My Fall Closet Cleanout Checklist

If there’s one thing that dorm rooms and tiny college apartments don’t give you, it’s closet space. Every year, upon moving back to Boston for school, I find myself shoving piles of clothing into every nook and cranny of my dresser drawers and placing the rest of my clothes in tupperware bins in the closet (always store extra clothes away in a big storage bin, it’ll keep moths away from them and keep them neat)! A couple of months later, when the weather begins to change, I have to dig through those same spaces to find my cozy sweaters and tall boots.

This year, I decided it was time for a change. I tend to think of myself as a very organized person, so I wanted to do a good ole closet cleanout while switching my summer clothes with my winter designs. For a fall pick-me-up, you should do the same (and you can donate or sell the rejects as an added bonus)!

  1. 1. Pile It Up!

    This may not be the prettiest manner of cleaning out one’s closet, but it helps me a ton. I love to grab all of my clothing and throw it in a huge heap on my bed when I’m doing a cleanout. This allows me to see just how much clothing I have and often inspires me to part with more items than I normally would. Often, when we see how much we have, we realize it’s excessive.

  2. 2. The “Last-Year” Test

    How much of your clothing do you actually wear? If you’re like me, you have favorites, and the other pieces may go by the wayside. I like to ask myself for each piece of clothing: “Have I worn this in the last year?” If the answer is no, it’s gotta go. 

  3. 3. Fit or Flop?

    This is often the hardest part of the closet cleanout for me because I have so many beloved pieces that will simply not fit anymore. Our bodies change a crazy amount throughout college, and that often means that we have to part with some fashion items. If you’re uncertain about keeping a piece of clothing, try it on. If it doesn’t fit, realistically ask yourself if you’ll still wear it one day. More often than not, it’s best to just say “goodbye” to that piece. 

  4. 4. Memories Make More Memories

    Do you have a pile of t-shirts from concerts, camps, and family vacations that you never wear? Or is your old prom dress taking up tons of room, with no other use? Many people attribute memories to the pieces of clothing they wore when making them. While that’s a beautiful part of the human brain, it can make it hard to clean out a closet. 

If there’s a fancy piece of clothing that you don’t think you’ll wear again, try selling it on Depop or Poshmark. Better yet, donate it to an organization like Becca’s Closet, which helps get prom dresses to those who can’t afford them. For more casual items, like that pile of sentimental t-shirts, consider repurposing them! Make a quilt, frame them as wall art, or find other ideas on Pinterest and Etsy.

I hope that a closet cleanout can help you make the most of our COVID quarantine days this fall! Remember to donate any gently used items to organizations that help those in need, and start off the fall and winter season with the spirit of giving. 

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