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the great closet purge of fall 2015

fall closet purge 2015

One of my October goals was to clean out fall and winter clothes that don’t fit anymore, so I thought I’d share a little about how that went! It actually ended up being a two part process over the course of a few weeks. On a dreary weekend in October, I pulled all of my fall and winter clothes from our guest closet and laid them on our bed. One by one, I tried everything on. No, this wasn’t fun, but a little girl power/self-care playlist made it infinitely more bearable!
Once I had a pile of things that didn’t fit from last year, I started looking at my closet to see what I didn’t really wear during the spring and summer or that I’ve already grown out of in recent months. This resulted in setting aside a few more items, some of which to be replaced (these high-waisted black jeans replaced my old ones!) and some to just say goodbye to (I’ll always think of you fondly polka dot skirt). I have three bags full of clothes: one to donate, one to take to Uptown Cheapskate (a resale shop), and one with items to list on Poshmark (more on this next month)!
I was really happy to find how few pieces I had regretted buying, both over spring/summer 2015 and fall/winter 2015. If you were following my blog this time last year, then you know that I pretty much lived in an unintentional capsule wardrobe during the fall/winter months. Thankfully most of these items still fit, but I was definitely hard on them because I wore them so often. I have a couple of blouses that need mending and a good steam, but overall I’m excited to be able to wear them again this year! I may not participate in much “ethical” shopping at this point in my life, but I do believe that I’ve grown to shop more thoughtfully and intentionally, resulting in fewer true impulse buys and only rare occurrences of buyer’s regret.
One thing you may not know about me is that I am no good, very bad at hanging my clothes up and keeping them off the floor. I’m notorious for having one large pile on the floor of my favorite clothes, which I pull from every day when I get dressed. So after putting my winter clothes back in my closet, it looked pretty sad…because everything else I owned was still on the floor! This is where part two comes in. Especially after living out of a suitcase for 4 days in Dallas for a work trip, followed by going to a music festival the next weekend, my side of the room was a disaster zone. I finally had a chance to clean things up and it was a much needed opportunity for a little re-organization in my closet.
I have always hung my clothes in the exact same order in my closet: tank tops, tees, blouses and button downs, sweaters and cardigans, dresses, and finally skirts. Each section is organized by sleeve length and color. However, as I began hanging up all the clothes from my floor, I had an idea to shake things up. I tend to feel that when I look in my closet, I have nothing to wear (don’t we all?), but I realized that of course I feel like I have nothing to wear in the colder months if the first thing I see when I look in my closet is tank tops!
This inspired two changes: 1. I typically don’t move spring/summer clothes out of my closet because they don’t take up as much real estate as sweaters, and because Texas winters can be fickle and it’s not unusual to have an 80 degree day in the middle of January. Regardless, I decided to move all of my spring/summer clothes except for a couple of tank tops and a couple of sleeveless dresses to our guest closet. 2. I moved all of my skirts to the front of my closet. Tank tops aren’t particularly inspiring, and neither are plain tees, but I have a beautiful collection of skirts that I love to wear. Having them at the front of my closet, I think, will help me think more creatively with my outfits and wear more of my favorite pieces during the week, instead of forgetting about them in the back of my closet. Now all my tops are hugged by skirts on one side and dresses on the other. It’s an exciting change and definitely prettier when I open my closet! Here’s to hoping this helps me keep all my clothes hung up, too!
The last thing I did was a big shoe purge, because I haven’t done one…ever? Or not since leaving my parents’ house for college, anyway. I’m weirdly sentimental about my shoes (spoiler alert: I now have a box just for sentimental shoes that I don’t wear that I can’t bear to get rid of. It includes things like my prom heels, the cowboy boots I broke while rallying during the Wendy Davis filibuster, etc.). 
I keep my shoes in three Ikea bins at the end of our bed; one for flats and sneakers, one for boots, and one for heels. The heels bin literally never gets touched, and in fact my clogs usually end up in with the boots or flats because I feel bad relegating them to the heels bin. In the shoe purge, I got rid of all the pairs of heels I thrifted when I thought I might have a job that required me to wear them. I also set aside a few pairs of boots that I don’t wear and flats that have been too well-loved over the years. Inspired by my moving summer clothes to another closet, the heels bin now holds my sandals, giving the flats bin a lot more room (I really love flats, y’all).
Because I love when other bloggers do this, here’s the official count from my closet (excluding spring/summer clothes):
11 Skirts
5 Tanks (like I said, those warm winter days aren’t uncommon in Austin, so I saved a few)
11 Casual Tees
3 Blouses
6 Button Downs
11 Sweaters (definitely a couple here that need replacing, but will wear until replaced)
5 Cardigans
8 Dresses
2 Pairs of Jeans
2 Vests
3 Jackets
5 Pairs of Flats
6 Pairs of Boots
4 Pairs of Heels
Total: 181 items
I don’t really know if that’s a lot or a little, but it’s nice to know that everything in my closet fits and I like it! At this point I’m mostly interested in replacing items that are pilling or are too worn, and adding one or two blouses (love this one), a pair of jeans (what’s your favorite brand? Two people have recommended I try these!), and a couple of purses (I have my eye on this).

I’m always curious, how do you organize your closet? By item or style or color? Do you split closets or space by season? When’s the last time you did a closet purge or tried a new arrangement?

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