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March 15, 2011 / Ellsbeth

Woman vs. Closet

This week I attacked my nemesis and won – the Closet!



There is nothing like having a baby that will make you view your wardrobe in a whole different light.  I have been staring at my closet for quite some time, wanting to tame the beast lurking in the corner of my bedroom.  I’m the kind of person that ponders things awhile before actually doing it (haha!).  That, and restructuring how I spend all my time now that I’ve got my little girl, meant that it took me awhile to get started.  Three weeks ago, I discovered Project 333, and I decided that was my home project for Spring Break.  And for the first time ever, I found myself actually excited to clean my closet!

So while I didn’t plan to adhere strictly to Project 333, I felt that it was a good baseline to work from.  After all, most of us only wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time.  So how hard could it be?  Plus, I’ve certainly never been accused of being a fashion queen or a clothes horse, so I thought this might be a good approach for me.  I have always hated clothes shopping and I tend to just go out and buy whatever I needed and be done.  I think this approach will help me be more deliberate about what I purchase and get me to focus on quality clothes that I really love and that love me back.

I was reading up on getting started with Project 333 and dreaming of a closet where my clothes could hang wrinkle-free, when Tsh at Simple Mom announced Project: Simplify! I thought, “How nice. Another decluttering spree. Someday I might do one of those.” Then she revealed Hot Spot #1.  And yup, you guessed it.  The closet!

So I figured, what the heck?  I’ll combine Project 333 and Project: Simplify! to hopefully get the results I want.  So here is the approach I took:

1. Took some before photos of the monster.  It’s always nice to see the progress you’ve made. Plus, I’m addicted to the “big reveal” from watching too many home improvement shows.

2. Emptied the closet and sorted my clothes into type (dress shirts, jeans, workout clothes, etc.). Took pictures of the crazy pile.

3. Scrubbed and vacuumed the heck out of the closet.  Who knew a clothes rod could get that dirty?

4. Counted up what I had, a la Project 333.  For some reason, I was excited to do this.  I think because it was a way to easily quantify my progress and take stock of what I really own.

5. Sorted things into 4 categories using the How to Make Space guide:

 

Pile #1: I love these items. They fit me well and I wear them frequently: Keep

Pile #2: I want to keep this but I don’t know why.

Pile #3: These items don’t fit me or my style: donate.

Pile #4: These items aren’t in good condition: trash.

 

6. Developed how I would like my closet to be organized.  This includes incorporating my three dresser drawers into the closet, so everything is in one spot.  I like to be able to see all my clothes.  After all, “out of sight, out of mind” is one of the reasons I ended up with such a messy closet in the first place.  And just a note: I didn’t want to buy more organization containers.  So the organization drawers you see in the after photo were also in the before photo.  It’s almost like a Where’s Waldo kind of thing.

7. Returned the clothes I love to the closet, trashed what needed to be trashed, donated, and set aside my “I want to keep this but I don’t know why” pile.  I will be going back to that pile after letting it sit for a bit to see if I really want to keep what’s in it.  If I use something, great.  If not, time to donate.

8. Counted up what was left and took some after photos for the “big reveal.”

 

Items of clothes in my closet:

Before – 210

After – 47

I reduced the clothes in my closet by 78%!!

I am very excited about this.

 

Before….

 

After….

I am now left with the clothes I love, rediscovered some that I’d lost, and everything can hang nice and wrinkle-free.  I may or may not participate in the rest of Project: Simplify!, but I really appreciate the closet hot spot coming along when I needed it.  I am kind of excited to see what the next hot spot will be.  Who knows?  Maybe I’ll do that too…maybe… ;)

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