The 5 Piles
1. Keep: When you walk by the mirror in these items, it should compel a brief pause, during which a smile flutters across your face. It doesn’t have to be fancy, but it does have to flatter.
2. Archive: Are your winter boots currently residing in company with your flip flops? For shame, keeping seasonally distinct items in a single closet (even in Arizona) not only makes for fashion overwhelm, but it also makes your clothes very sad. It’s like serving tuna with peanut butter, it just isn’t right. Now for those items that you loved upon purchased, proceeded to wear for a straight fortnight, and in consequence is now prematurely jaded, I suggest archival. Archive all that is tired, seasonally inappropriate, or just inconclusive. Then reassess in 3-6 months, and ditch anything you’re still not ready to wear immediately. Don’t underestimate the thrill of fashion reunion.
This is not however a dumping ground for fashion memorabilia. If you don’t plan to wear it within the calendar year, take a picture of it and donate it.
3. Repair: You have exactly five days to go to the dry cleaner, cobbler, or tailor with these items. If it’s not urgent, it’s not important enough to fix.
4. Give-Away: Donate items that don’t fit your body or style but are in good condition. If you are having a difficult time parting with an item that no longer flatters your figure, find a specific friend to give it to. Or better yet, organize a clothing exchange, in which friends can bring all their items that are in good condition, but no longer employed by their closets.
5. Throw-Away: Items that are stained, torn, or otherwise beyond repair. Enough said.
Still overwhelmed? Reserve a 90 minute one-on-one session to review your entire closet. Items will be evaluated based on color compatibility, fit, flattery, and condition. By the end of the session you will have a wearable wardrobe plus a shopping list for key items to purchase. During this session suggestions will also be made on how to mix and match existing pieces to break away from clothing “uniforms” and get more wear through creative ensemble pairings.