Closet Confessions :: The Inventory

I've been spending the past few months cleaning out my closet and trying to refine my personal style. You can read the whole journey here.

I'm introducing a new Saturday series today called "Closet Confessions." After discovering

Recovering Shopaholic

and reading her cover to cover, I suddenly became aware of my own closet situation. This entire thing isn't gonna be easy, and at times it's going to be embarrassing, but it has to be done. I've finally broken - it's time to clean out my closet.

Living with a man has really opened my eyes to my hoarding tendencies. I've lived alone since college, in nice apartments with large closets. Here's my VERY FIRST big girl closet.

Look how cute! Not even half full. I was a full time student and only worked a few hours a week for spending money, so I didn't buy a lot of clothes. And let's face it - most college students don't have the most impressive wardrobes. I started a job where I needed more professional clothes and started building a "grown up wardrobe". Here's what my closet looked like when I moved out of that apartment.

Oh. Em. Gee.

My next apartment had a similarly impressive closet and I wised up to the powers of organization to fit more in my closet. I started working a job in retail (40% off! woot woot!) and discovered shoe clubs (You mean...you get new shoes every MONTH??). The closet spilled out into my bedroom thanks to shoe racks and a rolling garment rack. The shoes started piling up the stairs to my office loft and boxes stacked all around the house.

Don't get me wrong, it was all very organized. I knew where everything was and it was mostly organized by color and type. I loved that people always asked to see my closet when they came over. Guilty pleasure, you know? But it was excessive, and moving out was a disaster. I did a pretty large purge when I moved from my apartment into my current house I share with my husband. But the collection steadily grew again. Shoes. Clothes. Jewelry. Bags. Until I was busting at the seams. Taking over not one closet, but two!

I can't pinpoint what the defining moment was. Maybe it was reading about Recovering Shopaholic's experience, maybe it was just my husband mentioning I had too.much.stuff. ONE more time. But I snapped. I was done. I was done hanging on to things that were way too small from my size 0 college days. I was done stuffing more and more in my closet and never taking anything out to give away. I decided to make the change, and this series is going to be about the struggles, triumphs, and lessons from that experience. Starting now.

The first step is taking inventory. I wasn't aware of how much JUNK I had accumlated until I took inventory. The thought of the money spent makes my stomach turn. Personally, I thought I had a normal amount of things. I knew I had a lot, I knew my closet was larger than most, but I didn't find it excessive until I actually counted. So this is the embarrassing part - these are the numbers we're working with.

Is it time for another OMG? Because I'm feeling it. That's 794 pieces total, if you're counting. MY CLOSET IS ALMOST 800 PIECES???? THAT. IS. INSANE.

My goal is to cut that in half. The shoes are going to go down a little, but I've always considered my shoes to be a "collection" of sorts. The goal is to get all of my clothes in my half of the master closet. The goal is to get rid of anything that doesn't fit, anything that doesn't look great, anything out of date, and anything I just don't love. I want to get down to a closet that's full of things I can't wait to wear instead of a closet full of nothing to wear.

So....this series begins here. We'll be going through a purge, through re-organizing, and final touches. We'll examine what holes I have in my closet, what needs to be replaced with higher quality pieces, and how to let go of things you're attached to but don't necessarily need to keep. We'll talk about the process and I'll give you my solutions and tips in case you want to do something similar. If anyone wants to participate in the Great Purge with me and follow up each week with their progress, feel free! It's a great time to start all over again.

Please don't get too judge-y about my current closet. I'm really trying to change it, I promise.

Except the shoes. You can totally be judgey about the amount of shoes I have.