Decluttering the Wardrobe

One of my strategies for living more simply is to get rid of all the clutter. I’m only going to keep what I need or what I love. That’s why one of the first steps I’ve taken to living more simply is to declutter my wardrobe.

My wardrobe is a perfect example of why I need to do this. It is packed full of clothes, but still I can never find anything to wear – probably because I can’t find anything in there. I have a small number of clothes that I like and wear regularly. The rest just hang there, taking up space and sapping my energy.

I waste time in the mornings trying to find outfits because most of what I have either doesn’t fit any more, is horribly unflattering, doesn’t go with anything else in my wardrobe or has worn out.

To declutter I decided to make 4 of clothes on my bed: Keep, Give to Charity, Discard, Out of Season.

One by one I took each garment out of the robe and put them in one of the piles. If I liked the garment it would go straight into the Keep pile. Garments that were in good condition but are unwearable because either they don’t fit me anymore or the style just doesn’t suit me went into the charity pile. Garments that were shabby and worn out went into the discard pile. Any out of season clothes went straight into that pile – I’ll declutter them when Spring comes around again.

After the initial sorting, I tried on every one of the garments in the keep pile and looked at them in the mirror. If they didn’t suit me or didn’t fit properly, once again they went straight in the charity pile.

I went through the same process with my shoes.

In the end I had 4 large garbage bags full of clothes to take to the charity stores and one garbage bag full of worn out clothes to put in the rag collection. The out of season clothes were packed in a box which rolls under my bed.

My wardrobe now is much more limited, but everything in there fits me. I still don’t think it all suits me, but I needed to keep a few things I didn’t like so much, like my unflattering jeans, until I can replace them with something better. In the mornings it doesn’t take me so long to get ready because I can clearly see my options. With less, I’ve had to be creative with mixing and matching and have put together some great new outfits using some new combinations of old favorites. I can also clearly see what I’m missing, which means my shopping trips can be more purposeful. I’ll stop duplicating the same garments over and over again, like I did with the 5 pairs of grey work pants I discovered, and buy things I actually need… or love.

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8 thoughts on “Decluttering the Wardrobe

  1. I need to do this myself! Thanks for the great reminder, and good for you in having the courage to get rid of the clutter in your closet!
    Having fewer things is a simpler and easier way to live.

    • Nice to know I’m not the only hoarder around. You should definitely have a go at this – its a small thing to do, but I feel a lot happier now I’ve culled my wardrobe.

  2. oh yes! awesome post and amazing job of de-cluttering your wardrobe. i try to own only the minimum of clothes that i need, but try to get the best clothes that i can get – the most flattering fit, the best colour on me and something that i love and no matter how i feel, makes me feel great. i know you will enjoy your easier time in the mornings getting ready and how much clearer your shopping trips will be. great post! be ruthless with your clothes.

  3. Over the past three years, I have done much of what you are starting to do. Also, living for 15 months in a tiny apartment, I realized what I really needed to live comfortably. Although I have cleared out boxes of books and other stuff, this house is still pretty full. I have never been able to convince my husband to get rid of his clutter. He cleaned out one drawer (which took a week because he looked at every single item) and thought that was enough for now.

    • I can just picture your husband going through that drawer – very funny. My husband is similar, in fact, my one fear of de-cluttering is that as soon as I clear a space, my he will find something else to fill it with.

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