Closet Cleaning

I set aside pretty much a whole morning or afternoon (3-4 hours) to do this. It seems like a long time but I try on almost everything, plus I use this time to put together new looks and consider new items that I may want to purchase to make or complete a look. And I have a lot of closets…

It’s important to be organized. I have 3 piles on my bed to categorize my clothes: keep, toss, donate. But how do I decide what goes in each pile?

Basic guidelines:

  • If I haven’t worn it in a year or more, I consider getting rid of it. Alternatively, I try to re-purpose it. I ask myself “can I use this with a different outfit?”
  • If it no longer fits, I try to determine whether it can be altered and if it’s worth the cost. But it has to be something I really really love. Alternatively, I try to sell it online or on consignment.
  • I often take cost into consideration. If I paid a lot for it, I am less likely to want to get rid of it. But this alone is not a good enough reason to keep something.
  • Clean out the “other” stuff too: underwear, outerwear and shoes!


Classic styles

Sentimental value

Pricier / brand name


Too big / too small

2-5 years old

Low cost


Damaged (rip, hole)

Faded or discoloured

Very old (>5 years)


Cleaning out my closets also allows me to re-organize. I organize my closets by garment type – dresses, jackets, pants, suits, shirts/tops, etc. – and by colour lightest to darkest (and attempt to maintain). This way I can put my outfits together more easily.