Before building my wardrobe, I knew I needed to tear it down.
By Saturday morning I’d read numerous blog posts about creating capsule wardrobes, and decided to use the how to by Un-fancy, with a few tweaks. My husband and kids were downstairs and I had the whole day to get this done. Many bloggers I’d read suggested completely emptying your closet, and only allowing clothes back in that are really going to work. So I did.
Step 1: PURGE
I had way too much stuff to pile it all onto my bed at once, so I started with all of my hanging clothes. I then moved on to my sweaters and shoes. Once my closet was completely empty, my attention went to the overstuffed drawers in my dresser. I just piled it all onto my bed and worked through it one piece at a time.
Step 2: PILE
I put each item into one of three piles: “Love it and can wear it now,” “Maybe later,” or “Goodbye!” It was surprisingly easy to separate them. I’ve got many pieces that I absolutely love but I cannot wear because they don’t fit or they’re ruined; I really thought I was going to have a hard time saying goodbye to them, but I really didn’t. Thinking that I would soon have other things to wear that I would like much better helped to motivate me.
Nothing made it into my “love it” pile without my trying it on, looking at it from all angles, and honestly considering whether it worked for me. That was going to go back into my closet. These were items that I really liked. Some of them I did already wear, but most of them I didn’t, for several reasons. Some, it was because I didn’t have anything to wear them with. Others had been lost in the clutter of closet or drawer.
My “maybe later” pile consisted of things that were out of season, or things that I liked well enough and that fit me well. This was much bigger than I had hoped, but I know many of them will end up in future capsules, and I’ll clear out many more with each seasonal capsule that I create. I ended up having to buy bins in which to pack it all in:
My “goodbye” pile was huge. Lots of the clothes didn’t fit me, but I had kept them all this time because I liked them so much. But, really, my arms aren’t getting any shorter, so out they go! Then there were the ones that were too small, see-through, or too tight, but I could wear them under other things. I knew that wouldn’t fly with a 37 piece wardrobe; each item needs to be able to stand on its own, or it’s gone. I ended up with two huge boxes. Goodwill employees were happy that night. Or maybe horrified. I’m not sure.
Items that I used to love but were stained, faded or torn? Those didn’t make it into a pile. They went into the trash.
Step 3: COUNTING AND CONSIDERING
After all that, the “love it”clothes were back hanging in my closet (no more drawers, now. Everything hangs so I can see it.) Now it was time to look at the list at Un-Fancy and decide what I could keep and what I needed to buy. A few more things needed to be moved to the “Maybe Later” bins, and then I made a list of what I needed for my shopping trip.
Yes, after all that, I still had to go shopping. Not my favorite thing to do, but especially not after spending over half the day working on this.
I had hope, though. After all, I wasn’t going to the store with a vague notion that I “needed more clothes.” No, this time I was going with a list of what I needed.