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Learn to clean out your closet without the guilt

5 Steps to Clear Our Your Closet

 

I’m a girl who loves to clean out my closets. I don’t know if it’s the or what, but streamlining my clothing and shoes, while making room for new possibilities has always made me happy. However, every now and then I get struck by this overwhelming sense of guilt when I try to get rid of something. “Ugh, I just got those shoes. True, they were final sale, and I ordered them, so I didn’t know they were just a tad too tight, but still… Maybe I could squeeze into them for an hour or two at dinner??” Or the always present, “Okay, yeah, so I’ve never worn that dress. But it’s so cute, and you know the second I get rid of it, the perfect occasion will pop up where I could’ve worn it.”

But unless you have a vastly huge closet (and even if you do), you don’t need to keep things that aren’t you from mucking up your space. So here are some steps to clear out your closet without needing a glass of wine to cope through it –

1. Accept it for what it is and learn from it

Yes, you spent money on that shirt, and no, you’ve never worn it (or you only wore it twice). Did money get wasted? Probably. Have you learned anything from it? Sure. Maybe now you know that you really don’t like cashmere sweaters (anyone with me there?? Why are they always itchy to me??) Or maybe you really thought you could pull off a mini skirt, but you can’t get over how your knees look. You won’t be spending money on those same fashion mistakes in the future. And recognize this fact – unless you still have the receipt, that money is gone. End of story. You can try your luck at Buffalo Exchange or Plato’s Closet, but you will likely not fully recoup whatever you spent to buy that item in the first place. Accept that fact and move on.

 

2. If you really can’t let go – then don’t

A few years back, I had gained a lot of weight, and I had to majorly clean out my closet because so few of the items fit. I threw the garbage bag of discards into the trunk, and promptly forgot about them until almost a year later. Then one day, and about 50 pounds lost later, I noticed a pair of jeans poking out from the bag, and I decided to investigate. I took the bag inside, tried on the clothes, and ended up bringing a couple of the items back into rotation. But here was the thing – out of probably 20 items, I only ended up recouping 3 or 4 pieces. The rest were either now too big for me, or they just weren’t my style anymore. No matter what, those clothes just weren’t meant for me anymore. But, at the end of the day, if you just cannot make yourself get rid of something, then box it up and make a note somewhere to check it out again in 6-12 months. Maybe it’ll be right for you by then, maybe you’ll have learned to let it go.

 

3. Don’t let emotions get tied to material objects

I can’t tell you how many times I have heard people say, “Yes, that dress looks awful on me, but my boyfriend gave it to me. I can’t possibly let it go” (or some variation thereof). Look, if someone you love gave you something that you don’t love, you are not obligated to keep it. First of all, the person who gave it to you would (presumably) want you to be happy, and wearing something that you feel awful in won’t make you feel happy. Second of all, once a gift is given, it is the property of the recipient, and no longer any business of the gift giver. I have a family member who I love dearly, but who I hate accepting gifts from. She will give me something, and tell me that if I ever don’t want it anymore, that she wants it back. Then she’ll ask me later if I’m wearing said gift, how often I’m wearing it, why she never sees any pictures with me wearing it, etc. Yes, we all want people to enjoy our gifts, but a gift is just that – a gift. The receiver can do with it whatever they want, and if that means taking it to Good Will, so be it.

 

4. Don’t accept other people’s timelines 

Pretty much every clothing clean out article tells you that if you haven’t worn something in 6 months, it’s time to toss it. Why???? If you love it, and you only wear it on special occasions, who says you can’t keep it? I have a great skirt that I got from Ann Taylor almost 6 years ago, and I’ve probably only worn it 4 or 5 times. However, every time I wear it, I get tons of compliments and I feel like a princess. It’s way to fancy to wear to the office, and really, it’s too much for even a date night. I’ve worn it to a gala before – that’s how fancy it is. But it takes up a minimum of space, it fits perfectly, and I love it. So what if I haven’t worn it in 3 years?  Conversely, if you wear something every day for 2 months, and then one day it just doesn’t work for you anymore, that’s the way the cookie crumbles. Maybe you’re suddenly over peplum, or the color worked in the summer and not so much in the winter. If you suddenly stopped enjoying ice cream, you wouldn’t force yourself to eat it, right? Don’t force love when it isn’t there.

Which brings me to –

 

5. Recognize that you can’t force what isn’t meant to be

Every girl on every webpage and in every selfie is rocking out skinny jeans like there is no tomorrow, and dammit, you are NOT going to be left behind. At least, that’s what you said when you bought those jeggings, but… they’re just not working for you. Maybe they don’t move with you, or you just don’t love how your booty looks in them. Whatever the reason, it’s okay. Some things just aren’t meant to be. I love shorts, but I have never felt comfortable in them. I just get too self-conscious, and I wonder if everyone is staring at me legs, and then the fun of whatever I was doing is wasted. If you don’t love something, it doesn’t matter how much you spent, or who gave it to you, or why you bought it in the first place – you deserve to be surrounded by things you love. If every time you look in the closet you feel guilty over some item, that’s unfair to you. You should love every piece of your wardrobe like a child loves a puppy – unabashedly and fully!

 

-S

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I know, I know, it has been forever and a day since I graced your presence, which K rightly pointed out to me, so here I am. I cannot even begin to tell you how excited I am to see The Great Gatsby next week. I already have my night planned out (including outfit – I will try to get pics). I’ve been listening to each new song as it has dropped, and they are all amazing!!!! The one thing that was holding me back was Carey Mulligan.

Don’t get me wrong, girl is gorgeous, but she seemed a little too young to really play Daisy. Then I saw this cover:carey-mulligan-cover-gallery-tsr

Tell me, just try and tell me, that she does not look out. of this. world. This is exactly how I pictured Daisy! Oh, and of course it gets better!!carey-mulligan-vogue-may-2013-cover-7__oPt Daisy-The-Great-Gatsby1 gatsby-carey-mulligan-vogue-07 carey2-419x569

I have to admit, this final dress is my absolute favorite. If there was ever something that I would steal from a movie set, this would be it. Although the bracelets worn on the cover would be nice to own too! All photos are in the current issue of Vogue Magazine, and are, of course, the work of Mario Testino.

I’ll check back in after I see the movie next week, and will regale you all with the tales of lovely fashions amid dashed dreams!

– S

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So last week, none of my usual bloggers were really doing it for me. I don’t know if I had just been looking at them for too long, or if they were on vacay, but there was just no inspiration! This week, I have culled a new group of talent, and they are bringing the styles!

1. Viva Luxury

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Yes, a perfect LBD – like you expect something different from me? I really like that she found a new way to do the lace dress thing that has been so popular (although, apparently that dress is from years ago).

2. Just Patience

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I NEVER wear yellow (except in my shoes) but the color combo here is just so awesome! Plus, very few women look at their makeup as its own accessory, but her bright red lipstick is almost as much of an extra touch as a purse.

3. Style Scrapbook

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In Shanna’s perfect fantasy world, I would wear this every.single.day.

4. Wish Wish Wish

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I am usually allergic to cats, but these shoes are too cute. Love that the stars on her dress are not overpowering.

5. The Blond Salad

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This is what summer is supposed to look like.

6. Just Patience

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 The thing I love about this look is that it is totally something that everyone I know would wear to work. It transcends all trends, all styles, all body shapes – it’s a perfect work ensemble.

7. Style Scrapbook

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I want that shirt. And her legs!

8. See Jane

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Perfect, relaxed, breezy dress. What more could you ask for on a hot day?

9. Viva Luxury

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I could never pull off that skirt, but I love that even though it is so attention grabbing, she didn’t shy away from adding pops of mint and an open neck shirt. It really pulls it all together.

– S

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I am a major film freak fan. I love movies of all types, genres, eras, you name it. And I truly love how designers are influenced by fashion in highly-anticipated movies (or some of them anyway. I don’t recall that Iron Man sent any inspirations walking down the catwalk). But if you are a follower of fashion, then you know that The Great Gatsby, which comes out this December, has been the talk of the fashion community for at least the past six months. The trailer came out last week, and while I have a few problems with it (Jordan is supposed to have hair the color of an autumn leaf, and Leo looks a little too bloated for my tastes), the clothing choices are out of this world.

And this is actually only one of the movies that I think will influence the clothing racks this year. A little discussed movie, The Gangster Squad, comes out in September. This gem is set in the 40s and 50s, so there will be some different looks that come out of this, but expect a lot of the same theatricality that you see coming from Gatsby. Plus, how can you not LOVE Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone teaming up again??

And while I would love for Rock of Ages to influence fashionistas everywhere, I think the 80’s era is a little over (and not a moment too soon. Now that I think about it, I really don’t want leg warmers to come back just yet!) I do think that, depending on the awards talk come November, the updated Anna Karenina will reflect on the fall shoes in February (does anyone else get turned around by that too???) Expect some dramatic coats, touches of fur, and rich, dark colors. No trailer for AK yet (check out the photos on IMDB), but you can rock out with your socks out to the sweet sounds from RoA below!

Overall, I would suggest pulling out those pearls, strapping on those mary janes, and short-haired girls – you get to be the belles of the fall. I’ll take a look at fashionable films of the past next week. And spoiler alert, no Breakfast at Tiffany’s will probably not be on there – it’s only on every other fashionable films list EVER! (But it is still spectacularly awesome).

– S

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“…but it’s better to be known for your soul.” Famous words of Kenneth Cole (appropriate, no?) I am known far and wide for my shoes, and this is one lesson that I am desperately trying to learn. There have been a lot of changes for me this year, and I’m trying to come out of it as a better person – physically, mentally, and emotionally. So for this month’s links, along with the usual fun fashiony tidbits, I am going to throw out some of the posts/sites that have been helping me along. Because working on yourself is like filling your closet – a never ending job!

Bonus Haul!!!

As some of you know, I work for a state agency, which means a few things – I get to wear almost anything I want; we’re having major budget concerns, so raises are hard to come by; and, every now and then, we get merit bonuses when there is a little extra money. I got this bonus on Friday, and it was AWESOME!!!! So of course, I went straight to the mall to spend my hard-earned money, and you know what?? It was hard! I went into Sephora TWICE and nobody would help me – not that they were all too busy, they were just standing around gossiping. But every time I approached someone, they walked off. So then I went to Express. But the one dress that I really wanted was not available in my size. So then I went to American Eagle – and then I remembered that I am not 22 anymore, and that nothing there is appropriate for the office. Then I went to Nine West. And while they were having a BOGO 50% off sale, I could only find TWO pairs of shoes that I liked (pictured below). Seriously, I thought I might be getting sick! But it got better on Saturday – I went to Marshall’s and found some cute things, and a pair of Nine West wedge mary janes on sale for $22 (pictured above). Then I went to Ulta, and had the most amazing help ever. Then it was off to Aveda, and again, had awesome assistance. So my money was able to spend itself 🙂

All shoe photos by ME!!!

ALSO… I am stealing a page from K’s book, and setting some June goals for myself. 

I have about $1500 in savings – I want to end the month with that same amount there or more. No more dipping!

Walk (I can’t run yet) at least 2 miles, five days a week.

Bring my lunch to work at least 3 days per week.

Go out at least once a week to happy hour or dinner with some friends.

Post at least 2 “extra” posts here (so on Saturday or Sunday)

Finally get off my lazy butt and go see The Avengers (and also Snow White and the Huntsman. Oh, and also Magic Mike – love me some Channing Tatum!!)

TO THE LINKS!!!

My favorite painting on a cake?? I better see this on my birthday!!

I need one of my exs to text me so that I can send this message.

Absolutely beautiful, but what are they all used for?

As I have been trying to eat healthier, I have been learning how to cook with the seasons, and this has been so helpful.

Perfect for getting clean after a night on the town.

I have literally been eating this 3-4 nights per week for the past month. I’ve just been substituting feta cheese for the mozzarella. Love tomato season!!!

To make up for a trip that I abandoned for my ex, I will be taking this vacation next February.

Of course, this wouldn’t be a bad place to go either!!!

I so need to brush up on my spy skills!!!

I think I could pull off making this

The two lessons I am focusing on right now.

– S

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I know, I know, I am soooo late with this, and I am doubling up my posts by making my Wednesday post the same thing that my Monday post should have been. But I have a very good excuse (actually two). I was moving this entire weekend, and then on Monday I had jury duty. Like, WTF??? The automated system I used to fill my jury duty said what days can you NOT come in the next THREE months. So I said, why, Friday, April13; Thursday, April 19; and Friday, April 20. So why did this STUPID system sign me up for Monday, April 16??? Out of the next three months, you are going to pick the ONE day that is in the middle of my conflict days??!! This is why I needed my full bar when I got home.

Anyway, for my move, I trashed all of my old bedding, and therefore, needed a new frame. I found this AMAZING one at Ikea (land of all things wonderful and Swedish), and it only took two hours for me to put it together, all by myself (which, seriously, a king sized bed in two hours is pretty sweet).

Princess Zelda lover (get it? Because Link was saving Princess Zelda? huh?? Oh forget it…)

This is my new favorite website – soooo inspiring: http://dustjacketattic.tumblr.com/

Or maybe this is: http://ritzybee.typepad.com/

I’m making these with the fresh strawberries I saw at the farmers’ market: http://www.ourbestbites.com/2011/06/strawberry-chocolate-nachos/

I am soooo making these for my new patios (yes, that is plural!!!): http://www.designsponge.com/2010/07/diy-project-karens-coffee-can-lanterns.html

Found out that I am going to San Francisco this September (yea!!!). Need to brush up on what to do while there: http://www.designsponge.com/2011/02/san-francisco-design-guide-2.html

I can do this: http://www.thegardenerseden.com/?p=13221

What I have decided my future bathroom/closet will look like:

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– S

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K and I have been talking a lot about fitness lately. Back in February, I was whining to my aunt about how bloated and out of shape I was, and she said some magic words to me. “Two miles a day, at least five days a week. Run, walk or crawl, it does not have to be pretty, but it does have to be two miles.” Even for as busy as my days are, I figured, sure, I can do two miles. At most, that’s 40 minutes (if walking 20 minute miles, which is not that fast). And you know what? Two miles a day is like a gateway drug. All of a sudden, I have been doing squats, crunches, and jogging! I do not do these things! But in just two months, I have noticed some huge changes, as have my coworkers and friends. So next time you are whining about not loving your body, or not liking how you feel, remember: two miles, at least five days a week. It is so worth it!

And for those of you feeling a little more enthusiastic –

Monday links:

– S

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