Thursday I got to hang out with my nieces all day. When my sister in-law came home we had some fun purging her wardrobe and she sent me home with a whole lot of tops to try on and add to my own wardrobe.
Although I had a huge wardrobe clear-out at the beginning of December I knew my drawers were still full of stuff I've held onto. Most of that stuff doesn't really fit me any more but I've been holding onto for 'just in case'.
'Just in case' what?
- Just in case I lost weight as suddenly as I put it on?
- Just in case I had to have something to wear I could squeeze into a top that was 2 sizes too small?
- Just in case I could never buy another top again and I would have to try to make a new top from the ones I already had?
Step 1. Create empty wardrobe spaceBefore I could add any new items into the drawers I needed to make room for them. Working through each drawer individually I completely emptied the drawer and sorted it's contents as per the next step.
Step 2. Sort into 3 piles Replace / Keep / Undecided
ReplaceI put to one side all of the clothes that I would happily get rid of if I knew I had something to replace it with. There were 22 items.
KeepEverything I really wanted to keep back went back in it's drawer.
UndecidedThe remainder I put aside to the undecided pile.
Step 3. One-in one-outI tried on all of the items from my sister in-law and for each item I decided to keep I would take an item off the replace it pile and put it aside for donating/upcycling.
This is the first time ever I've followed the 'one-in one-out rule' and it was working!
Step 4. Re-assessGo through the undecided pile again and try everything on. With a wardrobe full of new (to me) things the undecided pile was no longer as appealing as it had been and it was much easier to make the decision to say goodbye.
The results:I brought 30 of my SIL's items home with me.
I swapped out 20 items, and didn't like her other 10 items, mostly due to them not fitting in a flattering way.
Because I'd already chosen 22 items I would be willing to replace before I started swapping out clothes using the one-in one-out rule by the time I'd finished there were only 2 items left in that pile so I decided to get rid of those 2 items as well.
I had just refilled my wardrobe with new-to-me clothes, so when I went through the undecided pile trying everything on it was much easier to decide not keep them. 10 items went into the donate pile and 8 items went into storage because I'm not ready to get rid of them yet but they are just a bit too small for me. I only put 2 items back into my drawers.
Upcycle Donate:20 one in one out items
10 of my SIL's items
2 extra from my replace pile
10 items from my undecided pile
Total Upcycle / Donations = 42 items!
Stored for now:8 items
Total Stored = 8 items
Total removed from my drawers:20 in, 20 out = 0
2 extra from my replace pile = 2
10 items from my undecided pile = 10
8 items into storage = 8
Total drawer reduction = 20 items
Why I think it worked so well.I applied the one-in one-out rule to my wardrobe as a whole. If I had created categories of smart casual tops, singlets, t-shirts etcetera I would have stumbled at every decision of which top could replace which. It was totally okay to replace a dress top with a singlet or vice versa looking at my wardrobe as a whole.
I didn't try anything on until Step 3. This is really important because if I didn't know if it fit or not meant it didn't make the first cut and went into the undecided pile. If I didn't know if it fitted it also meant I hadn't worn it for a while. It was either something I didn't love and was holding onto for 'just in case' or something I liked but didn't fit. The truth is that neither of those kinds of things should be taking up wardrobe space.
I re-visited the stuff I ummed and ahhed about in the undecided pile after I had added the new-to-me items to my wardrobe. How differently those undecided items looked compared to the newer stuff!
Do you use the one in one out rule with your wardrobe?