When it comes to the Chrimbo Limbo, not knowing what to do can become a problem. One of my favourite tasks to do during that awkward time between Christmas and New Year is sort out my wardrobe. You’ve probably got a few clothes as gifts for Christmas so before you start adding them in, why not clear out what’s already there? Every year, I do a New Year wardrobe declutter so I can see what I already have and what I’m missing.
Before I go into my process, it’s important to know that this is not about getting rid of everything you own. A New Year wardrobe declutter simply means getting rid of the things that no longer serve you and streamlining your wardrobe. With your wardorbe, it’s ill-fitting pieces, items that you think you’ll squeeze into one day (it never comes) and things you haven’t worn in over a year. Having a wardrobe full of pieces that you know fit you well and that you love is the end goal here!
I’ve gathered my process into step-by-step chunks to create the ultimate guide to the New Year wardrobe declutter. If you’ve recently decluttered, it won’t take you as long but it’s about being honest with yourself. Would you rather have a wardrobe full of random pieces or one full of your favourite pieces that you wear all the time? I’m in the latter category of course!
TAKE EVERYTHING OUT
That’s right, you’re about to make a huge mess. Take every piece of clothing out of your wardrobes, drawers and extra cupboards and pile it all on your bed. I prefer the bed to the floor so I don’t have to keep reaching down (dodgy back here).
If you have some items in other rooms, bring those in too. We’re talking all clothing (tops, bottoms, outerwear), shoes (on the floor, superstition and all), accessories, underwear, pyjamas, loungewear, gymwear, EVERYTHING. You will probably be shocked by how much you actually own! However, it’s good to see how much you actually have and think about how much you actually need.
TRY EACH ITEM ON
We’re going for a proper clearout here so you need to try every piece on, even underwear. I can’t remember how many times I’ve found a bra or pair of knickers uncomfy, washed them and put them back in the drawer again. Get rid of them!
Some pieces you might have already made up your mind about but I just like to double check that I’m 100% sure by trying it on.
SORT INTO THREE PILES
For now, make this as uncomplicated as possible. With three piles of yes, no and maybe, you can begin to organise at the same time. Anything in the yes pile can go straight back into your wardrobe and drawers. It doesn’t have to be organised as such but just away and out of sight for now. The organising part comes later on in the process!
The no pile can be moved to another room for the time being, just to get them out of the way. I often just pop them in a bin bag before I start sorting through them.
With the maybe pile, I keep these items together. If I don’t wear it within three to six months, it moves to the no pile. You might want to try them on again if you have lots of items in the maybe pile. Think about how they fit you, what you will wear them with and where you will wear them. Try to keep your maybe pile as minimal as possible.
ORGANISE THE NO PILE
This is one of my favourite parts of the process. When everything else is away, bring those ‘no’ items back onto your bed and sort them into piles again. I like to categorise them into five piles maximum:
- Sell – I try to sell as much as I can!
- Charity – Any item that is still in good condition but I don’t think will sell. If it doesn’t sell within three months, it moves to this pile too.
- Give away – Those items that you know friends and family have their eyes on!
- Recycle – Check with your local recycling centre or tip to see what you can recycle. Try cutting up worse-for-wear items to use as rags for housework first.
- Throw away – This pile should be as minimal as possible.
ORGANISING – WARDROBE
To me, there are two important to organising your wardrobe: colours and hangers. Velvet hangers are best but I do use thick plastic hangers for heavier items. I recently got these velvet hangers in grey and they’ve been a game-changer! I now have much more space to hang items and they look sleek and grown-up too.
Colour co-ordinating your wardrobe is also appealing to look at. It’s very The Home Edit but I just like how it looks. It makes putting away clothes much easier too as the colours just flow nicely!
ORGANISING – DRAWERS
I think I might enjoy organising drawers more than anything! I have a mixture of drawer organisers with dividers and without. Keeping similar pieces together is a good idea so you know where everything is.
With the divider drawer organisers, I keep bras, knickers, socks and scrunchies. They’re best for smaller items that you need keeping together. For the drawer organisers without dividers, I have sweatshirts, vests, pyjamas, loungewear and some skincare. It’s not allowed in a drawer if it doesn’t fit in one of the organisers!
Measure your drawers before you buy anything to make sure you get ones that fit properly and play around with your organisers until you find out what’s best for you. For example, I keep bras and knickers in one drawer because it’s convenient. Loungewear and sweatshirts are kept close to each other so I can grab and go.
There’s something so therapeutic about a New Year wardrobe declutter. I tend to take it further and declutter the entire house (I know, I’m obsessed). It’s a great idea to take stock of what you do have already as well as what you do and don’t need. My space is by no means minimal but it’s certainly less cluttered that it used to be!
Do you love a New Year wardrobe declutter as much as I do? Let me know if you need any help with your clearout by sending me a DM on Instagram. I’m always happy to send over any tips or help out virtually!