A bit of winter cleaning

I decided to end 2009 with a bang here on “New Normal” by not posting for five weeks. Five. weeks. I don’t know how you all keep up with me. 🙂

To make up for it, I have an incredibly exciting post. Yipee!

Tim’s company had their Christmas party in mid-December and he always seems to luck out on the door prize end of things. This year he won a gift card to Old Navy which meant shopping spree for me!

It couldn’t have come at a better time. Me and clothes haven’t had the best relationship over the last three and a half years. I was in maternity clothes for basically the whole year in ’06. Right after losing Lucy I went and worked for Starbucks so instead of spending money on new clothes that fit, my wardrobe was polo shirts and khakis. While I was at Starbucks I was pregnant with Isabelle so I just went back to my maternity wardrobe. I’ve bought a thing here and there since Isabelle was born- but I feel like I spent the last two years in a couple pairs of jeans and t-shirts. In fact, I wore some of my maternity clothes until Isabelle was a little over a year (or longer). So new clothes have been a long time coming.

With the addition of new clothes I’ve noticed how much my closet is in need of a good clearing out. I have clothes that I probably wouldn’t wear even if I could fit back in them again! Plus, 95% of my closet is clothes I don’t wear, giving me no room to hang up the clothes I actually wear.

Last week I finally got fed up with everything and decided that spring cleaning is coming early to our house.

I got to work and ended up spring cleaning our entire bedroom (even Tim’s closet) in one day.

I decided that the only way I’d actually get it done well was to pull out all my clothes and sort through one big pile. Here’s what I started with (there are a few of Tim’s clothes mixed in).  Notice: when cleaning or crafting, the TV show “Felicity” must be on in the background- you don’t even want to know how many episodes I got through while doing this.

After about 3 hours I had three piles done. Keep (or try on), give away, and toss. The toss pile was only things with holes or bad enough stains that Goodwill probably wouldn’t take it.

Here is my toss pile.

Then it starts to get impressive. I tried to be harder on my clothes than I ever have before. Since I don’t wear most of them anyway it wasn’t as hard as I thought. My closet is largely filled with clothes I bought 5-6 years ago and aren’t really in line with what I would consider as my style now.

This is what I ended up with as a keep pile. The pile in the back left is the maternity clothes I sorted through.The front pile is what I wear regularly.

Yay! I also had a small pile to try on and ended up keeping three sweaters.

Finally, my giveaway pile. This is a little crazy and I can’t believe I held on to these clothes for so long. Tim did a sort as well and his clothes are included in this pile.

8 bags! Yikes. One bag is headed to the crisis pregnancy center with maternity clothes, I have a couple of pieces for Dress for Success and the rest will be donated.

I finished the afternoon by dusting everywhere (way overdue for that chore!), cleaning my closet and putting everything back.

I did take before and after pictures of my closet.

Before:

I rearranged everything so I could use existing shelves for my shoes and cleaned the top shelves for better storage.

See all those hangers? More than half are now gone from my closet. Getting rid of wire hangers was almost the highlight of my day.

And finally… the finished product!

It’s so nice to look at a color coordinated, clean, organized closet! I moved the drawers over and that helped with my shoe issue. We also used to have the laundry hamper in the main part of our room so it’s nice to move that. I have space for everything now and I’m not trying to find places to put clothes away. I was also able to get our suitcases off the floor of Tim’s closet and now he has room for his shoes. I’m really going to try and maintain this closet. I don’t want to have to do this process all over again!

I hope to be spending the next couple of months focusing on each room in the house and really giving it a good cleaning. I can never seem to do a full on spring cleaning blitz-in-a-month, but I think if I keep up my momentum I can get some good progress on the house.

Maybe I’ll even get another post up in less than 5 weeks!

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9 thoughts on “A bit of winter cleaning

  1. Joani says:

    Wow – your closet looks fantastic, want to come do mine? I’ve been cleaning around here, too, although the sewing machine always seems to be calling me…..

  2. Aunt Devonne says:

    Wow! I’m impressed. Did I see a cheerleading skirt in the pile? One thing good about my closet is that it’s half the size of just yours and Uncle Kenny and I share it. It helps keeps me from keeping things I don’t wear. Keep up the good work. Looking forward to seeing the next purging.

  3. Janelle says:

    I totally noticed the cheerleading skirt in the first pile! Then I felt this huge sense of relief in seeing your done closet. I thought I was the only one who color-coordinated my clothes!

  4. Do you love shoes? Then you might need a great deal of storage for all of them. Maybe you need shelves for your sweaters or your favorite books you keep in the closet.

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