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How to Audit your Closet

UPDATED FOR 2016 with a free "out of season packing" download!

I know how to clear out a wardrobe.  Call it a gift from God, or a sign that I have to do it far too often, but I have my method and it works pretty well.  I thought however, that perhaps I should research how other people do it, before I share my method with you, dear reader.  Soooo, I armed myself with a nice cuppa and took to browsing the internet with the search phrase "cleaning out your closet".  Oh. My. God.  How complicated can it be?  How many steps and lists and sublists and CRAP do you need to sort out your wardrobe??

Now, maybe I'm over-simplifying this process, as I imagine for a lot of people there is a lot of emotional (and financial) baggage attached to some of their clothes which prevents them from gaily flinging it into a bin bag and carting it down to the Salvo.  But, I am here, sent from God (or possibly Target- my guilty partner to my overstuffed wardrobe) to tell you that if you don't look bloody fabulous in it, you may as well get it the hell out of your wardrobe.

Tell me - what is the point in hanging a dress in your closet that when you put it on you internally go "mehhh, not so great"?  That's like buying a painting for your wall and every time you walk past it, you turn away from it because it's just a bit "blahhh".

If you don't love it then get it out of your closet.  BAM!

To further clarify this "complicated" process, I have lovingly crafted this flow diagram.  Follow it carefully, as the steps are convoluted and awkward, and you will reap wardrobe wonders.

I'm really not sure what else to tell you.  I can write a list of things you need to clear our your wardrobe if you like?

  1. Your Wardrobe
  2. You
  3. Wine (not an essential, but always nice, isn't it?)
Ok, that was fairly straightforward, wasn't it?  Of course, I want this to be simple if you're doing it yourself, otherwise you'll get daunted and give up half way through which is even worse than not starting at all!

I'm sorry if I appear flippant and I guess for some the process may be complicated by the following factors, which I've given some solutions to.

You don't have room in your closet to "move it down" 
(by which I mean consign it to a lower, less-acessible shelf).  If this is the case in your house, stow it under the bed, or in suitcases, or in the top of the kids wardrobes - they'll never know!)  *See you end of this post for a hugely helpful download that will make this process a breeze.*

You don't know how to use Ebay.
I can guarantee that at least one of your friends will have sold stuff on Ebay before, and if not, download the app-thingy onto your iPad or iPhone and it's incredibly simple.  All you really need is a Paypal account and a way to take photos of the stuff you're selling.  There are tutorials on Ebay too to get you started.

You can't bear to throw things away.
If you came from a "clean plate" home, like me, I can sympathise with the urge to not waste money by chucking stuff away.  However, donating it to a women's refuge or just a thrift store means it's being re-used and you're not really throwing it away.

You honestly don't know if you look awesome in it, or not.
 This is the biggest stumbling block of all.  I'm going to suggest before you start your purge, put on some nice knickers and a decent bra.  Put your hair up and a bit of lippy wouldn't go amiss either.  If you look nice when you try stuff on, you're more likely to feel better about yourself in anything you try on except  for the items that are really grim.  Chuck those out straight away.  If you can rope in an honest friend, that'd be great, but not everyone wants to prance around in front of their bessie in just their knickers.  A wardrobe consultant, however, does this for a living and will be honest with you in what does and doesn't make you look fabulous.  Just give me a call and let me help you out of your wardrobe rut.

In the real world, of course, we can't just chuck out all of our clothes that don't make us feel amazing, because some of us may be left with feck all to wear over our scanties.  You may have to go halfway and accept that you don't look amazing in those trousers, but once you've recognised that you can find the perfect pair to replace them and then ditch them.

Once you've packed away your out of season pieces, there is a huge possibility that you will forget you have them.  This may sound ridiculous but if you randomly stuff wardrobes and suitcases with out of season items, you will have completely forgotten where you've put them by the time you need them.

To stop this happening, I've created a simple but effective sheet to track what you put where.  It's free for subscribers to my newsletter, and you can sign up right here!  If you're already a subscriber, you'll get yours in the next day or two.

If you want someone to hold your hand throughout this process, then I'm your girl - I can come to your home, audit your closet and give you a list of items that will make getting dressed in the morning an absolute breeze.  Just drop me a line and I'll be there!

How's your wardrobe looking right now?  Could it do with a little TLC?  Next week I'll have another freebie which will make sorting your closet even easier.


  1. Thanks! Love your simplicity and honesty. I look forward to the next instalment

  2. I know exactly what you will be doing when you get home from your holiday!! ;)

    1. Haha, you're so right Bobbi! After a month of living on around 12 items, I got back and my wardrobe looks, well, overstuffed and confusing. I think it's time to take my own advice!

  3. Love the flow chart idea. Going to use that to clean some stuff out.

  4. Sometimes I keep things even though I'm not wild about them, because I still wear them ... maybe I should pluck up the courage and just ditch 'em!

    1. It's easy to do Janet, I guess it's just a case of finding the time to find the "ideal" replacement for those items.

  5. This post is pure gold and I shall be linking to it in an upcoming post!

  6. You'll be proud of me - I finally removed some of my corporate pieces from my wardrobe on the weekend - it's been 3 years since I wore them!

  7. This is brilliant, I really need to address my wardrobe. Although, my problem is that I don't really follow 'in fashion' so I wouldn't have a clue if something is 'in fashion' or not!! lol

  8. Every time I look at my cupboard I cringe and think that it needs a good clean out. When I do a clean out my method is pretty simple too. If I have to think about whether I should keep it or not, then it goes. I just need to work on getting the bags out of the house and to an op shop!

  9. Fabulous tips Vicki. I need to give my wardrobe a good purge - thanks for the prod!

  10. Great tips! I just recently did a complete wardrobe overhaul and what a huge difference it made to my life.
    Not only can I now see what's actually inside my wardrobe, but I know that each and every piece I kept actually fits and looks good.

  11. I tend to take out what I haven't worn regularly and put it in a suitcase. Then I revisit in a few months and if I haven't wanted it in that time, I throw it. Out of sight, out of mind also helps me detach from any clothing.

  12. virtual voyage:Fashion is about dressing according to what's fashionable. Style is more about being yourself.
    Virtual Voyage Fashion Designing Institute


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