How To: Declutter Your Closet

I’m Anna.
Newly wed, pup mom to Ozzy, living off the coast of NC. Sharing capsule wardrobe tips, renter safe home projects, recipes & more! Here to share the alternatives for living simply and sustainably
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Gimme that

Before you decide to throw all of your clothes in the “donate” bin out of overwhelm and frustration, take a breather. I get it, we all get in the mood to clean and declutter our lives every so often but sometimes in the heat of the moment we make hurried decisions that lead to a bit of regret. I’m not saying you shouldn’t go through your closet every once in awhile, but when you do, you should ask yourself these questions before hand. How to declutter your closet the right way:

What Is Your Goal?

Start by asking yourself what your goal is by decluttering your closet. “Why do I want to declutter my closet?” Do you only wear half the things in your wardrobe on a regular basis? Are there clothes in your closet that don’t fit you or that you don’t feel comfortable in? Are you struggling to find your personal style and don’t like what you currently have? All of these questions can help you understand your next steps to create an intentional wardrobe that you actually love.

Dump The Goods

The first step to decluttering your closet is to take everything out of your closet…no really. Grab everything on hangers, shoved in drawers, or thrown on shelves and dump it on your bed. It’s gonna look worse before it gets better. There’s several reasons for this, for starters, when you see everything in one big pile it helps your brain visualize the excess. If you were to go hanger by hanger, it’s much harder to see or reference what you have. For instance, let’s say I decided to organize my closet piece by piece. I might see only one pair of shorts folded in my closet and feel the need to keep them when I have two full drawers of shorts in my dresser that I’m unaware of. When you have every single article of clothing in one place you can see the full picture. It gives you a clean slate to build up your wardrobe!

Piece By Piece

Now you’re ready to start the decluttering process. Turn on some fun music or your favorite show and get to work. Pick up the first article of clothing and run through these four questions

  1. Would I buy this item again today in the store?
  2. Does this item fit me comfortably?
  3. Can I remember the last time I wore this?
  4. Will I wear this item more than 5-8 times this month?

If you answered NO to any of these questions I say it’s cluttering up your closet. I usually create three piles when getting rid of clothes:

+ Resell

+ Donate/Give Away

+ Rework/Throw Away

Special Occasion Pieces

For special occasion pieces like dresses I have a small section in the back of my closet. They aren’t daily wear but things I like to have on hand for events or travel etc. Something I have considered for future to keep my closet minimal is rental services or clothing subscriptions like Nuuly. This way I could simply rent pieces for a trip or wedding coming up and don’t have to sacrifice the space in my wardrobe. I haven’t tried this out personally but I have several friends that do and love it so I say go for it if you’re looking for a similar solution!

Curate Your Closet

Now as you’re going through the remaining pieces in your closet, think about the wardrobe you are creating. You want a curated, intentional, and versatile wardrobe. This is where a capsule wardrobe could be wildly helpful in simplifying your life and your closet. I have been following a capsule wardrobe since May of 2022 and I haven’t looked back. You can read more about capsule wardrobes and if it’s something that might help you HERE. I also explain to specific details on how to create a capsule wardrobe here. The idea is having a few things you just love love to wear and feel the most like yourself in, I have a feeling you might like it!

Gatekeep Your Closet

You’ve successfully cleared out the clothing you no longer like or wear and minimized the clutter in your closet, now what? You should be left with the things you love and a collection of pieces that you get excited to wear. But it doesn’t stop there, you must be committed to no longer bring in things that make it clutter up again. This all boils down to making thoughtful purchases for long term intentionality and sustainability in your wardrobe. And if you’re like me, that will take time and exercise. We are being heavily marketed to every single day- “buy this” “you need this” “must have” “the next trendy thing” and it can be exhausting. But even through it can be overwhelming at times, we have to retrain our minds to not live in a state of constant discontentment, and that takes some effort.

I plan to write more about this in the future so if you found this helpful and are looking to create a simple and intentional home and wardrobe, I hope you decide to stick around here and follow me on socials!

I’ll see you in my next post!



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