raori

living handmade

Closet clean out

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Tomorrow I will become 35 years old. Thirty-five years old! How did that happen? It feels pretty good though, getting older and wiser…
Although, I’m finding myself slightly lost at the moment… It’s been five years now that I have spent changing diapers, never having time for myself, hardly time to shower, grabbing the only clean piece of clothing I can find, playing with Duplo and getting dirty, seriously- getting dirty as in: you.have.no.idea.unless.you.have.kids.yourself. The substances I’ve been covered in… uhhhh, you really don’t want the details! Anyway, my point is that I’m done with this baby life now. The kids are in school now and I can start living again. And as any girl, I seriously needed a make-over / wardrobe rehab.
I’ve been doing a closet clean-out for a few days and it’s a really inspiring thing to do if you like that sort of thing. I really do. Clean out your closet, organize, give away, re-make old stuff… This blog is partly about environmental fashion, and I think that environmentally, the best thing you can do is to know your style. If you do, you will never buy unnecessary items that will end up in a dust pile eventually, but you will only buy garments that fit your body and can spend some money on good quality (handmade things for example!) It’s true what the stylists say- we only use 20% of our closet, the rest could go away to charity or could’ve been saved in money and production in the first place. Sale at H&M, for example, is dangerous! We go in to look for what we need, and we come out with lots of cheap items, bought on impulse.
So that’s what I’m trying to do at the moment. I already have a box of DIY-items. Clothes that I love, but are just wrong in fit or slightly broken. I have less than 30 garments left now in my closet, but I feel very free and I found lots of nice styling combinations that I never thought about putting together before. Hope you will give it ago as well, if you don’t end up giving away half your closet, at least you get a huge energy boost, ego-kick and some new ideas for styling. My best advice before you start this huge project is to make a little sketch like this:

It will help you guide you through your closet clean out. It can be pretty hard to see yourself and if you make a few sketches of what you tend to wear in your life, it will be easier to set some “ground rules” in your personal style, and it will finally help you to throw out or give away those tops and pants you have kept for years without actually wearing them. Above are the outfits I wear the most and as I’m crazy about lists and “creating within frames”, I’ve named them to remember the different styles. If I found something in my closet that didn’t fit the above styles- it went straight into my eBay second hand shop or to charity. Never mind if you feel like you can’t draw – it’s just for you, so anything will do. Have fun!

Steps to clean out your closet:

– Take out everything from your closet and your drawers, even underwear, stockings, bags, hats, shoes and jackets (get them if they are stored in the hallway). Put it on the floor or on a table. Separate it all into different piles if you wish- cardigans and sweaters, t-shirts, shirts, pants, skirts, dresses etc. – Literally clean out your closet. Wipe drawers, take out hangers and storage boxes. Try to imagine how the closet should be arranged for you to quickly find a nice outfit. Knickers, pants, t-shirts, tank tops, socks in drawers, dresses, thin jackets, skirts, tops and blouses on hangers is the way I do it. – Try on everything! This will take you some time, but it’s worth it, you will feel much better knowing that you only have close that fits you like a glove and that makes you look gorgeous! -Start by hanging back the items that you feel really makes you you! Cause “no one is you’er than you” as Dr Seuss says. That is the clothes that you probably wear most of the time- what makes them special to you? Is it the fit, set silhouette, the style, the color? – Clothes in the the wrong size, or if you haven’t used it in 6 months (apart from winter or certain summer clothes), if it hangs too funny on your body, doesn’t flatter or just doesn’t make you feel “damn, I look good in this” toss it in a “get rid of it-pile”. Be tough! For things that needs some fixing, throw it in the “DIY-mend pile”. Some clothes might be out of fashion or in the real world, or slightly broken or with a tiny stain… these items can be re-used in the bedroom as a stylish pajama for cold nights instead.

the get rid of it-pile
 – give away to charity (don’t throw anything in the bin, even broken clothes can be re-used or appreciated by someone)
 – sell on Ebay or cheap to friends FB (the stuff with a little bit of a value, vintage)
 
 the DIY or mend it-pile
 
– the items you can re-make by dying it, copy (harvest a pattern), up cycle or adorn with beads or embroidery for example (I will show you lots of ideas later on)
 –  the items that you can mend yourself with a little sewing, or that needs to be take to a tailor, dry cleaner or shoe-repairer.
Once you’re done with these steps, you should have a clean closet of only a few very nice items that all go very well together and that fits you perfectly. These are probably your basic items, your staples. The 20% that makes you look gorgeous! These are the kind of clothes you should look for when buying clothes in the future.
 

Author: raori

swedish-belgian mama, designer @ raori, maker of things, veggie-lover, anti-consumer, thinker, explorer, urban gardener and chicken herder.

One thought on “Closet clean out

  1. I can't wait to do the same. I love the beginning of this. You, my friend, have inspired me to do the same. It just takes actually starting the project to make progress. Starting it is the hardest part for me though.

    Like

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