This month, let’s talk about cleaning out that closet of yours and making space for newcomers! This topic really excites me because it is the second step to creating a closet that allows you to select items blindly and still walk out of the door making a statement to the world! Please don't think that I am this excited when I start pulling out the oversized shopping bags and garbage bags to fill them with clothes, shoes, and accessories that I have spent my hard-earned money on. This definitely does not fill my heart with joy, but what does put the sparkle into my eyes is the fact that I will have so much room for more STUFF! And when I say stuff, I mean fresh and affordable new items to enlighten my clothing racks and jewelry stands.
Just imagine yourself standing at the door of your closet and saying, "I know I need to get rid of some stuff but don't know to start. I WANT TO KEEP EVERYTHING!"
My sisters in shopping, let me help you get this cleaning party started. First things first, start small. Go to those jewelry boxes and chests and break out the garbage bag to throw away custom jewelry that has tarnished. It's the worst to see some one wearing a costume ring or bracelet that is now red or a rust color because they forgot to take them off a couple of times before washing their hands. I'M GUILTY, so I know what I am talking about. The cheapest thing to replace is the bejewels; however, the cheaper they are, the faster they are to turn. If you are as guilty as I am about forgetting to take off your costume jewelry before washing your hands, invest in some real jewelry. I only wear costume rings when I am going out to an event because I wash my hands too often throughout the day for them. I also stack my costume bracelets with real gold and silver bangles. I typically put a real bracelet closet to my hands and then stack my watch and costume bracelets behind it; that way they catch the water first and slow the tarnishing process for my costume bracelets.
So after we've cleaned out the jewelry, we'll keep up the pace with placing those scarves that are all stringy and those hats with all of the lent balls in those oversized shopping bags for Goodwill. These are items that others can use but we can replace at reasonable prices. If your scarves and hats are designer, take photos of them and place them on Poshmark and Thriftflip for a month to see if you can sell them for a little cash to buy new ones. Keep them in the bag; that way, if they don't sell they are prepared to be dropped off. Scarves and hats can definitely add spice to a weekend get-up. Remember my consignment hat from last weekend? That hat set my outfit off! Oh Yes! Don't be afraid to branch out if you aren't a hat wearer. This is one of the cheapest accessories to experiment with. I had a girlfriend of mine tell me that her head was too big for a hat! I love you A.B., but NO SUCH THING! Just like most clothes aren't one size fit all, neither are accessories. Take your time and find one that works for YOU! Make a day out of it with your girlfriends. Make it a day when you only shop for specific things. If I do any store shopping, I typically only come with accessories, because I truly believe that they are the hallmark to any wardrobe.
Alright, so we are ready get our game face on and tackle the clothing and outerwear. All I can say is have your bottle of wine ready, because after you lace the giveaway bag with all of the items that you've been planning to take to the seamstress to get a button replace or a hem let out, you are going to need it! Don't be like me and have a sewing machine and still go to have seams stitched and alterations done by someone else. SHAME ON YOU! LOL
YES, GIRLFRIENDS, go through that closet piece by piece. You should know exactly what you have to work with. My mom has always teased me about not selecting what I am going to wear the next day the night before. WHY, I say to myself? I know exactly what I have and I know where it is. Your closet should be organized just like the food in your kitchen pantry. For those with sloppy kitchen pantries ... clean it up ladies! LMBO ... now bake the closet purge.
If you haven't lost weight YET … put it in the bag. If you cannot comfortably flex in those tops ... put it in the bag. If you haven't worn it in two seasons (ESPECIALLY if it still has a tag on it) ... PUT IT IN THE BAG. If you have to camouflage missing buttons, busted seams, discolorations ... put it in the bag. And if you have been on your good girl and it's too big ... you should HAPPILY put it in the bag!
Now that that’s out of the way, I want you to get on your knees and say a small prayer because we are about to tackle that shoe closet. Go ahead and take a sip of that wine I asked you to break out earlier. I typically just go ahead and take a bottle into my shoe room with me along with my favorite potato chips (Lay's Plain ... GO LAYS). Yes, this is serious business if you have to be told, so let's get started.
We are going to take this in stages just as we've done with your other items. First, look at the space where you keep your shoes and decide whether you need to make room for more, do a complete overhaul, or just find a totally new space for them! I try to keep no more than 300-350 pairs at one time, so that helps me eliminate when the psychological stress of it all gets to be a bit much.
After we have surveyed our shoe canvas and know what our end goal is (for me it's all about staying under my number because I run out of shelf space), we are then ready to get started. The first ones we want to interview are those with missing taps, very noticeable scuffs, toe creases, filthy insoles (from being barefoot in the summer), discolored leather, Irish pennants (for you military girls, you know that means stray stitching), and tilted heels! Bring them front and center! Guess what? Put them in either bag you want ... the Goodwill or the trash ... BUT THEY MUST GO! You haven't taken them to the shoe repair shop in all this time, so DON'T GET MOTIVITED NOW THAT YOU KNOW THEY HAVE TO LEAVE!!!! No ma'am! Say your last words and kiss the casualties of the foot war GOODBYE! (Before I go ANY further, let me not forget to address those of you who still keep shoeboxes. Ummm, let's upgrade the shoedrobe with some nice fabric or plastic boxes from IKEA or The Container Store if you don't have the shelving to display them.)
Now that I've covered that, let’s do an inventory to determine how many boots (high-heel and flat), pumps, flats, and sandals by color and material. Depending on what region you live in, suede is out of the question in July, so the material of the shoe should have a category of its own. The purpose of this inventory is to get you a great idea of what types of shoes are missing from your shoedrobe.
Once you have taken an inventory, look a look at what you have left. I want you to bring those shoes and boots that you haven’t worn for more than three seasons front and center. Now ask yourself, how many times have you worn them this past year. If the answer is less than five, put them in those things to sell on Poshmark, eBay or Thriftflip! They are obviously of good quality if they've lasted this long, but if you haven't worn them and need the space, I suggest letting someone else take them for a stroll!
Hopefully, by now you have created some much-needed space to fill the gaps you discovered during your inventory!!!! OMG! You have just created a reason to shop!!!!!!! I am literally screaming "WOOT WOOT" right now while typing!!!! I LOVE IT!!!!!!
So for me, I would take a shower, load all of my bags for Goodwill in the trunk of my car, grab that bottle of wine from my shoe room and head to the couch to shop for shoes online ALL NIGHT, but I don't expect you to do that! LMBO! I do, however, expect you to give yourself a round of applause and treat yourself because you have accomplished quite a few things by doing this: (1) You have given your clothing a breathing treatment to assume its duties for the upcoming season; (2) You have donated to a worthy cause; and (3) You have given yourself a reason to SHOE SHOP UNTIL YOUR WALLET CAN'T TAKE IT ANY MORE!!! Now your shoedrobe is looking forward to spring just as much as you are!
Until next time ... keep it classy sassy!
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