Mar 4, 2011

It's the freakin' weekend baby, I'm about to have me some fun . . . .

*This got a little long, but I wanted to give you as much detailed advice as I could.*

Yep, I just quoted an R. Kelly song. I couldn't resist. It is Friday, and that means that I have two days to catch up on  sleep, magazines, house chores, friends, and anything else I feel like doing. I plan on cleaning out my closet, and making room for my spring/summer clothes, and new purchases. I love this time of year, it's getting close to another season, so you can clean out your closet, re-evaluate what you have, and make a list of the must have items you need this Spring. Call me crazy, but I love organizing and cleaning. It's one of those things that when I am done, I feel like I have accomplished something monumental. It may just be my lingerie drawer, or my shoe collection, but it's now all neat and organized, and I feel like I can see what I have and use things I forgot I once bought.

I have gone to a few of my friends houses this week to help them reorganize their closets and make a list of things they need to add to their already fabulous wardrobes. This is such a daunting task for most people, but for me, it's so enjoyable and fun! I get do things I love; hang out with good friends, organize, style outfits, make lists of needed items, and leave with inspiration for my own closet. Believe it or not, going through your friends, sisters, or even parents closets can give you ideas for your own wardrobe. I have come up with several "new" outfits this week from my wardrobe, just by going through my friends.

If you want to get organized and clean out your closet, I have a few things that work for me, and make the process much easier and enjoyable.

My first must is to make time to do this. This is not going to be a quick process, so for me, the best time to conquer your closet is the weekend.  Rushing only adds stress and possibly throwing out things that could really be useful. 

Get 4 laundry baskets, or make 4 distinct sections or piles on the floor. Label these YES, NO, MAYBE, ALTERATIONS. Things that you love and wear a lot, go in Yes. Things you haven't worn in a while, or don't think you will wear again, go in No. This pile is the hardest for a lot of people. Some hate to get rid of things, especially clothes. But my philosophy is if you haven't worn it in the current or previous season, it's probably time to get rid of it. BUT if you are in doubt, this may sound silly, but google the garment in question, and click on the images section and see how people are wearing that item now.  It will help you decide to keep or toss them item(s) in question. Next put things that you want to try on or aren't sure what to do with in Maybe. And clothes that still work, but need to be hemmed, or taken in, etc. put in the Alterations pile. I cannot tell you how much money I have saved and how many pieces of clothing I have reworked just by having them altered.

This is probably my biggest pet peeve. I HATE the dry cleaners wire hangers.  They are unattractive, flimsy, and cause hanger "boobs." Yes, those annoying little dots on your shoulders that are sometimes impossible to get out without having to wash.  Hangers can be expensive, and to totally replace your whole closet at once is insane and would cost hundreds. My suggestion is to buy once a week, or every other week, until you have totally converted your closet to good hangers.  My favorite hangers are the "Slimline" hangers (pics below). They are really thin and are covered in felt. They help keep shirts from sliding off hangers, and they allow for more space in your closet. I get mine at TJ MAXX, they come in packages or 12 and sometimes I find a packs of 20! And they are pretty inexpensive! Bed, Bath and Beyond, Wal-Mart and Target also have them if your TJ MAXX does not. I would not recommend hanging heavy sweaters on these, or any hanger for that matter. I would fold sweaters and put them in a drawer or on a shelf.

After separating clothes into the four piles, start with the Yes pile and add them pack to your closet. I arrange my tops in order of sleeve type, ie tanks, three quarter length, and jacket. Start with the shortest and move to the longest. Tanks and other sleeveless tops can get lost if you don't have them in one visible place.  Then, if you want to get really organized, arrange each style into color sections.  For example, take all your tanks and put them at the front of the closet, then arrange them in color order (ROYGBIV), then go to the wider tanks, etc. This way you can see your styles as well as colors. And you will be better able to create an outfit if you know what you have and can actually see it. As far as pants go, I would just organize them by type. Have all your jeans together, and within your jeans, have all your skinnies together, wide legged together, etc. You can arrange them however you want. If you work where you have to wear dress pants, then I would have those at the front of your pants section. You wear them more ofter, so it just makes sense to have them first. 

Once you have put back all your yes clothes, move on to the Maybe pile. Try on everything that is in that pile, and not with your sweats!! Try it on as if you were planning an outfit or going somewhere, you want to see what it will look in an actual setting. If you are stumped at to how to wear it, google it!! If you are still on the fence about a certain item, the best thing to do is part with it. It will just take up space.

Now that you have gone through your Maybe pile, add the garments you decided to keep to your closet in the sections where they belong. As far as the No pile goes, I would check for any holes, stains, etc and if you have some that aren't "re-sellable" I would put them in a pile for goodwill or your local shelter. The rest you can try to sell at a consignment store or eBay. Or have a clothes swap with friends, you can get rid of what you don't wear, and get things you will wear.

Do this with your shoes, accessories, bags, etc. The goal is to purge and get rid of things you don't wear or use anymore!

Your closet is now nice,clean and organized. The next thing to do is make a list of things you need to buy. Since I am a super organizational nerd, I carry around with me (all the time) a moleskine notebook. I use it to wring ideas for my blog, some websites or stores to check out, trends or ideas for each season, and most importantly, my list of things I want and the "staples" that I need to add or replace in my closet. This is where you write down ANYTHING you are wanting this season. That includes shoes, bags, jewelry, and other accessories. I also use this notebook as a place to write out outfit combinations that I see or think about and want to try, or ones that are my "go-to" when I'm in a hurry. I can't tell you how many times I have been stuck standing in my closet with all these clothes, and nothing is coming to me or I hate every outfit I try on.  Having several outfit options already written down somewhere is a lifesaver.(today's outfit is a prime example)

This probably sounds like a high school idea, but look through magazines and tear out looks, or things you like or want. This can give you and idea of what your style is and what you should be buying. It's easy to go into a store and get overwhelmed with so many clothes, or sales people trying to get you to buy something you aren't really sure about. Having an idea or list of things you want to look for is the best way to get what you want. You can tape these in the notebook, or just have them in a folder to look through when you are about to go shopping. If you have the space and time, and inspiration board is also a great idea. This is a collection of anything that is catching your eye or you keep coming back to. It will help you hone in on you and what you look for in clothes and style. 

If you don't want to attempt this on your own, or still have questions, please contact me. This really is something I love doing and enjoy. I would LOVE to help you out with anything. Just let me know. Have a great weekend. See you all Monday!

Shirt/Dress Hangers - They sell clips separately so you can use these for skirts as well.

Pant Hangers

Moleskine Notebooks

Examples of an Inspiration Board

images are from google search.


  1. i need to clean out my closet but am too lazy to do it myself! thanks for the tips, they're great!

    perfect timing that i discovered your blog today :)


  2. Sarah Taylor,

    You crack me up! I miss you and love you.



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