One of the first things I did when I started simplifying is emptying my closet. I had learned about the capsule wardrobe and Project333 (Look those up if you don’t know it! It’s quite interesting!), but I just wasn’t ready to go that drastic. So I followed a few steps to downsize my closet, and I am still working on it.
Why I didn’t throw away half my clothes immediately
When I decided it was time to downsize my collection of clothes, I knew it would be hard. I am really bad at this and usually end up tossing out half a bag and still having a closet with doors that can hardly close. So what I decided to do, is stick to this strategy.
You do not have to throw away half your clothes to be successful at this.
What I decided to do was taking it one step at a time. It would be easier for me. I knew it would make me feel better if I could really think things through and be sure about what items to get rid of.
Steps to help you empty your closet
- I took out all my clothes and laid them on the bed. I am sure this is a big part of why I failed in my previous tries. I usually just looked through my stuff and picked out a couple items. This time, I made sure everything was on the bed and I picked up and carefully looked at every single item. This makes you think about it better and helps you to tell yourself it’s ok to throw the dress out you have only wore 3 times since you bought it back in 2010.
This process gave me about 1 bag full of clothes I never wore and a handful of items I wasn’t ready to part with just yet.
- Get rid of the ‘sell/donate/throw away’ pile as soon as possible. I had heard this tip somewhere, and I think it is a great one! As soon as you have gone through your closet you should get rid of the bag. Firstly, because it is extra clutter in your home. Secondly, to resist the temptation of taking something back out of the bag. Make it easy on yourself and toss it immediately.
- Be conscious of what you wear in the next few weeks. Did you keep that cute summer dress when you were clearing your closet, but still didn’t wear it? And Summer is almost over anyway? Than this is probably an item you could easily miss. Be honest to yourself and try to find out what your go-to items are.
- Go through your clothes again. Do the same thing as you did in the first step. Lay out all your clothes on the bed and look at each item carefully. I go rid of another bag of clothes just by going through the clothes again and realising I kept some shirts and dresses because they were cute, but actually never wore them.
Don’t feel bad if you throw away something you have never worn.
Be conscious of what item it is and why you never wore it. This will keep you from buying something similar again and thus making the same mistake.
- Take a close look at the items you do keep. Making sure what items you love, will help you when you need to buy new clothes. I have made the mistake of buying a button-up shirt once, realised it didn’t fit me and tossed it out. Only to buy a new one a few weeks later. With the same result. I love button-up shirts, but for some reason I just don’t think it looks good on me. It’s an item I absolutely love on other people. But nowadays I appreciate the item, love it for a second and put it back. It would be a waste of money to buy something I wouldn’t wear anyway.
I hope these tips will help you to have less clothes. I truly believe we have too many clothes in general and we can all downsize in one way or another. Watching the documentary ‘The true cost’ will help you to want to downsize as well. You can see more documentaires about minimalism or simplifying your life in my blog here.
Let me know what your approach is to minimising your closet. Do you have a capsule wardrobe? Let me know in the comments below. I’d love to hear from you!