I’ve got the spring cleaning bug! I just completed a major clothing purge where I paired down my wardrobe by about 70%. I am super excited to share this first installment of my 2015 Home Purge series with you!
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I was inspired by Marie Kondo’s The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up (which I reviewed last week) to attack my entire wardrobe in one fell swoop. I followed the KonMari Method, which suggests beginning the clothing purge process by placing piles of all clothing on the floor. This first step was quite powerful for me as it revealed just how much I really had. I was blown away by the sheer size of my pile! Keep in mind it includes everything from everyday wear to special occasion clothes, sleepwear, workout gear, undergarments, and everything in between.
Kondo recommends a particular order to go through your clothing, which I basically followed, starting with tops, then moving onto bottoms, hung items, socks, underwear, bags, accessories, clothes for specific events, and finally shoes. I veered slightly from this order saving my bags, accessories, and shoes for after all of the clothing, mainly because I couldn’t fit any more piles on my floor. Even though it looks like one jumbled heap, I actually placed the clothing on the floor in piles in this order for ease of sorting. While it did feel overwhelming at first, I found that once I sat down and started sorting I felt really calm and focused. It took me about an hour and a half to go through and pick up each garment before deciding what to keep and what to give away. In the end I broke the rules just a bit and tried on seven things I had put aside because I couldn’t get a clear read from just holding them. I only kept one of those items and donated the rest.
The “after” pile surprised me as well, but in a much different way from the “before” pile. I had a feeling going into the purge process that I’d be getting rid of about 50% of my wardrobe, but I hadn’t expected to get rid of more than that and with such ease. Using the KonMari Method, I was able to make instant decisions about each article of clothing and accessory. Instead of hemming and hawing and getting stuck over rationalizations, which is what normally happens to me even when deciding whether to purchase or keep a new item, I instead relied on my feelings and intuition about each piece. Right away after picking something up I knew if I had a good feeling about it or not for the most part and was able to make an immediate decision based on that feeling. How liberating! Taking the brainwork out of the equation freed me to really let go of what I truly no longer needed or wanted in my life. I am a KonMari convert!
I was left with five extra large garbage bags of clothes to donate, one regular size garbage bag of clothing and winter accessories and one regular size bag of trash (I only tossed things that couldn’t possibly be recycled like underwear and worn out socks and slippers). I also filled 8 large shopping bags of nicer quality items to donate to specific charities, and two rectangular bins with enough handbags and accessories for my own charity auction next year (this year’s charity auction will be announced soon!).
Here is a list of the charities/donation drives I picked:
1. Goodwill – Items donated are sold and the revenue generated funds employment training and job placement services for people in the community.
2. One Warm Coat – Provides a list of local coat drives (most are held in the fall so I plan on keeping this bag in storage until then).
3. Dreams Delivered – Provides free prom wear including dresses, shoes, and accessories to local underprivileged high school students.
4. Dress for Success – Provides business appropriate clothing, shoes, and accessories to women in need going on interviews.
5. Shelter, Inc. Thrift Shop – Proceeds from sold items fund this organization which provides support to abused and neglected children and teens.
6. Northshore Exchange – High-end resale boutique whose proceeds support local charities serving children and families with the greatest need.
7. Personal Charity Auction – I sell my previously loved bags and accessories to support a charity of my choosing through eBay Giving Works. This year’s charity auction will be announced soon! Click here to see the results of my first charity auction.
I understand that not everyone will agree with my charity choices, but I ask that you please respect my right to choose where I donate my belongings.
I documented my entire clothing purge process in this video, if you’re interested in a more in-depth look:
I’m feeling energized after completing this major wardrobe purge and I can’t wait to tackle the remaining parts of my bedroom and then move onto the rest of my home. I’ve decided I’m not in a particular hurry to complete my entire home purge process and will be breaking it down mainly by room from here on out. I plan to space out my process so that I can focus on sharing other things with you as well in the coming months. I’d love to know if you decide to give the KonMari Method a go and what you think of the process.
Happy spring cleaning!
* This is not a sponsored post. All opinions are genuinely my own. *