Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Wardrobe Resuscitation.

Every year like clockwork, I get into a flap about the state of affairs in my wardrobe. It usually happens at the start of a season, like summer, when I'm trying to decipher what still fits me and what I need to buy. Then, in a panic, I'll run out and purchase several must-have items only to discover they already exist in my wardrobe.


This year, I decided instead to examine my entire existing wardrobe. I had a hunch there were good things lurking in there, probably in undisturbed corners gathering dust and cobwebs. I had distant but definite memories of bright hues and foreign textures - things that hadn't seen the light of my bedroom in years. So I went on a treasure hunt of sorts. I was like a pirate on a mission for gold (only without the eye patch and the parrot). 

I chose a time when I could be alone for one whole hour (a rare thing indeed).

I started by removing everything from my closet. Everything.

I laid everything out on my bed (and the floor). It was quite a mess.  

Then, completely overwhelmed, I ran out for a coffee to procrastinate for ten minutes.

I then began organizing things into categories:

- current: things I wear every week
- dress: things I only wear for special occasions
- old but good: things I haven't worn in the past six months
- dead: things I just shouldn't
- accessories
- shoes

The things I knew I'd never wear again, I put straight in a bag assigned for charity. Easy.

The "old but good" things I hadn't worn in the past six months, I tried on. There were some pre-baby clothes that fit me again. There were some clothes that didn't fit any more, and some that just looked plain wrong - I assigned those to the charity bag.

With the old clothes that fit again, I set about pairing them with my current clothes to make new outfits.

I found this oyster silk top purchased in a British shop about ten years ago. It was right at the back of my wardrobe, behind some old coats and blazers, and surprisingly was in fine condition. I hadn't given it a thought in years. I decided it would look great with a pair of jeans.

Then I found this old beloved striped chiffon top with waist tie. I could pair it with a pair of white linen pants for another summer outfit.

I'd worn this aqua-coloured dress to a wedding once, about six years ago, and it had since been committed to the back of my wardrobe, perhaps for fear it was too pretty / pastel-y / floaty. Or something. This summer I'll find a way to wear it. Even if it's just in my own back garden.

I had totally forgotten about this skirt - purchased at a store in Maui years ago. It is very pink and very boho and hasn't been worn anywhere for at least five years. Poor thing. I could team it with a black spaghetti-strap top and a pair of strappy sandals.

I found this silk halter top, hanging in there (by a thread) and I think it has at least one more summer's worth of wear in it. I could pair it with a pair of black capris and flip flops.

It was amazing to go through my wardrobe and rediscover things I'd completely forgotten about. As I put everything back in its place, I felt confident, knowing what I could still wear and what could be given away.

Another idea would be to have a friend go through your wardrobe and suggest outfits you might not have thought of. Sometimes a fresh pair of eyes can do wonders.

How about you? How do you revive your wardrobe?
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Carmen said...

I love this :) Did it stop you from going shopping or no? ;) I went through mine when Aidan was about 1, but I need to do it again. I have no idea what summer worthy stuff is in there, and whether or not it fits. Perhaps I'll do it one day this week :)

Lady Mama said...

Unfortunately no, it didn't stop me from shopping as well! Oops.

Tammy said...

Love love love the pink skirt!!!

Kate Coveny Hood said...

I try to do this every time I switch my wardrobe for the warm/cold season. But realistically - I do it at least once a year.

This is the reason why I am always at a lost for costumes to wear to theme parties. I recently attended a costume-optional 80s party sans costume. Now if they were having a late 90s party, then I MAY have been able to throw something together...

I hear you on the need to talk about things other than children by the way. I have two other design-related blogs and have been writing less and less at TBPOC. I wonder if that's a parenting thing... Getting tired of talking about the kids all the time...feeling like you're running out of stories that aren't precious anecdotes that should really only be shared with doting grandparents...

Or maybe that's just me!

Loukia said...

I love the second outfit so much, and that silk tank top! Yay! I recently tore apart my closet too. It was so hard to toss/give away certain things, but my closet has more room to breath now... more room for new things! ;)

Christy said...

Since I'm pregnant for the third time in less than 4 years, I've been going through my clothes OFTEN! And, doing so again is on my list of things to do this week. I LOVE purging!!

Great idea about having a friend put together outfits for you! Love that one! Wish you were local so you could swing by and do just that for me! :)

Elaine A. said...

This is SO funny because I just did this last week too and found a dress that looks SO cute with a new belt I just bought. Plus I got rid of a BUNCH of stuff and plan to try and sell some of it to the local resale shop so... you know... I can buy a few new things. ;)

Elaine A. said...

Oh p.s. LOVE the stripy top and white pants combo!

Mwa said...

Well, I must do precisely what you did. Only I must wait another two or three kilos to do so.

Great finds!