Monday, February 2, 2009

When was the last time you wore that puffy shirt?

All of us have items of clothing that we don’t wear, but still hang on to with all our might. We assure ourselves that someday those items will be back in style/fit us/suddenly look appealing one morning –- when really, they just take up space in the closet and in our psyche.

The trick is to purge everything from your closet that you are not actually wearing on a regular basis. Here is an easy way to figure that out: Turn all of your hangers around so that the hook is facing you. When you wear the item, turn the hanger around so that the curved part faces you. If you have any hooks pointing toward you after six months, you’re not wearing those items and they should be removed from your closet. This works just as well with sweaters and other things that are stacked on shelves or in drawers, just turn them opposite you to start, and put them back with the fold facing you and you’ll see what you really wear. Although: If you store seasonal items with all of the rest of your clothes, they are exempt from the purge as it’s likely that these won’t make the six month cut-off.

Once you've culled out everything that doesn't make the cut, decide whether you want to sell (consignment is going great guns right now), toss, or give away the items. A few of my favorite ways to do the last:

  • If you are interested in donating clothing to a worthy cause, three of the organizations I recommend: Dress for Success, Casa Latina, and The Northwest Center.

  • Something fun to do –- and especially appropriate given our challenging financial times –- is a clothing swap with friends. You get to divest yourself of the puffy shirt you no longer wear, those things find a happy new home, and hopefully you’ll score a couple of fabulous new items as well.
  • 1 comment:

    1. Turning the hangers around is very clever. I too have the 6 month rule but don't have a physical method to track it - relying on my unreliable memory instead. Great tip!