· If I haven’t worn it in the past year – donate
· If it no longer fits and cannot be altered – donate
· If it does not fit my current style – donate
· If it has holes or stains – throw or donate
Both times I gave away between 1-2 shopping bags worth of clothing to charity. And I can’t say I have missed those pieces, and I can’t even remember what most of them even were.
I set two goals for myself:
- Reduce my clothing so it fits into ONE suitcase.
- Try not to purchase any new clothing items for an entire year.
To achieve goal one I instituted a process I read about on multiple blog sites. I placed a shopping bag in the back of the closet. Anytime I try on an item and don’t LOVE it, I put it in the bag. If after a month or so, if I have not thought about it or wanted to wear it, I donate it to charity. This trick has worked very well for me, and I can confidently say that since the move I have scaled down on my wardrobe by about 40%.
Goal number two has been very difficult, and I broke after 4 months of no purchases. The break was also not because I NEEDED something. I had had a horrible day at my job and was feeling sad, homesick, lonely and was low in the self-esteem department. So I did the worst thing anyone trying to live minimally could do; I went to the mall. At the mall I feel most at home because it is the most ‘American’ thing I can find in my current country of residence. And I bought…cute pjs… Not a proud moment in my new minimalist life style. Even as I waited for the bus outside the mall, buyer’s remorse set in… As I admitted my folly to my husband, he reminded me that it is ok to buy new, as long as something old goes out. So I chose a pj shirt and pants that I wear less often, and put it in the donation bag at the back of the closet. I have since thoroughly enjoyed my new items and have not thought about retrieving my old ones at all. I did learn from this experience though. Shopping when I’m having a bad day is NOT the answer. And I have found other ways to treat myself instead of accumulating THINGS.
What are your thoughts on retail therapy? Have you found other ways to turn a bad day around? What about wardrobe maintenance and control? As always, would love to know your thoughts!