A year ago, I wrote a blog for Unchaotic about my year-long process to clean out my wardrobe. I tied a piece of yarn around every hanger in my closet. When I wore a garment, I took off the yarn. At the end of the year, the initial plan was to get rid of everything that still had a piece of yarn on it. This plan was based on the idea that if I had not worn something in a year, I’m never going to wear it, so I might as well get rid of it.
Initially, I was going to wait until the end of the year before I threw anything out, but as I started putting yarn on my hangers, I saw items that I knew I had not worn in a while and was never going to wear again so by the end of setting up my closet, I had at least 10 items that were already eliminated from my wardrobe. Some of it went to charity and the rest went in the trash. I did another similar wardrobe purge in June when I evaluated what I hadn’t worn yet.
On New Year’s Day, I pulled everything out of my closet that still had a piece of yarn on it. There were about 30 things. I spent a few hours trying each garment on, remembering why I bought it in the first place, and asking why I hadn’t worn it during the last year.
There were two items that I did not wear in the last year that are wardrobe staples – my white oxford shirt and my black pullover sweater. These are the type of thing that everyone should have in their wardrobe, and the fact that I did not wear them does mean that they do not have value in my wardrobe. They could stay.
I also realized that owning wrinkle resistant shirts has made me spoiled and so I did not take the time to iron my other shirts, and thus I did not wear my other shirts for a year. The ones that I thought I would wear if I did my ironing could stay. I had a few pieces that I didn’t wear because I assumed that they too big after I lost weight. After trying them on, I saw that they still fit. They could stay too.
This project brought a personal issue to the surface that a lot of people have – I sweat regardless of the temperature. This means I’m more likely to stain my clothes. (It’s also one of the reasons why I didn’t wear my white oxford during the last year.) I am one of those people who should never own a silk blouse because I will stain it the first time I wear it. If I wanted to stop this from happening, I could pay a lot of money to have my armpits botoxed, or I can periodically throw out whatever I stain. I’ll stick with the latter for now.
I’m glad I did this project. I feel like I decluttered my closet and have a clearer idea of my personal style. The garments that I decided to keep despite not wearing them for a year still have their strings on them as a reminder that I should consider donating them if I continue to not wear them.
- My wardrobe is crammed but I have nothing to wear (ask.metafilter.com)
- 5 Tips for Cleaning Out Your Closet (beso.com)
- How much clothing should I own? | Unclutterer Forums (unclutterer.com)