Nine questions to ask yourself when facing down a packed closet.


Messy Closet

  • Do you actually wear this item of clothing?
  • Do you love it or, if not, is it truly useful?
  • Even if you love it, is it in such bad shape that you ought to get rid of it?
  • How many fungible items do you own? If you have five pairs of khaki pants, will you ever wear your two least favorite pairs? How many t-shirts can one person wear?
  • Do you worry that it’s out of date? If you think it might be, it probably is.
  • Can it only be worn in a limited way? Get rid of a shirt that’s stained so it can only be worn under a sweater, or a jacket that’s too heavy to wear on all but the very coldest day of the year.
  • Does it fill a need that no longer exists? It can be hard to admit that you no longer do yoga or wear a bikini, so press yourself.
  • Get rid of an item of clothing if you describe it by saying, “I would wear that,” or “I have worn that.” Those phrases mean that you don’t wear it.
  • If you’re saving items for sentimental reasons, or to hand down to someone else, or to wear to a costume party, store them away from your active closet. And be choosy; only save things that really deserve it.

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2 thoughts on “Nine questions to ask yourself when facing down a packed closet.

  • August 1, 2007 at 12:54 pm

    These are great suggestions. My biggest fear (and the reason I haven’t tackled my closet) is that I wear the same ten pieces over and over again. It feels like it would be too radical to pare my closet down to my ten rotating items; therefore I do nothing. I feel like I’ve just been to confession.

  • August 23, 2007 at 6:21 pm

    Great tips. I just recently cleaned my closet and felt such a relief afterwards not to mention my closeted looked a lot better. One thing that really motivated me to get rid of things was the fact that I was donating the item to a local homeless shelter. Knowing that I was going to be helping a person in need really helped me to give up the things I really didn’t need.

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