As we are all still experiencing spending much more time at home than we ever anticipated, over the next month or so (maybe when the snow has passed!) is the perfect time of year to pencil in a date with your wardrobe for a seasonal refresh. So grab a glass of wine and follow my top tips on how to carry out an effective wardrobe declutter on your own wardrobe which should leave you feeling prepared and looking forward to the season ahead – bring on the lighter layers…!

Do Your Research.

  1. At least a few weeks before you attempt your declutter grab a note pad so you can start planing which direction you would like your style to go in – think who’s style do you most admire? Which items have worked the best for you in the past and why? I find that writing a bullet pointed list or a brainstorm helps to create a clearer picture of your thoughts.
  2. Make a list of your favourite stores that you can rely on and a list of stores that you have never shopped in but would like to explore.
  3. Then create a Pinterest/Instagram/Moonsift board or tear out looks that you like in magazines and make your own collage where you can collate images of everything that inspires you from colours, prints, fabrics, full outfits and accessories. This helps you to build a clearer picture of what makes you tick in terms of style and then you may be able to see more clearly how you can incorporate this into your everyday look.

Preparation is key…

  1. Buy yourself some vacuum storage bags to store your seasonal clothes in to free up space in your wardrobe, e.g. in winter store away your high summer, lightweight pieces and vice versa. Storage boxes are also good but I do find the bags easier to carry down from the loft without having to involve my husband!
  2. If you have old & mismatched hangers treat yourself to some lovely wooden or velvet space saving hangers (I buy mine from Dunelm) so once you’ve finished your wardrobe edit it will be much more aesthetically pleasing and more inviting to look through each morning. Ask friends or your local charity shop (when they open) if they would like to take your unwanted plastic hangers or return any dry cleaner hangers when you next visit so they can be reused.
  3. Buy a pilling comb to go over any bobbly knitwear – this can really bring something back to life that you may have discarded otherwise.
  4. Grab some bags to organise the items that you no longer want to keep in and label them – e.g. one for charity (any damaged items can be recycled by Ragtraders via charity shops so don’t throw into landfill) , one to pass on to a friend or family, one to sell on Ebay/Depop/ Vestiaire etc and one for anything that needs repairing or dry cleaning (if you put damaged or dirty clothes back in your wardrobe they will never get repaired or cleaned, therefore not worn).
  5. Allow yourself a good few hours of time to work through your wardrobe without being disturbed if at all possible – not always easy if you have little ones I know but booking this time in your diary for yourself in advance can help you to make sure it actually happens.

Consider Colours & Body Shape.

  1. If you are unsure of which colours suit you best look through photographs of yourself and be honest – does that colour that I wear aaalll the time actually suit me? Do I look washed out or have a healthy glow in a certain colour? It could be that you are covering up in black when in actual fact softer shades such as navy and khaki are much more flattering on your complexion. Do your skin, hair and eyes have cooler as opposed to warmer undertones as this has such an impact on whether you suit warmer or cooler shades.
  2. We are mostly all guilty of being cruel to ourselves when it comes to body shape (me included!), when I ask my clients what their favourite part of their body is I am often told “erm maybe my toenails!” as it can often make us feel awkward or big headed to say out loud something that we admire about our looks. So rather than focusing straight away on our most disliked parts, instead try to focus your attention on what you do like about yourself, which can be hard to do but it is really important. This has been something that I have to work on continuously too and I try my best to focus us on how I quite like my arms and my lower legs – rather than focusing all of my attention on not being a fan on my thighs and bum – now its your turn!

Get Started!

  1. Pull out anything that you know for sure is a definite no – these items always jump out at you and are the easiest to get rid of. Decide what you will be doing with them and pop into the appropriate bag that you have prepared – i.e. donate/give away/sell etc.
  2. If you have a spare rail or lots of space in your bedroom where you can hang from, take out your all time favourite wardrobe staples that you love and are absolutely not getting rid of.
  3. You should now be left with all of the items in your wardrobe that you are unsure of. You then need to go through each piece and ask yourself some questions and try it on – “When did I last wear it? Do I still like it? How does it make me feel? “Does it flatter my complexion and highlight my best bits?, Can I style it up in at least 3 ways? etc etc. After running through these questions you will know if it is something that you would like to keep or not.
  4. Try some of the items that you have decided to keep with a few of your favourite staples and see if you can come up with some new looks. Take photos of any outfits that you like so you create your very own little album of looks to inspire you going forward, it can be a good idea to print these images and stick them to the inside of your wardrobe for daily inspiration!

Create a Wish List

This is the perfect opportunity to create your very own wish list to keep you on track for the season ahead. Consider what you might be missing from your collection that would tie some of your pieces together. For example if you only have skinny jeans as your option for casual trousers, maybe its time to try out some new shapes for the summer? If all of your knitwear is grey – how about a pastel or more vibrant shade? Are all of your t shirts old and tatty and could it be time to invest in some quality t’s that have a bit of print or added detail such as a frill or puff sleeve rather than plain? Be as objective as you can and try to think outside of your usual box. When you next have the desire to shop online you now have a plan to stick to rather than scrolling endlessly and find yourself buying repeats of what you already have in your wardrobe.

Organise Your New Wardrobe

Now you can hang everything on a lovely new hanger and place back in your wardrobe not turned inside out (one of my biggest bug bears!) all facing the direction that you enter your wardrobe and group categories together such as dresses, shirts, tops, skirts, trousers etc. I like to put each category into sleeve length order and block similar colours together so it looks much more organised. To save space jeans, knitwear and basic T shirts can be folded, although I do think statement/printed t shirts are better hung so they are treated as tops and don’t get forgotten about!

Repeat Twice a Year..

It is a really great exercise to practice every six months so you get into the habit of continuously reviewing what you have in your wardrobe and this will help you to not hoard things for years that no longer represent your true style and aren’t being worn. Changing over seasonally also enables you to look at anything being taken out of storage with fresh eyes and think more objectively about it, therefore you only put back items in your wardrobe that you know you LOVE!

I hope this blog inspires you to give your very own wardrobe declutter a go but if you would like me to guide you through I am of course offering my usual sessions virtually so do let me know if you would like me to assist you.

Thank you for taking the time to read this and please do let me know how you get on!

Lots of love,

Laura xxx