A Step-by-Step Guide to Decluttering Clothes

So you’re fed up with an overflowing closet and are ready to tackle the mess once and for all, but where do you start? You could try the reverse hanger method where you turn all the hangers backwards and only flip them when you wear something. If a hanger is still backwards at the end of a year then that item goes – but that’s just delayed decision making taking up valuable hanging space in the mean time. So let’s tackle the beast head on shall we?

Step 1: Vision

The first step to any organizing project is to get a clear image in your mind of what you want to accomplish. If that vision doesn’t jive with the amount of things you own then some of it just straight up has to go. I’ve created a handy flow chart to help in the decision making process below (along with a printable┬áversion).

decluttering guide

Step 2: Basics

First and foremost your clothes should be in good condition, fit your body, be comfortable to wear, and match your lifestyle. If any of these are not met it should be an automatic NO.

What if you want to have another baby, plan on losing weight, or might start working again? Don’t let what-ifs prevent you from reaching your goals. Take those items – maternity, too big or too small, and office attire – out of the everyday rotation. Keep a few you are most fond of in a storage bin with a DATED label. Give yourself two years to need those items, then let them go. Chances are in two years the style, your tastes, and even your body have changed. If you do end up having a baby, losing the weight, or getting a job, then go CELEBRATE and buy yourself something new. You earned it. I don’t ever want you to look at your wardrobe and see regret. You should open the door and feel happy about the awesome choices you have for the day.

Step 3: Usage

Now that we’ve gone through the basics, do you actually wear it? As in, you actually wore it out of the house and can vividly recall doing so. If you’re left scratching your head wondering when the last time you wore something, then it’s probably time to Elsa it and Let. It. Go.

For special occasion items, like fancy dresses (or pants with buttons), it’s OK to keep some, but do you really need ten formal dresses when you wear only one a year? How many date night options do you need if you and the hubs get out once a month…if that? When usage and space restrictions are at odds, it’s important to go back to that vision you had before you started the decluttering process.

Step 4: The Feels

Last but certainly not least, you gotta feel like a million bucks when you put it on, or at least think your butt looks nice.

What about sentimental items? Your closet should be for items you USE. If there are things lurking out of pure nostalgia then they need to be stored with your other keepsakes.


Now go out there and crush some closet goals!

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