|no more clutter newsletter for October 2004|
Dont delay any longer sorting out your clothes and accessories is a great mood booster. Imagine next time you look in your wardrobe there are only clothes you feel fabulous in. Set aside a quiet morning or afternoon to tackle your wardrobe, follow my tips and turn that fantasy into reality.
Set your goal
You are aiming to streamline your clothes so they are current season, your current size, in good repair and you enjoy wearing them all. That way getting ready in the morning will take half the time.
Take absolutely everything out of your wardrobe lay the clothes on a clean sheet on the bed. Now go through each item of your clothing - hold it up or try it on in front of a full length mirror. Ask yourself the following questions
Unless it gets four yeses why are you keeping it? It doesnt matter what it cost, how much you loved it five years ago or if youve never worn it if it doesnt work for you now, let it go.
Say goodbye to fat and thin clothes
Both men and women suffer from the vagaries of weight gain and loss. It can be very depressing to look in your wardrobe and see a host of size 10 tops or 32inch waist trousers that no longer fit. If you are planning to lose weight or have just had a baby then store clothes that are too small. Put a date on them and if you cant get into them in a year give them away. Let go of all clothes that are too big otherwise you are unconsciously telling yourself you expect to gain weight again.
Store like with like
Once youve decided what clothes to keep its time to put them back in the wardrobe. Face all hangers the same way and categorise clothes into work and leisure. Put your work suits and shirts on one side and your casual clothes on the opposite side. Colour code everything so you can see at a glance that you have 10 pairs of blue jeans or 12 white shirts. Make a note of any clothes and shoes that need mending. If you're not handy with a needle get to know a good drycleaner or tailor who can help you out.
Invest in good quality hangers
Next time you treat yourself to a new shirt just say no to the offer of another free store hanger. Hangers are an important part of clothes care. Return any wire ones to the dry cleaners and treat yourself to wooden ones or padded ones for more delicate items.
Moths are still very much with us in the twenty first century. Keep them at bay by using cedarwood, lavender, or horse chestnuts. Check here for some of my tips for moths.
Find your unwanted clothes a good home
You can donate to charity, recycle your tired clothes or sell your unworn mistakes to a dress agency or even on eBay.
Edit your clothes twice a year
Every April and October have a thorough clear out of your wardrobe. Be ruthless about keeping anything you havent worn last season. Use this opportunity to change clothes over to the current season. Store the out-of season ones in your spare wardrobe or use under bed drawers or vacuum packs to store in the loft. Don't forget to sort out your sports gear too.
Work the one-in one-out policy
Once youve reached capacity with your clothes storage its tempting to fantasise about that enormous walk-in wardrobe. In reality its time to work the one-in one out policy. For everything new you buy you let something similar go. This even applies to shoes!
Minimise shopping mistakes
Youre only human we all have off days when we buy things that well never wear. Limit these mistakes by only buying clothes you feel fantastic in. If youre dithering go and have a cup of coffee and come back in half an hour and try it on again. Chances are youll walk away empty-handed and save your money for something that has the Wow factor.
out this month's tip:
Even up your
Debi wins the family organiser calendar from www.organizedmum.co.uk for her contribution to last month's discussion - What's holding you back from having the clutter-free home of your dreams?
Debi says: "Can't believe you left out my all-time favorite, "I'm holding onto it so that when I lose weight I can wear it again!" As you know since you are into psychology, that excuse represents ALL KINDS of deeper problems. I've been using this excuse for years and in the meantime had amassed a HUGE wardrobe in things of all sizes. I even had some clothing items that I really loved in three different sizes so that I could wear it no matter how large I got.
I only recently came to my senses and learned to accept myself the way I am. I knew the rule that "if you haven't worn it in over a year, get rid of it," but I had never quite been able to carry through when I'd set out to do that. So I asked my daughter to help. She sat on the bed while I went through everything in four closets. Every time I would waver in my resolve to abide by this rule, she would ask, "Mom, when's the last time you wore that?" or "How many sizes are you away from that size now?" I think I have conquered this problem now and am loving my clutter-free closets."
I'm sure everyone can relate to this. In my twenties I used to buy clothes one size smaller in the vain hope it would encourage me to lose weight. Years later they went to the charity shop unworn!
This month's Competition
to win a pack of 10 fragrant lavender balls from the White Company (www.thewhitecompany.com)
to hang in your wardrobe, to smell sweet and to banish the moths. Just
email Sue at email@example.com
and share any tips, revelations or funny or moving stories about decluttering
your wardrobe. My favourite answer will be published in November's newsletter.
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