The Wardrobe Edit


Love the playlist! I have to admit that instead of cleaning my closet, I sat at my desktop for a very long time watching all the You Tubes on your playlist.  I loved all the music – with my favorite still being The The’s This is the Day.  But really, if you spend any time at all watching the videos to the songs Options and New Shoes, you become really concerned about the young men performing them –  for a host of really good reasons.  But I digress…

With your fabulous playlist ready, let me share you with my straightforward tips for cleaning your closet on a seasonal basis. For this project, you will need the following:

(1) one industrial rolling rack;

(2) large black trash bags; and

(3) a tolerant friend (for Part II of the event)

Begin by setting up the rolling rack in an area close to your closet that houses your current wardrobe.  Follow the next few steps to get started:

Part I of the Closet Clean or as we say in the boutique business, “Wardrobe Edit”

(1) Take out one section of your closet at a time –regardless of how it is organized — and separate the pieces of clothing into categories: blouses and tops, jackets, pants, skirts and dresses.  As one rack won’t be able to hold the entire closet, as you complete a category, first organize it by color and size, and then place that group nearby on a chair or bed to open up more room on the rack. Where you have a larger walk-in closet and good lighting, you can create those categories and organization without the rack.

(2) Once the categories are in place – button, zip and tie up all the pieces – and put them in all headed in one direction — to create a polished look.

(3) Next, go through each piece — try it one if you haven’t lately — and review it for wear & tear, fit, fashion and season. Translate: Does this top look like it’s spent too much time at an amusement park with small children eating cotton candy? Does it still fit?  Does it fit well? And if it is still in good condition and fits well, does it look like something that could be worn confidently in an urban-setting in 2011?  If it is clean, fits well and is current, then ask, is it in-season or is time to send it into waiting for next year.  Once you have worked your way through the checklist for all the contents in your closet, then stop, and go to part II.

Part II

(4) Dial a Friend.  You think you know the answers to all of the above in (3), but you don’t.  Everyone needs an independent critical review to support your wardrobe assessments or to challenge you.  Let your friend — who is clearly a good friend because he or she answered the phone and came over — help guide you through the really questionable pieces. If you reach consensus to retire something, have the black trash bag at the ready to toss it into.  Ann, great suggestion for Dress For Success.  Make sure the retired clothing gets repurposed in someone else’s closet.

(5) Make a list. By taking things out of your wardrobe, you may find you’ve lost key wardrobe pieces.  Write a list of those essentials that have had to go and keep it close at hand on your next shopping trip – online or out in the world.

(6) Turn up the music, give your friend a glass of wine and don’t trip on the rolling rack as you leave your well-edited closet.

And if a good friend/wardrobe editor is hard to find, send me an email at to find out more about our wardrobe and styling services.  


1 Comment

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One response to “The Wardrobe Edit

  1. Karen Anillo

    My hubby treated me to a Wardrobe Edit. I haven’t missed a thing. He has his half of the walk-in-closet back. All better now!

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