Monday, 12 March 2012

The Big Clean

This weekend I managed to complete a task that I have been successfully putting off for months; I cleared out my wardrobe.

After an hour of online research (procrastination) I finally made a start on the mammoth undertaking. About five hours later I had the (not so) shocking realisation that I probably own way too many striped tops. I also had a well ordered wardrobe, a number of re-discovered items which I had previously overlooked (shoved down the back, ahem), a bag for the charity shop (ah, the warm fuzzies) and a bag to take to the tailors for adjustment.

So here is how I went about it...

First I emptied the closet completely and waged war on those pesky dust bunnies. Then I turned my attention to the clothes.

Wear? - Will I wear it? Have I worn in in the past year? If not then it went into the 'maybe pile'. I was pretty ruthless at this stage. I spent several hours doing this - I tried things on and made outfits to check that I really will wear everything. It helps to have a full length mirror and/or an honest friend to give an opinion.
Arrange? - Everything that I do wear then went into piles on my bed according to garment type.
Recycle? - Then I examined the 'maybe pile'. Can it be recycled? Should I take it to the tailors for mending/adjustments/alterations? This is not just about fittings, I love to have items drastically altered as you get a whole new garment that no-one else has, such as changing a dress into a top or changing the sleeve type or neck line. You could also think about re-dying items that have faded or that you no longer like due to the colour.
Donate? - If I'm not going to get it adjusted it went into the donations bag, either to a charity collection or to a specific friend if I know someone that would like a particular item.
Rejuvenate! - This is a vital stage. You need to sit down and have a coffee break before you abandon all hope of ever finishing. I also found that cake was useful addition to this stage...
Organise - Now to tackle the clothes on the bed. I grouped like items together and placed them  back in the closet. I hang shirts and fold jumpers, trousers and most other tops. I also chose to hang cardigans on large hangers, though this is controversial. Hanging can affect the shape of your knitwear if the garment is heavy.
Beautify - I then organise garments by colour. This is the easiest way for me to locate what I want in a hurry, plus I think it looks good too.
Enjoyment - For this stage I kept opening the doors and drawers to my wardrobe and feeling smug. It helps to show off to someone else too...

So if you are planning a big clean of your own for Spring - good luck!

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