In my last post I talked about getting organised, finding clever storage solutions and my new found love for minimal, low impact, tiny houses. I've actually been trying to thin out my possessions since January, when I resolved to own less. As well as parting ways with as many books and DVDs as I could bear to, and saying goodbye to several pairs of shoes that my giant flipper feet could never really cope with, I've spent some time going through all my clothes and having a GOOD clear out.
Jess's Super-Duper Fail-Proof Take-No-Prisoners Clothes Clear-Out Method
1. First, break your clothes down into manageable chunks. Ever gone at some spring cleaning really hard, that realised half way thorough (when EVERYTHING YOU OWN is on the bed) that you'd really rather not? Yeah, we're trying to avoid that.
2. Pick ONE place that you store clothes, e.g. a wardrobe, shelves or a chest of drawers - if it's a big chest of drawers, I recommend just picking one to start with. (That way, if you get bored after one drawer...freedom is yours!).
3. Lay the contents out and take a good look at each item. Set aside any piece that you're absolutely certain you love and don't want to part with. Be honest - don't put anything in this pile that's a maybe.
4. Next, go through and pick out anything that is embarrassingly tatty. You know what I'm talking about. That jumper that's more bobbles than...not bobbles. The horribly misshapen cardigan. Those pants that may, in some past life, have been a colour other than grey-ish. (My personal exception to this - a few crappy old t-shirts for decorating and hair-dying - always room for a few of those in your collection). Old t-shirts that you don't need can be cut up and used as dusters, if you're that way inclined. If you have access to a textile recycling bin/bank which will take clothes in any condition (for turning into loft installation and such), you can pop the rest in there.
5. Now, you should be left with the clothes you don't love but which still function nicely as clothes - if not on you, then on somebody else. Try each of them on and assess, honestly, if they make you feel and/or look good - preferably both. If they do neither, stick them in a pile for the charity shop (or freecycle, our your relatives or pals, as you prefer). Be RUTHLESS. That top that is unflattering now is not going to magically become more flattering with age. Those jeans that squish you to the point of light-headedness are not going to get any looser.Get rid! Clothes are meant to fit YOU, not the other way around.
6. Rinse and repeat steps 1-5 until you've gone through all your clothes. Et voilà! Your lean, mean streamlined wardrobe is good to go.