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  • Writer's pictureDameon Nelson

Cleaning Out Your Closet: Steps for Organizing and Decluttering Your Wardrobe

Embarking on a closet cleanout can be an overwhelming task, yet it's a transformative process that can reignite your love affair with your wardrobe. With guidance from professional organizers, this article provides a step-by-step checklist to help you declutter, reorganize, and create a closet space that reflects your personal style and lifestyle. Here are the key takeaways to ensure your wardrobe edit is both mindful and effective.

Key Takeaways

  • Set aside time for a dedicated, mindful wardrobe edit to avoid feeling overwhelmed and to truly reconnect with your clothing.

  • Clearly define your intentions for the closet cleanout, focusing on creating a space that reflects your personal style and lifestyle needs.

  • Sort your items into four distinct piles: keep, resell, donate, and recycle, to manage your belongings responsibly and sustainably.

  • Organize your clothing by stowing away out-of-season items and arranging your closet in a way that aligns with your daily routine and preferences.

  • Maintain your organized closet with ongoing care, including scheduled seasonal edits and a designated space for items to discard or reconsider.

Setting the Stage for Success

Dedicate Time for a Mindful Wardrobe Edit

Embarking on a closet cleanout is more than a mere tidying task; it's an act of self-care that sets the tone for your daily style choices. Allocate specific time slots in your schedule to ensure a thorough and thoughtful edit. This approach not only prevents the process from becoming overwhelming but also allows for a more mindful engagement with each piece of clothing.

Remember, a closet cleanout is not something to be rushed. It's a chance to reconnect with your wardrobe and perhaps uncover forgotten treasures. By dedicating the necessary time, you create the opportunity to make conscious decisions about what stays and what goes, ultimately shaping a wardrobe that truly reflects your personal style.

Set Your Intentions for the Cleanout

Before diving into the physical task of decluttering, take a moment to set clear intentions for your closet cleanout. Ask yourself what you hope to achieve. Is it to make room for new items, to simplify your life, or to rediscover cherished pieces? Your intentions will guide your decisions throughout the process.

  • Reflect on your lifestyle changes and how they affect your wardrobe needs.

  • Consider the emotional and practical aspects of the items you own.

  • Determine the style you want to project moving forward.

As you set your intentions, think about the overlooked areas of your wardrobe that could use attention. Perhaps there are items that could be upcycled or restyled to better fit your current aesthetic or functional needs. Nelson Total Services, known for their thorough cleaning, reminds us of the value in focusing on areas that often go unnoticed.

Pause and Reflect on Your Current Wardrobe

Before you proceed with the cleanout, it's crucial to pause and take stock of what you currently own. Sustainable stylist Kerry Wilde advises to stop buying anything new and to halt habitual shopping. This allows you to assess your wardrobe without the distraction of new items. Reflect on the reasons behind your decluttering. Are you adapting to a new job, a change in size, or a shift in style? Your motivations will inform your approach to reorganizing.

When sorting through your clothes, consider creating a 'maybe' pile for items that you're uncertain about. To decide on their fate, ask yourself: When did you last wear it? Does it make you feel confident? Is it in line with your personal style? If an item is sentimental but no longer fits your wardrobe, think about altering it to better suit your current needs.

The Core of Closet Cleanout

Identify and Set Aside Your Go-To Items

After you've dedicated time to your wardrobe edit, the next step is to identify and set aside your go-to items. These are the pieces that not only fit you well but also resonate with your personal style and are frequently in rotation. By securing these items first, you create a foundation for your wardrobe that reflects your current lifestyle and preferences.

Once your favorites are safely aside, you'll be ready to tackle the rest of your closet with clarity. Sort the remaining items into four categories: keep, donate, resell, and recycle. Here's a simple way to approach this:

  • Keep: Items that you love and wear regularly.

  • Donate: Gently used items that no longer fit your style.

  • Resell: High-quality pieces that could be sold.

  • Recycle: Worn-out items not suitable for donation.

As you sort, consider the services of companies like Nelson Total Services, which focus on customer satisfaction and safety, to help you with the deep cleaning of your space once the decluttering is complete.

Create Four Distinct Piles for Sorting

As you embark on the journey to declutter your wardrobe, it's essential to systematically sort your items. Begin by identifying your most-worn pieces that reflect your personal style—these will form your 'keep' pile.

Next, create the following piles for the remaining items:

  • Resell: Select valuable items you hope to recoup some expenses on. These are pieces that could be sold at consignment stores or online platforms.

  • Donate: Choose items that are still in good condition but no longer serve you. These can be given to charity or local shelters.

  • Maybe: For items you're uncertain about, place them in a 'maybe' pile. Revisit these later and decide if they fit your current lifestyle and style.

  • Discard: Items that are worn out or no longer usable should be placed in this pile for ethical disposal.

Consider Ethical and Sustainable Disposal Options

When the time comes to part with clothing that no longer serves you, it's crucial to do so with mindfulness towards the environment and society. Discarding responsibly means ensuring that only items beyond salvage, such as worn-out socks or damaged undergarments, are thrown away. Before you toss anything, explore the disposal options in your community. Many retailers offer recycling programs for textiles, and local nonprofits might welcome fabric scraps for creative projects or donations for animal shelters.

Here's a quick guide to help you sort your items ethically:

  • Resell: List valuable items on platforms like The RealReal or local consignment shops.

  • Donate: Give wearable items to charities, shelters, or religious organizations.

  • Repair: Fix or clean items that only need a little TLC before rejoining your wardrobe.

  • Recycle: For textiles that can't be repaired or worn, find a recycling program.

Remember to do your homework on the charities you choose to support, ensuring your donations align with your values and contribute to the community in a meaningful way.

Organizing Your Wardrobe

Stow Away Out-of-Season Apparel

As the seasons change, so does our need for different types of clothing. Storing out-of-season apparel is a key step in maintaining an organized closet. For those in Dallas or similar climates, where weather can be unpredictable, having easy access to a variety of clothing is essential. However, it's important to keep your closet uncluttered by stowing away items you won't need for a while.

  • For spacious homes, consider using a guest room for storage.

  • Smaller spaces can utilize a hall closet or under-bed storage solutions.

Remember, the goal is to create a functional space that makes your daily routine smoother. By keeping only the current season's apparel at hand, you'll streamline your choices and reduce the time spent on deciding what to wear.

Fold Sweaters and Hang Bottoms

Properly organizing your sweaters and bottoms can transform the look and functionality of your closet. Fold chunkier knits and sweaters to maintain their shape and make it easier to see their patterns and textures. This method not only helps in visual identification but also ensures that the garments wear better over time.

For bottoms, hanging them is the way to go. This approach allows for a clearer view of the colors and washes of your jeans and trousers. If you're working with limited closet space, consider using space-saving velvet hangers. They're not only compact but also gentle on your more delicate items.

Remember, maintaining an organized wardrobe is akin to keeping a tidy home. Just as you would schedule a spring cleaning for your living space, regularly revisiting and reorganizing your closet is essential.

Arrange Your Closet to Reflect Your Lifestyle

When organizing your wardrobe, it's essential to consider how it aligns with your daily activities and personal preferences. Arrange your closet in a way that feels most natural to you and supports your unique lifestyle. For instance, if you're someone who dresses based on mood or occasion, consider grouping your clothes accordingly.

Organizing by color can add a glamorous showroom touch to your closet, making it easier to find what you're looking for. Here's a simple way to categorize your clothing:

  • Work attire

  • Casual wear

  • Evening outfits

  • Workout gear

Maintaining an organized closet is a continuous process. It's not just about a one-time cleanout; it's about creating a system that works for you and sticking to it. This way, your closet remains a sanctuary that truly reflects who you are.

Curating Your Personal Style

Revisit Your Mood Board for Inspiration

As you stand amidst the organized chaos of your closet cleanout, take a moment to revisit your mood board for a burst of inspiration. This visual compilation is a reflection of your personal style and aspirational aesthetic, serving as a guiding light through the decluttering process. Grace Thomas, a personal stylist, emphasizes the importance of aligning your wardrobe edit with the colors and patterns that resonate with you.

Remember, your mood board is not just about the clothes; it's about the lifestyle you envision for yourself. Whether it's a collage of magazine cutouts or a digital Pinterest board, ensure it includes elements that speak to both your practical needs and your style aspirations. Reflect on the title, "How to Make a Fashion Mood Board & Use It to Shop Mindfully," and let it remind you that this is not just about fashion—it's about making mindful choices that align with your values and vision.

Integrate Essentials with Personal Style

Once you've revisited your mood board and identified your style aspirations, it's time to integrate your essentials with your personal style. This step is about creating a wardrobe that not only serves your needs but also expresses who you are. Start by choosing pieces that align with your taste, body type, and lifestyle for a cohesive, standout wardrobe.

Consider the colors that inspire you and the ones you've enjoyed wearing recently. These hues can serve as a foundation for incorporating statement pieces that resonate with your personal aesthetic. Here's a simple list to help you merge essentials with your personal flair:

  • Review your mood board for inspiration

  • Select essentials that complement your body type and daily activities

  • Choose statement pieces that reflect your taste and add a touch of individuality

By thoughtfully curating your essentials and statement pieces, you create a wardrobe that is not only functional but also a true representation of your personal style.

Consult a Virtual Stylist for a Fresh Perspective

After revisiting your mood board and integrating your essentials with your personal style, you might still feel the need for a fresh perspective. Consulting a virtual stylist can provide you with professional insights tailored to your unique style. A virtual stylist can help you analyze your existing wardrobe, offering advice on how to mix and match pieces and suggesting new items that could complement your collection.

  • Review your mood board for inspiration.

  • Schedule a virtual consultation for a professional analysis of your wardrobe.

  • Receive personalized advice on separating seasons and designing a wardrobe that suits your lifestyle.

Remember, the goal is to create a wardrobe that feels both personal and refreshing. A virtual stylist can be the catalyst for that transformation, guiding you towards a curated selection that truly reflects who you are.

Maintaining Your Closet Sanctuary

Commit to Ongoing Curated Closet Care

Maintaining an organized wardrobe is not a one-time event; it's a continuous process that requires regular attention. Keep your closet in pristine condition by scheduling regular cleanings, ensuring that each piece remains visible and accessible. This not only helps in keeping your space tidy but also in making daily outfit selections a breeze.

Cleaning out your closet doesn't have to be a solitary task. Consider enlisting a professional service to assist with the upkeep. A seasonal or bi-annual appointment with a cleaning service can provide a deep clean and help maintain the curated state of your wardrobe.

To stay on top of your closet's condition, follow these simple steps:

  • Review your wardrobe monthly to remove any items that no longer serve you.

  • Immediately repair or clean any soiled or damaged clothing.

  • Reassess your organization system periodically to ensure it still meets your needs.

Schedule Seasonal Edits

To maintain the pristine condition of your organized closet, schedule seasonal edits to adapt to the changing weather and fashion trends. This not only ensures your wardrobe stays relevant and functional but also prevents clutter from accumulating.

  • Spring/Summer: Refresh your closet with lighter fabrics and brighter colors. It's the perfect time to stow away heavy winter wear and make room for your warm-weather attire.

  • Fall/Winter: Transition to cozy layers and richer tones. This is when you should revisit your stored garments and swap out the summer pieces.

Remember, a well-maintained wardrobe is a reflection of your commitment to a curated and conscious lifestyle. Embrace these seasonal edits as opportunities for renewal and self-expression.

Keep a Designated Basket for Non-Essentials

After you've curated your wardrobe and created a space that reflects your personal style, it's important to maintain the order you've achieved. Keep a designated basket for non-essentials to ensure that items which no longer serve your style or needs don't clutter your space again. This basket acts as a temporary holding area for items you're uncertain about or that you intend to remove from your closet.

Wicker baskets are not only functional but can also add a touch of elegance to your room's decor. Use them to store items that you might want to donate, sell, or repurpose. Here's a simple guide to what your non-essential basket could include:

  • Clothing pieces you haven't worn in over a year

  • Accessories that no longer match your style

  • Seasonal items that are currently out of use

Remember, the goal is to keep your closet as a sanctuary for your personal style. Schedule seasonal edits to reassess your wardrobe and ensure that everything in your closet deserves its place. This ongoing curation is key to a clutter-free and harmonious space.

Transform your home into a serene sanctuary with the expert cleaning services of Nelson Total Home Cleaning Services. Our dedicated team in Dallas ensures every corner of your closet—and beyond—is meticulously cleaned, giving you the peace of mind and time to enjoy life's precious moments. Ready to experience the difference? Visit our website to see pricing, availability, and to book your cleaning session today!


As we wrap up our guide on organizing and decluttering your wardrobe, remember that a closet cleanse is more than just a chore—it's an act of self-care that rejuvenates both your space and spirit. By following the expert steps we've outlined, from setting intentions to arranging distinct piles for resell or donation, you're on your way to creating a curated closet that reflects your personal style and supports your lifestyle. Remember to maintain your newly organized space with regular check-ins and seasonal edits, ensuring that your closet remains a boutique-like sanctuary that inspires daily. Embrace this transformative process and enjoy the clarity and joy that a well-organized wardrobe can bring to your life.

Frequently Asked Questions

How much time should I dedicate to a wardrobe edit?

A proper closet cleanout requires undivided attention and cannot be rushed. Dedicate a block of time for a mindful wardrobe edit, and if you feel overwhelmed, break it down into manageable chunks over a week.

What should be my first step in decluttering my closet?

Begin by pausing and reflecting on your current wardrobe. Set your intentions for the cleanout to guide you through the process and help you stay focused on your goals.

What are the four piles I should create when sorting my clothes?

During your closet cleanout, sort your clothes into four piles: 'keep' for go-to items, 'resell' for items you can sell, 'donate' for items in good condition, and 'recycle' for worn-out pieces.

How can I dispose of my clothes ethically and sustainably?

Consider upcycling, repurposing, or restyling your clothes. Look for local textile recycling programs or donate to charities. Avoid simply throwing clothes away to minimize environmental impact.

How can I maintain an organized and curated closet?

Commit to ongoing closet care by scheduling seasonal edits and keeping a designated basket for items that no longer fit or align with your style. Regular maintenance will keep your closet in check.

How should I organize my wardrobe to reflect my lifestyle?

Arrange your closet in a way that suits your unique lifestyle, whether it's based on seasonal changes, color palettes, or personal categories of meaning. This makes it feel like an extension of yourself.

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