Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Day #5 of 30 Days to a Simpler Life--- Organize Your Closet

Today's mission is:

Do you ever find yourself saying, "I'm I'm so smart why do I have so many clothes and nothing to wear?"  After today's task, you will have fewer clothes and more to wear.  
And it will be easier to use your closet!  
First, sort your clothing into three piles: the Recycle Pile, the Ambivalent Pile, and the Love and Wear Pile.  Use the steps in Day 3 as a guide. 
Second, put the Recycle Pile into your car to be taken to a thrift shop or a consignment shop.  When you give up a garment that no longer feels good to wear, you let go of something that no longer enhances your life.
Third, place the clothes from the Ambivalent Pile onto wire hangers.  Hang them in the back of your closet or in another closet.  Practice living without these clothes.
Fourth, buy enough wonderful hangers to hold the garments in the Love and Wear Pile.  Buy them today, if possible.  Finally, hang up your clothes.  Tomorrow morning, notice how much easier it is to get dressed.  You may find yourself combining colors in new ways.  Organizing your closet may take longer than an hour.  You may want to save this task for a Saturday morning.  

OR...for serious simplifiers only---

Design a highly organized closet immediately.  To become inspired, visit closet companies and stores like Hold Everything and Stacks & Stacks.  Make your hangers one kind and one color.  Next, radically pare down your wardrobe.  Recycle at least half of your clothing and accessories.  Put your clothes back into your closet using a simple arrangement.  (See "Arrange your clothes inventively" above.)  Finally, remove your shoes from the closet floor and restrict them to neutral colors.  After seven days, review your closet and work out the bugs!

Again, there are a lot more great tips in the book (like "Arrange your clothes inventively" which the author mentioned in the quote above) so if you want to get more out of the challenge, get the book.  And remember, we are not getting any new challenges on the weekend so if you need to stretch this one out for the rest of the week and into the weekend, you can!

Lucky for me, I've done this before so I already have some lovely wood hangers that I purchased for my closet last time I did a purge.  For those of you who are doing the month long non-perishables sabbatical, I give you permission to buy hangers if it helps you with this challenge.  Not like you need my permission, but if it helps you get through this and end up with an easier to use closet with all the stuff you actually wear in it, then I think it is worth it to break the sabbatical for a few hangers.  If you don't want to break your sabbatical, use the hangers you have and add some nice matched ones to your "to buy list" for when your sabbatical ends.

Here are my day #4 results.  Here's a photo of my linen closet before:
Not bad.  My husband neatened it a few weeks ago.  The top shelf is all our spare guest pillows, and the bottom shelf is our featherbed.  In between are shelves filled with spare blankets, towels, and sheets.
Here's a photo of my linen closet after:
Not too much different.  I just got out an old comforter of my mother's to give back to her from the top shelf, made the second shelf just sheets (and neatened them up), and put all the towels on the third shelf.  The fourth shelf now has stuff that isn't used often.  I guess it's kind of my ambivalence shelf.  On that shelf are spare  bedding for our room (it hasn't been used in 3 years but we paid a TON for it so I don't want to get rid of it just yet), spare bedding for my daughter's room (I love it, but she's not sure about it.  I'm hoping one day she'll change her mind), and spare throw blankets.  Here's the small pile of stuff to donate...
...and a baby blanket my grandmother embroidered for me and a really cool throw I got at Pier 1 and paid too much for like 10 years ago.  I really don't know what to do with those (I don't use them, but I like them) so I put them in our hall closet for now.

You may recall these shots of my bedroom before --- the cats lying all over the donations for the crisis pregnancy center and the dresser piled with junk.  I'll leave the unmade bed and the overflowing basket of clean laundry waiting to be folded to your imagination.

Here's my bedroom after:
Tom Thumb was a good helper! :-)
The pregnancy center donations finally made it into the trunk of the car (I must drop them off today!), the clean laundry finally got into drawers, and (shocker!) I made my bed.  Yay!

I'm still working on the basement so I'm not ready to reveal any basement photos today, but they're coming soon!  I did manage to get this stuff out of the basement.  I cleaned it up and bagged it.
Here's the stuff being picked up by Purple Heart today:
Yes, I did it.  I managed to sneak the ride on toys out of the basement.  Tom Thumb's pushing four years old now so I think it's time to start riding bikes.  I have to admit I felt a little choked up as I put them in the bags.  My babies aren't babies anymore...sigh.

We donated just the big honkin' truck that Tom Thumb never uses.  The little truck gets to stay.
Five more bags of stuff out---hurray!
 Don't worry---we get a bit of a breather tomorrow after two busy days in a row.  See you on Day #6! 


laughinglioness said...

Good for you! Your bedroom is lovely ; )

Faithe said...

Wow! That was amazing. Looking great. Very serene bedroom.

Harvest Moon by Hand said...

Your bedroom looks so relaxing and peaceful. Congratulations on getting rid of so many bags of items! That's such a great feeling, isn't it?

I have pictures from my closet simplification here: