What My Closet Really Looks Like
You’d think after watching my thrift haul videos all these years that my closet is overflowing with magnificent clothing… but, it’s not.
My closet is actually a well-organized, curated, color-coded work-in-progress.
It wasn’t always that way and I know a lot of thrifters who are still the ‘before’ version of me.
Overwhelmed at the thought of cleaning their closets, reluctant to get rid of anything, and scared to let things go.
If that sounds like you, don’t worry.
I’m here to demonstrate super simple steps you can take to clear the clutter in your closet, what to do with it once it’s gone, and make better choices in the future so it never gets that way again.
Ready to make some real change? Let’s get started!
Where To Begin In Your Closet
The best time to start decluttering is now and the best place is with something small. Starting small allows you to complete an area quickly and gives you the momentum you need to keep going.
For you this might be a box of jewelry, an unopened drawer, or your shoe collection. I have a problem with scarves so I’m always weeding through my heap.
When picking up an item, Marie Kondo will instruct you to ask the item if it sparks joy. But I’m not MK, I’m a real thrifter just like you and evvverything is going to spark joy. If not, then why did I buy it in the first place?
Some real questions to ask yourself are:
• Am I still using this? Does it serve a purpose for me anymore? (If not: set is aside for our later steps.)
• Is there someone that could use this more than me? (Definitely set it aside for later if you said yes!)
• Do I like this anymore? (If you don’t even remember that you have it, it’s probably safe to set it aside.)
Once you’ve got some piles going, it’s time to move on to the next phase.
What To Do With Your Stuff
At this point, some people might bag everything up in a trash bag and toss it.
NEVER EVER DO THIS!
It’s terrible to throw all that stuff into a landfill but, more importantly, it can all have a second life.
Because this post is geared towards thrifters, I always recommend rounding up items to take to your favorite thrift store. But you have lots of options of what else to do with your items! It will all depend on what you found and where you think it would be best:
• Give it to a friend. If you know someone who would appreciate the item, give it to them. Don’t wait and hold onto it as a gift as you might squirrel away and you’ll forget about. It’s all about getting the things out of your house (or used in another way) as soon as possible. We’ll talk more about that in the last step!
• Consign the items. Sometimes you’ll find items that have some decent value and would be better off taken to a consignment shop. This would be
• Upcycle your stuff. Maybe you found a bunch of skirts you don’t love as much anymore but with a little TLC (ie: embellishments or a hem change) and they’d be back in regular circulation again. Always consider another use for your stuff.
• Host a swap party. Maybe you can’t think of a particular friend to give an item to? Have a bunch of friends over, ask them to bring unwanted items, and have a big ol’ swap party. These are traditionally done with clothing but adding in accessories makes for a more size-inclusive event!
• Store it away for later. Ok, so I said don’t store things away but this is for those items you come across that have a lot of sentimental value! Sometimes you just can’t relinquish items in the moment but it’s still important to move them out of sight so you can have that Pinterest-perfect closet you’ve always dreamed. Remember to revisit this box in 6 months-1 year to see if you still can’t let it go.
If you’re still not sure what to do, ask a friend for their opinion. They might have an idea you hadn’t thought of before!
How To Prevent Collecting In The Future
Now that you’re in a cleaning groove, it’s important to keep it up so you don’t get a cluttered closet in the future.
• My biggest tip is to keep a bag or basket near your closet at all times and add items to it as you get tired of them. Only cleaning once a month or “when you have time” feels like a cop out to me. You should do things when you’re thinking about them or else you’ll forget. (Trust me!) That’s kind of a common theme in this post though, huh?
• Have your friends keep you accountable. Share your struggles with them and let them know what’s going on in your closet. If you’re comfortable, even let them help you with the cleaning progress! Everything is easier with the right support system.
• Become a more conscious shopper. Think very hard about your future purchases. Don’t buy things just because they’re cheap, available, or “almost right.” Be picky! You’ll feel so much better knowing you waited for the perfect item and didn’t settle for less. You deserve the best in life!
This is all easier said than done but I promise that with a little practice, you’ll be a pro in no time! At this point in my life, I’m like a fine oiled machine that keeps my closet looking fresh everyday.
Coming up, we’ll go more in depth about closet organization hacks that will spruce up your space and make your piles look more sleek and tidy! If you have any questions, feel free to ask them in the comments.
In the meantime, please ‘Pin’ this post for future reference and sign-up for my newsletter to continue this conversation. ‘Til next time!