little story illustrates how holding onto things takes up space in your mind as well as your wardrobe. Try applying this logic to clothes that no longer fit you and you will be amazed how much easier it is to say goodbye to them.
Well it fits… but…
What about the clothes that fit, but don’t make you feel great? You may have spent quite a bit of money on them when you bought them, and maybe you’re feeling guilty that you’re not getting value from them.
The thing is you can’t get the value back but by selling them, but you could recoup some money and go and buy something that you really love. Feeling good in our clothes uplifts our mood and confidence, so why keep something that brings your energy down.
Mending or Alterations
We’ve covered clothes that don’t fit, clothes that you don’t love, so let’s move on to the things that need mending or altering. Is it a broken zip or something that just needs a button sewing on?
By having these in a separate pile it will focus your attention to getting round to having these things fixed, so you can get back to wearing them again!
If you’re no good with a needle and thread (aka, me) then ask your neighbours, friends or a local Facebook community group for a local seamstress recommendation – having a professional care for your clothes to fix them or get them fitting properly again will save you money rather than having to go out and replace them!
At the end of the process, you’ll have more space for the things you love. How about treating your clothes to new hangers? Velvet hangers not only help save space, but they also stop your clothes from slipping. Use them for lighter items, keeping sturdy wooden hangers for jackets and coats.
Once you have sorted through your clothes, you have a couple of bags ready to go, and a whole heap of space in your wardrobe – especially if you’ve done some tough talking with yourself!.
We’ve talked about donating to charity shops, and there are other places you can advertise clothes you want to give away, for example Facebook groups. How about selling clothes? EBay, Gumtree, or there are various apps in the App store or Google iplayer store. Or you could try Facebook buy swap and sell groups. It’s up to you to choose but do get those bags out of your bedroom and make sure they’re gone as soon as possible – and then you can congratulate yourself on a job well done!
If you’d like some help sorting out your wardrobe, whether it’s working through the seasonal swap over or a complete declutter I’d love to help you. Why not book a free no-obligation consultation today. You can book one here.
For more info on Professional Decluttering go and check out the Association for Professional Declutterers and Organisers