Conquering Your Cluttered Closet

Living among clutter leads to a cluttered mind, and your closet is no exception. The average woman wears 20% of her clothes, 80% of the time. I encourage my clients to have fewer, well-selected pieces that work beautifully for their body types rather than a closet full of clothes that don’t work.

Organizational experts say that everything in our lives should be beautiful or useful. I couldn’t agree more. Getting dressed is so much easier when your closet is pared down to just the garments that make you look and feel great. And whether you've gone through some major life changes or you haven't cleaned out your closet in years, almost everyone can use a closet overhaul!

My friend, New Zealand stylist Susana Sarmiento, says, “Everything in your closet should celebrate who you are.” I love this! Too many women keep clothing from years ago that may no longer fit or reflect their current style. The key is to honor who you are right now – not who you were 10 years or 10 pounds ago.

To get your closet pared down and reflective of you, follow this formula:                                 

  • · Take everything out of your closet, one category at a time (tops, bottoms, dresses, etc.)

      · For each item, ask yourself the following questions:

o Does it fit me? (if you’re not sure, try it on! Can it be altered to fit better?)

o Does it flatter me?

o Have I worn it in the past year?

o Would I buy it again if I saw it in a store today?

o Do I feel good when I wear it?

  • If you answer no to any of the above questions, donate or consign the item. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit, flatter or make you feel fabulous! If you must hold on to some garments that have sentimental value, pack them safely into a bin that can be stored elsewhere. The idea is to create an active closet, one that is full of clothes you wear all the time.
  • Be creative, always thinking of how you can get more use of what you already have. For example, could a simple alteration change the look of a certain garment? Hang matching suits separately in your closet so you can mix and match those pieces and create a more modern look. Organize what remains by color to make your closet look more like a boutique. Changing the way you arrange your clothes will also help you notice garments you would normally pass by.

Once you clean out your closet, you will have a true inventory of what you own and what you need. Then, you can add in a few key pieces your wardrobe might be missing.

For more information and helpful hints, please visit me at www.jmstylist.com. Sign up for my newsletter and get a free copy of my Top Ten Wardrobe Staples.