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I don’t want to get rid of my clothes

by Lisa Lyford
I don’t want to get rid of my clothes

I had a panic call from a woman concerned about doing away with some of her clothes. “Why do you have to do that”, I asked. “Because the experts tell you to regularly clear out your wardrobe.”


I’m with this woman. I find it really really hard to part with my clothes - they’re part of me and I love them! Instead, I swap over my summer and winter wardrobes (of course trans-seasonal clothing remain in each) and sort them according to clothing type - tops, skirts, trousers, jackets, etc. By going through each item, I am reminded of what I have and what I might need to refresh my overall look or top it up. 




Get the most out of your wardrobe


By mixing and matching the clothing and accessories in your wardrobe, see how many different combinations you can come up with. Be experimental. Don’t pre-judge anything until you’ve tried it on. Oh and be sure to try on a 'whole' outfit, complete with accessories; you can't possibly get an appreciation of an outfit's full potential without doing so. Invite a friend along for advice and a giggle. Here are some suggestions:


  • mix up colours
  • mix up styles
  • layer clothing
  • try wearing tops back-to-front
  • if you have a button-front top or cardigan, after the first buttonhole, use every alternate buttonhole to create a gathered effect.


To refresh the look of your wardrobe…


  • look at changing the buttons on an outfit
  • add embellishments, e.g. beads, epaulets, braiding, etc
  • add some new accessories - colourful jewellery, shoes or a scarf (check our blog on scarf tying) in cooler months
  • a new top to give your skirt/trousers/jacket/suit a new lease of life. I tend to buy ‘fashion’ pieces from mainstream brands to give me the ‘in’ look but without the hefty price tag
  • can an existing garment be altered to give it a new look - hemline lengthened or shortened or angled, taken in at the sides, totally reconstructed? 


A number of these ideas are also good when you're given or buy pre-loved clothing. Think about a garment's potential, what can you do with it.



Take a photo


If you think you’ll struggle to remember the different combinations you've come up with, take a photo. Claire, one of our makeover models, now organises her wardrobe as ‘outfits’ to make it quicker to get ready in the morning.




Don’t be embarrassed


I’ve spoken to so many women who are embarrassed about having clothes and accessories in their wardrobe that are years old. Don’t be embarrassed, congratulate yourself that you chose well in the first place and that you obviously look after your clothes so well that they last. I have a few items in my wardrobe that are inching on for 15+ years!



It is pointless


...keeping clothes that you haven’t worn for years and can’t see yourself wearing again. Instead, wouldn’t it be wonderful to give them a second life with someone else - charity, clothes swap, selling them.





This is also a great time to actually clean your wardrobe, wiping down the walls with a fragrant spray and airing it out.



Lack of Storage?


We recommend vacuum storage bags - a very efficient form of storage (triple your storage!) and they protect your clothes from insects, dust and mould too. You can get them from most homeware stores.


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