New Year, New You Wardrobe Detox

by Janine

Own Your Own Style

Time for a New Year, New You Wardrobe Detox?

Take the first step in owning your style this year by starting January with a wardrobe detox but remember it’s 2020 so it’s also about being ethical and sustainable. The hunger for fast throwaway fashion is fading, and we should all be conscious in our decisions of what to buy but also how to dispose of any unwanted clothes going forward.

I talk to clients all the time about their wardrobes and the biggest problems tend to be: buying too much of the same item or colour, buying clothes and keeping clothes for a lifestyle they no longer have, buying clothes that don’t fit their body shape, but most of all clothes hanging in their wardrobe for years that either no longer fit or have remained unworn with the labels still on them.




The ideal wardrobe should only contain the clothes that you love to wear and that fit you. Clothes that suit your lifestyle today and also reflect your unique style personality. You should open your wardrobe with pleasure knowing that you have outfits that you love to wear.

By taking time to detox your wardrobe now you will also be clearer in your style and the clothes you have that work together. You can identify the gaps that you have in your wardrobe before you go shopping. After all, does anyone really need a wardrobe full of going out-out clothes if their party days are somewhat less than they used to be!


So, here’s where you begin!

Set aside at least three to four hours, yes it will take this long if you do it properly. Make sure you are wearing something that you can easily change in and out of as you’ll need to try clothes on as you go. Have lots of quality coat hangers at the ready, the wire ones’ we tend to collect from the dry cleaners are not good for the shape of our clothes, and covered hangers are widely available now at such a good price there’s really no excuse!

Grab some black sacks (although nothing should be going to landfill here) and some labels. Also, a big box, this is for those sentimental items, like the dress you wore to a special occasion that you can’t part with. You also need access to a full-length mirror!

Let’s get started, open those wardrobe doors and take everything out. Make your four piles. One is for items to keep, one for charity donations, one is for recycling and one is for dry cleaning / mending. One by one go through each item and if it meets any of these criteria it has got to go! Don’t forget your box for your sentimental items of clothing, the things you can’t part with – they need to be stored away carefully though.


As you go through each item quickly ask yourself

Do you like it, is it sentimental? If the answer is yes, even if you haven’t worn it place it in the keep pile or the sentimental box. Is the item, worn out, discoloured, stained? If so, it can go for recycling. Is the item clearly out of date and you don’t like it now? It can go in a charity bag.

If you are struggling ask yourself, can you remember the last time you wore the item? If you haven’t worn it in the past 6 months, think why, can you repurpose it? Will you really wear it again? I am not suggesting that we just cast clothes aside but if you are not going to wear it and it does not fit you it needs to be passed on.

When you have made your piles, you need to go through the ‘keep pile’ and try the items on. Does it fit? Is it right for your body shape? Does the colour suit you? Do you feel great wearing it? Now start to mix and match items together and see how many outfits you can make from the clothes. Do you have enough basics in your wardrobe for the season ahead? Don’t forget to also take each pair of shoes through this process too, nothing dates an outfit more than worn out, dated shoes!



The next step is to start organising the wardrobe

Hang it back in colour order and make a list of what you have as you go, or you may prefer to split it into a work wardrobe and a leisure time wardrobe, or by items so, maybe all skirts together, all tops together, the choice is yours, but make sure it works for you.

Don’t forget to give your drawers the same treatment – especially the underwear drawer, after all nobody needs 365 pairs of old pants. With the list that you have made it’s now time to plan a shopping trip and fill the gaps to complete your wardrobe. You can see now why it’s important not to go shopping before you’ve decluttered, or you’ll end up with more clothes you don’t wear, and we don’t want that!

With your bags you should now have clothes to take to the charity shop, clothes to take to a recycling bank and some that may need to go to the dry cleaners. Can you re-invent or restyle anything? There is no need for anything to be ‘thrown away’ at all, isn’t that great!

Finally, when you go out clothes shopping and you find something you like always ask yourself: Do I really need this? Do I have something similar? Can I style it at least three ways? Does it fit me? Does it suit my lifestyle? But I also challenge you to be more sustainable and ask yourself – can I see myself wearing this in a year or even two years? Is it truly sustainable?



Congratulations on your detox – you’ve done it!

Have a stylish but sustainable 2020!


Love Janine
Style Coach & Personal Stylist