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5 Things to Declutter from Your Wardrobe Today!

By Lesley Spellman December 23, 2023 Beauty

If your wardrobes are bursting at the seams, but you still find you have nothing to wear, you’re not alone. It’s time to get ruthless and be honest with yourself. Here are 5 things taking up valuable space in your wardrobe that you can declutter today!

Clothes You Are Keeping Out of Guilt

We all have things in our wardrobes that we overstretched ourselves to buy. We loved it so much that we splurged a lot of money on it, but somehow it has never quite worked out.

It gets overlooked each and every time we look for an outfit to wear. Yet we can’t bring ourselves to get rid of it because we feel guilty about the money we spent. It’s a tough decision but it’s time to say goodbye.

The money was wasted at the time we bought it, and no amount of time is going to bring that money back. And on top of that, do we really want that negative guilty feeling each time we open the wardrobe door? Let the item go and let the guilt go with it.

You may want to look into second-hand consignment stores in your area or online websites that allow you to sell and purchase used goods. Knowing that you at least made a few bucks back from your purchase may lift a little guilt. 

Clothes You Want to Get Into

Now we come to the age old issue that we keep in our wardrobes items of clothing that don’t fit us. Whether we yearn to be bigger or smaller, many of us keep clothing that doesn’t work right now in the hope that it’s going to happen for us some time in the future.

The key is to be realistic and honest with yourself. Are you currently on a diet that is realistically going to get you to where you need to be? How long is it since you were that weight?

If it’s been years or decades since you were the right size to get into that skirt you love, maybe now is the time to say goodbye. After all, if we achieve our weight goal, don’t we deserve to treat ourselves to something new?

Have you heard of clothing swap parties? Bring the items in your closet that you don’t wear or that don’t fit and other women do the same. What is old to you will be new for someone else. You may even find a new skirt that you love that actually fits.

Shoes That Hurt Your Feet

If you have been a shoe lover all your life, chances are you have some shoes – THOSE shoes that you really, really love – sitting at the bottom of your wardrobe. They take you back to a place when you could wear the heels you wanted, look amazing, and feel fantastic.

But time played its part, and your feet are sadly not what they used to be. You favour comfort over height or style now. You have your go-to favourites that work for you, and you know what you like. But you still yearn to wear THOSE shoes.

Is this even realistic? Are your feet miraculously going to switch back to the feet they were in your 40s? It’s not an easy realisation to come to, but the likelihood is that you are never going to get back into those shoes. Life’s way too short for sore feet. Declutter them today, and let someone else enjoy them.

Office or work shoes that you no longer need can be donated to clothing outlets, like Dress for Success, that help women get back into the workforce. 

Dress for Success

Multiple Versions of Our ‘Safe’ Clothes

Black trousers, a little black dress, a floaty top, a cashmere sweater – everyone has a go-to item. An item that is safe, that makes us feel good, and never lets us down. We know it works for our shape, so we buy it over and over again.

Because it works so well for us, we tend to buy one every season, or even the same item in multiple colours.

But the problem is, even with our safe clothes we will still have our favourites – the perfect colour, the little black dress that looks the nicest, the version that’s most comfy – and we repeatedly choose our favourites when we are looking through our wardrobe each day.

Even within our safe clothes, the ones lower down the list get overlooked. So, it’s time for more of that honesty. Put your whole collection of ‘safe’ clothes together and rank them.

The ones that are below number 5 or 6 on the rankings are definitely up for debate. Don’t give up valuable space in your wardrobe for things you never wear.

DIY or Gardening Clothes

So, you have made a decision that you no longer need an item but it still has wear in it. It’s a perfectly good item of clothing so why get rid of it?

You have the perfect solution. Wear it when you’re doing dirty jobs – DIY, cleaning, or gardening. But how many outfits do you have for ‘dirty’ jobs? You definitely don’t need more than one or two. Don’t delay your decision. Send it straight for recycling today.

Further reading, SUITCASE CLOSET CLEARING – OR HOW I GOT MY CLOSET IN ORDER.

Let’s Have a Conversation:

Is your wardrobe bulging at the seams, but you struggle to make the right decisions? What is your go-to safe item of clothing? Have you fallen foul of having too many clothes for ‘DIY’ jobs? Use the comment box below and let us know about your wardrobe decluttering efforts.

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Joan Totten

After I retired, I purged my closet and felt a sense of freedom only to find myself going back to work 3 years later and shopping for appropriate business clothes. I love the idea of keeping only what is needed, but the need might change when unexpected life events turn you in another direction than what you planned would happen.

Last edited 3 months ago by Joan Totten
Ria

We have a rule specifically for clothes. 1 comes in 5 must go. Then part of my closet collapsed several months ago & while I hemmmed & hawed for a bit, I did a massive closet purge only keeping 2 pairs of slacks, 3 blouses & 3 dresses (all t-shirt material with pockets, 1 long black, 1 long beige & 1 midi black). Also all the high heeled shoes, boots, etc. Kept 2 pairs of Bzeesz slingbacks, 1 tan, 1 black, black leather calf boots, 2 pairs of Sperry 1 brown, 1 black, sneakers & a pr of Birkenstocks for summer.

Next purge is the bureau.

Lesley Spellman

Well done!

Renee Lovitz

I am good at decluttering! I have very few clothes in my closet and very few things in my house!

Linda

I’ve decided to try to avoid buying clothes in 2024. I need to be disciplined, lose a few pounds and just shop in my wardrobe. I have a wedding in August so I will probably buy a nice dress for that, but one I can wear for different occasions.

My life is very much smart casual now, anything surplus will be donated to my local Red Cross shop. I buy good quality things and take care of them so I like to think ladies of less means can enjoy my preloved things at low cost.

Lana Muir

I invited all of my girlfriends over to go through my closets and take anything that they liked. It was so much fun and now I do this every year. I now have a “capsule wardrobe” and add to it annually with just a couple of items. I kept my favourite pair of jeans – that’s it. And they are 20 years old and still look great.

Last edited 3 months ago by Lana Muir
Linda

I am also wearing jeans that are 20 years old. Faded black denim and stonewash bootcuts, I love them. Denim is classic.

Lisa N.

I wish I had girlfriends (or any type of friend) who would be interested in my clothes. We’re all such different styles, colors and sizes. But I donate any clothes I haven’t worn for a year to a charity. This article has great ideas of which clothes to choose.

The Author

Professional Declutterer Lesley Spellman has been creating clutter-free, happy homes for over 10 years. She believes life is too short to be consumed by clutter. As co-host of The Declutter Hub Podcast, owner of UK based The Clutter Fairy and worldwide membership site, The Declutter Hub, she is on a mission to help people all around the world completely change their clutter mindset for good.

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