3 Tips to Control Your Clothing Chaos

I don't know about you, but I only wear about a third of the clothes in my closet. And that's generous. It just seems like SUCH a pain to do a major overhaul, which is why I only do it about once a year. It got me thinking - there's got to be a better way to "process" clothes as they come in (to put it in GTD terms), so you can make instant decisions that will make your closet more manageable and an overhaul less painful. Here are three things I came up with (and this goes for guys too):

  1. Put a donation bin in your closet. Collect items on a daily basis (or as you try things on that you know you'll never wear). When the bin gets full, take it to Goodwill (or any charity) for donation and benefit from a tax write-off. Don't forget to document your donations - either write a list with each item, it's estimated value, and if it's a name brand or lay all your clothes on the table and take a photo. Click here for a handy value guide from the Salvation Army.
  2. Try this mantra: No new hangers! Ever find yourself short of hangers, so you go out and buy 10 more to accommodate your ever-growing clothing collection? This could go on forever if you never take the time to clear things out. Right now I've got about half my clothing on hangers (shirts, nice pants, dresses). My new policy will be no new hangers - if I buy something new and want to hang it, something else in the closet has to go. The hard part will be resisting the urge to just stuff it all in drawers instead!
  3. Create an 'On Probation' section in your closet (or designate a drawer). These are clothes that you can't bring yourself to throw away...yet. Review the section or drawer from time-to-time and if you haven't worn an item in the last two years (one if you're really serious!) throw it in the donation bin. Add things to this area as you go if you aren't ready to throw it in the donation bin.

Have another tip for controlling your clothing chaos? Please share!