Wetherby, England

How to Have a Successful Wardrobe Clear Out

June 10, 2020

Newsflash: there’s no better time than spring to have a wardrobe clear out.

After all, it’s called “spring cleaning” for a reason. (Wink-wink.)

And the number of things that we acquire on a yearly basis can soon add up, clogging up much-needed storage space in our homes — or suitcases, if you’re currently travelling.

Struggling to know which pieces to say goodbye to and which pieces to hang onto for another 12 months? Not to worry — I’ve got you covered with my top wardrobe clear out tips.

How to Have a Successful Wardrobe Clear Out

1. Put Some Time Aside

First things first, you need to put some time aside to tackle your wardrobe clear out.

It’s no use trying to do it all in two hours before you head out to the supermarket because this simply won’t work.

The truth is: this kind of house job always takes longer than you think. Therefore, be sure to assign a day where you’ve not got anything else going on to do it.

Do you have kids to look after or have to go to work? You could always split your wardrobe clear out into sections and focus on clothes one day, shoes the next and accessories the day after that. Sorted.

2. Get Everything Out 

Once you’re ready to proceed with the task at hand, I find that it helps to get everything out of your wardrobe and put it on your bed or bedroom floor.

Why? Well, this allows you to see each and every item properly. But it also enables you to clean the parts of your wardrobe that you might not have cleaned in a long time.

One word: ew.

3. Clean, Clean, Clean!

Next, grab your best feather duster, anti-bacterial wipes and rubber gloves — and just start scrubbing!

If you’re finding it difficult to be productive, put on your favourite music or radio station, turn off your phone and get some snacks involved, such as crisps or your latest baking creation.

Oh, and don’t stop until there’s not a speck of dust or a dirty mark in sight.

4. Go Through Your Wardrobe Item By Item

Now that the cleaning’s done and dusted (sorry), it’s time to go through everything one by one and create six piles:

Decide What to Keep

If you’re unsure about a specific item, the following questions will be able to help you decide if it stays or goes:

Depending on the answers to these questions, go ahead and place the piece on the appropriate pile.

Oh, and try to avoid getting rid of anything, as in throwing it away. I mean, letting fashion sit in a landfill isn’t exactly environmentally-friendly.

And we’ve only got one planet; therefore, we need to look after it.

Wardrobe Clear Out

5. Consider Creating a Capsule Wardrobe with Your “Keep” Pieces

Ever heard of the saying “less is more”? Well, this also applies to a wardrobe clear out.

If you want to re-focus your fashion collection and save time getting dressed on a morning, consider creating a capsule wardrobe with the pieces in your “Keep” piles.

But what is a capsule wardrobe, you ask?

Well, it’s an idea created by London boutique owner Susie Faux in the 1980s, who made it her mission to assist women in identifying their personal style by utilising a limited number of items in their wardrobes.

And it’s kind of stuck around ever since.

Here are the rules:

That said, it’s completely up to you how you want to do it based on the size of your wardrobe and how strict you feel like being!

Either way, my advice would be to stick to key womenswear staples and build your capsule wardrobe around them, depending on the season and upcoming weather forecast.

6. Organise Your Wardrobe

Your next job is to organise your wardrobe according to your “Keep” piles.

If you’ve decided to abandon the whole capsule wardrobe idea, no problem. Simply put each item back into your wardrobe according to its category, i.e. coats, jackets, tops, dresses, skirts, trousers, shoes, belts, handbags, etc.

Some people also like to split their wardrobe into two and have one half dedicated to spring/summer and the other half dedicated to autumn/winter. I find this useful as it means that you only have to focus on half of your wardrobe at one time. 

However, this is solely your decision to make.

Find Space for Your Capsule Wardrobe

Are you keen to give the capsule wardrobe notion a go? If so, be sure to make room for your new capsule, whether this is an end section of your wardrobe or a completely separate area. 

After all, you need a designated space for it that you can easily get to and is differentiated from everything else.

7. Create More Space if You Need To

Lastly, if you find that your wardrobe is still bursting at the seams even after a clear out or you’re struggling to fit everything in, it’s okay. You just need to be a little smarter with your storage solutions.

I recommend the following tips:

And always persevere — you’ll get to a point where you’re happy with your hard work in the end!

Wardrobe Clear Out

Remembering These Wardrobe Clear Out Tips

Even though the idea of having a wardrobe clear out isn’t exactly attractive in the busy digital age, it’s worth doing.

I mean, not only does it feel good to tidy and clean up the space that you’re living in after neglecting it so long, but it can also make other people feel good when you donate items to them.

And that’s what I call a win-win situation.

When was the last time you had a wardrobe clear out? Are you due one? I hope my tips are helpful!

Katie Davies is the Yorkshire-based freelance writer who founded The Trendy Tourist. In the last three years, she has written for over 100 companies on a range of subjects, from fashion to marketing. When she’s not producing content, you can find her shopping, exploring a new place or sitting somewhere having a cup of builder’s tea.

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