I had the privilege of helping my friend, Courtney, last week. She called to ask if I could spend some time helping her declutter her closet and up her style game. I was more than happy to put my skillz to the test, and since Courtney is fun to hang out with anyway, it was an absolute joy.
We agreed that our session would have three goals:
- Courtney wanted to declutter effectively and wondered what to toss and what to keep.
- She also wanted help understanding how to dress for her figure and how to combine certain pieces.
- We left #3 open to address any other issues that presented themselves, and they wound up being closet organization, clothing care, accessorizing, and shopping destinations.
Our In-Home Session
We started our session decluttering Courtney's closet. Like most of us, she had a plethora of items that had seen better days, and we were able to toss these easily. Thankfully, Courtney was familiar with this philosophy, and she discarded confidently and thoughtfully. There were a few pieces that she second-guessed, and I assured her that they had served their purposes and were ready to go. We amassed a big pile for donation on which her cat loafed and watched us diligently work.
After the decluttering was complete, Courtney modeled some of her favorite outfits for me including a few new Boden dresses. This led me to talking with Courtney about how to dress to emphasize her best features (her bust and shoulders) and deemphasize her least-favorite features (her tush). Raise your hand if your tush is your least-favorite feature, too. I know! We snapped pics on Courtney's phone of full ensembles in case she would forget how to accessorize something or which shoes to wear with which dress. She now has a quick and easy reference tool.
Courtney looks great in slim-fitting tops with interesting necklines like V-necks, boat-necks, or embellishments. We discarded some of her tees that had basic crew-necks or that were too blousy. She also looks great in dresses, long cardigans, and coats that cinch at the waist. Doing this emphasizes her tiny waistline and maximizes effect.
After we finalized her best looks and decided what to keep, we moved the cat and enlisted Courtney's husband to take the giant donation pile straight to the car. Courtney laughed that I initiated this like. right. now! She wondered if I was worried she'd rescue items from the pile after I left. Truth is, I just wanted her room to look uncluttered, and a giant pile in the middle of the floor ain't doin' it, if you know what I mean.
Now that we had an uncluttered space and Courtney's best, most loved outfits on the bed, we were able to arrange her closet for best use. We placed her "wear to weddings and funerals" dresses way off to one side. Then we placed her winter coats and activewear off to the other side. Finally, we organized her current season (summer) clothing in the center, arranging by outfit. I like to see my outfits hung together in front of me. (Not shirt over there and shorts far away.) I like to look in my closet and see exactly what I'm going to wear.
After we dropped off the items at Goodwill, Courtney went home to work on her closet. Her task was to find other places to store things she had parked in there. (Photo albums and her children's unsorted artwork were among the items.) I went home and got to work on the next few steps of our plan.
I created a secret Pinterest board for Courtney and I to share, and I spent some time browsing Nordstrom, Nordstrom Rack, Banana Republic, LastCall, and the like. I selected pieces that we had designated as needs, and luckily, many of them were on sale. I also picked out some sale pieces that she could save for fall and winter. This part was probably the most fun for Courtney--the shopping trip! She promised to snap photos when things arrive. Yay! Here are a few of the items from our Pinterest board: