It’s time to get real with your wardrobe. The fact is most of us only use about 20% of the clothing we own. So, eighty per cent of your closet is clogged with stuff you don’t even wear or use. Toss it! You don't have to go full Marie Kondo and pile everything you own on the bed. But you should have a good hard look at everything you have in there at least once a year and decide if it justifies your wardrobe real estate or not.
TOP TIP: Try to make a habit of regularly grooming your wardrobe. It’ll make it easier to get dressed and help you to make smarter choices when buying. This is a big job. Perfect for the weekend!
TIME: 2-5 hours, depending on the size of your wardrobe. Don't fall into the trap of trying on clothes endlessly and wasting time. Be ruthless. If you haven't worn it for a year (or longer), it's time to say goodbye. Toss or donate!
- Proper Wooden Hangers: An investment in good quality hangers is the easiest and most permanent change you can make. They last a lifetime and are well worth it. Get more than you think you need.
- A good vacuum
- Cleaning Cloths or old Tea Towels to wipe down shelves.
- All-Purpose Cleaner
- Garment Groom
- Laundry Soap
- Room & Linen Spray
- Measuring Cup
- Bags to toss/donate
- Fabric storage bins or space-saver bags to store seasonal clothes.
- A row of pegs or valet hooks to hang outside your closet.
HOW TO DO IT:
Start with plucking out all the clothing, shoes, and accessories you want to toss or donate.
1. Stow Seasonal Clothing
Very few of us have the luxury of ample closet space. You need a winter coat (but not in December). I wash and rotate seasonal clothes twice a year (even shoes). Doing this not only gives you more hanging space but also removes visual clutter, which makes it much easier to get dressed.
2. Wipe it down
This is a good time to vacuum and clean every corner of your closet.
3. Use Real Hangers
We’ve talked about the importance of good-quality hangers before. Consider this your second nudge!
4. Group Clothes in Categories
You probably already do this, but if you don’t, now is the time to start! Just hang like-with-like (e.g., pants in one section, shirts, and dresses in another), etc. This will go a long way to help keep your closet organized to make finding something to wear a lot easier!
5. Hang from Light to Dark
Working within your groups, hang clothing from light to dark. For example, shirts>>>light to dark. Pants>>>light to dark. This does two things; it helps you find what you want to wear based on colour and category. It sounds complicated, but it becomes automatic once you do it for a while. It makes getting dressed so much easier!
6. TO THE LEFT, TO THE LEFT
The Empty Hanger Trick. This is the ONE SIMPLE TRICK THAT will help you to keep your closet tidy forever. I’ve never seen it mentioned anywhere by any organizing Guru (which is baffling because it’s so simple). Here it is: Once you pick a garment to wear, don’t put the empty hanger back where it was, hang it at the very end of your closet (I use the left side of my closet), and keep it there until you need to rehang something. This will ensure that you always have a hanger handy when you need one AND you aren’t taking up valuable real estate in your closet with empty hangers.
7. BE ORGANISED (and skip the Dry-Cleaners)
Most of us over-launder and dry-clean our clothing way too much. I'm not saying you need to wear second day-yoga pants, but I AM suggesting an easy setup for the stuff that's lightly worn. Get yourself a valet hook, a row of pegs, or even a curtain rod. I know it sounds weird, but stay with me. The goal is to have a dedicated place to hang lightly worn clothes, so you remember them when they're back in the general population. For example: If I've worn something once and it's not dirty enough to wash but not clean enough to rehang, I hang it in a dedicated place in my closet (or just outside on a hook), give it a spritz with Garment Groom and wear it again on a Saturday. I only wash something once I've worn it at least twice (underwear and yoga pants excluded). And BTW: You can launder a lot of DRY-CLEAN ONLY clothes with mild laundry soap on a cold water setting, as long as you don’t use too much. Get a measuring cup and use it!
Lastly: Deal with your shoes. If your closet is small, reconsider where you store your shoes. Inside your closet isn't the only answer. There are plenty of good-looking options at every budget for storing shoes that look good and take up less space in the wardrobe.
REWARD TIME! The refreshed and renewed space that used to be a cramped closet is now an efficient dressing room. Well, almost. Treat yourself to a gorgeous set of storage baskets, a chic Valet stand, or classic coat hooks.
INSTANT GRATIFICATION: I suggest a nibble on a frozen Arnott’s Mint Slice while staring at your newly organised closet. So refreshing!