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Power Tips For An Awesome Closet Clean Out

 

So as I journey towards Minimalism, I find myself in a constant battle over my wardrobe. I love clothes and style, after all I had a focus in Fashion Design & Merchandising for part of my schooling. Moving to a ‘Capsule Wardrobe’ (even though I do think they are a wonderful idea!) is just not something that is a realistic goal for me right now but that doesn’t mean I can’t slender my wardrobe down. Each season, I make time for a good closet clean-out and overhaul.

Minimalism isn’t about only owning the less stuff you possibly can, it’s about only holding onto things that bring joy and value to your life so some thoughts to keep in mind when you’re going through your clothes (really think hard into these questions too!):

1.) Does it fit well?

2.) Do I feel confident and fabulous in it? Does it add value to my day?

3.) Have I worn it or do I see myself wearing it in the near future (in season – within the next month; out of season – within the next 3-6 months depending on the piece of clothing)?

The Tedious Process of the Closet Clean-Out (but oh so necessary!!!):

1.) Take everything out of your closet.

2.) Hang back up the things you wear routinely or absolutely love and can’t live without.

*Organize by either type of clothing (i.e. work, play, going out wear) or by color.

3.) Start three piles:

First Pile – Donate

Second Pile – Try On/Keep if fits well

Third Pile – Sell

And a trash bag

4.) Start going through everything. Go through each piece of clothing and separate into each  pile, tossing anything that is mega worn, has holes or tears and doesn’t have any life left in it.

5.) Try on the clothes that are in that pile. Hang up what you have decided to keep. Quick Tip: Put your out-of season clothes in the back of your closet and then switch out when the season changes. The clothes you’ve decided not to keep, split up in the other piles accordingly (donate/sell).

6.) Pack up clothes for donation. After they’re all packed up, put them by the door or in the car so that you take them next time you go out. The key is to getting them out of the house as soon as possible so they don’t end up sneaking back into your closet! One of my favorite places to donate is Soles4Souls – they even hooked up with Zappos now and you can get free shipping labels to send your stuff in. They take both clothes and shoes!

7.) Take out the trash bag! 

8.) Prepare/Pack up clothes to sell. There are tons of places to sell your clothes nowadays. Here are a few of my favorites:

Ebay – The process to set up a listing on Ebay has become much easier than it used to be. The downside is that I’ve found I don’t sell my items for very much money here but it’s a great place to get items sold quickly.

Swap.com – I am loving this site! I pack up my stuff and ship it in and they take care of the rest – photos, listing on their site, pricing and shipping to the buyer. This is a newer site for me so I’m still waiting to see how I profit out of it but I really love the ease of it. You have three options to ship your clothes to them – Print a prepaid label and ship in your own box (which is a decent size box, up to 17 x 17 x 20 and up to 50 lbs.), request a label to be mailed to you, or request a shipping bag with prepaid label. They take the shipping cost out of your profits so there’s no upfront cost. I also like that they will take all seasons of clothing (of course, it may not sell as well if it’s out of season but still so nice to have the option to be able to ship it all out at once!) and they take women’s, men’s, and children’s clothing.

Poshmark – This is an app based site so you’ll have to download the app to your phone but it’s pretty simple to use. You can take pictures of your clothing within the app which makes it a pretty seamless process. Poshmark is more of a social selling platform in which members follow your “closet” and share your listings to their followers. I’ve been a Poshmark member for few years and I’ve made some sales here and there. Be ready to reply to comments and questions on your items, I’ve found it’s definitely more a conversational sale. They also have the opportunity for members to make an offer on your items and you can bargain back and forth for the sale a little bit.

Brick & Mortar Consignment Shops – These can be nice because they’re local but I find them to be more time consuming. Typically you’ll bring your items in for review, wait while they review them, and then they will review what they are going to take and what they will be pricing at them with you. You’ll have to head back to pick up any unsold items and they usually mail you a check for your commission. If you go this route, I recommend trying to find a shop that will offer you cash on the spot for the items they accept – it saves you some trips!

Yeah, I know the big, awesome closet clean-out can be a good day’s work but that aahhh feeling you have afterwards is so worth it and it pays off in the long run. Keeping a clean, organized closet helps relieve stress in the morning when you’re getting ready, helps ensure you have clothes that make you feel your best each day, and saves you money by keeping you up to date on what you already have (so you don’t end up with duplicates) and keeping basics on key for each season.

Get rid of the closet clutter! 

All opinions are my own. This post may contain affiliate links. For more information please reference my disclosure page.

Why Working Towards Minimalism Is Important To Me

I see a lot of posts about minimalism that focus on owning less stuff and de-cluttering, this isn’t what minimalism is about for me. For me, minimalism is more emotional than functional. Minimalism is about learning to make room for things that have meaning to my life, things that bring value and joy to me, and about letting go of the things that don’t. It’s about clearing space for better things in my life, allowing space for things to grow. It’s about following my heart and soul’s desire to have more in life, more than just stuff, things bigger and more inspiring. It’s about filling my life with adventure, love, and about filling a fiery desire to live life to the fullest. 

When my Grandparents passed away I found myself in a very emotional state, I became almost materialistic in a way that I needed to possess all of their material things so that they would always be there with me. Maybe this was how I was coping at the time but in the end, having all of their stuff didn’t help me mourn any better. Time is the only thing that can heal a sorrowful heart. 

I grew up with the idea that having stuff meant you were making it in life. I had all of these ideals in my mind that in my life now just don’t make sense any more. Minimalism is about having less stuff, but not in a way that whoever has the least stuff is a better minimalist. It has a much deeper meaning than that. Moving towards minimalism is freeing for me. It is a process of letting go, learning to be detached. It is about letting go of clutter that I thought was providing me safety but really was creating chaos. It is about letting emotions flow through me and not staying stagnant within an object. It is a journey for an understanding that living with less can mean that I’m living with more. 

I have been working towards minimalism for about 6 months now and I’ll be honest, I still own a lot of stuff but I’ve also let go of a lot of things as well. My thought processes are evolving and that is why I continue to work towards minimalism. I am finding more joy and less confusion in my freedom of being able to let go. Yesterday, my Mom’s new puppy climbed on my dresser and knocked down a whole bunch of things, most of them breaking as they hit the floor… a couple of years ago I would have been a mess, one of those items being an oil lamp I inherited from my Grandparents and other treasures I had collected over the years…but in the moment, I wasn’t worried about the stuff, I was worried about the puppy cutting herself on the glass. It is just stuff after all, it is not breath or the essence of life, just stuff. 

As I learn to let go, I find myself less stressed and happier. Calmer in the things that happen in my life, both good and challenging, both big and trivial. I find myself watching less tv, only buying clothes I love (even though I’m still struggling to let go of the clothes I still have), and more focused on working towards the things I really want out of life – like checking off a gigantic bucket list! I am by no means a role model for minimalism but I’m proud to be working towards it and someday I may just get there and some day I will feel as if I can truly call myself a minimalist but for now I’m okay with being a “minimalist in training”.