I have to confess: I binge and purge

…my closet. Often.

If you’ve read my pocketbook blog, you know that I was raised by a compulsive shopper. Its in my genes. I buy things for a variety of reasons. Sure, I often purchase things I like. But many things are just a really good price; so what if the Loft sweater doesn’t fit me, its 9.99!! Many things I buy w/the aspiration of losing weight. Some things I buy without trying on, and then I’m just too lazy to go to the store to return them.

After awhile, these items start to really cramp my style. I get angry when I see a blue sweater sitting in my drawer that I know I will never reach for. Why, blue sweater, are you blocking the view of my favorite black camisole?

That’s when its time to purge.

I decided to chronicle tonight’s purge, so that I can teach you all the ways of closet purging and maintenance. So many people are under the impression that with regard to clothes, shoes, and accessories, the more the merrier. Its just not true. Quality is much more important than quantity.

Are you a hoarder? Do you still have crop tops from your junior year of high school clogging up the back floor of your closet? You need to clear out! I promise you, its cathartic. Plus, for every item that you’ll never look at again, there might be a loving owner out there who will cherish it forever. Or at least for this season. If your friends don’t want your leftovers (I always feel bad offering used clothes to my friends) then, believe me, the local thrift store will be more than happy to take your castoffs.

Now journey with me as I purge.

When my closet area (I don’t have a REAL closet, only a group of two armoires and a skinny dresser, enclosed by some curtains) starts to look appalling, I know its time for a purge. Poor Stella feels so violated that I posted this.

One of the first things that I, and you should, do when purging is separate anything with sentimental value. These are items that you, perhaps, wore and loved ten years ago, but they aren’t quite in style anymore, and probably never will be again. I loved these two purple shirts in my early 20’s, but at age 32, I’m not so keen on showing my belly button at the office anymore. I can’t part with them, nor can I part with this blue kitty cat t-shirt, so I’ll pack them away in an under the bed box; I get to keep them, but they’re not cluttering my drawers or closet.

The next thing that you should do is separate anything that is stained, ripped, pilled, or generally gross. Your friends don’t want a sweater full of holes, and quite honestly, neither do the people who shop at the Goodwill. Don’t insult them – if its broken, chuck it out.

There might be items that you like on the hanger, but just don’t work on your body. For example, this button down shirt from Loft is so cute on the hanger, but it makes my arm look like a Virginia ham. I know I’ll never wear it, so it will be in my purge pile.

On the fence about some items? Try them on, put them aside. Sleep on it. Will you really wear them or will they sit in your drawer? If you think there’s a chance you will, then hang onto it. If after six months the item still sits unworn, then say goodbye to it at your next purge.

Sometimes purging is like a treasure hunt. You might find items you’ve forgotten about! I found this really cute Loft top under an old denim jacket on a hanger. Its like a free shopping trip!

When I present my items to my friends – or when I pack them up in a bag to send them to the thrift store – I fold them and present them as if it were a store. Who wants to look through a bag of wrinkled clothes? Clothes demand respect! I don’t know about you, but I assign feelings to inanimate objects… I feel a little bad for clothes when I give them away… so I want them to put their best foot forward when they’re trying to be adopted by a new owner. I realize this is insane, but I know I’m not the only one out there that does this. Aww little blue shirt. I hope you have a nice life with KK.

After the purge you’ll feel cleansed… your drawers will be neat…

And your closets will be clutter free! (note my old skool caboodles) Here is closet #1 – shirts and shoes…

And closet number 2, dresses, bottoms and handbags…

And you’ll have a nice little pile of treats to give away to friends and strangers…

When you do this, the closet fairy gives you good karma, and in your next life, you’ll be blessed with…

Hey, I can dream, right??

7 thoughts on “I have to confess: I binge and purge

  1. Bri

    Yay for closet purges! I am wearing a black dress (from Ann Taylor of course) you gave me at book club to a wedding this summer. Thanks!


  2. h

    Yay! I'm so glad when people get use out of things!! Feel free to come by book club this thursday just to check out the clothes 🙂 🙂


  3. KK

    ooo I'm already dreaming of that little blue shirt!
    Also I'm trying to talk Bryan into buying an elfa system for our walkin in the new house. For some reason I just can't sell him on a $2-$3,000 closet!


  4. h

    They have a really nice closet organization section at home depot. You could probably put together your own for $300. God, I'd love a $3000 closet. I'd consider sacrificing my living room in favor of a huge closet 🙂 We could have book club in there.


  5. Allison

    I give you credit on your closet purges. It is not an easy thing. I am even having trouble parting with my maternity clothes! I also love the shout out to the Kaboodle!



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