When my cousin, Bridget saw my wardrobe sorting on Facebook, she recommended “The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying” by Marie Kondo. I’m only a few pages in but it gave me a couple of things to keep in mind for the first stage of my restyle
- It reinforced my belief that you should have a relationship with your clothes; Kondo asks “Does it spark joy?”.
- Kondo also says that you should “tidy once and properly”, taking everything out of the cupboard before you start to discard and sort, “tidying a little a day and you’ll be tidying forever”.
At the beginning of each season, I put away the clothes I won’t wear for the coming season into an old suitcase. In fact, Kondo says you shouldn’t do this but I like it, it feels like I have new clothes to wear each season and it forces me to review my wardrobe on a regular basis. Some items are trans-seasonal so they never get put away but I can’t see the sense in cluttering up the space I have with big chunky knitwear all summer or shorts in the winter!
On Monday, I took everything out of my drawers and wardrobe and took my summer clothes out of my suitcase. I put my winter clothes away, saying goodbye to the rain and the cold! Then I put summer favourites in the drawers or wardrobe (or ironing pile!) Then what clothes were left, I grouped like items together, into piles or onto my rail. These were things I hadn’t worn much last summer or even at all, I had some that I was hanging onto despite not having worn for years. I forced myself to do this systematically, fighting the urge to go more quickly, thinking there shouldn’t be any items I don’t wear .. seems obvious but the danger of my suitcase is that I put things into it that I can’t make a decision about, taking up space with things I am not wearing.
I find it hard to discard clothes, it feels ruthless and I’m attached to my clothes, but the reality is if I’m not wearing them, there is a reason why. I tried to focus on a step at a time … “I’m just hanging them on a rail for now, I’m not getting rid of them. I’m not even asking myself if they spark joy or why I didn’t wear them. Just, did I wear this last summer? Yes or No? Wardrobe or rail”.
I did manage to bravely select a few items for the black bag .. though it is still sitting dangerously in the corner of the bedroom, I have been know to revisit my black bag and things creep back into the wardrobe! I’m planning to check out some swapping events so I’m going to keep a few things for that, somehow feels better than giving away.
I tried to take my own advice and be ruthless about the quality of items. Scruffy, damaged … they might spark happy memories but not joy. I do allow myself a memories box in the loft for really special items such as the shirt I wore almost everyday when I was travelling. That shirt was with me for one of the most important journeys of my life, I can’t discard it, it would be like throwing away a friend!
I don’t really have multiples of similar items because I don’t shop on the high street, my problem is that my wardrobe is a bit random. I buy clothes second hand or I’ve inherited them and I make decisions based on what I like rather than what I need. I’m pleased to say, I only had a couple of items I hadn’t worn at all, mainly because on the odd occasion I do buy new, I make sure I can return if I get items home and change my mind.
Ready for the trying-on stage ….