Cleaning out your closet doesn’t have to be a pain.
I’ve made it very easy for you by writing out a step-by-step guide to taming your wardrobe. Of course, the easiest way to clean out your closet is to give everything away and start from scratch though I doubt most, if any, of us could muster the courage to do that.
If you’re ready to dig deep and let go of all this crap that’s been holding you back, stressing you out, robbing your joy and weighing you down then read on.
Pick a day of the week that you can devote about 3 – 4 hours to. Schedule it in your calendar and let your spouse, partner, or roommate know that you’re going to be doing this.
Grab a box of trash bags. You’ll need at least two bags depending on how much you’d like to purge.
Pick one room (your bedroom or room where most of your clothing is kept) to be your staging area. This is where you’re going to be going through everything. This is ground zero.
On the day of, eat a good breakfast, hydrate, caffeinate, pick a favorite playlist, and be prepared to do this!
Here comes the fun part! Getting rid of things.
Pull every single item of clothing you have out and bring into the staging area: drawers, bins, laundry, other closets, storage. If you have a lot in storage, wait to focus on that at another time. Don’t overwhelm yourself. You’re going to want to get your hands on every item of clothing you have so that you can make a decision and stick to it. We’re cleaning out for good!
You might be asking yourself, “How many items of clothing should I keep?
There’s no magic number of garments to keep.
That really depends on you.
Depending on who you are, what you want, what your job is, where you live, and what stage of life you’re in, you will have to decide when enough is enough. I can’t make that call for you.
Questions To Ask About Every Garment
Now that we’re ready to face our closets head-on, we’ll need to make a decision on each and every garment.
Ask of yourself of each item:
- Do you like it?
- Do you LOVE it?
- Is it cute?
- Is it your style?
- Does it fit?
- Is it damaged?
- Has this item run its course; is it old and shabby?
- Does it have potential?
- Does it need to be repaired?
- Have you worn in the past 12-18 months?
What to do with ill-fitting items?
If the item in question doesn’t currently fit you because it’s too small or too large, you’ll want to let it go.
Putting Things In Piles
At this point, you can begin sorting into 3 or 4 piles based on all the criteria that we covered in Step 1.
Here are your piles:
- Charity (give to a thrift store or friend)
- Sell (make money from your clothing)
- Recycle (never throw away clothing, it goes straight into a landfill)
You’re ready to organize what you’re keeping
Organization is going to keep you motivated to own less and wear what you love. It will help you to see clearly what’s in front of you and bring peace of mind about getting dressed.
How To Organize Your Garments
Keep everything in one place
Because I want to help you get to a place where you own less clothing but more of what you love, I recommend keeping all of your clothing items in one place.
For example, no need to pack seasonal items away. Leave them out all year round. This helps keep you focused on what you have so that you don’t accidentally end up buying a duplicate.
To make getting dressed easier and more fun you’ll want to organize your hanging garments by fabric type, sleeve length, and color.
Beginning with garment type from left to right:
- Top (jersey or knit material)
- Blouse (silk, cotton, linen)
- Workout clothing
Organize each garment category and length; shortest to longest: Tube top, strapless, or sleeveless, cap sleeve, short sleeve, long sleeve.
Bottoms: Mini, mid-length, maxi, shorts, capris, full length
By color, ROYGBIV (Red, orange, yellow, green, blue, indigo, and violet).
Make sure all of your hangers are the same kind and facing the same direction depending on what feels most comfortable to you. It doesn’t matter what kind of hanger you use. If you can’t find all matching hangers, then have them facing in the same direction.