The Great Clothes Purge- 5 People, 5 Wardrobes in 2 Days

The GREAT Clothes Purge

5 Entire Wardrobes in 2 Days

The Great Clothes Purge Square

Okay, I confess, I began my “One Month, One Project, One Room” at a time just a little early.

My youngest grew another 2 inches in the past few weeks in addition to adding a few needed pounds.  This means that half her wardrobe was too tight and too short in just a matter of days.

Frustration got the best of her and she asked if we could “try-on” clothes last Sunday.

I had intended to spend the day working on my closet, but her need to discover what still fit, in order to purchase needed items Monday, meant that my closet got skipped.

Anyone else do this?  Kids come first.  Yep, you are doing something right, then.

Of course, being the go-getter I am, I couldn’t allow her to “just” try-on clothes.

I had to check each and every piece for holes, stains, fuzzies, strings, loose seams, etc…

THIS began the “Great Clothes Purge”.

Now, a normal person would only purge one person, one section, one closet, one dresser at a time.

Not me!

We did one girl’s entire hanging wardrobe and half the other girl’s hanging clothes Sunday afternoon- after I cleaned up the post-holidays and shopping mess in my room.

How we managed the “Great Clothes Purge”

The Great Clothes Purge Pinterest

Today we tackled all the girls’ folded clothes, the other half of my oldest daughter’s hanging clothes, all of my son’s clothes (BTW he abhors doing anything involving cleaning, straightening, trying on clothes or organizing), and all of my husband’s clothes.  His response after testing half his wardrobe was….”I am tired.  This wears you out.”

When I say we went through everything, I mean everything.  This includes socks, pj’s, personal items, jeans, shirts, etc…

It means I looked at each and every item individually, clipped strings, pulled fuzzies, check for holes, etc….

If my family only owned the basics, this would be fairly quick, but if you recall from my previous posts here and here my family does NOT have a small amount of clothing.

I have yet to show you my son’s room or closet, but don’t worry I will share a little of it at a later date.

I will share the completed “pretty pics” when I share our completed closets, but for now I wanted to share HOW we make decisions about each of our clothing items.

Please remember I am 1. A Hoarder Keeper,  2. Frugal,  3. A Recycler,  and 4. A Bargain Hunter

I not only buy clothes at a consignment shops, clearance and sales.  I donate or resell them as well, so I usually don’t have a “trash” box section.

How We Sorted Our Clothes

I began by gathering our containers.

I, personally, like to use totes because they are easy to throw things at and actually make it in.  I organize and repack them later, as needed.  You can use trash bags, boxes, baskets or whatever is handy for you.  I have been known to use a combination of all of the above.

I then labeled EACH container so that if I asked a kid to toss something into one of them, it increases the odds that it will make it into the right container.

Today I used note cards, a permanent marker and tape.

The Great Clothes Purge Totes

I used the following categories:






Treat for stains  (I used my clothes hamper for this.)

As I stated earlier, I closely checked each and every item for holes, stains, seams unraveling, etc… then we tried them on.

This is a breakdown of each category, why some may seem duplicated and why there is none labeled trash.

1.)  Consignment/Facebook/Resale

Our local consignment shops only except Name Brand items that are less than two years old and they must be in “gently used” condition.  Many times I will take items that I feel are in excellent condition, only to find out they are over two years old.  Other times I will toss in some items I don’t think they will accept and they keep them, so I have learned “when in doubt” toss it in the consignment tote.  I will go through these items a second time to double check for any damage I may have missed before, as well as lint roll and straighten them before taking them to the shop.

2.)  Rummage

These are the items that I know consignment will not except but are still in good condition and can be sold for fifty cents or more at our yearly rummage sale.  I do not add items with holes, stains, missing buttons, etc…

3.)  Donate

These are items I do not want to store while waiting to have a rummage sale.  Generally outgrown socks, rough jeans (someone could use for construction or car repairs), clothes that are little more worn , have a tiny pin hole, and that we have outgrown.  Clothes that someone else might enjoy, but we do not need.

4.)  Sewing/Repair

This is pretty self-explanatory.  IF it still fits, it goes into this box.  I can sew enough to fix seams, replace buttons and secure loose hems.

5.)  Rags

These are the clothes with irreparable holes, stains, leftover socks with holes that I have destroyed the matching one too, etc…  Not all items make good rags, but we try to reuse every item we dispose of.  Jeans can be passed on to create rag rugs, memory bears or purses.  What do I do with so many rags?  Clean the litter box, floor, trash cans, dust, and stain my crafts.  By using cut up clothing, I can toss the rags in the garbage when done and not feel guilty about wasting paper towels or rags I have paid for.

6.)  Stained

I would LOVE to say I NEVER find any clothes in our closet with stains on them, but that would be a lie.  My hubby had 1/2 a closet of shirts with stains- mostly from cooking sausage for breakfast and splattering his polos.  I try to bring all the clothes into the kitchen for the best lighting, and treat all the stains that got by me after the initial washing.  I then soak them, like colors only, overnight in a washer of Oxyclean and Dawn dish soap.  The Dawn is great for grease.  If they do not come clean after this?  To the rag pile they go.

7.)  TRASH

Why do we not have trash box?  Because I don’t believe in wasting.

Do I throw some items of clothing away?  Yes, but not if they have already been washed (unless they are full of sparkles or damaging materials).

When do I throw clothes away?  When I find the holes BEFORE they have been washed.  I don’t believe in wasting the power to wash and dry them, just to use them as rags if I catch the irreparable stains or damage first.

This is how we purged our clothes to prepare for the new year, and I am beginning my “One month, one room, one project” at a time.

How Do YOU Purge Your Closets?

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  • By Leah, August 6, 2016 @ 3:29 pm

    I need this right now, but for different reasons. One going into toddler clothes and another little one on the way! I’ll be sure to use these pointers to do a bit more purging (my cleaning up is usually more of a trickle).

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