Friday, January 21, 2011

My Own 12 Step Program

It's been a while since I've done an official "Fashion Friday" post on this "blog*," but I figured when I set to a certain task this week that it would be the perfect band-aid for the wound that is the temporarily-but-quite-noticeably-absent feature. I know I've missed it, and we're not all that different, you and me.

About now, everybody is all gung-ho about resolutions. Well, those that don't give up their resolutions on January 4th around dessert time are still gung-ho. Good for you, endure-ers. I know you all are so glad I shared some of my resolutions, but one that wasn't shared but should have been is cleaning out my disastrous excuse for a closet.

Look at it, people. This is what I would wake up to every day. This is where I hoped the appropriate outfit would just leap out of that poorly-lit closet and give me a big morning hug. Alas, never did this happen.

So, I had to organize it. While I am what many consider to be an organized person, this personality trait hadn't made its way into my closet. Call it prioritizing. Call it being busy with other things. Heck, call it plain being messy.

No longer.

Ta-da! (Are your eyes watering, because I know mine are)

How did it happen? How can you make it happen? Will your life be better afterward?

To question #3, YES! To questions #1 and #2, get to reading:

Jennifer's 12 Steps to Having a Better Closet, and Thus a Better Life:

1) Open the closet door, turn on the lights, and accept that things are a total mess. Only berate yourself for about 30 seconds.

2) Make yourself a White Russian so you can properly cope with the closet.

3) Take all your shoes out of the closet. This makes reaching everything else so much easier, which will make you less frustrated during this task.

4) DO NOT TAKE ANY CLOTHES OUT OF YOUR CLOSET YET. (I feel this is truly the secret to getting this done for real).

5) While keeping all clothes in the closet, organize everything you own by color and length. All of the shirts go from lights to darks, and all of your longer items like coats or dresses do the same (wherever they fit in the closet, that is).

6) Relish that a color-coordinated closet looks organized, even if it isn't. Sip your White Russian satisfactorily.

7) Now you can start taking out some clothes: Starting from the lights and moving toward the darks, take out the items that you a) haven't worn in a while, b) aren't sure if they fit, or c) don't care for anymore. I find it's easier sort through your white T-shirts when you know exactly how many white T-shirts you have because they are all sitting right next to the other white T-shirts. Please note that I only have one white T-shirt and used that for example only.

8) Depending on how you feel about the particular piece in your hands, you can try it on if you think you will wear it (really, I mean it: don't go kidding yourself).

9) If you don't care for the piece, I'm a big fan of either finding something new to do with it (e.g. dye it, tailor it, etc.) or donating it. Someone out there can use your clothes.

10) Try on any questionable shoes, like those you haven't worn in a while because they are out of season, or because you secretly hate them because while they are very cute they hurt your feet like crazy. Resist the temptation to keep them because they go with that one skirt from that one time.

11) Return your shoes to the closet in whatever manner you prefer (me, I like using a shoe rack).

12) Put all of your donated clothes into bags whilst both marveling at your accomplishment and finishing your White Russian.

At least that's how I do it; do you have a better strategy?

And how do you like Fashion Friday's return? Happiness, yes?

*And, actually, I'm considering a special theme for the blog in February to make up for the oh-so-many times I've missed a Fashion Friday Blog. Stay tuned.


  1. Bravo on tackling your closet solo! One thing that I share with my clients is to pair all the like items together -- all the shirts together, all the skirts together, sweaters, jackets, pants, etc. -- and then sort from longest to shortest sleeves, skirts, etc. It helps to open up the opportunities for mixing and matching.

    Thanks for entering the Mod Bod contest!

  2. Sara, thanks for the great advice and nice comment! The picture of my closet is only shirts and dresses. My pants and skirts are all on a different rack in the closet, but I think I'll have to try your "organization my sleeve length" suggestion. It may help me with the 30 for 30 I'm participating in this month. Oh, and thanks--I hope to win the Mod Bod contest! :)