Thursday, April 21, 2016

Would You Buy it Again?

Closet cleaning time is here. I have read (and written) umpteen articles about the twice-yearly try on-sort-cull-pack up and deliver ritual. It's not always fun because...

> You realize how much has gone unworn or under-worn and how little of your wardrobe you really wear.

> You may experience first-hand the phenomenon known as The Mysterious Shrink— how clothes laying packed away can grow smaller during their down time. This is why you must try on everything (more about that later).

> You get to judge what a poor shopper you may be, owning too much of one thing and not enough of another. I believe we women fall into two camps— those who buy too many basics and not enough pizazz or those who are pizzaz-overloaded with nary a basic anything.

> You will certainly come to the conclusion that you don't need more clothes. Remember, need is not the issue. It's in our nature to refresh and greet the change of seasons with our best foot forward. And what would the American economy be if we all decided not to go shopping?

Back to the job at hand. Try to do this in little bites. Tackle pants one day, skirts the next, tops then dresses, etc. Some things stay in the closet year-round of course (depending on where you live).

Once you've de-hangered everything, count the hangers as you shouldn't put in more than you took out (no room and probably not enough hangers).

Pull the new season's goodies from their winter slumber (ie giant tubs or underbed chests or whatever), and try on each piece. Some things may not fit. Has that happened for more than a year? It's time to toss...

I have a new mantra for deciding what's worth keeping:
So simple I can't believe I've not heard it before. If you took that piece back to a fitting room while shopping, would you say yes to the dress?

Take a good look in the mirror, from all angles. If you were to slap down hard-earned real money for it, would you? Or would you pass? Most of us are pretty decisive in a fitting room. We know right away if it's worth the spend or is better-looking-on-the-hanger. Don't see yourself as you were last year or many years ago. Everything has a season, and sometimes that is reason enough for tossing.

By "toss" of course, I mean give to a charity, feed those big bins you see around, try your luck at a resale shop, gift a friend with something special, donate to Dress for Success please if your town has one. You get the idea.

As daunting as this task may seem there is something exciting about thinking where your newly-in-place wardrobe will take you this year, whether it's across the world or across town. Happy Summer!



  1. I love "would you buy it again?" - that's a great test to see if something is worth keeping. So simple! I do this full process every spring/summer and fall/winter - I don't usually try my stuff on, as I'm always aware of where my weight is (comes from being a Weight Watchers leader).

    I enjoyed this post, thank you!

    1. Thanks, Sheila. Of course, even if things "fit" they may not fit your life/style anymore. That reflection in the mirror sure lets me know... And congrats on fighting the good fight.

  2. I love your thoughts Michelle! I am certainly a pizazz gal & have beyond struggled to find those basics when needed!!

    You give me hope though- that I can grow older beautifully, gracefully, & with a closet full of fun pieces! -Katie :-)