22 Tips for Cleaning Out Your Closet After 60 – Downsizing the Tried and True Way
Are you filled with joy when you open your closet in the morning to get dressed? Or are you overwhelmed with too many choices? As an older woman, you likely have a ton of accumulated clothes, but do you often think, “I have nothing to wear”?
If that’s the case, it could be time to start thinking of your wardrobe in a new way, starting with a good closet clean-out!
The best place to start tackling your wardrobe is by considering which are your favorite items why you reach for them again and again.
What to Keep
Next, make a list of must-have basics for yourself. Of course, you can read other people’s lists, but take their suggestions with a grain of salt – you know your life and your body best.
Start with a basic color scheme, including your favorite neutrals and a few favorite pops of color. The neutrals I go for include black, gray, tan, and denim with pops of red/berry. Navy, brown, beige, white, and olive green all make great neutrals as well.
When you’re done with that, make note of your favorite and most flattering silhouettes. If you are a pear-shape like me, look for fit and flare dresses, including the ever-flattering faux wrap dress, as well as flared jeans and long jackets.
What are your go-to pieces? Make your own list. Are you missing anything that you really need or would like to own? Maybe some of your basics are ready to be replaced?
Now it’s time to think about your lifestyle, what you actually do and what you’ll be doing this next year. (I’m all about positive thinking, so keep in mind what you’ll be needing when you take that dream vacation!)
Try on all your basics and must-haves. If they fit and are in good condition, put them back into the closet along with everything you absolutely love – even if it’s for no good reason.
What to Get Rid of
As you browse your closet, be on the lookout for those things that have long lost their place among the hangers/shelves. These include:
- Anything unflattering, uncomfortable, or itchy – anything!
- Shoes that give you blisters
- Things that don’t fit right or are in a color that doesn’t look good on you
- Items that you can’t match with anything else in your wardrobe
- Sentimental items that you don’t actually wear (take a photo or put them in a keepsake chest in the attic or basement)
- Anything you’re just sick of wearing
- Any projects that never actually happened (for me, that means the bomber jacket I was going to cover with patches and the jeans that I was going to get hemmed. This also includes the jeans you’ll fit into someday.)
- Costume jewelry that’s starting to look old
- Earrings that are too heavy to actually wear
- Bracelets that slide off your arm
- Scarves in shapes you don’t know how to tie (and don’t plan to learn)
- Anything you feel ridiculous wearing
- Things you bought on vacation and have never worn since
- Anything that shrunk or just never looked the same after you washed it
- Things that you try on from time to time and for whatever reason never seems quite right and always goes back on the hanger
- Items that are too low-cut and never looked right pinned or with a cami underneath
- Anything that was a gift that you never really loved as much as you wanted to.
It sounds like a harsh list, but it’s such a joy to open your closet and just see things you love and really want to wear!
What to Do with the Rejects
All the items that don’t qualify, have no place in your closet. Give them to charity, or a friend, or sell them on eBay or Poshmark, or the local consignment store.
Whatever you do, don’t start going through them again and pulling things out to save!
Because, really, what are you saying to yourself if you keep those things? That you must stare at those expensive, terribly uncomfortable shoes for the rest of your life as punishment for your bad decision? Haha!
Be kind to yourself and let the stuff go! Let someone else enjoy your mistakes and make room for the perfect items in your closet!
Getting dressed in the morning should be a joyful experience, and fashion should be fun! You deserve to start the day with a closet full of things that make you look and feel great!
And if you’re looking for some more style inspiration, be sure to stop by my blog, Fashion Should Be Fun.
What do you think about doing a closet clean-out? Do you have any tips to share? I’d also love to hear what pieces in your wardrobe you can’t live without! Looking forward to your comments!