Contributing Monkie G Living Staff Monkies
Published on October 24, 2008
Filed Under Interior Design / Home Stuff
Just last week, I cleaned out my closet for the first time in awhile.There were plenty of fashion skeletons in there — college t-shirts with cheesy messages, ill-fitting blouses, and “the flood is coming” jeans — yikes. It was a bear of a job, but it turned out to be the perfect timing. I was able to clear some space and figure out what I need and don’t need. Below is my new and improved, monkey proof, 4 step closet de-junking plan that’s also easy on the earth.
Step 1: Get down to your last threads
The hub and I do laundry only when absolutely necessary – when the piles start making the cats nervous and we’re finally out of comfortable knickers. If your family is like mine, take this perfectly dirty opportunity to go through your closet. Chances are, if you’re desperate for clean clothes and you still won’t wear what’s on your hangers… it might be time to rethink whether or not you need it.
Step 2: Pile it up
Take your unwanted duds and make two piles. Pile 1 is for friends and family giveaways, Pile 2 is for donation.
Step 3: Giveaway etiquette (getting rid of clothes, not friends)
Like most things in life, there is a little diplomacy required when giving away clothes to people you know and love. You certainly don’t want to dump a bag of leftovers on your buddy’s doorstep with a note that says “can’t have this in my closet anymore, love ya!”. Your peeps may not want your old scratchy striped sweater either. Before gifting anything, take a good, hard look at Pile 1 and pick out specific pieces that you think your friends would like. Here’s an example convo my friend Kit and I had yesterday after a nice glass of organic wine. Fill in the blanks accordingly.
Me: Hey ________, I was cleaning out my closet and I brought over four things I thought you might like, especially for your trip to _______ this weekend.
Kit: Oh, yeah?
Me: Totally, and if they aren’t your style, just let me know and I’ll donate them to ______. The first one is this ______ — it’s super sassy, but it just doesn’t fit my _____ right. I think it would look great on you because _______. (repeat as necessary)
Kit: Hey, thanks for thinking of me.
Me: Sure. And remember, if they don’t work, you can give them back to me next time we go to ______.
Step 4: Donation time
Pile the rest of your stuff up for the donation center. You get a sweet little tax write off, the store makes money for their org, and other peeps get clothing at a discount cost.
I’m feeling pretty clean and green with my freshly decluttered closet. Knowing what I already have and love makes me less inclined to buy things I don’t need. Plus, it gives another life to functional clothes, diverting them from the waste stream.