What to Keep or Donate From Your Closet

by Karen

Spring clean-up is in full swing at my house and probably yours too so this article comes at a great time. These fashion tips will help you decide what to keep or donate from your closet and wardrobe. We will tackle this daunting project together, so don’t worry!

Where to Start

For some this is the hardest part. Some will set a bench at the door of their closet and just stare for hours on end, while others will strategically pull all the clothes out and toss them on the bed in a big pile, and, yes, there is a third group who will open then shut the door and walk away. For me, the pile on the bed is how I handle the spring and the fall closet reorganization. It seems like a good place to start. Okay, ladies, drag a bench or chair into your bedroom and place it in front of the open door of your closet. Now take everything, and I do mean everything, out and pile it – in no particular order – on your bed. You will be going through this pile and creating three new smaller piles. One for keeps, one for donate, and one for trash. Grab a big box or a large bag and be ready to part with several items.

Try on Each Item

This is the time consuming part of clearing a closet, but it is a must do. Try on every piece of clothing in the pile on your bed. Make a conscious decision of how each article makes you feel. Do you feel sexy, confident, and pretty then keep the item. If your clothes do not fit do not keep them. There are women all over the country looking for clothes in sizes that no longer fit you. But, and this is a big but, do not donate torn or stained clothes unless they are going to an animal shelter to be used as bedding. Clothing that is missing a button or needs a zipper repair should be fixed before donation, if possible. Take the box or bag of clothing for donation out of the room immediately after it is full. This will help you not go back through it.

Make Two Keep Piles

I know it sounds odd, but make two keep piles. The first one will have clothes for the current and next season. The other will be the other two seasons. When organizing your closet, remember to only keep current and next season clothes on hand. This will free up so much space. Place the past seasons’ items in durable container that can be slipped under the bed. When fall rolls in it will be time to re-do the closet again.

Get Out Your Hangers

This tip is going to sound odd, but it worked for me. Once you have a pile of clothes ready to go back in the closet, hang them up backwards. I mean, hang the hanger in the closet opposite of how you normally would. This will show you the clothes that you put back in but never wear. In six months, all the hangers that are still backwards should be donated. Why six months? Because, in six months’ time you will have had plenty of opportunity to wear the item regardless of weather, occasion, color choice, etc. and there will be no more excuses for the item to still be in your closet. You probably found several scarves you forgot you owned in the pile on your bed. Hang them all on the same hanger. Use shower curtain rings on a sturdy hanger and tie a scarf (or two) to each ring. This way you can find them whenever you need or want one. Another thought about hangers, I see closets in photos that are color coordinated all the time; I am not that organized. If you are like me, it is okay for the red blouse to be next to the green sweater. I also hang as many skirts and slacks as I can on one sturdy hanger – am I the only one?!

It is Okay to Fold Clothes

So you have taken up every inch of available space on the closet bar and you still have a pile on the bed. It is perfectly acceptable to fold your sweaters and most shirts, as well as jeans and some casual pants. First decide what you have an abundance of and how much wardrobe and dresser space you have. Just be sure that you keep tops in a separate drawer from bottoms or you will be defeating the purpose of this reorganization.

All the Other Stuff

Ladies, so far so good. The closet is taking shape and your bed is almost clear of all the clutter. But, what about all that other stuff. I mean your purses and clutches, the belts, and special shoes and all those sort of things. This stuff is no different than clothes. It must be dealt with – Keep, Donate, or Toss. Toss torn, stained, or otherwise unusable items immediately. What do you have left? How many of each color? Can you bring yourself to donate one quarter of your pile? Trust me, this will help you in the long run. Now, at the top of your closet, there may be a shelf. This shelf is not for the blankets on your bed (they go in the linen closet). This shelf is for all that stuff like purses and special shoes! Organize it and put it away. Anything that doesn’t fit has to go. There are other ways of getting ready for spring. But reorganizing my closet and dresser gives me the most satisfaction. And it allows me more room for all the new clothes of each season. Please take these fashion tips to keep or donate and share with your friends.

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