THE BLOG
29/07/2011 11:50 BST | Updated 28/09/2011 06:12 BST

Wardrobe Rehab - How To Create Your Best Closet

Bodies change; don't clutter your life with things that might fit when you lose those 5 extra pounds. There are incredible clothes available in sizes from Le Petite Waif to Curvaceous Amazon Queen, and a wardrobe is no place for what ifs. If it no longer works for your shape, goals, or taste, it's gone.

As long as your style goals are rooted in positive thoughts (no "if I wore sexy clothes then boys would ask me on dates more!" No. No. No.), anything you want to manifest is achievable.

It's time to get cut-throat on your closet. Set aside a day to spend on yourself (I find Sundays to be the best choice for the weekday workers) then grab a full length mirror and trash bags. This is the only time I will ever tell an individual to fully embrace their judgmental emotions.

Step One:

GET IT OUT.

Empty every nook and cranny of your wardrobe. Hoarders, get your 'next season boxes' out of the attic and throw the contents on the ground. Anything you come across that causes an adverse reaction (ie. "I own overalls?"), throw out immediately.

Step Two:

Try it all on.

Bodies change; don't clutter your life with things that might fit when you lose those 5 extra pounds. There are incredible clothes available in sizes from Le Petite Waif to Curvaceous Amazon Queen, and a wardrobe is no place for what ifs. If it no longer works for your shape, goals, or taste, it's gone.

Create four piles: Keep, Tailor, Charity, and Trash. Anything you find hard to place in a category should get a sayonara. Go the same or next day to donate the Charity pile, and put a 'Tailor Trip' in a nearby calendar date. There is no reason to keep either pile laying around.

You should especially be goodbye-ing anything you haven't worn in a full year (unless it is formalwear or collectible), clothes that look old/worn (old does not 'vintage' make), anything stained (yes, people notice), and the clutter you have hidden from view by throwing it in your closet.

Step Three (Optional):

When all is said and done, if you have some pieces that don't fit into your style scheme but would be a steal for someone else, eBay and swap parties are mutually beneficial.

Step Four:

Organization. Guess what? You now have the makings of your dream closet. Because you want to maintain and improve on it, organization will be key. You're not organised, you say? Don't worry, it's a learned behavior. I find that colour-coding works best for me because I often dress like a walking rainbow (a walking rainbow with with an allergy to pants).

For someone with a more monochromatic collection, I would suggest:

  • Hanging: Shade-coded creaseable tops, dresses, jackets, and tailored or collectors items. Each colour put in the running order of sleeve length. Coats at the far end (but colour coded).
  • Folded: Separated stacks of trousers, skirt, cardigans, and anything you can 'just throw on'.
  • The Colour Code: The most flattering gradient I've found is White, Yellow, Orange, Red, Pink, Purple, Blue, Green, Grey, then Black.

Congratulations, you have a kick ass closet.

From here on out, you need to remember to assess your closet every season - it is all too easy to let the style suckers slip in. Shopping excursions should be planned via a style notebook that contains only the items you need. Keep the notebook in your purse at all times to avoid whimsical shopping binges.

On both shopping days and laundry days, take that extra sixty seconds to slip your garments in their colourful designated homes. To top it off, you can spritz your closet with a 'signature scent' (mine is Vanilla) so that when the doors are opened, you are inspired by your every sense.