Start the New Year With a Working Wardrobe!

We’ve all heard that “decluttering” has multiple benefits.  Marie Kondo, Peter Walsh and Gretchen Rubin have all gained prominence in the field of “organizational clarity.”  (Who knew there was such a thing?)  Gretchen Rubin’s book, “Outer Order, Inner Calm” promotes the ideas that when you get rid of the clutter, it makes things easier to find plus, getting rid of stuff that makes us feel bad (those expensive boots that we never wear because they hurt our feet) produces a calming sensation.

Think about how this could work with your closet!  Wouldn't it be nice to go into your closet and be able to see all the fabulous pieces that you love wearing and know that everything in there looks great on you?  The new year is the perfect time to declutter your wardrobe and get it working for you.  Here are some easy steps you can do to make your wardrobe workable.

  1. Plan.  Set aside a half day (or full day depending on how extensive your wardrobe is) to work on your wardrobe.
  2. Get the tools ready.  Why not start the year off with new hangers?  I love the huggable hangers that were originally sold only on HSN.  Now you can purchase them anywhere (Home Goods, T J Maxx, Old Time Pottery) for less than $1 each.  Pick your favorite color and buy about a dozen more than you think you will need.  Also set aside a few large trash bags to collect the items that are leaving your closet forever.

Colorful hangers can be a nice accessory to an organized closet.

  1. Start the project with the proper nourishments.  Have a cup of coffee or a glass of wine (white wine might be a better choice than red - in case of spillage) by your side and perhaps a bowl of chocolates.
Wine and chocolate are good have on hand when organizing your closet.
  1. Remove all items of clothing from your closet. 
  2.  Return to the closet all "specialty items" such as workout clothes, tennis or golf wear, cocktail dresses and formal gowns that still fit you and are in good condition.  Keep all the casual sporting items in one area and all the dressier items together in another area of the closet.For those pieces that no longer fit or are not in wearable condition, place them in a trash bag.
  3. Now go through everything else and place it into one of three piles.  The first pile is for items that no longer fit or are outdated and will never be worn again.  The second pile is for items that can be worn "IF."  Pants that can be worn IF the button or zipper is replaced.  A skirt that can be worn IF a top can be found to coordinate.  The third pile is for items that are reasonably current and hopefully, fit you well.
  4. Sort through pile #1 and decide what can be taken to a consignment shop or donated to a worthy organization such as Dress for Success.  Place them in a separate trash bag and leave items unfit to be donated or consigned in a separate trash bag.
  5. Place the items from pile #2 in a separate trash bag to be dealt with later.
  6. Try on everything from pile #3 and take a critical look at yourself in a full-length mirror.  Is it a good color for you?  Does it fit you well?  Does it embrace your personality?  Is it reasonably current?  Any items that don't pass this "test" are placed in the trash bag with items to be consigned or donated. 
  7. Now you are ready to return everything else from pile #3 to the closet in this order:
Tops, arranged from lightest color to darkest color with spaghetti strap tops first, then tank tops, then sleeveless tops, short sleeves, 3/4 sleeves and finally, long sleeves.
Skirts, arranged from lightest color to darkest color with shortest skirts in front and longer skirts in back.
Pants, arranged from lightest color to darkest color with shortest pants (cropped pants, capris, etc.) in front and longer pants in back.
Jackets/Sweaters, arranged from lightest color to darkest color.

Now step back and take a good look at your new workable wardrobe.  Feels good, doesn't it?

Set aside some time on another day to return to the items from pile #2 and make a list of what is needed to get those items returned to the closet (a new zipper, new buttons, hemming or tailoring, a new camisole, etc.).

An Organized Closet is soothing.

Now, finish off that glass of wine and eat those chocolates.  You deserve it!


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