Thanks for following along with my Capsule Wardrobe Series! In last week’s post, I went over the overall process and outlined each of the five phases. Today, we will dig deeper into Phase 1, what I’m calling “The Purge.”
If you’re anything like me, then you love purging things. Whether it’s a junk drawer in the kitchen or the under sink cabinet in the bathroom, there is nothing better than the weird archaeological experiment of cleaning everything out and then the glorious feeling of looking at it once you are all done and it’s all clean and organized. Sometimes I will clean something and then just stare at it for a while, because it brings me so much joy to see things nicely cleaned & organized. Or is that just me?
Either way, for this process we will be focusing on your closet. This will take several hours to a whole day depending on how much stuff you have, but if that kind of time isn’t available to you (because let’s face it, being a woman and a mom these days is a real time commitment), I have outlined another process at the bottom of this post that will still give you similar results.
First things first, take everything out of your closet / dresser / wherever and start sorting it. I would first sort things by season, and then by style (dresses / tops / bottoms / outerwear / etc.). Once you have each style sorted out, focus on each pile and sort it further into these three groups:
The “Love It” items will be the items you go to over and over again. Your favorite sweater or your go-to jeans. These will form the basis for your “style” and will help guide the additional items you purchase (if any) for your capsule (we will go into this further during Phase 3).
Your “Like It” items will be the ones you aren’t sure about. These would be the items you love but you never wear, or maybe something that doesn’t fit right or is worn out. We will dig into these items more thoroughly during Phase 2, “The Try On.”
And your “Toss/Donate It” pile will be anything that is either too worn out to wear anymore, clothes that are the wrong size and anything you just absolutely know you do not want to keep with you any longer.
Now, everything that you have in your “Love It” pile goes back into your closet. Everything in your “Toss/Donate It” pile needs to be dealt with accordingly. Your “Like It” pile is what we will be tackling in Phase 2, so keep those puppies close.
While you are waiting for the next installment of this series, read all about my March Capsule here and be sure to follow me on Instagram to see how I style my clothes and my current capsule on a daily basis.
If you are just way too busy over the coming weeks to set aside a few hours to purge your closet, then try this handy closet trick.
Take everything hanging in your closet and turn the hanger around so it’s facing backwards. As you wear items over the next 30 (or 60) days, turn the hanger around. At the end of the 30 (or 60) days you will know which items in your closet you are wearing and those will be your “Love It” items. Quickly go through the remaining items and determine which ones you can part with and pack those up into a trash bag and donate them immediately.
The rest of the items you didn’t wear, set them aside into a box or an unused drawer and see if you pull any of them out over the next 30 (or 60) days (obviously if something is not seasonally appropriate then you would just store it away with your out of season clothes). Anything you wear in the next period can get re-hung in your closet. Everything else, you donate. The items you did not wear during this period do not match your lifestyle, or they are the wrong size, or there is something else wrong with them. I say donate them all and only have hanging in your closet the items that you consistently wear and that make you happy.
This quick 2 step process will take several months to execute but during that time you will get a good idea of what items you consistently reach for and which items you do not. Anything you do not, Stop buying those items!
(I know this is hard, I have a hard time with this too. For example, I LOVE dresses, I used to wear them daily at the office, but now I never do. I still buy them on occasion and they just hang forever until I finally sell them on Ebay or something or I donate them. Don’t be like me! Make your life easier and stop buying clothes you don’t wear!)
Thanks for following along, and I hope you enjoy that purge!