Tip for easier clothing de-cluttering

lazy_gardensJanuary 11, 2013

I just remembered something that might help decluttering clothing.

A friend had a huge number of bluejeans (factory job - they were work clothes) and had seriously bogged down on the problem of which to keep and wash, which to toss out and which to give away. It was a pile several feet high on the floor of his utility room - clean, dirty, various sizes and conditions. I think he went out and bought new jeans every time he confronted the pile.

I removed the starting gate's obstacle by telling him to wash, dry, fold and stack all of them without making any decisions about their fate. I had him fold them with the knees exposed and stack them as "good knees no paint versus ripped knees or paint" which was the difference between work and grub-wear for him.

Then we put a box in the utility room ... instead of trying to sort the jeans all at once, he went to the utility room in the morning and grabbed a pair off the top of a stack and put them on.

If it fit, he kept them on. That pair went into his laundry hamper at the end of the day. But he didn't get to wear them again until the stacks were gone.

If it didn't fit, that pair went into the box and he grabbed the next pair ... until he found one that fit. When the box was full, he took it to the closest charity dropoff.

It took a while, but he got them all tried on and sorted out in a couple of months.

Perhaps a variation of this could work with other clothing. Put them in order and wear the first thing that fits, and if it doesn't fit, it goes in the box.

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That is a great idea! I am going to try to get my sons to do it. They each have way to many clothes. I am ruthless about purging my own clothes. I have a 4' closet and have 4 seasons of clothing in it with room to spare.

    Bookmark   January 11, 2013 at 2:00PM
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I have three classes of jeans in my drawer. Brand new, still dark blue, can be worn for a meal at a restaurant.
. Faded and/or minor rips, good for eveeryday. And badly ripped, stained, good only for when I'm painting.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 11:10AM
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I have a separate hamper in the closet for "garden work/paint projects only" clothes -- meaning, they are good for a dirty work only, not for donation. Once they get beyong use (large hole, too small size) - they go to trash. I tried donating them to pet shelter -- they told me they don't like giving dogs any human clothes items - in order not to let the pets develop a habit of ripping any human clothes.

I sort my clothes on hangers by color and then by "worn recently" , "not worn in long time", "dressy/special occasion", "pregnancy". I go through the categories twice a year and put lots of items in "donate" bags. Right now I have two bags of donation clothes and am trying to find a local "dress for success" program to give them to.

I also go through all shoes twice a year -when the season changes - spring and fall, and get rid of at least 2-3 pairs.

    Bookmark   January 13, 2013 at 8:33PM
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When sorting clothes that I don't have to try on, it helps me if I don't touch them myself. I have a friend hold them up, then I decide. It's like if I touch them I usually associate feelings with the clothes and won't get rid of them. Some of the clothes are truly ugly and I get a different view of them when she hold them up across the room. Ha!

    Bookmark   January 14, 2013 at 2:48PM
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I did something like that w/ my DD, except it wasn't that they didn't fit--it was that they didn't have anything to go with them.

That would be an interesting way to sort things out--sort of "as you go." But I notice that you created a place for the stuff that was going out, so there was somewhere to put it.

As for grub wear--I do little enough grubby work (apt. dweller, so no yard) that I now keep only ONE set for each season, and they don't go in w/ my regular clothes. They go in a bin at the bottom of my closet.

    Bookmark   January 15, 2013 at 9:07PM
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