3 Tips to Effortlessly Declutter Your Closet

minimalistic room with clothing rail and poster, metal grid wall display, the 1975 poster, records on wallConsidering that the majority of us are stuck inside right now, home-tasks such as decluttering and cleaning are suddenly seeking more invigorating than scrolling through Instagram all day. I just moved back home from university for Easter (and potentially for Summer), which involved loading my car with everything I had in my university accommodation, driving down the motorway for an hour and then unloading that stuff into my room. Anyone who has moved their stuff anywhere, will realise that when you collect your belongings into one pile, it makes you look like a hoarder. Sometimes it feels like I've been decluttering forever, I purge my wardrobe almost every year and its only until recently that it feels 'complete' in terms of how versatile my pieces are. Although I still own a crazy amount of different coloured denim jackets, it is starting to feel like making outfits is easier. Over the years I have narrowed down my wardrobe into a loose colour scheme, meaning that more items match with one another! Though it is still hard to keep track of what I am wearing, and items can easily just blend into the rail and never be worn again. 

Have a visual storage of your clothing in one place, so you can make outfits easily and find what you never wear.

yourcloset app example, outfit ideas In January I downloaded this app on my phone called YourCloset
which is for Android, but I found some Apple alternatives here for you to try out. Essentially, it is a clothing tracker and online visual representation of the clothes I own. This is my attempt at 'managing' the clothes I have, and making sure that I am wearing as wide a variation as I can. my favourite feature is how you can make outfits in advance (it can even randomise outfits for you.) Before you start decluttering, I suggest you download an app like this one, this way you can see all your clothes in one place rather than just in a massive pile on your bed.

You can see which items you have, and how many outfits they go into (so you can see which items are versatile and which are not.) The initial uploading images of all your clothes IS tedious I won't lie, but the amount of time it has saved me is amazing. For me, seeing the number of tops, skirts, coats I have is enough to make me realise that yes I do have too many clothes. The way it is organised also shows me which areas I have more items, so for me I have way more tops. My favourite feature, is 'Least Worn Clothes' which essentially shows me what I don't include in my outfits and wearing every day - therefore creating an automatic 'declutter' section of my wardrobe. I'm going to be recording my outfits until September to make sure I include seasonal Summer items in my audit of what I am really wearing, before I go to declutter everything in my 'Least Worn Clothes' area.

yourcloset app calendar viewyourcloset app viewyourcloset app least worn clothes preview

The process of uploading photos of your clothes to this app can make you aware of what you own. If you know as soon as you go to take a photo of an item that you never wear it, you can automatically declutter it! Not only does having an app like this mean you have a portable version of your closet on you (which can come in handy when shopping, you can see what you already have without having to rely on your memory), it is a constant monitoring of your clothing. The app I use also tells me how many items of clothing I have, which has acted as an incentive NOT to buy more things; why would I ever need more than 120 items of clothing?

Ask yourself key decluttering questions, but don't lie to yourself! There is a reason you are choosing to declutter in the first place.

There are a few classic questions that are prompted to ask when decluttering:
  • Have I worn this in the last year / 6 months?
  • Do I feel confident wearing this?
  • Is this something I love/ does it make me happy / spark joy?
  • Is it in line with my personal style?
  • Can I think of 5 outfits I would wear this item with?
  • Is it broken? Will I fix it?
  • Do I feel like I will wear this again? 
  • Will I miss this when it is gone?
  • Do I already own something similar that I prefer to wear?
It's all well and good asking yourself those questions with your items, but if you are just lying to yourself, then it's counterproductive. There is a reason you are trying to reduce your wardrobe size, so stick to it and don't give up halfway through.

colourful clothing rail with simple background

Take your clothes off the hangers and put into a pile on your bed. 

If you remove the items from the closet, that way you are more likely to be brutal and get rid of stuff you don't wear, rather than just casually putting it back into your closet or flipping past it and ignoring it. Face your decluttering challenge, and make it easier for yourself to get rid of things. Doing this also makes trying clothes on a lot easier. Try decluttering whilst wearing a simple cami and leggings, so trying clothes on is easy.

Doing this means you can REORGANISE your clothes when you put them back into your closet. I like to divide my clothes by type, then by colour within that. That way when I am looking for a particular item I know exactly where to grab it from. I also love to have the same style and colour (I use wooden ones) of hanger, to make your closet visually cleaner and calmer

Once you have made a pile of clothes you are decluttering, I recommend you sell them on Depop, or donate them to a friend! I wrote a post for The Gryphon recently called How To Get Rid of Your Unwanted Clothes, which outlines exactly what you should do for your clothes, making sure you do it in an environmentally positive manner.

Have you tried decluttering your closet? What tips work best for you? If you are interested in decluttering other areas of your life, you can check out my recent post on Minimalism, including 14 ways to simplify your life

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