Your wardrobe is bursting at the seams yet you still can’t find anything to wear. You forever procrastinate when it comes to figuring out how to declutter your wardrobe and don’t know where to start. You’re keen for some minimalist living tips for your wardrobe but don’t know where to look. You’ve come to the right place because I’ve got the low down from someone who knows a thing or two!
I spoke with Robyn Amott, a Professional Organiser & Declutter Specialist, owner of Bless this Mess and Professional Member of the Institute of Professional Organisers (IOPO). Robyn has worked with a multitude of self-confessed shopaholics, to curb their purchasing habits around clothing by merely organising their wardrobes.
Robyn was kind enough to share her top tips on the most effective ways to declutter your wardrobe and organise your clothing to provide a functional and cost-effective wardrobe, without taking up your whole weekend. I’m looking forward to taking on board Robyn’s tips because I think my husband has been confused when I’ve said I have nothing to wear yet my wardrobe is full to the brim.
How to declutter your wardrobe
As busy women, our spaces naturally come last. We dedicate most of our time, outside of work, attending to the kids’ needs, their spaces and general household tasks. Inevitably our needs are often the last priority.
Firstly, it’s important to get clear on your vision of what being organised looks like for you. Understanding what has a purpose assists us in establishing effective zones for each of your items. Establishing functionality and accessibility goes a long way in achieving long-term success.
Let’s look at some of the reason we hoard our clothing?
- We’re unclear on our existing content
- We keep purchasing without purging at the same time
- Our style purchases are based on current trends
- Our spaces or use of storage is ineffective or non-productive by our needs.
Have you ever heard of the Pareto Principle or the 80/20 Rule?
Quite simply, in reference to your wardrobe, it’s in that 20% of our wardrobe is worn on high rotation 80% of the time. I’m guessing you can relate to this. It’s those bright shiny new toys that you have to wear all the time, while everything else gets left hanging on the shelf.
The DeCluttering Process
The Decluttering process and implementing essential decluttering tips is vital to organising and ensures you’re not simply tidying up or just shuffling items around.
Begin by working on one category of item at a time. Robyn suggests utilising the bed to group and sort each category.
Start with t-shirts and move onto l/S tops or items that are of the same genre such as work clothes vs sportswear, to remain focused and remove the overwhelm of the bigger task.
- Grouping like with like items together also helps us establish and understanding the volume of items that are the same and creating a limit for the amount of content.
Ask yourself the following questions:
- Does it fit? Do I feel like me in this outfit?
- Would I wear this in public?
- Is it my style?
The Organising Process
The question Robyn asks all her clients is: When you go shopping what items are you most attracted to – the hanging or the folded items? 9 times out of 10 it’s the hanging items.
Therefore it’s important to take this principle into your wardrobe and hang as many items as possible. This layout can also help in greatly reducing the time it takes to do your laundry.
Take a look at your current wardrobe design.
- Remove unnecessary shelving
- Incorporate additional hanging rails
- Remove any wasted air space by adjusting your shelving height and avoid over staking items
- Establish purposeful homes by creating zones for each category of item. I.e.: tops at the top bottoms at the bottom.
- Keep like with like items together – helps save you time and curbs that spending
- Reserve draws for underwear, socks, pjs and sporting gear. Items stacked in draws are out of sight, often forgotten and again we tend to wear only the items at the top.
- Hang as much as possible – if you can’t see it there is little chance you’ll wear it
- Allow your spaces to create a limit for the amount of content you keep/need.
- Group items according to colour, sleeve length, dress length or genre – workwear vs casual.
Organising is never a set and forget process; regular maintenance is required to avoid build up and to save you time.
Apply the one in one out rule
If you purchase an item, you must donate an item. E.g. new t-shirt in, old t-shirt out.
One last little trick for you. At the beginning of each season/year turn all your hangers backwards. When you return an item to the wardrobe after it’s been worn and washed, turn the hanger the right way. You’ll easily see what items you have or haven’t worn.
Dealing with a kids wardrobe instead of your own? Check out these ideas for a more practical kids wardrobe.
For more information on the services Robyn offers along with many other helpful hints and tips, jump on over to her website or social media pages.