Our daughter, former procrastinators, was consistently one of two top salesmen in a women’s clothing department. It wasn’t because she sold the most. It was because she had the fewest returns. (Returns subtract from a salesman’s total.) She’d say, “I think we can find something more complimentary for you.” Or, “If you won’t reach for this blouse over and over, don’t buy it.”
Is your closet a satisfied customer?
This week we’re “listening” to our personal closets and helping them out by paring down. I’ve had mostly tiny closets. The same lessons apply to any size.
Clothing tips that help me:
- Buy what you’ll reach for over and over.
- Figure out what colors, styles, and types of fabrics compliment you and serve you best. A friend, someone on line, or a class can assist you. This helps avoid buying clothes you seldom wear. You can even find guidance targeted for your age group.
- The clothes in our closets should fit our body and our lives at this time.
- Arrange clothes in a system that serves you and that you’ll stick with. I divide by hot and cold weather, then by colors.
- Hanging items on tubular hangers gives the clothes a little more room (using one color is soothing) and is easier on some fabrics than wire. (Hang certain items inside out so any “shoulder bumps” are less noticeable.)
But then there’s the rest of the story – shelves and floor – the places where anything goes. My closet now holds my clothes, shoes, purses, sweaters, some of my husband’s clothes and shoes, luggage, household items. It also briefly holds whatever I need to move quickly out of the public space on short notice.
These tips help me with the floor and shelf space:
- Tow the quickly stashed items out as soon as possible. No free parking.
- Force yourself to be realistic about what to keep. I’ve just transferred five lamp shades from the closet to donations.
- Ask a dry cleaner for oversized hangers. These look like wire hangers on steroids. They have large round cardboard tubes that don’t crease fabric. Great for runners and tablecloths.
- Utilize hanging shoe bags. I use one for shoes, one in another closet for odds and ends like Band-Aids, ointment, cough drops, etc., and another near the front door. It holds gloves, ear muffs, stocking caps, sunglasses, and peppermints for my husband’s pocket.
- Streamline the look of shelves by tucking purse straps inside.
- Label! Mark boxes or bags by contents to save frustration when you’re looking for something or need to store like with like. Label hanging shoe bag pockets, too.
When we put off dealing with our closets, we accumulate more stuff that makes us feel bad and function poorly. The objective is a clutter-free, organized space that serves you well. Floors and shelves this week.
If you like, work in increments. What day will you start?