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Declutter your Closet with The Closet Manifesto

Personal Development

By Leanne Pruette

Does this sound like you? You don’t have a lot of time to devote to decluttering, yet you really need to claim back some time in your busy morning routine!

Here’s a quick closet refresh that will help you make some progress in your closet. It’ll require an hour or two over a period of a few days which will pay you back in spades! You’ll be able to get out the door faster, with less stress and fuss and make your mornings much easier!

The key to making this work is for you to be INTENTIONAL.  Make quick, decisive decisions on your clothes – do this, and you’ll have an updated closet in no time!!!

Let’s get Started!

1) PREPARE for your closet refresh by having a nice big box or bag for your
DONATION items. Also, have a notebook or paper and a pen – so you can jot
down items you’re donating, for tax purposes.

2) Get anything out of the closet that doesn’t belong there – items you’ve stashed or put in there that belongs someplace else needs to be removed.

Psst… if the item doesn’t have a home, it’s clutter! If you can’t / don’t want to make a home for something, get it out of your space!  These are the first items for your DONATIONS box!

3) Take a first pass through your clothes and get rid of ‘low hanging fruit’ in
your closet. Go through your clothing items and accessories and pull
anything out that is obviously stained, worn, needs repair or does not fit. If
the items can be salvaged and they are things that you love, make a plan to
get them repaired/cleaned SOON (like, within the next 7-10 days) – otherwise, the items need to go.

If something doesn’t fit – get rid of it!

I know, I KNOW– you’re going to lose weight – those clothes will fit soon.

Donate them anyway – you deserve to have clothes that FIT you and make you feel good about yourself in your closet. When you DO lose that weight, go out and choose a few nice, new pieces for yourself to enhance your wardrobe. If clothes are too worn or stained, they may need to be trashed instead of donated.

4) Once you’ve gone through the first pass, it’s time to take a second pass at
those clothing items and accessories that are left. Let’s go through your
closet and really determine if they are working for you. For each item, ask
the questions:

  • IS THIS SOMETHING I’M CURRENTLY WEARING, OR HAVE WORN
    WITHIN THE PAST YEAR?
  • IS THIS SOMETHING THAT I’D BUY RIGHT NOW IF I SAW IT IN A
    STORE?
  • IS THIS SOMETHING THAT MAKES ME FEEL CONFIDENT WHEN I WEAR
    IT?

If you answer ‘no’ to any of these questions, you need to get that item out of
your closet. Now!

You don’t need to do this closet refresh all at once – in fact, it’s a good idea
if you take on this closet refresh over a period of days and divide your closet
up into sections – work on a portion of your closet at a time, or if your
clothes are easily divided into types, you can start with a particular clothing
item at a time ( tops, bottoms, dresses, and jackets, etc.).

One key here is to note that you’re not pulling all these items out of the closet to sort them and then putting them back – you’re just addressing each item in your closet, and the items that are leaving your closet are the things that are pulled out.

This distinction is what will allow you to complete this refresh in a timely
manner – pulling all the clothes out, sorting them, and then putting the
things that remain back in your closet will take more time.

5) Once you’ve gone through and removed ‘bad actor’ items from your closet, it’s time to give it a little clean – vacuum or use a dust mop on the floor and use a dust rag or all-purpose cleaner on the shelves and racks.

6) For a little closet refresh extra credit, up-level your organization – if your clothes are interspersed randomly in your closet, sort them by type; if they’re sorted by type, you can sub-categorize them (for example sleeveless shirts, short sleeve shirts, ¾ sleeve shirts, long sleeve shirts, etc.); you can
subcategorize further by grouping items by color.

On the following pages, I’ve listed some great closet storage and organizing hacks for you. Once you’ve finished decluttering, see which of these items will help you really maximize your closet going forward (but remember – don’t consider these items until AFTER you’ve decluttered.

DECLUTTER first, then ORGANIZE afterward!

Closet Hacks

 

HUGGABLE HANGERS

The thin profile of the hangers maximizes your space,
the velvet flocking keeps clothes from sliding off, the
uniformity of using a single type of hanger and color
bring order to your space, and the choice of colors let
you personalize your space and add a sense of calm (or
vibrancy or energy) to your closet.

BACK OF DOOR STORAGE

If your closet has a closing door (not a bi-fold), use the back of the door for storage.  There are all sorts of organizers made for the back of the door or consider towel racks for hanging scarves or other items, or a series of hooks for purses, jewelry, scarves, etc. – think ‘outside the box’ and consider repurposing hanging kitchen or bathroom organizers, too.

SMALL HOOKS

You can use cup hooks or Command hooks for
necklaces. Hang them inside your closet or on the
back of the door and display your necklaces so you’ll
remember what you have and wear them!

 

POOL NOODLES

Use pool noodles cut in half to stuff into your boots to keep them upright.

SHOWER CURTAIN RINGS

Loop shower curtain rings on a hanger and hang tank tops on them (you can hang scarves this way, too).
Letsaceyourspace.com Closet Manifesto

PHONE APPS

Use an app, like Stylebook or Closet to help you keep your
closet organized and help you track what you’re wearing.
It will even remember how often you’ve worn a piece of
clothing!

CHAIN – EARRING STORAGE

Keep earrings in order by hanging them on a chain. Hang a chain between two nails
on your closet. Then hook earrings into the loops of the chain.

S-Hooks

Hang purses or scarves in your closet using S-Hooks – you can also loop multiple scarves on a clothes hanger (Huggable Hangers are particularly good for this!).

BINS, BASKETS, BOXES

Use bins, baskets or boxes on hard to reach upper
shelves to store purses, umbrellas, off-season shoes
and clothes, etc.

HANGER HACK

If you really want to track what you wear, turn all your clothes hangers around backward. As you wear a clothing item, put it back on its hanger in the closet facing forward. In 6 months, you’ll see what you didn’t wear, and can get it out of your space!!

EXTRA HANGING ROD

If your closet only has one long hanging rod spanning the closet, install a second rack to create more space – you can get hanging racks that will hook on the top rack and hang down, to multiply your hanging space.

FLIP FOLD

More a DRESSER hack than a closet one, but an answer to
Marie Kondo’s KonMari fold is to use Flipfold boards –
makes nice uniform ‘packages’ of your shirts!!

CLOSET DOOR REDO

 

Consider removing your folding or sliding closet doors and replacing with a curtain, to make more room in the space, and make the closet items easier to access.

CANVAS RACK

Fold or roll up thick sweaters and jeans and store them in
a vertical hanging canvas rack, to save shelf/drawer space,
and make more use of hanging space.

FAVORITE TIPS AND QUOTES

 

  • Ask yourself ‘If I were shopping right now, would I buy this?’ If NOT – get rid of it.
  • Get rid of things you haven’t used in a year.
  • Decluttering is an ongoing process – reevaluate regularly.
  • When you buy a replacement for something, GET RID of the thing it’s meant to replace.
  • Value quality over quantity in your purchases – the items will last longer, and you’ll need fewer things in your space.
  • Organizing and decluttering are DIFFERENT! Don’t organize until after you declutter.
  • “If you want to improve your life immediately clean out a closet. Often it’s what we hold onto that holds us back.”- Cheryl Richardson
  • “Set up a plan of what to let into your house BEFORE you go shopping.”
    Marie Jackson
  • “If it doesn’t make you feel fabulous: don’t do it, don’t buy it, don’t keep it.”Unknown
  • “Be a ruthless editor of what you allow in your home. Ask yourselves, ‘What does this object mean to me?’”-Nate Berkus
  • “The first step to getting what you want is having the courage to get rid of what you don’t.”-Joshua Becker
  • “Decluttering is infinitely easier when you think of it as deciding what to keep, rather than what to throw away.”- Francine Jay
  • “We buy things we don’t need, with money we don’t have, to impress people we don’t like.”- Dave Ramsey
  • “We have traded our freedom for overfilled closets, and our passion for unnecessary maintenance. We have sacrificed life in pursuit of clutter.”
    -Joshua Becker
  • “If it doesn’t add to your life, it doesn’t belong in your life.” -Jennifer Burger

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