Keep, Trash or Cash: The 3 Step Process to Cleaning Out Your Closet

Posted On Friday, March 10th, 2017
Filed Under: Style Guide

  looking-fly-on-a-dime-closet-clean-out-how-to-clean-out-closet This week I made another appearance on Essence Live and I helped an editor clean out her closet.
The process of cleaning out your closet can feel super overwhelming, but it can be broken down into three simple steps: keep, trash, cash.
But read on for more specific tips if you feel your closet is overflowing, needs organizing or if you just want to know how to wear that piece you love but are clueless about styling it.

I assisted Essence editor, Charli Penn, tackle her cramped closet and the process wasn’t super time consuming and that’s because before I started I had a closet clean out game plan.

Start Small
Don’t burn yourself out. There may be an instinct to revamp your entire closet in one day. But if you’ve got a lot of work to do, that can actually backfire and make you feel discouraged. Instead, start small. This might mean tackling an area in your closet {the top shelves, left side, etc.} or only particular items {shoes, accessories, tops, skirts, etc.}. Only tackle as much as you can realistically handle. While working with Charli, I only focused on two rows of clothing versus the entire closet or clothes and accessories.
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Know Where Everything Will Go 
Before you start creating piles to keep, trash {donated goods} or cash {to be sold}, know exactly where everything will end up. For the donated items, have a few charities in mind and research their donation policy {if they pick up or do you have to drop off} ahead of time. Same goes for the pieces you want to sell. Have an idea of what apps or websites you want to sell them on or what stores you can drop them off at. Poshmark is my preferred app for selling clothes and I shared a few tips here {7 Killer Strategies to Sell Your Clothes on Poshmark}. The point is to know what you’ll do with everything before you start creating those piles. Because what you don’t want is for everything to just take up space in your home or even worse, back in your closet.
Hold Off on Closet Accessories, for Now 
Remember in last week’s post when I mentioned you should organize your closet based on the order in which you get dressed? You definitely want to do that, which makes your life easier. So don’t be afraid to move things around a bit. Maybe your tops were in the front of your closet but it makes more sense for you to place them elsewhere or folded up. And sometimes this means buying shelves, bins, etc. But before you purchase any new closet accessories, organize your closet first. I know so many people {self included!} who buy racks, shelves, bins, etc. because they’re cute and you think you’ll use them, but then you realize you don’t really need them or you need something else. Instead, go through the organization process first and this will dictate exactly what you need. It might mean a hanging rack for sweaters, under the bed bins for out of season shoes, etc.
Be sure to watch the video below to see exactly how I organized Charli’s closet. I even gave her a few styling tips so she can finally wear a gorgeous metallic cape blazer she’s had forever.

How do you organize your closet? What was/is your biggest hurdle in organizing your closet?  
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