Welcome to my Summer Cleaning Series! It is a well-known fact among my peers that I love to ✨clean✨, and in all the years I’ve been doing it, I think I’ve gotten pretty good at it! I’ve also been reading a few books and blogs on the matter and am getting really pumped up about it. 😀
“Well, good for you,” you might be thinking, “What does that have to do with tea or gaming?”
Everything, young grasshopper.
You see, when the sun becomes oppressively hot and you long to slink back to a cool, dark room to sip iced tea and play games, we don’t want to slink back to a dank cave. 🙅 No, my friends, we are not basement dwellers; we should slip into a luxuriously clean sanctuary filled with tea and games we love. 💚💙💛
For most of us, myself included, that means we’re going to have to put in a little elbow grease! Of course, cleaning is great to do any time of the year, whether you’re male or female, so feel free to bookmark this and use it as a reference. I know I’m going to. 😊
Alright, no more small talk and procrastination; let’s get busy!
How to Clean Out Your Closet: A Step-by-Step
Step 1 – Haul it out. Yep, that’s where it all begins. Open the drawers, the closet doors, the dresser. Find the socks lurking under the couch, the basement, around the house and put it all on your bed. Note that you might have to clear off your bed before you start. I understand. 💛
Step 2 – Sort it out. After admiring your embarrassingly large pile of clothes, take a minute to put on some music and maybe make yourself some tea. Then, you can start sorting. I like to sort the clothes into types, like shirts, pants, etc, and then go through those piles one at a time.
Make sure you’re doing:
- Tops 👚
- Bottoms 👖
- Suits and Dresses 👗
- Socks and Underwear 👙
- Bags and Purses 👛
- Accessories (including belts, scarves, jewelry, hats, umbrellas, etc) 👑
- Shoes 👠
Step 3 – Judgement Day. You’re pretty awesome, so it stands to reason that you should only wear clothes that completely and accurately reflect your awesomeness. Grab each article of clothing in your hands and use the following questions to help you figure out if they are.
Question 1: Does it fit me?
And I mean seriously, does it fit? Not like, can I technically get this thing around my body somehow? There’s nothing wrong with your body, no matter what size you are; please don’t punish it by wearing any clothes that dig, cut in, squeeze, or otherwise make your poor little body sad. Similarly, just think how much harder your clothes have to work, carrying much more person than they were designed to. It’s not fair to them, so if they’re too small, it’s time to let them retire. 📦
Similarly, I see lots of guys wearing shirts and pants that are honestly just too big for them. You might be large in spirit, but small in clothing size! Don’t be afraid to wear body skimming clothes that fit. Check the technique!
Bottom line: If you stuff is too small, thank it for its service and send it on its way, no exceptions! If your stuff is too big, consider if it’s worth taking to a tailor (assume $15 per item). If it is, take it there BEFORE you put it back away, if not… ➡️ 📦
Question 2: Is it in good shape?
Pick that garment up and give it a good inspection. We’re looking for rips, stains, pilling (the little balls on your shirt or other stuff), fraying, stretched elastic, lingering smells, etc. This goes DOUBLY for your underwear. Seriously, if you wouldn’t want anyone else to see it, you shouldn’t be wearing it.
If you sew, you might be able to fix your own rips. The catch is you need to do it RIGHT now before you decide to keep the item. But let’s be real, you’d probably rather have someone else do it so make sure it’s really worth it (assume $5-$10 per item). Many stains can be soaked, but be prepared to live with the idea that it might be your item’s time to go. Piling can be fixed with a sweater shaver, or maybe an electric razor. I personally like to use these life-changing devices, but be careful you don’t make a hole in the garment you’re working on. (Been there.)
Bottom Line: If your clothes need help, do it now before you put them away. If they can’t be saved…➡️ 📦
Question 3: Do I Even Wear This?
I know, I know. We all have those items that we bought, we thought they were going to be awesome, and they didn’t meet all our hopes. Maybe you didn’t have the clothes you needed to make a complete outfit or maybe you felt uncomfortable wearing it. Take a moment to remember how you felt the last time you wore each garment. In anything you wear, you should feel comfortable, confident, and fashionable if it’s an item you’re planning on keeping. Obviously, if you can’t even remember the last time you wore it…➡️ 📦
Bottom line: There are so many great fashions out there, and while it’s good to experiment and branch out, if you’re forcing yourself to wear clothes that you’re just not comfortable in, consider saving your closet space for the items that you truly love, the ones you reach for every single time they come out of the laundry.💛
- If you’re worried about getting rid of something because it was a gift, consider that the purpose of a present is to be given. It’s nice if the gift is your taste, but you don’t need to feel guilty about getting rid of it if that’s not the case. I don’t think the giver would have wanted to cause you guilt or trouble. 🎁
- No, you will NOT wear that thing as pajamas. Your pajamas should be as cute as the rest of your wardrobe (even if you’re a guy). Stop now and put it in the box where it belongs. ➡️ 📦
- FOLD EVERYTHING before you put it away. Don’t complain, just do it. Take care of your hardworking clothes and they will take care of you.
- Items that have sentimental value should not be stored with your everyday clothes. Please find another place for these objects.
- Please do not try to pawn off your old belongings onto friends and family who might feel obligated to take them. Only offer your hand-me-downs if you are very certain the item is their taste.
- If you live with parents who won’t let you get rid of stuff, at least try to store your unwanted clothes in a box or a separate drawer and don’t open it. Obviously, this only applies to the under 18 set. The rest of you need to get rid of your boxes like adults. 😊
Step 4 – What Do I Do With the Boxes? 📦📦📦
- Try to sell them at your local consignment/thrift shop
- Donate them to a good cause (e.g. Goodwill)
- Recycle the unwearable clothes at a place like H&M for a discount on new clothes
Option 1 works best if your clothes are in great shape, a name brand, and/or still fashionable, as they have curators working at those stores to only select the highest quality goods. Option 2 is a nice way to deal with the less fashionable leftovers; please note that Goodwill prefers items in bags, not boxes. Option 3 is great if you have a lot of destroyed, unwearable clothes; please never donate those!
Well, there you have it; hopefully it wasn’t too stressful getting rid of your old clothes. You may have realized some of your things need replacing. Of course, there’s no shame in going shopping to fill in those wardrobe gaps after your big clean out. Step 5 – Treat yourself to something nice; you deserve it! 🍰🍵🍧
Currently Drinking – 🍵🌸 Sakura Vert from Lupicia