closet declutter

5 tips for decluttering the wardrobe.

Experience the precious freedom of an emptier closet.

As promised in my last post, this week is all about decluttering and specifically, decluttering your wardrobe. There are other rooms where you live and we’ll tackle them together during the month of January. For now, here are my 5 tips for decluttering the wardrobe.

Re-creating your closet is not a small task to do, I warn you. It takes time to get rid of things and organise them. It is a process of letting go and rearrangement so the FIRST TIP that I’d like to give you is: don’t over challenge yourself.
If you still want to be motivated at the end of your decluttering, set aside a realistic time to do so, without being burned out by the process.

I spent not more than 2 hours when decluttering my part of the closet and I suggest you do the same.
Depending on the size of your wardrobe, you may want to start with just a type of clothes or space (closet or drawer).
Simply put, don’t stress. You’ll get there and the less stress during the process (actually the whole point of decluttering), the better. 

Bibi Choo
Guess who wanted to try shoes on?

I have started reorganising my clothes first and not my kitchen, for example, because I believe this is the best time of the year to do so. 
Sales are on and I know you would love to fill your closet with a few new items (I do too).

SECOND TIP: why not to check what you really need and what garment would fit better with your style? If you are in need of inspiration, look no further:

  • on @notbuyingnew, you will find lots of ideas for combining your clothes together and to create new outfits out of your own closet. The account is amazing and I invite you to have a look at it.
    So remember, #shopyourwardrobe first!
  • If you still want to buy brand new clothes, consider quality first. There are many beautiful shops which offer good deals at the moment. I bought a lovely sweater by @masscob at @vestibulezurich for an extremely good price.

Remember last week when I wrote about the why behind an action?
This is when you apply theory to practice.
Before starting decluttering your clothing space, keep in mind the reasons for your motivation.
For me, a closet that contains only the pieces you really like and use, is liberating, energising and convenient.

A simple wardrobe allows you to:
1.spend very little time in the morning to pick up an outfit;
2. always like what you decide to wear;
3. invest the recovered energy and time, not to mention finances once you decide to spend new money on the limited items you really need, for the thing you love the most.

As for me, I love fashion and beautifully handcrafted clothes made of soft fabrics. I am not sure I will ever be able to challenge myself with tight rules. However, since I still find it very interesting and because of the saying `never say never`, I invite you to have a look at Courtney Carver’s Project 333: you will find all the guidelines and tips to create the perfect capsule wardrobe. The challenge is to choose your 33 items for 3 months.

If you participate in this awesome project, please share your pictures with me because you may motivate me more to take part!

You are ready to declutter.
As simple as it may sound, this process may give you hard times when items are sentimental.
To overcome this difficulty, you could follow Marie Kondo’s suggestion on her book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and ask yourself if a garment sparkles joy or not.
I do not do that because I do not believe that a thing brings joy. It’s me deciding to appoint an experience to a thing that brings me joy. 
It’s a subtle difference but it helps me stay disconnected to being excessively material. 

Example: I would like to have a nice table for my living room and that would make me very happy. However, it is not the table itself that will make my life joyful but the idea of having friends around it.
Silly? Probably.

So how to proceed practically?

  1. Decide how much time you want to dedicate to the task. Don’t overdo. You can start with drawers maybe, or socks, underwear.
    Or go directly for the clothes.
  2. Take out all the garments of space/s you decide to declutter.
  3. Check the pieces asking yourself these questions, for example:
    do I feel good when I wear it?
    – does it fit me or with the rest of my closet? See my guide below for more on this point.
    – is it still in good condition? no, but a tailor can fix it up?
    After that, put what you have decided to keep in a pile and separate the rest.
  4. Your standby pieces would probably now be what are called sentimental items. Ask yourself why are you keeping them. My weakness is pre-pregnancies dresses because some are so pretty and well-kept with such many memories…you get the point!
    Well, I chose to keep just two or three with the promise to wear them.
    My suggestion is: try everything on and match it with what you decided to keep.
    Your new cleared-out pile is your new standard. I am pretty sure that you will now easily see by yourself that the majority of the standby pieces won’t just combine with your new style.
    If you like what I did, you can take a small box and bring very few items to the attic as well. Very few, right?
    Be ready for surprises! You may find pieces you forgot about and that match perfectly your new closet!
Can’t say no to a nice classy dress. And purse too.

5. And now the part where you really SIMPLIFY your life. You are now ready to let go: what does not make the cut, you can donate or sell. Do not let your former clothes linger in your corridor for weeks otherwise they will find their way back to your closet.

Now you finally start enjoying a simpler closet!
Try new outfit combinations with what you have now, lay the pieces out on the bed and be creative. See if would like to try a capsule collection, or you want to try focus on a palette, a colour, or simply work your style around tees!

Looking for a simple guide to assess your closet’s essentials and an easy introduction to the colour palette scheme to start combining
your pieces at best?
After you have read my 5 tips to decluttering the wardrobe, this guide will take you to the next level towards the mastering the art of simplifying!


In addition, you can also be inspired by some lovely boards on Pinterest
or, if you need guidance for building the perfect collection, have a look at this resourceful blog by Anuschka.
You may even notice you need to fill a gap. In other words, go for some shopping!
Because it’s Winter and because Angela has written this very useful post about knitwear sustainable brands, I link you here below her latest of some style you are going to love.

(the article is in Italian but you can easily google translate, plus if you need some help, feel absolutely free to give me a shout).

On Angela’s blog, you will find lots of other inspirations.
However, I would like to share with you a few labels I’ve discovered in the last months.
Try to go sustainable: price wise, this is the perfect time of the year to do so. 


Aurelie Lecuyer

Son de Flor, if you like nostalgic female high-quality dressing

Many of you have written to me already and are waiting for this post to start decluttering. I hope I had inspired you with some good and easy tip and that you will soon experience the precious freedom of an emptier closet.
Things are constantly entering our home and it is not always necessarily a bad thing.
Just remember of what you already possess and of the waste of time, energy, money, resources you can objectively spare if you look closely to what you are already surrounded with.

See you next week with more decluttering!
Use the hashtag #theartofslowsipping on IG to share my photos with me, can’t wait to see some good work done!

xo, Chiara

About the author
Hi, I’m Chiara, an Italian landed in Zürich in 2011. I like to help people finding their way to the sustainable use of social media, without sacrificing results. I like to write about mindfulness and all things real.


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