Wednesday, March 30, 2011

W.O.W. Wednesday: Closet Clean Up!

So, I have this list of topics that I want to blog about, mostly things that I want to be sure to tell Lydia some day, but I am so scatterbrained that I doubt i will ever remember them all. The list is in my head so sometimes I forget the list by the time I want to write a post. I was reminded that I wanted to talk about closet purging this week because Jordan Ferney over at Oh Happy Day published her list of tips.

Speaking of closets, here is Lydia trying on shoes that spilled out of mine!
Anyway, I buy a lot of thrift store clothing and my ability to sew means I buy things even if they have just a little "potential". Also, my weight fluctuates routinely (I'm working on it!) so I tend to have similar items in several sizes. Finally, I line in a house designed and built by my talented husband (translation: tiny closets!). So my clothing storage often overflows. Exacerbating the situation, I wake up an hour before hubby needs to and 2 hours before sunrise (translation:I get dressed in the dark!).

Lydia dressing one of her dolls

So, this fall I did a major purge of my closet. I didn't start with what cloths fit or didn't fit. I started by asking myself who I want to be? I have so many different colors, patterns, and styles that I am drawn to that my closet looked schizophrenic! So, I pulled out every item of clothing and first decided if it fit, or would ever fit in the conceivable future. Slightly small and slightly big stuff went to storage until size changes require they come out again. Maternity stuff went into deeper storage. What was left had to look the way I want to be viewed. I am learning to go at this the same way I think about clothing for Lydia. I am tried to have a related color pallet and a slightly vintage, artsy, upscale look. So i got rid of anything that didn't fit those categories. Then I tried to decide what created the BEST looking outfit for that one piece. I went ahead and put items together on a hanger, so that 5-7 great outfits were hanging up and ready to go. Some pieces doubled up, so I made a mental note of what worked and decided that as items were worn and washed, I could rotate the pairings. Tops tend to get dirtier than bottoms, so as one piece went to the wash, I paired up the next item that made a great outfit.

Eventually, I got down to a few pieces that I just couldn't make a "great outfit" out of. Usually those are my iffy items that I don't want to get rid of, but can't seem to wear. Suddenly I understood why I wasn't wearing them. Nothing "went" with them. So I either needed to buy something that did work, or get rid of it.

Lydia and Aunt Jen putting together an outfit

My fall purge has lasted me until now, just by layering more sweaters or jackets on the original outfits. I feel like I need to sort out some new outfits for summer and at the same time weed out a few fashion missteps before the fall. I suppose it never ends! Here are a few additional tips from Jordan and her readers: In order to keep an item, Jordan suggests you answer YES to both questions "Do I love it?" and "Do I wear it". I would add "do I have equally good items to wear with it?" Jordan suggests matching hangers. I get the concept, but get of rid of one thing that works and then having to PAY for a replacement is not my style. How about, she who does the laundry decides who gets which hangers? If all the old junky ones end up on my husband's side of the closet, am I to blame? Jordan suggests having staples that can be paired with seasonal trends. One of her readers commented with the tip of just once hang all your cloths hangers backwards and then turn the hangers around the correct way after you wear and wash items. After a period of time, items not worn are easily identified and tossed. If all else fails, either stop shopping (not likely) or convince your husband to build an addition to your house and supervise the amount of closet space in the new areas. (add to the future blog post list a post showing progress on the addition to my house!) PS. Can I just say that Cathe Holden (the crafty gal behind Just Something I Made) must be one of the nicest people ever. First of all, she is sending me a big old bag of swag (you send me one and I will pretty much like you too!) Second, Cathe peeked at my blog ( I think because I linked to her in my post about the big win) and saw that I misunderstood a few minor items that I will not be getting. She immediately sent me the nicest e-mail clarifying and making sure I wouldn't be disappointed. So SWEET! And while I am gushing, can I tell you all how weird it was to realize that I was probably looking at her blog while she was looking at mine! The Internet is a surreal place sometimes!

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