Closet Purge 101

Below you’ll find tips on how to be THAT person purging your wardrobe and tidying it up. Long post, so bear with me.


STEP 1. Take everything out of your closet / drawers by category. It’s overwhelming and time consuming to go through everything at once, so start with something small, like handbags, and separate them by those you want to keep and those you’re ready to part ways with. Then move on to something else… shoes, belts, scarves, pants, dresses, jeans, tops, sweaters, etc. until you’ve tackled it all. Maybe it takes you a day. Maybe it takes you a month. Just do what you can when you can.

STEP 2. Separate the items that didn’t make the cut into three piles: trash/ recycle, donate, and sell. Items you should probably get rid of include:

  • things that don’t fit that you’re not actively working towards wearing again
  • clothes you’ve outgrown on an age / maturity / place in life level
  • things that are stained or need repair (you can make an additional pile for pieces to have altered or repaired IF you’ll actually get around to it)
  • items you haven’t worn in over a year, excluding event-specific clothes (such as formals), super sentimental pieces, or ones that have been hiding due to poor organization
  • anything that makes you feel blah … aka does not “give you joy”

When it comes to donating, I prefer to find an organization who will keep any proceeds local. I typically drop things off at Care Help in Sulphur or CARC in Lake Charles. PSA, no one wants your cheap white T-shirt with pit stains or black top with the unsightly bleach spot. Don’t put crap in the donate pile that’s going to make its way to the garbage once it reaches your organization of choice. You could also contribute to a community garage sale that benefits a sports team, youth group, family with funeral or medical expenses, etc.

When it comes to selling, you can post it on Facebook or Instagram, or you can use sites and apps like EBay, Poshmark (personal favorite), thredUP, or Depop. For higher quality / luxury items you attempt to sell at a local consignment shop or consign on theRealReal or other online consignment site. I can’t remember the name, but there’s one out there where you can designate proceeds to a charity of your choice instead of receiving the funds. 🤔 Certain stores only except certain brands at certain price points, so consider calling ahead or checking the website. While listing an item yourself takes more effort, you could glean a greater percentage of the sale than you would from consigning since the seller has to do the hard work. But time is also money, so you be the judge of what’s best for you.

STEP 3. Organize, organize, organize. But do it in a way that functions for your lifestyle and how you put outfits together, such as…

  • BY COLOR : Probably the easiest to do, this is great if your outfit vibes off your mood. Find a sunny yellow or a gunmetal grey top in a snap. To execute, group like colored blouses together, like colored dresses, pants, etc.
  • BY FUNCTION : If you work in a professional environment that demands a certain level of attire, this may be the methodology for you. I’ve applied this to my own wardrobe since what I wear on the weekend and what I wear in the world of finance doesn’t necessarily jive – I’m a casual leggings or jeans girl on my days off. Basically what this looks like in application is separating what you would typically wear to work from what you wouldn’t by category. For me, it makes it easier to throw a professional outfit together or intentionally dress more casual. (Kind of complicated, I know.)
  • BY STYLE : You may be the kind of person who puts outfits together by the fit of clothes you want to wear. Like a button down with skinnies or a T-shirt with flared jeans. You can group your tunic tops together, t-shirts together, button downs together, etc. if that’s how you roll. (This works for shoes too. Have a shelf for each type – booties, loafers, heels, wedges, flats, etc.)
  • BY FABRIC OR TEXTURE : You could group all your silk blouses together, all your blouses that were lace, etc. I like to separate mine my dressy & casual. I’ll keep the simple, cotten shirts in a section while my more sophisticated tops take up the other half of my closet.
  • BY SLEEVE LENGTH : Begin ordering from strapless or spaghetti straps all the way through until you’ve reached long sleeves. (For shoes, you can organize by heel height or season. I admittedly have to hide shoes away for them to fit, so I’ll swap out my boots for sandals on the shelves when it’s warm enough to show some toes and I’ve had at least one pedicure.)

There are so many methodologies to organizing your clothes, but again, you just have to do what works for you. I use a little bit of everything right now which might sound like a hot mess, but there’s a method to the madness. Using just one or two of the above is just fine too, and is more practical for someone not so OCD about clothes. 😁

You may need to invest in some organizers or containers to maximize functionality of your closet space. I also recommend velvet hangers over wire or plastic. Here are some links to supplies you may need:

Once you’ve completed the full process, you’ll feel soooooo much better. Trust me. And if the task sounds overwhelming, call me and I’ll help you knock it out on a Saturday. Seriously.

Happy organizing. Have any other tips? Share below!

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