New year, new you…right? Well, that’s how the old maxim goes anyway, so start small when it comes to your New Year reinvention by clearing out your closet. Not only could you make some cash selling off your old stuff, but you’ll also start the year on a high note of productivity. Read on for our closet decluttering tips and tricks.
Empty your closet
Before you can give your closet a new year refresh, you need to empty that sucker out. You won’t make any progress when it comes to sorting your stuff unless you take stock of what you already have. So…tidy your room, make your bed and start hauling everything from the depths of your wardrobe. Yes, everything! You need to see exactly what space you’re working with. Allow yourself a good couple of hours for this step, because—depending how much stuff you own—it could take a while.
Organize and Categorize
Once you’ve emptied your closet, then it’s time to start sorting. You can approach the sorting step in several different ways. Perhaps you want to work by category (e.g. jeans, jackets, tops, trousers, etc.) or perhaps you’d rather go by ‘area’ of the closet, starting with stuff from the shelves, then clothes on the rack. Either way, choose an order of business and stick to it! You’ll need to separate everything into three piles: keep, donate, throw. Remember: be hard on yourself. If you really want to make an improvement in your closet situation, you have to rid yourself of the old.
Donate, throw away and craft
By now, you should have things organized into three categories: keep, donate, throw. Start with the throw pile, disposing of everything as ethically as possible and recycling where necessary. Then move onto the donate pile, and start taking your old clothes and accessories to neighbor charity shops or shelters.
Finally, it’s time to address the stuff you want to keep, including those old t-shirts that you can’t bear to part with but know you’ll never wear again. Instead of letting them clutter up your closet, consider getting crafty with them. Cut out the logos or designs into squares and sew them together to make a blanket or turn them into makeshift cushion covers. Basically, do something useful with the stuff you love but won’t wear!
Arrange by season
As for the non-crafty attire, it’s time to arrange by season. As we move out of winter fashion, start putting thick jumpers, long-sleeved shirts, and bulky coats into storage. You can use vacuum bags to shrink them down if you’re short on space, before tucking them away in some decorative storage bins until it’s time to get them out again. When fall fashion trends roll around, do it again with the summer wardrobe! This way, you’ll always have exactly what you most need front and center in your closet.
Color coordinate your stuff
You’ve now got just the clothes you want to keep and need for the season. But how should you arrange them? There are many schools of thought about just that. Some say you should separate your clothes into color groups, perhaps keeping red with red, grey with grey and white with white, for example. Of course, this only makes sense if you wear lots of colors!
You can also sort by category, keeping shirts and tees to the left of your closet rail, while shifting pants and trousers to the right. Or, put your longest items (dresses, trousers) to one side, and your shortest items (tops, tees) to the other.
Because we are talking about a complete closet refresh, now might be a good time to give your space a good cleaning and a fresh coat of paint. When your clothes are hanging, and shelves are stacked high, it’s hard to dust and vacuum the whole space. After you clean it, consider a new paint job! FYI: Pantone’s color of the year is Living Coral.
Hire a professional to do it all for you
Are you exhausted just reading all this? Skip literally every aforementioned step—except, maybe, Step 2—and hire a professional organizer to do the hard work for you. Yes, closet organizers are a thing and they’ll have your space neat and tidy in no time! Of course, you’ll have to pay for this service, but if you’ve got some spare cash it might make for a worthwhile investment.
Replenish your closet with some on-trend items and classics
Your closet is tidier and full of opportunity, so it’s time to stock up on some new classics and trendy pieces that will tie your looks together. After all, you need to fill in the gaps left by everything you threw away and donated! You can never go wrong with a cute crossbody or a statement jacket.
Hopefully, you feel more confident to tackle that closet refresh you’ve been putting off for ages. It might seem like a mammoth task to start, but remember that there’s no time like the present to get your life—and closet—in order!
Photo credits: realsimple.com, The Container Store & ambinityblog.com