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Old 03-22-2010, 09:11 PM   #1
mokamoto
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Default Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

Hi there! I am reading Decluttering Your Heart and Home (thank you ArmsofLove!) and learning so much!

I am such a clutterbug, I can find so many reasons to keep things, and that is exacerbated in my closet by living in a country where clothes just don't fit me well unless they are aimed at foreigners and out of my budget! I order online when I need to, but returning is not easy so I am not always happy with what I've bought and it takes more than a few days to get something in the mail! In addition, I moved from a professional life to a SAHM and my daily wardrobe needs are different. Could you all help me define how many outfits are good for daily wear and for special occasions? I know this differs by person, but I need a benchmark to start from in making it my own! Thanks so much for helping this clutterbug set some limits and get my closet back in usable order. .

---------- Post added at 04:11 PM ---------- Previous post was at 02:33 PM ----------

Seems this got buried in a slew of new messages!
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Last edited by mokamoto; 03-22-2010 at 07:35 PM. Reason: Typo
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Old 03-22-2010, 09:38 PM   #2
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

hmm... Well first I would probably go through and donate anything that doesn't fit you. Start there. it will help you get a handle on what you have to work with.

From there, you're right - it really depends! What's your climate, how often do you do laundry, what are your daily activities, etc.

I always have more shirts than pants/skirts. I like to have 2-3 pairs of jeans that fit.They to put together outfits out of the same pieces to maximize your wardrobe without having too many clothes- in other words, things you can mix and match for more options.

Sorry if that's not super specific, lol. ITU about hanging on to too many clothes, but it sure feels good when you don't have to dig through the things you don't wear to get to the good stuff.
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Old 03-22-2010, 11:14 PM   #3
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

I need to do this too, so I don't really have any any suggestions for you. I am going to be looking for some tips, though.

Who wrote the book you mentioned? Amazon had two with that title.
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Old 03-22-2010, 11:51 PM   #4
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

I have a fairly small wardrobe (by American standards, at least). I have a certain amount of nice wooden hangers (not sure how many, but I could go count, lol) and that's all the clothes I keep in the closet. It's worked well for me to keep a handle on things. I always feel like I have something to wear that fits, and if something new comes in, the old goes out, b/c I don't have enough hangers.

Off the top of my head I have 3 pairs of jeans, various t-shirts/tanks, two sweaters, 3 dress pants, one pair of kahkis, two pairs of capris, 3 skirts, 4 dresses, several blouses, and a couple specific things for dress events (I play piano with jazz groups), four pajama sets/nighties, and one sweatshirt. I also have a drawer of socks and underwear, which I recently pared down.

I also keep a specific set of shoes on four shoe shelves. I can fit everything on those. I've been trying to buy really high-quality clothing and shoes that will last years. I've been losing some weight so once I get to my goal weight then I will clean some more stuff out b/c several of the things are too big right now and update my dress pants and skirts, in particular.
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Old 03-23-2010, 12:31 AM   #5
mokamoto
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by BearyBlessed View Post
I need to do this too, so I don't really have any any suggestions for you. I am going to be looking for some tips, though.

Who wrote the book you mentioned? Amazon had two with that title.
hi Bearyblessed! It's nice to do it together, right? . The book is actually "Too Much Stuff, De-cluttering Your Heart & Home" by Kathryn Porter. It's awesome and I think I'll be rereading it to get the most out of it I can! She talks about reprogramming thinking about "things" and how our actions evolve from our thoughts in sometimes surprising ways. She also links prayer and mindfulness in as tools in the decluttering quest. I hope it helps you, too!

---------- Post added at 07:17 PM ---------- Previous post was at 06:52 PM ----------

canadiyank!!! This is exactly what I was looking for! As you lose weight, how do you manage? I think part of my proliferation is due to multiple sizes and prepregnancy clothes. Many fit but are not breastfeeding or babywearing friendly, although I love them! I see you are a WAHM. How often do you need to dress up to attend meetings, etc? Thanks again!

Quote:
Originally Posted by canadiyank View Post
I have a fairly small wardrobe (by American standards, at least). I have a certain amount of nice wooden hangers (not sure how many, but I could go count, lol) and that's all the clothes I keep in the closet. It's worked well for me to keep a handle on things. I always feel like I have something to wear that fits, and if something new comes in, the old goes out, b/c I don't have enough hangers.

Off the top of my head I have 3 pairs of jeans, various t-shirts/tanks, two sweaters, 3 dress pants, one pair of kahkis, two pairs of capris, 3 skirts, 4 dresses, several blouses, and a couple specific things for dress events (I play piano with jazz groups), four pajama sets/nighties, and one sweatshirt. I also have a drawer of socks and underwear, which I recently pared down.

I also keep a specific set of shoes on four shoe shelves. I can fit everything on those. I've been trying to buy really high-quality clothing and shoes that will last years. I've been losing some weight so once I get to my goal weight then I will clean some more stuff out b/c several of the things are too big right now and update my dress pants and skirts, in particular.


---------- Post added at 07:31 PM ---------- Previous post was at 07:17 PM ----------

crunchymum! Come to think of it, each child has a primary color and I mix and match that way for them. Since they outgrow their clothes, it is easy to have matching color pallettes. I suppose that's why my classic go to pieces have lasted so long, bc I do the same for myself. But I don't necessarily replace my clothes as often as theirs. thanks for the reminder and the rough bench mark.

Quote:
Originally Posted by crunchymum View Post
hmm... Well first I would probably go through and donate anything that doesn't fit you. Start there. it will help you get a handle on what you have to work with.

From there, you're right - it really depends! What's your climate, how often do you do laundry, what are your daily activities, etc.

I always have more shirts than pants/skirts. I like to have 2-3 pairs of jeans that fit.They to put together outfits out of the same pieces to maximize your wardrobe without having too many clothes- in other words, things you can mix and match for more options.

Sorry if that's not super specific, lol. ITU about hanging on to too many clothes, but it sure feels good when you don't have to dig through the things you don't wear to get to the good stuff.
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Old 03-23-2010, 07:29 AM   #6
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

I have a lot of shelf space in my closet so I keep most sweaters, sweatshirts and a couple piles of out of season clothes there. Twice a year I switch out my wardrobes - from shorts to long sleeves.

I typically wear "business casual" (dockers and cotton shirts) to teach lessons and to church, so I have 4-5 outfits like that. I also have four pair of jeans (two blues, one brown and one black - the colors can be slightly dressed up for get-togethers, etc). I have A LOT of shirts that can be worn with jeans for everyday or with dress pants for church/parties. I decided one day that though I was home every day, I could dress more nicely without dressing in expensive clothes. KOHLS is especially good for blousy-type shirts for everyday wear. I don't wear run-down tshirts anymore.

Every time I switch out my wardrobe, I first go to what is hanging and purposely pick out one garbage bag (for donation) of stuff I wore very little or didn't fit well. If it didn't fit well, I'll be less inclined to wear it again next year.

I'm pretty generous with what I toss - and when I find a shirt I like a lot, I tend to buy 2-3 in different colors.

Lastly, I have 2-3 basic black dress pants with 2-3 basic dress jackets (in colors to go with patterned shirts) for real dress up days. I play in an orchestra so the black dress pants are mandatory (as well as a dozen or more dress tops in various warmths and layers LOL).
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Old 03-23-2010, 03:18 PM   #7
mokamoto
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

for the details camperjen. Your description helps me a lot, especially the clothes for different purposes part.

Quote:
Originally Posted by camperjen View Post
I have a lot of shelf space in my closet so I keep most sweaters, sweatshirts and a couple piles of out of season clothes there. Twice a year I switch out my wardrobes - from shorts to long sleeves.

I typically wear "business casual" (dockers and cotton shirts) to teach lessons and to church, so I have 4-5 outfits like that. I also have four pair of jeans (two blues, one brown and one black - the colors can be slightly dressed up for get-togethers, etc). I have A LOT of shirts that can be worn with jeans for everyday or with dress pants for church/parties. I decided one day that though I was home every day, I could dress more nicely without dressing in expensive clothes. KOHLS is especially good for blousy-type shirts for everyday wear. I don't wear run-down tshirts anymore.

Every time I switch out my wardrobe, I first go to what is hanging and purposely pick out one garbage bag (for donation) of stuff I wore very little or didn't fit well. If it didn't fit well, I'll be less inclined to wear it again next year.

I'm pretty generous with what I toss - and when I find a shirt I like a lot, I tend to buy 2-3 in different colors.

Lastly, I have 2-3 basic black dress pants with 2-3 basic dress jackets (in colors to go with patterned shirts) for real dress up days. I play in an orchestra so the black dress pants are mandatory (as well as a dozen or more dress tops in various warmths and layers LOL).
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Old 03-23-2010, 07:31 PM   #8
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mokamoto View Post
I think part of my proliferation is due to multiple sizes and prepregnancy clothes. Many fit but are not breastfeeding or babywearing friendly, although I love them!
This is my difficulty.
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Old 03-23-2010, 08:14 PM   #9
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Maggirayne View Post
This is my difficulty.
Thanks, Maggirayne! My friends here really use a stroller, so they don't get my dilemma. What do you think about packing those non-bw/bf friendly clothes in a box and label it to open when done bw/bf and the date packed? That gets into storage space though. Hmmm... I suppose storing away from every day space is still more efficient though.
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Old 03-23-2010, 08:33 PM   #10
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

First, if it doesn't fit, get rid of it.

Second, if you don't like it, why keep it?

Third, if it's an issue of bf'ing etc then by all means box it up and stop wasting space in your closet when you can't enjoy it

Fourth, what do you do? What is your life about? Keep a few clothes that go outside that (nice dress if you occasionally go out but not often, suit just in case, etc)
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Old 03-23-2010, 08:38 PM   #11
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Default Re: Decluttering Question- closet full of clothes and nothing to wear!!!

Quote:
Originally Posted by mokamoto View Post
As you lose weight, how do you manage? I think part of my proliferation is due to multiple sizes and prepregnancy clothes. Many fit but are not breastfeeding or babywearing friendly, although I love them!
ITU - I can't wear dresses right now b/c I'm bfing, so I just wear skirts and blouses/twinsets to church. I've just been getting rid of the larger sizes as I go down. A couple yrs. ago I gained about 40 lbs and nothing fit so I got rid of all my smaller clothes b/c it was making me feel frustrated. Then I lost about 20 lbs, then got pregnant, gained 40 more pounds, and am now trying to get down again, I'll never get down to my pre-pregnancy weight of even after dd2 but So basically, I just keep a small enough wardrobe that I buy something that fits when I need it. Like right now I have one pair of jeans that fit and two larger pairs. When I get down I'll replace them all.

Quote:
Originally Posted by mokamoto View Post
I see you are a WAHM. How often do you need to dress up to attend meetings, etc?
Not often. I have three part-time jobs...my piano teaching is pretty casual, I just usual wears jeans and a nice-looking top, my church job I dress up for on Sunday but that's it (other rehearsals and staff meetings are casual), and then my jazz gigs are fairly formal so I have a couple nice black dresses and one formal dress for those.

---------- Post added at 08:38 PM ---------- Previous post was at 08:36 PM ----------

Quote:
Originally Posted by ArmsOfLove View Post
Third, if it's an issue of bf'ing etc then by all means box it up and stop wasting space in your closet when you can't enjoy it
When I was pregnant this last time I finally did that! Why was I keeping all those clothes in my closet/dresser when I couldn't even wear them?
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