I DID IT! The first step to doing a closet overhaul. I’ve wanted to refine my wardrobe for quite some time. First time it started stirring in the back of my mind is when I stumbled upon ExtraPetite.com, which made me question whether I really consider the fit of my clothes enough when I’m out shopping. Then several bloggers started doing this ‘wardrobe overhaul/refining’ thing (Franish, Rhinestone Religion) and I kept thinking: I need to this. AND MOSTLY. Almost every morning I’d be like: what the everloving FUCK do I wear today? Mostly because I have so much items that don’t really fit together, also because I’m lazy with storing and things I’d pull out would be wrinkled, or I’d put something on and remember ‘oh yeah this was actually unflattering/doesn’t fit/uncomfortable.’ SO. Firstly, I wanted to do a closet-overhaul/refining and get rid of the things I don’t wear. This is really hard for me because I always keep thinking: “But what if one day I want to wear this?” or “What if I’ll regret tossing this one?” Truth is, I probably won’t if it has gone unworn for so long in the first place. So I need to be honest and harsh with myself. My shopping habits don’t help, either. For a while, when I went shopping, I just bought whatever I liked, without worrying if it was anything that suits the rest of my clothes. So, in addition, I also want to change my shopping habits so I don’t have to do this all over again in a year. Thus I made a list of how I wanted to do it, based on ideas from Into Mind and Putting Me Together. If you ever want to do a closet over-haul, this list may me useful for you, too! I have also included some helpful links.Refining my closet
1. Think about my approach to personal style.
2. Identify my lifestyle needs.
3. Identify themes in my personal style.
4. Wardrobe detox.
5. Make a list of shopping rules for future reference.1. Think about my approach to personal style.
Into-Mind.com mostly differentiates between minimalist – maximist. I don’t think I could truly live as a minimalist, I like shopping and frilly things too much for that. Into-Mind.com also asks “Would you prefer to own a small selection of high-quality items or buy a completely new set of clothes every season and have lots of options?” Actually, I want a collection of both. I tend to go for cheaper things, so I can buy more. However, some timeless items it might be worth investing in. On the one hand, I do want to have a nice diverse selection to choose from, but on the other hand I don’t want to be an overconsumerist. My mission is to try to find a balance.2. Identify my lifestyle needs
I’m an university student and for my part-time job I have to wear a uniform anyway. So in that regard I’m not stuck with any rules. But, I do have a problem with my IBS condition: depending on whether I have a good or bad day, my stomach can bloat. Sometimes ten times its size. While I don’t want to completely let go of tight things, I do need nice loose fitting clothes for those days that I get IBS flare up.3. Identify themes in my personal style.
My style is either frilly and cute or minimalistic/classy/edgy. I always thought these two are a too big of a contrast but after pinning a whole lot of inspiration on Pinterest, I’m beginning to think these two are actually perfectly combinable.Into-Mind.com says: “Once you have collected a big pile of pictures, look for themes. Write a long list of all the elements you want in your wardrobe: specific items, colours, textures, trends, fabrics, combinations. Use all the adjectives and metaphors you want, it’s totally fine if the list doesn’t make sense to anyone but you. Include your old favourites and figure out a way to incorporate new themes into your overall style concept.”Here’s my somewhat incoherent list, totally unedited for your amusement:Peter pan collars & collars in general, bows, knee-high socks, or actually showing socks in general, faux-leather (panels), baseball tees (although maybe too trendy, not sustainable?), cats always, boots/dress contrast, flowers, flowy skirts as opposed to tight, lace but the classy kind, blazers (but make sure they are fitted and not too big which too often happens…), romantic, hats/barets, chic, cute but not childish, also want to be able to make band & geek shirts work, fabrics that don’t pill too easy, vintage-looking, shoes: need more comfortable shoes, love the look of heels (but cannot buy too many new ones – and learn to walk in them… better), also need more flat shoes and cold-winter shoes4. Wardrobe detox
I also really needed to get rid of things I don’t wear – they are only in the way. I needed to be harsh with myself, so I set up some rules.Rules:
-Anything dirty and irreparable – throw it away.
-Put everything that doesn’t fit your style according to the list you made in a ‘go’ pile.
-Try on everything that’s left. Anything that doesn’t fit and isn’t ever going to fit (I plan to lose a bit of weight but not too much so I’ve got to be realistic) is also destined for the ‘go’ pile. Anything you don’t feel comfortable enough in, also on the ‘go’ pile. The rest goes on the ‘stay pile.’
- Anything that you don’t wear but want to keep, be it for sentimental reasons, or intentions to DIY, don’t put them back in your closet but in a box somewhere. Make sure it’s not too much though. If the box is full, it’s full. This is different from the Maybe-box:
-Into Mind says: “Maybe box- If an item fits and is in good condition, but you cannot decide whether you like it or not, put it in the ‘Maybe’ box. This category is like a trial separation. You can put the box under your bed for a while and see whether you really miss an item in there. Chances are you will forget about them and you can throw them out or give them away after a few months.”How did this go?
I ended up with 4 full bags that had to go. Some if not most of these items were still perfectly wearable and in good condition. This was a good way to confront myself though, so I could admit I really need to change my buying habits.
Things that I had which I didn’t wear, for example, a couple of skin tights skirts which somehow accumulated while this is definitely the last thing I’m comfortable in, so these were the first to go. Also garments that didn’t really fit. Just because I can fit in XS, doesn’t mean I should. The same with M. XS is more than often uncomfortably tight and M is usually too roomy in the armholes and chest areas. Of course this differs between stores, so I should be critical whenever I try on any other size than S.With those items out of the way, I realised I need more versatile pieces so I can remix my wardrobe. As Putting Me Together puts it, I need to: “
Be able to reimagine garments and not just take them as is.
Learn to shop for pieces that could be versatile.
Add the right pieces that would serve as building blocks to create foundation for mixing and matching.So that leads me to make a list what to look out for, step 5.5. Make a list of shopping rules for future reference.
-No skin tight skirts, or at least none I’m not comfortable in.
-Limit the amount of new dresses. This is because I need more pieces that can be combined, like skirts and tops, rather than one-pieces. I wanted to do a ‘no-dresses AT ALLL rule- but, who am I kidding? I can’t do that, dresses are my weakness, so I’ll allow them, but ONLY :
- …if I really, really love them or they are super versatile – not because ‘it’s so cheap’ or ‘it has bows!’ In short, I need to re-evaluate how much I really need the dress and be totally honest with myself.
- …if I can wear them casually. I have enough dresses that may seem a bit too fancy or over-the-top for everyday wear. Don’t get me wrong, I really don’t mind being slightly overdressed but I have enough of those for now.
- … with the exception of a birthday dress.
-Look really closely at the fit and really consider it. Use all the information I’ve learned while browsing Extra Petite.com, think: What Would Jean Do? Haha, sounds silly, but this will help me I’m sure. She is really critical.
-Look at fabrics as well and minimalize the amount of items you buy with fabrics that pill or winkle quickly and attract cat hair the most. Actually, I will try to do some research on what to look for in fabrics and report back to you guys.
-No more heels, at least none that are hard to walk in. No, actually, NONE until the current ones are worn out. Heeled boots for winter are allowed but no more pumps or stilettos.
-So basically, evaluate: Do I really need it or do I REALLY love it? Will it go effortlessly with the rest of my wardrobe? Always keep receipts and tags.
-Make a list for when you go shopping, as My Here And Now Life says: Give yourself a mission. When you know what you are looking for, your mind is less likely to wander. If it isn’t on your list, ask yourself why before proceeding
-Imagine 3 outfits with what you are about to purchase.
-Don’t be afraid to return things.
Already, with a lot of clothes out of the way, it’s easier to get dressed in the morning. It will be even better when I fill up the holes in my closet (it’s quite empty now!)I hope I’ll take more outfit pictures now, too.PS: the picture is when I was halfway done sorting through my closet. My sister got first dibs, then friends. Some barely worn/hard-to-part-with items are going up for sale, the rest will go to Goodwill (or the Dutch version anyway.)
· By 3 Comments·