I was ruthless …

… let me start at the beginning…

I, Linda of Nice dress! Thanks, I made it!! sign up as a participant of Me-Made-May ’15. I endeavour to wear one handmade item each day for the duration of May 2015. #mmmay15

I did this challenge for the first time last year and loved it! It was a stretch to make it through the month, but I got a good look at the “holes” in my handmade wardrobe.  This year I plan on filling those “holes”!

Of course, I had some cleaning up and organizing to do first.  My closet and drawers were so stuffed it was a struggle to get anything out!

Google - not my closet, but close!

It’s been a while since I weeded out my clothes, so being fresh off my jeans and Capris projects, I decided not to sew anymore until I assessed what I had already.

I started by taking everything out of my drawers and closet and piling them all over the room – dresses in a pile, shirts in a pile, etc.  (The cats loved it!)

Then I sorted through each pile and assessed each item like so:

* does it fit?

* has it been worn in the last year?

* is it still my kind of thing, will I ever wear it again?

* does it need repair or refashioning?

After assessment, I either hung the garment in the closet, put it in my “repair or refashion” pile or put it in my DONATE pile.  The DONATES I quickly gathered up and ran out of the room – to be taken to the second hand or charity store on my next trip.

During my on-line reading on “closet organizing” I found a great helper from Vogue.com

Vogue.com (click to enlarge)

Another tip I found on-line was to hang everything up in the closet with all the hangers backwards – why? because when you take a garment out of the closet you are going to hang it back up correctly afterwards. Therefore after six months or so, anything that is still hanging backwards might quite possibly be something that hits the DONATE box next time.

When I did hang my clothes back up, I made sure that all the pants were not only together, but were also grouped by colour, same with the skirts, dresses, tops, etc., and, at the same time, I made sure I wrote down what were the “holes” in my wardrobe.  So here is my “holes” list:

* solid black, solid blue and solid red tops – I have quite a few print skirts in various colours, but no solid coloured tops to wear with them!

* solid black and solid brown cardigans – Handy for layering over anything I wear to the office – where first it’s hot, then it’s cold!

* a solid red skirt, not a necessity, but I’ve always wanted a Sewaholic Holyburn!

* a red print top, not a necessity at all, but a Sewaholic Oakridge would look really nice with my Holyburn!

I found a few garments that I could repair or refashion too.  A skirt too long, one too short.  A shift dress that should really be a top.  A waistband too tight.  That sort of thing.

I also found a couple of shoe boxes in the back of my closet, one contained letters our kids (now in their 20’s) wrote to Santa.  The other contained 27 year old shoes.  The shoes I wore on one occasion… our wedding.


I don’t even think I could fit my toes into these now, let alone stand in them!  (Those two boxes went safely back into hiding in the back of my closet.)

I still haven’t tackled the box that contains my purses… I mean it’s not a ridiculous amount, but it’s still gonna hurt!

Are you joining us in Me-Made-May’15?  What have you got stashed in your closet?

Happy Sewing!

PS – the Vogue.com chart tells me to get rid of the shoes and keep the photo instead (framed)… Gosh!  This isn’t as easy as it seemed at the start!

28 thoughts on “I was ruthless …

  1. I have exactly the same problem with too many patterned skirts and not enough solid tops to wear with them. This is one of my sewing goals at the moment.

    It’s very handy that I should be reading this tonight as I’m planning a bit of a wardrobe overhaul for the coming week. Your checklist is pretty similar to the one in my head, so hopefully that means I’m on the right track!

    Good luck with Me Made May, too.

    1. I guess my eye is caught by all the fancy prints? I don’t know… But I plan on fixing that! Good luck with the closet cleanup and analysis. Don’t stop until you’re done. It seemed like a small job in my head until I started. 😀

  2. Thank you for passing on those tips for closet organization. I’m going to tackle my closet too and group items according to colour. I could see your cats leaping from one clothes pile to another.

    Now, about downsizing the box of purses. 😁 You do realize that some people (your sister) try to buy a purse that’s all – seasons (like tires) LOL. Knowing that your knees turn to jello when you see a nice purse in a shop window, I’m buying popcorn and watching when you go through that box. 😊(joking)

    Congratulations on entering the May challenge. To have that many sewn items is an accomplishment. I’m not a Sewist so to me that’s impressive. 👍

    1. Well I must confess I haven’t tackled the purse box yet! All season purses? That’s not right! Thanks! 😄

  3. You’re getting seriously organised! I need a couple of plain jeans/casual trousers. Too bad that isn’t an inspiring make.

    1. I seem to have a few plain trousers/pants and skirts to wear with my print tops, but no plain tops to wear with my print skirts – just think of the mixing and matching you could do with a couple of solid colours! Although I’m one to talk… The prints always catch my eye!

  4. Oooh, you’re so organised! I really must think about this soon. I have such a weakness for pretty prints that I forget about those wardrobe staples in solid colours! I really like the ‘back to front’ idea though as it makes tough decisions for you.

    1. Thank you. A good cleanup was well over due!

  5. Those shoes are beautiful! I wouldn’t be able to part with them if they were mine. I know I wouldn’t be able to wear them either but they are so gorgeous…… I too get distracted by prints when I shop for fabric, they are so much more interesting than solids, but we need solids too so I have to control my impulses somehow.

    1. I know… It is much easier to SAY “control your impulses”, isn’t it!

  6. wow that is quite the challenge. My closet is such a horror I am afraid of what I will find in there 😉

    1. Well, if you do a clean up and find something really interesting… Let us know!

  7. What a great idea! I know I need to do the same thing. I’m afraid my refashion pile would be so huge I’d be freaked out. There are things in there that I made long ago that I can’t part with because I love the fabric so much. Of course! I should refashion them. Not sure I find that as satisfying though as starting a project from scratch…

    1. I know, I love starting from scratch on a project. I was lucky that my refashion pile was not too large… Even then we shall see how long it talks to get through it. I specifically did this clean up to see what I had to work with for Me-Made-May… I am missing a few things!

  8. Just getting rid of the clothes that are the right color but the wrong personality and size is a relief! I recently did a clean out and it was wonderful to see space! Good for you…but not sure about ditching the shoes….they don’t take up much space do they?

    1. It feels good to clean up, doesn’t it! Oh yes I kept the shoes. They are safely back in their box in the back of the closet. They don’t fit me and I will never wear them again but since they are the shoes I wore on my wedding day, I can’t possibly throw them out. They have become part of my Estate, I think! (I still have the wedding dress I made too! I just can’t part with that neither!)

  9. Great organising tips. I really must do something similar. I am getting into some re-fashioning which is very satisfying. I’m joining MMM for the first time. Maybe like you it will prompt some organising. Glad those shoes survived, they are darling, i couldn’t part with them.

    1. Thank you. I’m looking forward to seeing your MMM items. Good Luck!

  10. There are so many gaps in my wordrobe and I don’t see filling them any time soon, I mostly need every day clothes but although I start a project intending to wear it in my everyday live, by the time I finish it I consider it too good for that purpose.
    I would keep those shoes, they are not just an old pair that dosent fit you anymore!

    1. That sewing to do list just keeps getting longer! Yes I have kept the shoes (and the wedding dress too actually – it definitely doesn’t fit! 😀). They are both safely packed away.

  11. I’m not a pack rat so I constantly toss anything that I have not worn in a year. Now that I can’t sew anymore that has resulted in a rather empty closest, especially seeing as I hate clothing shopping. I am the type of person who has 5 of the same thing in different colors. Now, when you start going through that box of purses I want to be there sharing Jo’s popcorn. We know you are a purse-aholic. Good luck to you.

    1. Maybe you are going to have to get me to do some sewing for you? Ahem, I haven’t touched the purses yet!

  12. Ooooh boy, the dreaded closet clean-out–I haven’t got the stomach for tackling mine just yet, but my time is coming! Good on you for taking that first step, even if the purses must wait until later. 😉

    1. Yes, the purses will have to wait until MUCH later! 😉

  13. Those are some seriously beautiful shoes, I’d keep them too. It’s fun to read a sewing bloggers take on the closet clean out. We seem to put much more thought into solving our fashion needs. Love the Vogue infographic.

    1. I was surprised to find so much info on closet clean up! But I guess this is the internet!

  14. I love your wedding shoes! You can’t toss them out…ever!

    1. You’re absolutely right! I will keep them forever!

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