Ok, to be serious, not everything. But pretty darn close. Before I embarked on my 1600 mile California road trip, I made a pact with myself. I told myself that as soon as I got back, I’d sell, donate or give away everything that I haven’t yet. All the dolls, non-essential photography gear, collectibles, shoes and clothing that I haven’t rid myself of yet but know are essential to be rid of for my mental well-being. The preference, of course, being on selling as much as I can. We all know I need the money. Well sort of. I landed a part-time job (yay!) to help while I build a freelance career. A girl’s gotta do what she’s gotta do to make sure the bills get paid.
I can’t explain the strong desire to rid myself of virtually everything, but I know that the clutter has to go. Call it a mindset shift or whatever trendy buzzword you’d like but I don’t want it in my life anymore. It’s taking away from life and living. I no longer want an incessant amount of overwhelming decisions in my day and I want to CREATE.
My relationship with clothes will never end; in fact, it’s evolving. I can’t stand consumerism and waste anymore. It leaves me with a bad feeling and shopping is no longer enjoyable. You could say I’ve been unplugged from the Matrix. I want to spend my time enjoying life and the world instead of spending hours lost in online shopping and a downward social media spiral.
I still enjoy flipping through a fashion magazine, or reading fashion blogs, I don’t think I’ll ever get over that. Beautiful clothing will always have a place in my heart. Not denying it. From now on, clothing purchases will be much more methodical and conscious. No more fast fashion or trendy junk. I need to continue taking care of what I have currently, and when something needs to be added or replaced, it’s saved for and I take my time making the purchase.
So, I spent all of Saturday sifting through my wardrobe for the thousandth time, and it was No Mercy. With some clothes, it was an obvious choice to get rid of them. For others, it was a bit more difficult. You get attached, or remember the moment you purchased it, or you think about all the money you spent and it paralyzes you. You’re frozen for a moment fixated on that money and suddenly want to hold onto the item. But you know you can’t, and tell yourself, you’re better off getting something for it than it sitting there in closet purgatory. It’s strange, but you get attached to some things.
5 Ways to Get Started on a Closet Declutter
My never worn (or only a handful of times) clothes.
I’m looking at you 100% lambs wool Sweater Coat I bought at Anthropologie. No idea what I was thinking when I bought it. Considering that most sweater coats and long cardigans don’t look all that great on women with hips like mine, out it went. If you’re not wearing something, there’s a reason. And it’s usually one of two: 1. It’s not flattering and you don’t feel confident, or 2. It’s uncomfortable to wear.
Clothing that’s a color that only works when I’m staring directly at the sun and completely blinded.
I errantly bought an orangey red J.Crew Tippi sweater because I adored how it looked paired with a creamy white blazer in the photo. So I bought the blazer and the sweater. Not sure why I didn’t return the sweater, the color is not the best on me. In other words, I fell for one of J.Crew’s many marketing ploys. You know what I mean. The “Looks we Love” or “The Freak-out list”. Yep, that was me. Gawd, it makes me want to cry. At least I was able to keep the blazer.
Clothing for “the someday that it may fit” or “not on your body type lady”.
How many times do we as women fall prey to the trends or buy a whole new wardrobe after losing 10 pounds to gain 5 back again. Arrgh! I’ve tried in vain to make some trends work but in the end, they don’t. You’re left feeling helpless as something hangs on you like a potato sack, or worse, after laundering it shrinks to the size that fits a hamster. If you have to be a gymnast to wear it, it shouldn’t be in your wardrobe. Classy and timeless for me equals stylish, comfortable, and functional.
My over-worn clothes.
Ah, the comfy pair of jeans that you’ve had for 10 years and fit like a glove. It’s so hard to part with them. Unless they’re torn in the nether regions. That’s plenty reason to toss. And out went a pair of Silver jeans. Then out went a smelly, stretched out tank top. Then a few bras that were so stretched out I’m surprised they would hold up anything. And a few more “unmentionables” went out for being well worn. Anything that’s well worn is not something you want to wear to work or out in public anymore. Unless, you’re after the I’m a homeless person vibe.
That’s when it’s time to say no. Time for your goodbyes.
Sometimes, it’s not physically worn out, but you’ve worn it so many times that you’re tired of it. Enough is enough, time for retirement. It’s tough when you build a wardrobe of timeless classics, they always seem to work. You could wear them forever. I try to put a time limit of ten years on a piece of clothing.
The sentimental clothes that I know I’ll never wear again.
I’m a sucker for memories. And for some reason, I hung onto my college sweatshirt and my high school windbreaker. I took one look at the windbreaker and went ewwww and WTF? That’s a size Large and it’s filthy! Ah, the wonderful trend in the 90’s of wearing things that were two sizes too big for you. I was a tomboy. We’ll leave it at that.
I’m looking forward to the challenge of ridding myself of all this excess. I’ll be happy when it’s gone and money is in hand to pay down my debt. I sold almost $800 before I left, time to close the door on this closet.