As we established last week, it is spring! And spring is busy! If you’re anything like me, the improving weather makes you want to run outside and never come in again. Being outside in the fresh air makes brings into sharp relief just how stale and dark the air inside is after being shut up all winter. And if you’re anything like me, that creates an insatiable need to clean, sort, and renew every part of everything in your life.
This spring, I decided to start with my messy, disgusting closet. We’re about to get pretty personal here, so I want you to check any judgment you might have at the door. If it helps, go look in all of your messy closets and remember that you’re not such a great housekeeper either. And when you’ve done that, think about using the following tips to clean up your act too!
First things first, assess your mess. Take a good long look and soak it all in.
Pile of Shoes
Ok, stop soaking it in and move on to the real step #1: Pull everything out of your closet so you have a blank slate to work with in putting things back.
Step #2: Before putting things back, sort into 4 piles.
Keep, Maybe Keep, Toss or Recycle, and Donate. This probably goes without saying, but the Keep pile is for things you use and wear on a regular basis. I also include things you may not use often, but has sentimental value (e.g.: your wedding gown) and cannot be replaced.
The Maybe Keep pile is for things you haven’t used or worn in a long time, but you think you might. It’s also for things you need to try on and need to make sure you can even use it.
The Toss or Recycle pile is for things that have holes, are broken, or actual trash that made its way into the deep, dark corners of your closet. As you create this pile, keep in mind all the Pinterest DIY’s you have been saving up – you might not be able to wear your holy t-shirt, but maybe you can make a rug or grocery bag out of it.
The Donate pile is for things that are still useable and in good condition, but you no longer want them. These things will be given to charity, friends, or thrift stores.
Step # 3: Execute your plans for each pile.
Throw everything in the Toss pile away, keeping back things you have a project in mind for. Be careful not to use the recycle ideas as an excuse to keep crap you’ll never use: be realistic about your plans and don’t hoard junk. For the things you can Recycle, wash and put away in your craft storage place.
Try on everything from the Maybe Keep pile and make a judgment call. If you think you’ll use or wear it and it fits, put it with the Keep pile. If there’s no way you’ll ever be a size 2 again, put it with the Donate pile.
Bag or box up everything for Donation. If you think friend might want some of it, let them sort through it before dropping it off at your favorite charity or thrift store. This is a great time to donate the plastic grocery bags you’ve been hanging on to too – thrift stores often reuse grocery bags for their own shoppers.
For what to do with the Keep pile, tune in next week!
Happy Spring Cleaning!