Tuesday, January 16, 2018

Maximized Space, Minimized Wardrobe

September 1, 2013 by · Leave a Comment 


Keep-Throw-Donate  courtesy herecomesthestork.comThough we’ve heard the saying, “less is more,” when it comes to our closets, it’s usually a different story. Filled to the brim with clothes, many of us would fall short if asked to account for all the items in our closets.

Now is the perfect time of year to go through all your clothes to figure out what to keep and what to give up.  Minimalizing your wardrobe not only revamps your closet, allowing you to get a true idea of how many things you actually wear, but also makes you feel better and more in control.

I follow four rules when choosing whether or not to keep an article of clothing; they will work to pare down your closet, too.

  1. Has it been more than a year since you wore the item last? If you found it tucked in the recesses of your closet, crumpled on the floor, or didn’t even remember that you owned it, you don’t need it. Let it go!
  2. Does the item still fit? If it’s too big but you really love it, have it tailored so you can keep wearing it. If your seemingly endless quest to fit back into something that is too small hasn’t succeeded, it’s time to let it go. You can obtain more closet space and improve your morale at the same time.
  3. Is the tag still on something that’s been in the closet for more than six months? I’ve been guilty of impulsively purchasing something that I “just had to have,” only to eventually realize that it doesn’t belong in my life or my closet.
  4. Is the article of clothing looking worse for wear? It’s hard to let go of certain items that have sentimental feelings attached, or that get you compliments every time you wear them, but if something’s pilling, faded, filled with holes, or torn, it has exceeded its expiration date. You’ll always have great memories of the times you wore the clothes— let the tattered remnants go.

When undertaking a closet cleanout, get three bins or boxes and place them conveniently nearby.  One container will be designated for sale or donation, the second for repurposing, and the third to keep.   If you follow my rules, it will be easy to separate the keepers from those pieces that have to go.  (If the item still has a tag on it, check the return policy of the store you purchased it from. You may be able to obtain a refund or store credit.)

BEFORE & AFTER courtesy mycloset2closet.com

When it comes to what you’re keeping, fit and function are key. Proper fit is important because you want your clothes to flatter your body shape, whatever it may be. Also consider which pieces will give you the maximum amount of outfits by combining the minimum amount of items. Multi-purposing is the best way to keep your wardrobe size to a minimum while enlarging your options.

The items that you select to sell should be clean, with minimal wear and tear. You can bring these gently-used items to clothing exchange stores, sell them via an online auction site, or hold a garage sale.  If you opt to donate your clothes instead, check out local charities or disaster relief clearinghouses. Donating clothing is a great way to pay it forward on a budget; you’ve already paid for the clothes, so why not give them to someone who can really use them?

If your clothes are too distressed to donate, recycling and repurposing may be possible. Cotton shirts make a great alternative to dust cloths, and one shirt can be cut up into several pieces.  Have a shirt that has a great pattern on it? Consider turning into an accent pillow. Ill-fitting pants or jeans seemingly beyond salvation may be turned into a skirt, and a crafty person can take scraps of those sentimental clothes and sew them into a quilt (or unravel a sweater and re-knit it). If something is torn, stained, shrunken, or missing buttons or zippers, and it can’t be reimagined for another useful purpose, toss it away.

When you’re finished, take a look into your closet. I’ll bet you can actually see your wardrobe!  You’ll feel great knowing that everything you own fits and is functional for your lifestyle.

webPlus_web_green1How to turn jeans into a skirt


By Raven Peterson

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