With January's weather remaining predictably unpredictable, there's no better time for that wardrobe detox you've been meaning to do since the very first lockdown.
If you're anything like us, working from home during the pandemic has likely taught you several things. And while we've come to terms with our partner's bizarre phone voice and the fact that snack rationing will never work, we're struggling to ignore the endless piles of clean clothes on the spare bed that no longer fit in the wardrobe.
That's why so many of us optimistically spent the first lockdown diligently decluttering our wardrobe - and we encourage you to do the same this January. As well as actually being able to see what outfits you have to wear (and clearing out the ones that have been taking up space for years) a Marie Kondo wardrobe detox is also great for your mental health, something we all need to take very seriously during such anxious times.
Keen to declutter but no idea where to start? Here’s our guide to how to do it yourself in 15 easy steps.
Take everything out
Remove everything from your wardrobe - don’t just throw it out; grab 10 items at a time and lay them on the bed. Look at the quality of each item - is it bobbled? Faded? - and decide very quickly whether you love it or if it needs to go. It’s so important to declutter your wardrobe this way because it gives you the opportunity to look at each item, without skimming past it. It’s also less overwhelming to deal with one item at a time.
Don’t hold on to occasionwear
If you’re thinking of holding on to that strapless, satin, circa 2003 dress think again think again. The vast majority of occasionwear and evening dresses tend to look dated really quickly. If the item isn't something you'd consider rewearing, ditch it and give to the charity shop. Unless it’s a designer piece or a classic style, you won’t earn much reselling it.
Only keep clothes that fit you NOW
One of the biggest obstacles for women when it comes to clothes is that they live in the past or the future. They either want to look how they used to, or they may want to look a certain way in the future. Keeping an item of clothing that doesn’t fit is only going to bring negativity to mind when you see it.
Ditch wire hangers
Wire hangers (usually from the dry cleaners) are really bad for your clothes as they bend items out of shape. Wooden hangers look good, but they’re big and clunky and take up a lot of space in your wardrobe. We prefer non-slip hangers that you can buy cheaply online.
Hang your jewellery
The only jewellery that should be kept in a jewellery box are rings, bracelets and earrings. Necklaces should be hung up, either on hooks or on pretty hangers. Having these on display allows you to be more creative when playing around with outfits. It also prevents them from getting tangled. The psychological effect of seeing your necklaces will make it seem like less effort to wear a different one every day, rather than thinking: ‘I can’t be bothered to look through my drawers.’
Are you shoes dated?
Give your pairs of shoes a once over - making sure to check them carefully, as having super scuffed shoes can make an outfit look dated. Shoes can get dusty and sometimes even mouldy, so it’s important to store them in boxes where possible. If they're of no use to you, take them to a charity shop or recycling bank.
Some people like their wardrobes to be colour-coded, but we prefer to organise them in style order. For example, have a workwear section, a casual section, and an occasionwear section. It will make your life easier when you’re dressing for work and you only have one specific section to choose from.
When you have finished the decluttering process, take the leftover items to the charity shop as soon as possible, and avoid looking back through the bags ‘just in case’. Once those items have gone, you won’t miss them. Let someone else love, treasure and enjoy them now.