INVESTING IN MY WARDROBE & HAVING A RUTHLESS CLEAR OUT
Why I Continually Spring Clean My Wardrobe
Every now and then I can get a real urge to strip back, de-clutter, have less things and generally just ‘spring clean’ my belongings. As we live in a one bed flat (soon to be two, but the point still stands) having a walk in wardrobe sadly isn’t on the cards, we chose location over size for our first home and that means modest storage.
I realise more and more, whilst I am a huge consumer of things (forever buying books, new cameras, clothes) I do get overwhelmed with the amount of ‘stuff’ i have, especially when the nooks and crooks I store things in, becomes too difficult to access, see everything or generally just over flowing. As i’ve got older I realise I really want to be able to see all my clothes, open the wardrobe and be able to easily pick anything out of it (versus ignoring half my wardrobe because I simply don’t wear those things anymore or they just no longer fit.
THE NEED TO CLEAR OUT
I’ve had MANY clear outs since we bought our place two years ago, and am a huge believer in having clear outs to keep things ‘light’, the move from our bigger rented home to our flat now meant a HUGE clear out was needed and it was perhaps the first time I realised how much i’d hidden away. 200 of shoes was not at all necessary, when I probably rotated 4 pairs. I’ve had a good few clear outs since then too, perhaps every few months I feel stressed by my wardrobes and decided to clear out things. But all of those times a few bits always sneak back in, despite the fact i’ve not ever or not recently worn them – typically more expensive pieces I’ve kept because I think perhaps one day I’ll wear them again.
But when I truly ask myself that question, will I wear this in the future if the trend comes back around / it fits, the answer is often no. And here is the crux of my most recent clear out.
I’ve invested a lot of money this last month on some new pieces, mostly from Whistles and Ganni actually (simply because the pieces they have right now are truly my style), and with all these new pieces I couldn’t find a single space to hang them. It triggered the clear out and the slightly ruthless approach to making space. The reality is, living in London, I don’t have the luxury of hoarding pieces ‘just in case’. I always give my items away to my family or charity, but perhaps a few of those in my recent clear out i’ll sell, but regardless, clearing them out of my wardrobe has felt like a weight off my shoulders. Of course I still have a little pile of things i’ve kept ‘just in case’ but as we move to Autumn I will do the test again.
The second thing I did, much to the amusement of the guy at Homebase as I kept coming back for more, is replace all my big wooden hangers with very slim gold / brass hangers, just this process alone has revolutionised my space and made everything just FIT that much better. The final thing I have done (which if you follow me on instagram you’ll have no doubt spotted) is buy some storage boxes / drawer organisers for some of my draw spaces to just make things more organised, but also go through the process of simply taking everything out, and organising it all back away.
It takes time. But the feeling post clear out is so liberating. To know everything you own, to be able to see everything you own, and want to wear everything you own, is such a liberating feeling, and makes getting dressed just so much easier. Could you say the same for your wardrobe?
The next things to tackle will be the coat cupboard under the stairs (where I have secretly stored lots of coats and shoes from the first move and barely been in there since) and the vacuum packed bags we did in Spring which are currently packed away in a cupboard somewhere. I don’t like this concept even though I know many live by seasonal vacuum packing, because once it’s vacuumed I simply forget about it (as everything I have vacuumed is obviously clothes I don’t want to wear or don’t wear), so I’d rather simply do a clear out there too.
My overall aim is to simply wear everything I own, and be able to access everything I own. Which if you have too much, you simply can’t do (unless you have a beautiful walk in wardrobe – in which case hoard away you lucky beings).
SHOP THE LOOK
. WHISTLES PIPPA SATIN SLIP DRESS . WHISTLES NILE ESPADRILLES . SAINT LAURENT BELLECHASSE BAG . MANGO BLAZER (OLD) .
I mentioned above, what partly triggered my need to make space and clear things out was my recent investments and the new pieces I’ve bought. I have been a little frivolous with my spending, but everything I’ve bought I love and know I’ll wear heavily, and I felt the need to add some smart, high quality pieces into my wardrobe. Two of my new items are featured in todays outfit post – the burgundy satin dress and black leather espadrilles. Very simple, classic pieces, which can both be easily styled up or down for day (work) or evening (occasions), and for me this is critical with the nature of my job and lifestyle.
You may recall the first outing of this dress if you followed my recent stories? 58 minutes of wear, brand new out the box that morning, a black ink pen leaked all over the dress (courtesy of a faulty TFL door which slammed on me and crushed the pen in my bag). I was DEVO and new that pen ink often meant game over. I researched to the enth degree how to remove the ink (i’m a big googler) and finally a week after it happened had the mental space to try and tackle it, and I’m so relieved that with a mixture of hair spray & cue tip ink removal, followed by gentle warm water scrubbing, and then a silk machine wash … i only went and got it out.
So this dress now feels like a particularly special item, as nearly ruining it, made me realise how much I really did love it.