Fashion

Things you should do to organise your wardrobe before Chinese New Year

10 steps to organise your wardrobe before Chinese New Year

If you still haven't got down to welcoming 2021 on a fresh, clean note, there is still time to gain control of the overflowing mess that is your closet (or your spouse's and children's) before Chinese New Year comes around.

Here are 10 tips to organise and declutter your wardrobe and even earn some cash while you're at it.

Make a giant pile

It might seem counter-intuitive to make a mess when we are trying to organise. But if you have watched any home-organising shows such as Tidying Up With Marie Kondo or Get Organized With The Home Edit, you will realise their first step is always to empty the drawers and place the contents into a giant heaping pile in the middle of the room.

This is to help you get a sense of the magnitude of your collection and set the tone of the decluttering process.

Set intentions

After facing the mountain of clothes that you have collected over the years, think about the outcome you want to achieve.

Ask yourself: Do you want to reduce your collection by half, or trim it down even further by retaining only the clothes you usually wear?

Sieve and sort

Tackle the pile by creating multiple categories, like sorting your clothes and accessories into "keep" and "throw" sections.

Some considerations on what to keep or throw could be whether or not they fit and flatter, if you have worn them in the past six months or if they're damaged and you have no inclination to get them fixed.

This is also how and when you get damaged clothing and accessories you want to keep mended and fixed (and actually do it).

Clean your wardrobe

With your wardrobe now empty, give it a good vacuum and wipe down to clear dust, silverfish and unwanted pests.

Any broken hinges, dividers, and rods should also be fixed.

Store your keep pile properly

Before doing that, get the right equipment for your storage needs. For example, choosing the right hangers will ensure your clothes are more organised.

Any plastic dust cover from the dry cleaners should be discarded as they trap moisture that can damage your clothes. Use a garment bag made with breathable material instead.

Finally, replace the closet dehumidifier and wardrobe fresheners.

Once these are done, you can put your beloved clothing, shoes, accessories and jewellery back in their home.

Discard

This is the most convenient and straightforward way to deal with unwanted items in the throw pile.

Also, ensure your discards are not a physical or fire hazard for yourself and your neighbours.

Donate to a charity or cause

You can donate your unwanted (but wearable) clothing to people or causes who can use them. These places include charities such as The Salvation Army and Metta Welfare Association as well as recycling initiatives like H&M and the Wacoal Bra Recycling programme.

Upcycle

Upcycling turns your clothing into other usable items. For example, an old towel can be cut up and used as a hand towel or a cleaning rag, while a T-shirt can be repurposed as a hair turban to dry wet hair.

You could even transform a blouse into a tank top. A quick search on YouTube or Pinterest will yield many simple DIY upcycling ideas.

Do a swap

If you and your friends have embarked on this wardrobe decluttering journey together, another option is swapping clothing and trying them on - essentially shopping each other's collections.

Sell online

You parted with hard-earned money for these clothing and accessories, so why not resell them and recoup some moolah?

Websites such as Carousell and Refash are accessible ways to sell your items. Or, you could post it on social media and see if anyone in your social circle is happy to pick them up.

This article was first published in The Singapore Women's Weekly (www.womensweekly.com.sg).

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