I, on the other hand, had to try on EVERYTHING with the right shoes and undergarments. Please! How am I supposed to know if it still looks good without seeing the whole look? This process took me two hours. (I have a lot of clothes.)
I made five piles to keep myself organized as I went through my clothes and shoes:
1. Keep: Stuff that I have worn in the past six months and look really good on me.
2. Donate: Stuff that I really loved at one point but no longer fits, I’m tired of wearing or I’ve never actually worn (I know I’m not the only one who has done this! Right?) If you don’t know where to donate your clothes — here’s a list for “Getting Rid of Stuff.”
3. Iron: Some of my clothes were really wrinkled and I couldn’t tell if I even liked them or not. So I separated those and ironed them. After giving them a little TLC, I was able to really see the garment the way it should look and it helped me to make a better decision.
4. Alterations: I’m a petite person and sometimes it’s hard to find clothes that fit just right. So sometimes I’ll buy clothes that “almost” fit. It seems like a good idea at the time — but it never is. So I’m left with three fancy dresses that “almost” fit perfectly. All they need is a little nip here and a tuck there to be form fitting. I’ll be taking those to a seamstress so I can wear them confidently.
5. Maybe: Sometimes you just can’t decide! “It still fits, but its kind of old, but I love it, but I haven’t worn it in a while”…if I said any of those phrases I put the garment in the “maybe” pile. I gave myself until the end of the cleaning session to decide. Truthfully – most of the maybes got tossed.
A Replacement List
After I was done going through all my drawers and closet — it was time for a list. I looked through all the items I got rid of and decided what needed to be replaced. One of these days I would love to speak to an image consultant to find out what clothes would look best on me, and what my body shape suits, but right now I will just stick to buying things I think look OK. Luckily, I don’t have to get all the clothes in one shot — but if I have a list it’s easy to keep track of the things I want and need.
1. Short-sleeved dresses for work
2. Long-sleeved wrap dress
3. Skirts (brown, black)
4. Capri pants (white, brown)
5. Wrap shirts
6. Button-down shirts
7. Blazers (white, brown)
8. Camisoles (white, black)
9. Flip flops
10. Shabooties (black, brown)
11. Nude strapless bra
12. Kitten-heel sandals (brown, black)
When I go shopping it’s easy to get sidetracked by all the trendy new arrivals and forget why I was there in the first place – to replace staples. This doesn’t happen with a list. You’ll save time because you’ll be focused on just what you need. You’ll also save money because you won’t make pointless purchases — like that Panama hat! Shopping with a list makes the experience almost like a treasure hunt – it’s fun to cross off each item. And, oh yeah, I get some super-cute outfits while I’m at it!