The Fresh Clean Closet
I regularly receive questions about my wardrobe & maintenance. With Spring around the corner & it still being technically 'a new year', I want to share some quick tips on Spring Cleaning & how to maintain a consistent closet. Over the years I learned how to keep my closet clean, without unnecessary items yet with all my essentials. It feels awesome to open my closet & know where everything is, what I actually own & quickly be able to style myself & be out the door in minutes. So, for my ladies with questions, here are my tips & secrets:
- If its too big, too small or you haven't worn it in a while, remove it from your closet. No reason to have items cluttering & taking space. Have you ever looked through your closet, seen things from high school, remember the last time you wore it & place it back in your closet? Like, why!? Are you ever going to wear it again? Have you worn it recently? But does it fit you though? Probably not. I learned to let go of items I do not see myself actually wearing & aren't part of my current style pallet. It's hard girl, I know. But trust me.. it will be worth it.
- Sell items of value, branded & in good/great condition in store or online. Donate items that will be used the most. Coats, office clothes, jeans, sweaters. Make sure items are in good condition, washed & without many imperfections (holes, burns & stains.. if you don't want it, what makes you think someone else will?). Hand downs really apply for relatives or close friends. Normally I do this before I sell or donate anything. Sharing is caring ladies (& gents).
- The trick to the perfect wardrobe is good solid basics. Really, to start anywhere, you need the key staples. This allows you to easily mix & match or have what you need when you least expect it. The great thing about basics is that it doesn't matter what 'style' category you fall under, it works! Of course, over time you add pieces that make your style, well, yours. Here are the basics:
Always in Season. | Black & White tank. | Short-sleeved white & black T-shirt. |Long-sleeved white & black T-shirt. | Denim shirt. | Black turtleneck. | White button-down shirt. | Sleeveless shirt. | Crisp white blouse. | Crewneck sweater. | Cardigan. | "Little black" dress. | Day dress. | Pencil skirt. | Mini skirt. | Jeans. | Black pants. | Black Leggings. | Denim jacket. | Cropped jacket. | Black cashmere wrap. | Ballet flats. | Basic black pumps. | Black scarf.
Fall Basics. | Cotton waffle robe. | Athletic sweatshirt. | Corduroy pants. | Lightweight waterproof coat (parka). | Trench coat. | Leather jacket. | Peacoat. | Flat boots. | Black heeled boots or booties.
Winter Basics. | Heavy sweater. | Cashmere hoodie. | Dark-wash jeans. | Wool trousers. | blazer. | Black cashmere wrap coat. | Winter coat.
Spring Basics. | Cotton blouse. | Printed tops. | Lightweight cashmere sweater. | Cotton button-up cardigan. | Lightweight waterproof raincoat. | Rain boots. | One-button blazer. | Capri pants. | Chinos. | Maxi skirt. | Linen trousers & blazer. | Lightweight scarf.
Summer Basics. | Bathing suit. | Bathing suit cover-up. | Convertible strapless bra. | Cotton pajamas. | Cotton maxi dress. | Strapless dress. | Denim shorts. | Cotton drawstring pants. | White jeans. | Lightweight jumpsuit. | Flat leather sandals.
- Shop with a purpose, not for the heck of it might be my most important advice & best kept secret. I am by nature a compulsive shopper. I believe most women & some men are as well. When I was younger, I'd go to the mall a lot, find 'SALES' & splurge on random stuff that looked 'cute' or 'its cheap now!'. I'd take it home, wear it once or twice & then wonder where the hell did it come from. When I used to try to add colors to my wardrobe (like, ages ago), I'd leave the pieces sitting in my closet for a year or two collecting dust because I'd never wear it. Maybe a few times I'd consider it with an outfit, but never actually use it. So, I told myself to not just buy things because they look pretty, its trending or its on sale. Do not get me wrong. Sales are awesome! All I'm saying is, if you technically do not need it, don't buy it.
- Memory inventory is what helps me go shopping. It sounds weird but I know every item in my closet. Because I keep my closet with the essentials, it's easy for me to go shopping, find a gorgeous pair of shoes & picture different outfits actually wearing those shoes. Sometimes however, I do get a little riskaay a buy something a little different. Maybe a dress or a different neutral color (because me purchasing something not black, white or grey is like poison!). Try to stick to items you KNOW you see yourself wearing 2, 3, 4 years from now. Like above, if it's a temporary feeling, its not really worth it.
- Online shopping is really not a big deal. I've done so for the past 7-8 years now & love it. No lines, large crowds & time to focus. I know my body measurements by heart & read carefully all store & clothing details before adding it to my cart. This makes online shopping a breeze & a lot more interesting. The advantage - I get to shop with my own time frame, get to look at every item, browse different stores at the same time & find WAY more selections than you would at an actual store. The disadvantage - you can't try clothes on before purchasing (why knowing your measurements & reading is key), & sometimes (only sometimes) waiting too long for it to get to your destination sucks.
- Quality over quantity has stuck by me for many years now. When it comes to basics, these are the items you will most likely rotate & use all the time (hello, the T's & jeans). Go for items that are better quality & will last longer. Nothing worse then having to buy several jeans in one year because of wear & tear than have a few that have lasted you several years with a bombastic break-in feel.
- Have fun, be you & do you is another big one in my book. Having your own sense of style is easy. Going for items you like, make you feel comfortable & happy is way better than wearing anything just because someone said so or its in the 'must have' list. Everyone looking the same is seriously boring anyways. Always be true to yourself & the things you want to wear. If it doesn't feel or fit right, it most likely doesn't. Do not be afraid to explore & try new things. Believe me, personal style evolves & grows over time. I think it's amazing how every individual has the creativity to view pieces & ensemble them together in their own way making it eventually 'their' own style.
Have any tips or advice you'd like to share? I'd love to hear them!
The basics list belongs to Real Simple & was modified by Yadi G. for Yadi's Journal.