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Clean out your closet in 5 steps

Author

Yara Bakker

Clothes on a rack
Do you often struggle to find your favourite piece of clothing? Or do you regularly feel like you have nothing to wear? Then it is time to clean out your closet. In this article, we will discuss the 5 steps to an organised wardrobe.
An overflowing closet is often a source of stress. It might take you a lot of effort to find your favourite piece of clothing, or you might just start to wear the same outfit over and over again to save time. Do you recognise these problems? Then read on.

Cleaning out your wardrobe may take some effort, but it also pays off in the long run. If you go through the following steps, you will be able to put together the coolest outfits again without stress in no time.

If you really want to take a thorough approach to fulfilling this task, we advise you to take at least a day to follow these steps:

1. Make an inventory of your clothes
2. Create separate piles
3. Determine the 'why'
4. Let's combine!
5. Put them back with care

The 5 steps to an organised wardrobe

1. Make an inventory of your clothes

To get started, take all your clothes out of the closet and sort them based on their category. Put the pants with the trousers, the dresses with the dresses, and so on.

The more precise you approach this task, the easier you make the rest of the process for yourself. For example, you can make a distinction between mini, midi and maxi skirts. You can also take the material from which the garments are made into account. This way, you could subdivide your pants into jeans and fabric trousers.

Not sure which categories to adhere to? Then take a look at how your favourite online stores divide their products.

TIP: Go through steps 2 and 3 separately for each category so that you do not try to do too much at once. This way, you maintain an overview and you can be sure that you take on a rigorous approach.

T-shirts on a rack
Piles of clothing

2. Create separate piles

The second step is to create three different piles based on how often you wear a garment.

  1. The first pile is made up of items that you wear often, of which you are sure that you want to keep them. 
  2. The second pile consists of items of clothing that you almost never wear (anymore). You can use a fixed time limit for this, such as not having worn it in six months.
  3. The third pile is made up of all the other items of clothing, for which your answer to this question lies somewhat in the middle.


TIP:
If you put the hangers of clothes that you wear back in the closet backwards from now on, you will know right away whether you have worn an item the next time your are cleaning out your closet.

3. Determine the 'why'

It is important to critically ask yourself why you do not (often) wear the garments that have ended up in the second or third pile.

The item of clothing is just not right for you
It may be that the item of clothing no longer matches your style, or that it no longer fits you properly. In this case, it is time to say goodbye*. You can sell these items of clothing, hand them in at a thrift store, or throw them in the fabric bin. You can also organise a clothing exchange or have them picked up by us using our app.

The item of clothing needs to be repaired
Another possible reason is that the garment needs to be repaired. If this is the case, immediately put this on your to-do list and do not put these clothes back in your closet until they’ve been repaired.

You find it hard to combine the item of clothing
However, it could also be the case that you actually really like a piece of clothing, but that you do not know how to combine it. You will decide whether you want to keep these items of clothing during the next step.

*TIP: Before discarding these items, you should try to figure out whether you can spot a pattern. For example, are there many items of the same colour among the clothes that you want to get rid of? Then remember this so that you do not make the same mistake again in the future.

Outfit

TIP: Take pictures of the outfits that you have put together. This will save you a lot of time in the future. If you want to take this one step further, you can even organise the photos on your phone by season by creating different folders.

4. Let's combine!

Now, it is time to think of new outfits that make you feel good. To do this, use any items of clothing in your possession that you did not throw away during the previous step.

For inspiration you can look at the photos of your favourite clothing brand or browse Pinterest boards. This way, you may discover surprising combinations that you would never have thought of in the morning.

Do you still have some items of clothing left after this step that you do not have a use for? Then it is time to let them go. Even though you may like the them, it is unlikely that you will ever wear them in the future if you have not thought of a combination by now.

The only exception to this rule is when you are missing certain basics that would enable you to wear the garment. In this case, you should write down exactly what basics you are missing, so that you can buy those the next time you are in the store.

5. Put back with care

The last step is to put back all of the clothes that you have left in your closet. You can, of course, organise your closet based on the categories that you adhered to in the first step. However, it is also possible to put back your clothes based on the outfits that you have put together in the fourth step.

Whichever strategy you use, make sure to leave some free space in your closet. This makes your wardrobe look less stuffed and will help you to maintain a good overview of your belongings.

Wardrobe with clothes

How to keep your closet organised

You may ask yourself how you will ensure that your closet stays tidy from now on. To do this, we advise you to stick to the following tips:

  • Buy consciously
    When buying a new piece of clothing, do not just think about whether you like it, but also whether it fits your style and flatters your figure. It is even better to already think about how you would combine the item of clothing. We advise you to shop alone, so that your opinion is not influenced too much by others.

  • Organize your wardrobe according to the season
    Store your summer and winter clothes in a different place and have just one of them in your closet at all times if you are still short of space.

  • Stick to the 1/1 rule
    In the future, stick to the rule that if you buy one thing, you have to get rid of another. This tactic is especially useful for the shopaholics among us.

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