I’ve spent the last two weeks cleaning out my clothes closet, moving out the winter clothes, moving in the summer clothes, and trying to weed out the fashion “don’ts”. (Well, actually, if I remove all the fashion “don’ts” in my closet, I’ll probably only be left with my super-cute Coach rainboots and a pair of sparkly flip-flops. So I remove the obvious “don’ts” and leave the questionable ones. Much better.) It took me two weeks to organize the closet not because my closet is so huge, nor because my wardrobe is so vast and wonderous (see “don’ts” above), but because I am easily distracted by things like Facebook and sunshine and kids’ baseball games. And because cleaning out my closet is just too depressing to deal with in one fell swoop.
I’ve read a ton of organizing books, am a huge fan of Real Simple, and subscribe to numerous home organizing/simplifying websites and blogs. I know what I need to do. I started out organizing my closet by sorting all my clothes. I had piles of clothes that should go to Goodwill: clothes that don’t fit, clothes I haven’t worn in the last year, clothes that still had the tags on because I had nothing to wear them with, clothes that were in disrepair or stained.
I looked at all the piles and I looked at what I had left in my “keep” pile. Hmm. My logic may be flawed. My “keep” pile consists primarily of cute shoes, yoga pants, and my $9 t-shirts from Costco (that, truth be told, should probably be in the Goodwill pile as well). I refuse to buy any new clothes when I have all these beautiful, nice, questionable “don’ts” clothes to wear. I don’t need a trip to the Goodwill, I need a trip to the gym.
So instead of doing what the organizing gods at Real Simple tell me to do, I did what any sane woman in denial would do. I took the Goodwill pile and re-sorted it. It’s time for some tough decisions:
- The two adorable skirts I bought from my friend’s trunk show that I still haven’t worn because they are a bit snug and make my tummy look too…tummyish? Keep. Hang them up front and center of my closet to remind me every day to lay off the Ruffles and lay on the treadmill. I consider hanging them on the refrigerator door, but ironically, while the stainless fridge is a fingerprint magnet, it can’t hold a magnetic hook.
- The two fancy skirts I have for more formal gatherings – one suede with gorgeous gemstones around the bottom and worn once to a neighborhood Christmas party and the other a beautiful iridescent teal skirt that I’ve never worn but got for a great price at a Talbot’s clearance sale – I also keep. Someday, I’m going to have another fancy party to go to, and I’m going to wear one of these skirts. They’re classics. They’re always in style. Or they’ll be vintage. And vintage is always in style.
- The sequin encrusted top I wore to the John Mellencamp last year. It still fits and it will also always be in style. Again, a bit fancy, but I should keep it. If nothing else, I’ll wear it to school pick-up one day just to give the other mommies something to talk about.
- The pair of size 6 Gap khaki pants. I have to keep these just to keep the memory alive. These pants hold a special place in my heart. You see, I’ve never been a size 6. Well, not until one day during the summer of 2005. When I was in middle school, I suddenly went from a size 14 girls in sixth grade to a junior size 7 in seventh grade. I skipped right over 2, 4 and 6. And back in my day, that ridiculous made-up size 0 didn’t exist. (Size 0? Come on, people, that’s clearly a made up size to make skinny girls feel better and chunky girls feel worse.) I hovered between sizes 8 and 12 for most of my life (except while pregnant, when all bets were off). After having the boys, I started seriously exercising again and was on my way back to an 8. Then, we bought a new house and I was all stressed out about buying an expensive house. I dropped some weight. A lot of weight. My pants were falling off my hips, I could see some of my ribs, and I was stressed but thin. I went shopping for some new pants and found this great pair of size 6 Gap khakis. They fit – a SIZE 6! So of course, I bought them. And then, before I even got a chance to wear them, they were too tight. I’ve never worn them. But I keep them as a reminder that, for one day in the summer of 2005, I could wear them.
So my closet is back together, I have a small bag of clothes to drop off to Goodwill, and I can resume my normal everyday tasks of vacuuming dog hair, making snacks for the kids, and hanging out on Facebook. And if you see a girl in Costco rocking some black yoga pants, white t-shirt and fantastic cute shoes, that will be me. Because I still don’t fit in those super-cute skirts. But I will. Soon.