About two months ago I held a contest on my blog to help me find the perfect outfit for the Listen to Your Mother show. As I wandered store to store, cell phone in hand, hunting down dozens of outfits you all submitted, I had a revelation. Everything in my closet sucks. It had literally been about four years since I had purchased anything without a pregnancy pooch panel or that could double as shelter in the event of a severe weather emergency.
My daily uniform had drastically changed. All of my old work clothes were literally covered in dust, yet I refused to give them away because I paid a lot of money for them and loved them at one time. I held on to five dresses that required me to shave my stomach before wearing just in case I went to a last minute Sweet Sixteen birthday party in Las Vegas. I had six undergarment contraptions dedicated to displacing my stomach fat to my kidneys. I had an entire outfit in the off chance I was invited to a ho-down.
The result was that I was wearing gym shorts and ratty t-shirts every day because I when I looked into my closet it screamed, “AIN’T NOTHING FOR YOU IN HERE!” and I walked away feeling completely overwhelmed and defeated.
Finally… I had enough. I brought up a trash bag. Then another. Then four more. That makes six trash bags for all of you playing along at home. I literally discarded about 80% of my wardrobe. In no time at all I was able to consolidate all of my clothes into one closet, making a ton of space for my cheese collection in the guest room.
Here’s what I’m left with:
And I’m free. I feel like I made my closet go out back and pick out a switch so I could give it a good whoopin. I just keep opening the door and gazing in because even though there is so much less, I feel like I have so many more options.
You know what they say – crazy loves company – so I partnered with fellow St. Louis blogger Dacy Gillespie from Mindful Closet to share some professional tips on making the most of your wardrobe so you can be awesome like me. Because that’s how much I love you.
I’m a huge fan of Hannah’s and I’m so happy to be able to share my ideas about creating the perfect wardrobe with her readers.
So, what exactly is wardrobe nirvana? What does it look like? Wardrobe nirvana is when you open your closet in the morning and you love every piece in it and every piece loves you back. It’s when getting dressed is easy and fun, not frustrating and stress-inducing. It’s when there are no longer sleepless nights worrying about whether you have the appropriate clothing for a given situation. It’s when you shop knowing exactly what you’re looking for and you make good choices.
- Clothes from high school or college or ten years ago. If it has sentimental meaning, put it in a box. Get it out of your closet.
- Clothes that were a gift. I know, I know, you feel like you need to wear it in the presence of the gifter. You know what? They’re big kids, they’ll have to get over it. Ask people to give you gift cards instead.
- Hand-me-downs. Hand-me-downs are for five-year-olds (anyone else get mistaken for a boy as a kid because you were wearing your cousin’s clothes?), not for grown adults. If you didn’t choose something because you loved it, it has no place in your closet.
- Stuff that doesn’t fit. Please please please stop hanging on to those clothes that you’ll wear when you finally get rid of that extra five pounds. Let’s face it, that might not happen for a while and when it does, these clothes will probably be outdated. Anyway, you should reward yourself with new stuff at that point!
- Do you love it? As in, so much that you want to marry it?
- Do you feel good in it? When you look good and are comfortable in what you’re wearing, you will have a better day. You just will.
- Is it “you”? See Step 1: define your personal style