Wednesday, February 15, 2006

organizing the world: one closet at a time

Sunday morning, I woke up to breakfast in bed (omelets and toast) and the weather outside looking like this:

From my bedroom window.

And this:

At the front door.

I wasn't anxious to change out of these...

so I decided to undertake a project I've never done before- cleaning out my closet. Never. Not in college, not in law school, not when I moved into this house. Never.

Umm, no one told me that it would be that painful.

Everytime I go to purchase a new shirt, pants or shoes, Josh is quick to remind me that I have a LOT of clothes. Each and every time, I deny this, because really, it isn't that much!

Except, umm, turns out it is.

Damn, that is a lot of clothes.

Lots of sweaters, too. I'm not sure why I never wear sweaters to work.

There was a rather pressing need for the closet to be emptied, and that was an impending closet remodeling, per the Container Store's Elfa Closet System. See?

It may not look like much, folks, but this is going to I have faith.

I've been promised a complete remodel this weekend. I'll take pictures.

In the meantime, though, DAMN, do I have some ugly clothes.

I filled up one HUGE black garbage bag with pants that were too small. Ahem, because they shrunk. Not because I weigh 20 pounds more than when I got married.

I also came upon winners like these:

HOT DAMN. That is a bright dress. I wore this from high school through law school. I'm still wondering why no one told me to give it away 10 years ago.

Additionally, why didn't anyone tell me that you shouldn't wear skirts that are less than 3 inches in length?

I won't even tell you what I looked like when I tried this on to see if it still fit. The picture makes it look significantly longer than it actually is. I wore it, too, many times.

It almost pained me to give this dress away, because in theory, it was so cute.

I say, in theory, because in reality, I looked like a hooker.

An island hooker, to be exact.

My closet is now a full black garbage bag emptier, and Josh told me to think of it as making space for new clothes to join the family. That cheers me up marginally, but the 20 empty hangers are calling to me. I'm sure my new Elfa closet system with pretty shelves and hangers and the possibility for me to actually see the clothing I own will also cheer me up. The scented liners should help too.

If not, I can always blame Josh.


Jill said...

You know that you are quite a talented blogger when you can make cleaning out a closet as interesting and entertaining as you do! I got a good laugh from some of your comments about your featured clothing items, but I'll bet that you looked cuter in those outfits than you are giving yourself credit for.

P.S. Breakfast in bed--how nice!

P.S.S. I thought of you when I heard how much snow Boston got over the weekend.

Elizabeth said...

Oooh, the Container Store! Lucky. Love the polka dot jammies, too.

I like the island hooker dress. When I lose 40 pounds, can I have it?

Maribeth said...

Wanna come do my closets??

Piece of Work said...

I'm amazed you made it this long without cleaning out your closet. It's amazing the things we hang onto, isn't it. I still have, in a box in the garage, all my teeny tiny skinny pants from before pregnancies. As if I'll EVER fit into those again.

Love the island hooker dress--now I want to see a photo with you in it!

chickkhan said...

Saw your blog on the Reign of Ellen and stopped in. I just wanted to say that I have the same polka dot jammies!

Jess Riley said...

That was very entertaining! We're getting a snowstorm tonight and tomorrow (says the weatherfolks), so I hope to spend tomorrow in my jammies. Working at home, of course.

jo(e) said...

Very entertaining!

I went something like twenty years without cleaning out my closet. And then I did it by making an agreement with my daughter. I would try every item on, and she would tell me I could keep it or get rid of it. This eliminated almost everything in the closet.

She thought some of the clothes were hysterically funny.

halloweenlover said...

Jo(e), there were a couple of things that I actually saved for future children to laugh over. Like these pants from high school, in my first foray into super tight super low rise jeans. I cannot believe I ever fit into them, and I hope someday the style will come back and my future daughter or niece can wear them. I also saved the outfit I was wearing when I met Josh- for sentimental purposes, of course!

Beth said...

ha! i saved the outfit i was wearing when i met David, too! and every so often, just to make myself depressed, i try those jeans on.


not cool. at all.

Nancy said...

The "in theory, it would work" outfits are for some reason the hardest to get rid of. I have several "in theory, if I lost 20 pounds" items as well as some "in theory, if my tastes in clothes change 180 degrees" things.

Like Jill, I bet you looked pretty cute in some of those things. Believe me, they are not bad (you should have seen some of the things I used to wear!)

Ninotchka said...

An island hooker. roflol Good one!

wordnerd said...

Island Hooker - ha

I like the concept of new clothes joining the family, it makes it sound so fun. YAY JOSH!

Yankee T said...

HOWLING at the Island hooker. You are just.too.cute.

ccw said...

I cannot believe that you can make me excited about cleaning out the closet. A great post!

I have been tossing clothes, little by little, every time that I change my closet for the seasons. In another couple of years the ancient, out of style stuff should finally be in a trash bag.

Kristin said...

I am a major packrat, but I'm trying to slowly cure myself. Up until two years ago, I honestly still owned EVERY SINGLE item of clothing I wore in high school, including all those adorable tiny bras. Ha.

Then my parents moved to a different house and didn't want to move all our junk again. My sister and I had a MAJOR yard sale. I cleared out a TON of clothes ... my old slutty high school clothes sold like hotcakes! :)

I still have two closets, an armoire and several plastic bins full of clothes, but it's an improvement. I swear, that show Clean Sweep is the source of my de-packratting. Every so often, I sort through my clothes again, and every time it's easier to get rid of things. There are always what-was-I-thinking clothes, even from last year!

But I still keep clothes for sentimental reasons. They are such good memory triggers because I have this special talent for remembering what I was wearing at any given moment in my life. :) And I just LOVE clothes. What can I say?

jess said...

Good job. I am merciless when it comes to cleaning out my closet; I do it every season and give all the clothes that have, um . . .shrunk . . .to my friends. I also think of it as "making room" for the new stuff.

Honey Bunny said...

i never thought i'd say this, but i'm happy to be in minnesota where there's NO SNOW! but the downside is that it's -20 out there right now with the windchill. Burrrrr!

jenfromboston said...

just realized I was supposed to come back to this one as work ate my comment! anyway, yeah, this is my every 3 month project as my closets are what you'd call "cruel and unusual" i.e. only the width of my shoulders.

that said, DAMN that is a lot of clothes. I would be curious to see what the closet will look like after the cantainer store system-that-will-change-your-life is implemented.

Madeleine said...

Hey, I have way more sweaters than that. Some of which I really should let go. But I wear one every day, even in the summer when I'm in air conditioning. Mine take up half the linen closet -- and it's a big linen closet.

And I think we might have the same bedside tables -- Ikea?