We're well into 2019 now but I'm still looking for ways to make sure I'm living my best life this year. For me that starts with my closet. What I wear truly affects my mood like crazy. When I was in school I would dress up on important test days because it made me feel more confident. What doesn't make me feel confident is wearing something that I know isn't the best fit or is old and starting to show it, so every few months I try to clean out my closet. Here are my tips and tricks to getting your closet back in shape for the new year.
1) Clean it entirely out
I mean it, take everything out and start over. You don't have to throw anything out and rebuild your entire wardrobe but I take everything out and put it on my bed so that I have to finish that day and no shirt gets left behind.
2) Make three distinct groups
One needs to be your closet so you can start putting what you're keeping back in. Another should be a sell/donate group and your third should be a recycle/throw away group.
3) Ask the important questions
There's a checklist I've started using with each piece of clothing I have so make sure if it's something I keep it'll be something I actually wear and that when I wear it, it gives me that confident feeling I'm looking for.
I ask myself these questions in this order:
- Does it still fit? Sometimes it's got to be tried on to make sure it fits correctly. There's no point in keeping it if it "fits" but isn't comfortable or flattering anymore.
- Have I worn it in the last year? Just because it fits doesn't mean you're actually wearing it. Don't kid yourself either - if it sat hanging in your closet for a full year, you probably won't wear it anytime soon either.
- Will I likely wear it again? This is when I really evaluate more formal pieces. If I bought a dress only for a formal or a very specific themed event, I decide if I'll wear it again realistically. While the dress you bought for your brother's best friend's sister's masquerade themed wedding was cute, if you won't wear it again, don't keep it.
- Is this still in style? There are certain pieces that you can look at and just know that it's been in your closet since chevron became a trend. Think about if that piece is still something that has a place in your 2019 wardrobe.
- Is it damaged in any way? Will I actually make the effort to get it repaired? It always stinks when I'm giving my clothes the once over and I notice my favorite flannel has a hole in it or one of my jeans needs a little TLC. At this point, you've got to decide, will you fix the wear and tear your clothes have? If the answer is yes, make a fourth group to take to your alterations person and get them fixed ASAP. If you won't fix them, take them to the group for throwing away or recycling.
- If I was shopping right now, would I buy this over again? Pretend there's no price tag on your clothing anymore (because there isn't if you've worn it in the last year) would you still buy it? That's how I evaluate if it's still in MY personal style. When I started cleaning out my closet I found shirts from six years ago that I'd been wearing with no problem, but when I thought about it, I wouldn't buy it now. Obviously don't think "well, it's 28 degrees, I wouldn't buy this black tank top," Keep your basics if they've made it this far.
- Do I feel confident when I wear this? If something's made it this far, it needs to be something that makes you feel good when you wear it. I've made one of my personal style resolutions to make every piece in my closet a piece that makes me do a double take when I walk by a mirror so I want the pieces to make feel confident.
4) Put it all away
Anything that you decided to keep, start putting in it's respective spot. Anything that was frayed, missing buttons, or you otherwise decided not to keep due to wear and tear on the item, take to recycle. If you already know of a spot take it there. If you don't, you can always take them to your local H&M and cash in on their recycling discount. For every bag of garments you drop off, you get a 15% off discount for your next purchase. For everything that's in good shape but didn't otherwise make the cut, you can try and sell it or just donate it. If you go the selling route, you could try to make a closet cleanout post on Instagram or Facebook or if you want immediate cash, you could take it to your local Platos.
5) Make a list of anything you need to replace
If you had the perfect black tank but it doesn't fit the way it used to or it got damaged, replace it! There are certain must haves in every girl's wardrobe. There's no shame in rebuying something you wore regularly for years. You got good wear out of it and will likely do the same if you replaced it.