Well, that happens to the best of us…..on occasion 😉 But do you consistently suffer from “I cannot find a thing in there…”? If so read on.
Persistently cluttered wardrobes are a syndrome of a more pernicious beast that hides deeply behind the jumbled sweaters and strewn stilettos. It is a state of being that you have unconsciously adopted and you are properly not fully aware of. It leads to what I call the fashion flu, a nasty disease with unpleasant symptoms. Let’s get to the bottom of it, shall we?
Do you suffer from impulse shopping? Meaning you go shopping without a plan and buy random outfits that you end up not liking as much as you anticipated when you tried them on in the store?
Do you go to outlets a lot? The ones where they throw clothes into bins or have them randomly distributed in the store by price category? The ones were you buy way too much because “it was such a bargain”?
Do you have a tendency to shy away from “high-end stores” because you are worried about the price? And you feel that you shouldn’t buy anything that expensive?
Do you categorically avoid the fancy “couture” sections in department stores because you could not possibly……..
Do you listen to people who have little style sense and buy things because they think it’s “such a deal’?
Do you avoid organizing your closet out of fear you might suffer a mild anxiety attack?
If you answered yes to only one of the above you have the fashion flu. You have tried different remedies but nothing quite gets you cured. You end up with clothes that you either cannot find in your wardrobe, or (if you do find them) do not really want to wear, or (at the very minimum) do not know how to combine. You end up wearing the same few items in the same old combinations (let’s face it who has time to sort through all this clutter…)!
Ok, now that we have established the problem, let’s look at the easiest and most effective remedies against the fashion flu (most notable symptoms being the perpetually cluttered wardrobe and a sense of exacerbation when you stand in front of your closet):
Stop impulse shopping. It is the anti-christ to chic! You end up with way too many random items that do not resonate. Unless you have a closet the size of a house this won’t work for you. Instead have a plan. Shop for specific items because that will make you way less likely to buy too much. Take a look at your closet before you go shopping and see what you need to perfect another outfit. Does that beautiful brown skirt need a blouse to go with? Do these pants need a blazer? Do you need a silk scarf to lighten up this dress? Do you need a new cardigan that works with those boots? Think style, color, potential combination before you go shopping. If you want to buy an entirely new outfit think about it before-hand and form an image in your mind and consider the shoes you will wear with it. Do you already own a pair that will work with that new suit? Or do you still need to get them? If you have a plan you will not end up with bags of clothes/shoes that just clutter up your wardrobe.
When have you done the last closet spring clean? More than a year ago? It’s time. This is a yearly event my darling! You take a day to sift through your closet and everything that you honestly do not wear ends up in one of two bags — the donation bag and the second-hand shop bag. You drop these puppies off the next day (don’t wait) and notice a sense of freedom and joy! This is also the time to re-organize your closet so dressing starts to be fun again!
Can you shop your closet? Meaning you have a sense of ease while seeing everything beautifully displayed on hangers and organized in layers so it is easy to pick out? No? Then you need to re-organize. Try color coding your hangers (pink for light and airy; purple for professional; green for sporty; etc.). Dedicate your drawers (lingerie, socks, hose, scarves, throws, sweaters, etc.). The more you organize the less likely you end up in a jumble of stuff again. Never mix clothes with anything else. Keep your linens elsewhere. Linens have no business stealing space from your precious fashion pieces. Wardrobes are for clothes, shoes and bags!
Think quality over quantity. Wouldn’t it be better to have five quality outfits that make you look like a radiant goddess instead of buckets of stuff that you don’t really need? Get over the “I cannot spend that much”. Let me break it to you softly and gently — you already did, just not for the right items. Some people’s closets have so much stuff that it would pay for at least three fabulous couture outfits. So resist the “bargain shopping” in favor of treating yourself with the quality items you deserve. If you must have a bargain go to the sale sections of couture and designer boutiques where you find better quality items. But stay away from buying it if it is not your size. Just because it costs less does not mean you will look good in it.
Get a shopper if you need help. Many good department stores and boutiques will work with you and call you when the right item arrives. These people listen to what you like and will advise you. If they don’t, get another person. After you established a good relationship they may even alert you that something is about to go on sale.
Last but not least, avoid the outlets. At the very minimum have a plan before you shop there. Outlets are traps for the unwary shoppenista. They are packed with teasers to make you buy more than you need. Depending on the outlet they may not even carry quality items and you end up feeding your closet rather than your fashion soul. Opt for the sales rack in the better stores instead — same grand quality for less =-)