Before and After: I have a lot of clothes

As promised, I started the Great Purge of ’16 shortly after I published my last post. I spent a good half hour rounding up all my clothes from various corners of the house, emptying all my drawers and piling everything in great drifts on the bed. It looked something like this:

Nate commented, “You have a lot of clothes, sweetie.” Yes. Yes I do. I enjoy fashion, I like to shop, and I think clothes are a really fun way to express myself. So, I have a lot of clothes. The photo above is all the clothing I own, minus socks, undergarments, and accessories (scarves, hats, gloves, etc.). The accessories I piled separately on the ground, as well as my shoes (see below). I did not photograph my skivvies and socks, because I didn’t think you all would want to see them.

It is more than a little imposing to confront your entire wardrobe reincarnated as a mountain in a poorly-lit basement. In fact, it’s a bit terrifying. Not to be discouraged, I checked my manual, Tidying Up. There is a specific order for everything, and I wanted to get this right. Vanquishing a clothes-mountain takes deliberate planning and strategy. Following my tidying guru Marie Kondo’s suggestion, I started with tops, which happened to be the biggest pile, looming a good three feet from mattress to tip. I picked up one top and held it out, and then basically had a staring match with it while I tried to feel the sparkly joyful feelings, or lack thereof. It’s a little weird to have a silent dialogue with your clothes. It took me the greater part of a day to get through the whole massive mound piece by piece, shoes, bags, skivvies and all, but I made it. In all, I cast off 7 very full paper grocery bags full of clothing!

Then came the hard part: folding. Kondo has several chapters on folding. My girl LOVES folding. She suggests folding and stowing everything vertically so when you open your drawers you can see everything. Good ol’ MK even advocates for arranging your folded clothes in a color gradient from front to back, light to dark. I know, sounds like a pain.

As a former retail-slave (I take such pleasure in the fact that I can now say former), I can fold pretty much anything perfectly in seconds flat. Ask me to show you the patented Seaside sweatshirt fold sometime; it’s serious business. Oh, and for the record, folding boards are for chumps. All that folding for (minimal) pay has quite turned me off to the idea of doing it at home, however. Every few weeks I go through and fold everything, but in between I tend to let things pile up. Guru MK says I can’t do that anymore, and since I’m going all out on this, I followed her instructions exactly. It took a while, but check out those sweet gradients! And, my socks are “resting”. 

When I showed Nate my progress he congratulated me and said, “You know, sweetie, you still have a lot of clothes.” Yes. Yes I do. But now, I can say with confidence that every single piece of clothing I own brings me joy.

It’s been two days, and everything still looks nice. Today I tackled books, post and pics coming soon! Stay tuned!


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