Enough clothes already! No, this is not a post about nudism or nudists. Also it isn’t about Never Nudes (which you’d know about if you giggle at “Arrested Development” like I do way too often on Friday nights). This is about clothing of all varieties and materials and how I have too many and so do you.
What? How can I accuse you of having too many clothes? And what is too many, really? And who is measuring? And who gives a rip? “But wait,” you say, “we’re all on a spectrum, Claire…we’re all at different places in life….we all make different incomes and choose different paths and make choices based on very different values!”
So true. And you’re right. And I’m right.
I was inspired to share some of my secret ways of pretending like I have a handle on clothes when I read Kris Woll’s great piece on how she culled her closet recently.
Okay, so I’m not in your closet or rifling through those bins you still have stored in your dad’s basement labeled “Winter” (that includes your high school track sweatshirt with the “If you’re reading this I’m ahead of you” slogan printed on the back) and I’m not trailing you at Nordstrom Rack to see how much you actually spend on faux leather leggings. But I am with you in the spirit of excess because that’s the American way, after all, isn’t it?
Oh come on, just join me in the cynicism for a second, it will be fun.
I have put in to practice three different clothing downsizing efforts that have each worked brilliantly AND were hard AND were easy AND you can actually do these.
#1: The Super 7
One afternoon I was folding laundry and I realized I had just matched 15 pairs of running socks. 15. There were 30+ socks in my laundry basket (because there’s always the rogue sock there to mess with you while it relishes in its solitary float through laundry basket after laundry basket). I thought to myself: “Why do I have so very many socks for running?” I run or lift or workout 6-7 days/week. So my next thought was: “I need 7 pairs of running socks.” So right then I culled my best 7 pairs and they became my Super 7.
Then I moved on to shorts: 7 pair of shorts, please, not 13.
Then bras: 7 good bras that I actually wear, not 12.
Then jeans: Super 7!
Then sweaters: 7
Then running shorts: you guessed it: 7.
Jackets (um, I had 26).
Flipflops (now I only have 1 pair which my husband cannot stand because they’re almost 10 years old)
T-shirts: Super 7!
RESULTS: I got rid of tons of stuff. Okay, not an exact ton. I didn’t weigh it all. But six grocery bags off to Goodwill is significant. I love the simple and perfect number 7 and The Super 7 really helped me steer my culling. Sometimes I’d get one of those wild hairs and want to do a big GET RID and then I’d look at all my clothes, get a little dizzy and immediately find a scientific report on the layers of sediment in an Uzbekistan lake wildly interesting and never actually get rid of anything unless it had holes.
After The Super 7 my drawers weren’t packed, my clothes hung freely (with space to spare).
In 2011 I didn’t buy a single piece of clothing. Here’s what I learned:
(Hey! I wrote this post for the Living Enough blog…read the rest and check out what I learned AND discover my tip #3 over there. xo, Claire)