Taking a Clothing Inventory
Most people have a good deal more in their dressers and closets than they actually need. This is especially the case with women, who may have as many as four different sizes of clothing because their bodies shrink and expand. Many women hold on to “skinny clothes” with the dream that they'll one day fit back into them, while also resigning themselves to the reality of those not-so-skinny clothes that also need to be kept, just in case surprise expansions occur.
A bed with storage beneath can be both functional and attractive.
Overstuffed drawers and closets, however, create headaches. Finding clothing in the morning can be a huge hassle. The last thing you need when you're struggling against the clock is to have to sift through piles of wrinkly clothing. If you can thin down the contents of your dressers and closets, however, you'll find that getting ready in the morning is a breeze. You may even find that you don't need to go shopping after all. Perhaps all that you need is actually tucked away in your drawers, just waiting to be rediscovered.
While the idea of organizing your clothing may feel overwhelming, you can break the task down into small steps — perhaps you could try to tackle just one drawer a day (or even a week). As the FlyLady says, “Progress, not perfection, is the goal.” As long as you're making steady (even if slow) progress, you're going to begin to feel better about your room.
As you sift through your drawers, set out two boxes, one for “Give-away/Sell” items, and another for “Store” items. Try to be as realistic as possible. If you haven't been able to fit into your size 4 jeans for a good three years, you might want to let them go, trusting that should you shrink again, you'll certainly be able to replace them — and you'll have a great time doing it!
Rule of thumb for clothing: if you haven't worn it for two years, you probably aren't going to start wearing it now. Although it may feel wasteful to toss, give away, or sell an expensive piece of clothing, it is actually a better use of your resources to move that item out into the world where it can help someone else.
Find places other than the closet for storing clothing that you know you'll need but won't be using for several months, such as winter coats, thick sweaters, and other seasonal items. Ideally, you'll move these items to the basement, attic, or storage each time spring rolls around. This small step will simplify your life and help you to feel more at peace in your room.
If you live in a small space without an attic or basement, underbed storage may be an ideal way for you to tuck away off-season items, bedding, or other bulky items. Check stores such as Hold Everything and The Container Store for different storage options. Keep in mind, however, that adding additional storage does come with temptation. You may be inclined to hold on to some items that you'll never use just because you've created space for them. Ideally, underbed storage will be reserved for items that will be useful to you (and that have proven their usefulness over the years).