Over the years you’ll accumulate a lot of clothes. This is just a fact of life. But, as I’ve said previously, a big wardrobe doesn’t necessarily make a good wardrobe. You should periodically go through everything you own and do a cull.

First off, you should do an inventory. Empty out all of your clothes onto the floor and sort them into their relevant categories – shirts, trousers, shorts etc. It’s only when you have every item within your sight that you can see the extent of the problem. To be clear: I’m talking about every item of clothing. This includes your underwear and seasonal items like hats.

Start off by separating into initial ‘yes/no/maybe’ piles. You’ll find items you didn’t know you had, some which you’d hope to never see again (that ‘Keane’ band shirt, for example), and some which are just in a grotty condition. These can all be thrown onto the no pile straight away.

This will leave you with a yes and maybe pile. Now go through them again and actually be truthful with yourself: that ‘maybe’ pile is actually a no pile. If you can’t place it with other items to create an outfit, or haven’t worn it in the last calendar year, you should get rid.

A few important points to consider:

Do I want to wear it? Another way to think about this is:

‘If I was shopping right now, would I buy it again?’

If the answer is no, then you should get rid. You should look forward to wearing everything in your wardrobe.

Dress for what you are, not what you want to be. There will likely be an old pair of jeans that you bought in 2005 lurking somewhere at the back of your chest of drawers. You probably love these jeans, and have uttered the immortal phrase ‘Someday I’ll fit into them.’ Let’s be frank – if they’ve not fit you yet, they’re not likely to. Some body shapes were never intended to wear skinny jeans. There’s nothing wrong with that.

Put some clothes in your attic. I’m all for saving things that have sentimental value… but your ‘I got smashed in Ibiza 1999’ stag-do shirt has no place in your closet. Put that, and seasonal items such as heavy coats, into a secure box (so moths don’t get at them) and into the attic. This will create a lot of space for items you actually wear.

Once you have thinned out your wardrobe it’s time to dispose of your unwanted clothes. This can be done by:

  • Giving them to charity.
  • Putting them on eBay. There will be an eBay guide coming soon, but a quick tip would be to have the items finish on Sunday night, as this is when bidders have the time to check the listing.
  • Disposing of them in a clothes bin.

If you’ve done all this – congratulations! You’re now the proud owner of a sleek, efficient wardrobe.


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