Castle Revival Challenge
Creating Your Essential Wardrobe Part I –
There was definitely a problem in my “castle”. My closet bulged with clothes I didn’t even wear. Was I a hoarder? Had I become too emotionally attached to my clothes? Was I trying to keep the past alive by not letting go?
Let’s Be Honest…
In a world with so much need, I am truly blessed to even have too many clothes.
I’ll be honest, having a bulging closet indicated that I needed to share more and take in less. Do I hear an “Amen”?
After years of the same struggle, I have finally nailed down the cause – not being honest about how much I actually NEED to keep based on my ACTUAL life activities.
When I went through the steps in Creating Your Essential Wardrobe – Parts I and II, my wardrobe shrunk by at least 75 percent!!
It has been two years since I created my essential wardrobe and I haven’t missed an item yet.
Yes, even the sentimental items…and the pieces I was keeping out of guilt…Gone. No regrets. #freedom
The length of time the purge takes will depend on the number of items in your present wardrobe that you will need to sort through.
Since having clothes piled everywhere is not practical for days on end, I recommend you dedicate two separate weekends to this money, time, and sanity-saving project. One for Part I and the other weekend for Part II.
Here is what Parts I and II can help you accomplish:
Part I – Get rid of the bulk in your closet
Part II – Create your own Essential Wardrobe and discover the missing pieces.
This secret was so important to my success with this project that I copied it from my Power Purge post.
The best way to illustrate the importance of your mindset is the example of a brief conversation between the pope and Michelangelo regarding his renowned statue of David:
The pope quizzed him, “How do you know what to cut away?”
Michelangelo responded, “It’s simple. I just remove everything that doesn’t look like David.”
Brilliant! Until you know what needs to stay, you won’t know what needs to go.
And that, my friend, was the secret. Let’s do this thing!
Let’s Get Set Up
Your purging zone should be set up close to your closet to conserve energy and keep the chaos contained to one area of the house. It could be in your bedroom or in the next closest room.
Collect these items and set them up in your purging zone similar to what you see pictured above (items on sofa are yet to be sorted):
- blank paper – for labeling boxes and bags
- wide tape that can be written on with marker – I used painter’s tape because that’s what I had
- 4 boxes or opaque garbage bags – each labeled SHARE, CONSIGN, DONATE, and RETURN TO LENDER
- A large area where you can fold your “KEEP” items neatly until they are moved back into your closet.
- small plastic shopping bags – for RETURN TO LENDER and SHARE clothes – label with your friend’s name
Take one category of clothes (shirts, for example) out of your closet and put them in a pile beside your sorting area.
Ask the following questions of each shirt and place it in one of the boxes, bags, or pile of your choosing.
Move to the next category, like pants and so on, until your whole closet has been emptied (yes, even the shoes and accessories!).
Wardrobe Questions for Each Item
My best colour? If you have had a colour analysis done to find your best colours, this is a great time to use it. If not, you can just skip to the next question or check out this site.
My best style? If you know your body type and which styles are most flattering, apply it here. If not, you can just skip to the next question or check out this site.
Good fit? – Is it just not fitting right? Not tight, too loose? Trust your honest instincts on this one
Do you wear it often enough to keep it? Again, be honest 😉
Are you comfortable wearing it and able to move naturally in it?
Do you receive compliments when wearing it? Someone saying they like your sweater is different than someone saying, “You look great in that colour!”
Does it need repair? Is it fixable? Worth fixing? Tailor, seamstress, broken zipper? Missing buttons? Will you actually take the time, effort, or money to fix it?
Am I emotionally attached to the point that I am tempted to just leave it in my closet? Box it up and store it out of sight for 1 year. Without peeking, donate or sell it if you haven’t needed it in a year (unless it is your outfit kept for special occasions).
The Wrap Up
Is your closet empty – as in, nothing in it? Congrats!
(At this point, I take the opportunity to wipe it all down, vacuum the baseboards and get the webs out. Remember to use these Clean Smart strategies!)
You should have some boxes and bags filled so you need to get them out to the car a.s.a.p. for dropping-off. This is essential to maintaining your stress-free castle refuge. 😉
There should be a folded pile of KEEPs that will go back into your closet in preparation for Part II. So, they can be put neatly back into your spiffy clean closet. YAY!
A “Prep” Talk for Part II
Part I accomplished the goal of cutting out the clothes that added bulk to your closet. With a more manageable collection, Part II will be easier.
To prepare you for Part II, set aside a weekend now to dedicate to Creating Your Essential Wardrobe!
This will be quite a different experience from Part I. So, get ready for some focused, but fun work that will stream-line your outfit creation and morning routine.
You’ve got this. Have a great week! 🙂
I would love to hear from you!
Do you have a story about your closet clean outs?
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