HOW TO PURGE YOUR WARDROBE

New year, new wardrobe

You know how I always talk about how my mum use to constantly nag me about moisturizing? Well today’s post is about another thing that my mum use to make me do when growing up and that is… Cleaning out my closet!

For some people, they have to manage a closest that covers four seasons….well not me. I lived in Darwin and we all know Darwin only has ONE season and that is – “sweating balls in this damn heat and humidity” weather. Excuse my french. Anyway, every couple of months my mum would have me go through my closet and cull anything that I no longer wore or wanted and she would donate it. Her favourite quote was

“If you haven’t worn a piece of clothing in 6 months, get rid of it because you’ll probably never wear it again”. 

Sometimes I would hate it but in all honesty, I grew to enjoy it and find it somewhat therapeutic. So much so, I would purge my closest without my mum telling me to do so… Crazy huh?

Many years later and now living out of home and in a city where we have four seasons. I stil have a huge clean out every couple of months or so and get rid of absolutely anything that fall in these three categories:

  • Yuck, what was I thinking?
  • Fell out of love
  • Over it/don’t need it
  • No longer fits

If any of the items fell in the above categories, out the closet it went and boy, does it feel good… I promise you, it’s really simple and basically you just have to be brutally honest with yourself. I gurantee you, some good will come out of this. Keep on reading and you will soon find out.

STEP ONE

Studies have been proven that people wear only 20% of their wardrobe yet we always have a closet that is chock-a-block with clothes and nothing to wear. I’m also a culprit of this so don’t feel bad, I’m hear to help. Let’s start by locating your key outfits and put it aside to see what’s going on. These include:

  • The outfit you feel best in for a glamours party
  • The outfit you prefer for a work day
  • The outfit you wear the most
  • The outfit you wear around the house on a leisure day

Now think about your image and what your style is. The following key pieces mentioned above should be able to give you a visual idea as to what your style is. Is it Feminine and romantic, sporty, classic or dramatic? I like to think that my style is a bit androgynous with the occasional feminine moments. I’ve also strayed away from prints and bold colours in the last two years. You should consider what your current style and/or interest is and what you no longer like as this will help you for the next step.

STEP TWO

Grab six pieces of scrap paper and write down the following:

  • Currently wear the item
  • No longer fits (too big/small)
  • No longer like the item
  • Do not have the occasion to wear the item
  • Like the item, but had forgotten it exists

Now, before I begin… Make sure your bed or floor is clear because we are going to get down and dirty. Place each paper on the floor or bed so you know which pile is which. Start going through your closet and take everything out one at a time and placing it in any of the five categories. Keep doing this until your wardrobe is empty. If it makes it easier, start by pulling items out in sections. I.e. all tops, all pants, all dresses and so on. Make sure you are being realistic and honest with yourself! Anything you are unsure of, try it on and look in the mirror.

STEP THREE

ITEM’S THAT YOU WEAR

Are you positive that every item in this category is an item that you currently wear often let alone at all? Ok, I believe you. Place these items back into your wardrobe. I keep my jeans together and my tops separate by colour. Everything in my wardrobe are sorted by sections i.e. dresses, tops and skirts and I have them colour coordinated as well.

If you live in a city where you experience four seasons per year, I suggest putting aside the items that are not in season away in storage. Don’t put them in cardboard boxes as your items could get ruined from the smell or cockroaches could linger between your clothes. Purchase some plastic boxes or better yet, buy some vacuum seal storage bags. You can find these at Bunnings, Kmart or Big W just to name a few.

YOU LIKE THE ITEM BUT FORGOT YOU HAD IT

If you forgot you had the item then you need to ask yourself if you genuinely do like it. If you do, then you wouldn’t have forgotten it. It doesn’t hurt to try the item on anyway and see if it fits and if it suits you.

So, you like how it looks? Ok, well try and put a full outfit together with this piece from your ‘currently wear‘ pile that you just put back in your wardrobe. If you can style this piece with your current items and you can see yourself wearing this outfit  in no more than a month then hang it in your wardrobe. However, if you can’t – then put it in the ‘do not have a place to wear it’ pile.

ITEM’S THAT YOU DON’T WEAR

Let’s start a new category based on the item’s that you don’t wear, now. If you don’t wear these items, have no upcoming events that you think you could wear the item to then it’s time to decide to donate it, dump it or sell it which is in step four.

STEP FOUR

DUMP

Item’s that have stubborn stains, lost it’s value or has wear and tear then dump it. No point taking up all this space for items that can’t be repaired to the point that it’s not even worth donating. I mean, would you buy it?

DONATE

Anything that still has value but isn’t worth the hassle of selling it then be a trooper and donate it. It may be your trash but it could be another fashionista’s treasure.

SELL

The item’s in this pile should be items that are in mint or good condition and has resale value. If they are items that you have only worn once whether it was a casual day out or to a special event or they still have it’s tag still intact, even better! Sell these bad boys at a reasonable price. There are so many selling platforms these days but I use eBay and sometimes Carousell – depending on the item. I only take payment via PayPal and I recommend that you do the same.Buyers and sellers are protected via eBay but not on Carousell unless you have the buyer send you the money through PayPal and via Goods and Services. Alternatively, I send the buyers an invoice which is another method that provides you (and the buyer) protection. Trust no one! The only downside to this is, you will be charged a small fee which is no more then $2.00. I rather sacrifice that small fee and be protected than getting cheated and ripped off. Yes, it can happen to sellers too.

You can also arrange to meet the buyer if you both live in the same area. I wouldn’t recommend it for safety reasons unless you meet up in a crowded area.

Alternatively, you can sell your items via Buy, Swap and Sell facebook groups. I personally don’t like doing this because I don’t have the patience and had too many time wasters.

Another way to sell your items is to find your local market and hire a stall. Gather a friend or two who may have some items to sell as well and go halves on paying for the stall and hiring any racks if they offer these to you. I hired a stall three times in Canberra at Fash ‘n’ Treasure which occurs every two or so months. You can read all about it by clicking on the title’s below

How do you feel? Do you feel a whole heap better? If you don’t then… I don’t know, you may have a problem 😛 On a serious note, it’s for the better I promise. Your closet should have some free space and it should be looking spot on and pristine. To maintain your new wardrobe you could perhaps try turning your coat hangers back to front. Each time you wear something, turn the hanger the right way round and you’ll be able to visually see the clothes that you no longer wear and repeat everything I just mentioned above.

With the free space, you could start curating key items that you are missing. These key items should be staple pieces as opposed to items that are only in trend. Grab another piece of scrap paper and start a list of staple/key pieces that you are missing from your new and improved wardrobe. You need to consider items that will complete your wardrobe and match with the things that you already own.

Don’t stress… If you were a good girl/boy and got rid of a lot of items then you should be earning big bucks from selling these pieces to buy knew pieces and that is the best part. Out with the old and in with the new!

Side note, you can apply these steps to your accessories and shoes as well.

Before you go, be a champ and follow me on Bloglovin’

Images sourced via @fregnate, Miss Gunner, View From 5 ft 2, In Honor of Design, House Beautiful Magazine and Look Linger Love

You may also like