My closet editing technic applied on my wardrobe

If you read my bio you know my mantra is to buy less and dress better.
I recently wondered if I was doing what I predicated so I went check my own wardrobe as if I was looking at the one of a client.

It is really useful to do closet editing once a year – like in January – because owning too many clothes you do not wear clusters your space and your sight when it comes to outfit creation.

Many never do it and end up with unmanageable wardrobes. That when you can call me for help for a closet cleanse and editing.

To spare you the pain of going trough ALL my wardrobe, I only when trough the sweaters, jumpers and cardigans range.

I/ Get rid of the damaged

Believe it or not, many of my clients who hire me for a closet editing session own a lot of worn out clothes.

What haven’t they got rid of them earlier by themselves you may wonder?

Probably because noticing that the things you love and see everyday are getting old is not always easy to realize. (For instance: I do not obviously see I am 30 when I look in the mirror yet someone who sees me for the first time would probably notice (sigh)).

Which is why my fresh trained merciless eye helps (do not worry, I am kind and not judgmental. I just take action!).

At this point, get rid of the clothes that are not in good shape anymore. In many of my client’s closet there are clothes that are too old looking to be worn. Like for sweaters:
The whitened ones
The yellowed ones
The distressed ones
The shortened ones
The ones with plushes
The ones that have a hole (fill it or leave it)

This is why I recently got rid of a 7 years old grey V neck oversize Sandro boyish cashmere that was getting yellowish shades.

II/ Get rid of the unwearables

You often know who they are: they remain in your closet with their fancy (not) cupboard scent  hoping one day they’ll see daylight.

They may be outfashioned, outsized, not comfortable, uncleanable.

Sometimes though, my clients wear them. Again, because of the fact that it is harder to see yourself than to see others.

One you have faced the truth, I recommend you donate them.

I recently made two purchase mistakes. (No one is perfect ^^). Both were due to the fabric that was poorer quality than expected.
A fluffy angora banana yellow cardigan because no matter what treatment I applied to it (I tried everything google and grandmas had to suggest) it left yellow plushes EVERYWHERE. It made me sad cause it looked soooo stylish. Yet I had to be merciless with my own closet and admit that plushes on my black coat where NOT stylish. (Plus now that I have read how angora is made, hurting those little rabbits… I do not want to buy it anymore.)
A rust colored V neck from APC that got “white” and “small” very fast after having been washed (sigh).

III/ Keep the best twin only

Often, my clients buy the same thing over and over. Mistake pattern.

And even if this is useful to have several black sweaters if this is something you wear a lot, it is not useful to have more than two of the exact same piece.

Most of the times one of the piece is better than other very similar ones. You shall only keeps the best (s) and get rid of the other. Why wear a “meh” sweater when all you have to do is wash its “wow” twin?

Which is why I recently donated a 5 years old APC navy blue irish knit cotton square neck. Truth is my newly bought similar knit looks way better.

IV/ Save the symbols

Have you read Marie Kondo? The guru of tidiness? According to her, you shall get rid of any item that does not bring you joy. Although it sounds kind of esoteric it is very true.

Which is why I kept my high school’s year candy pink tight V neck. (And although because I think/hope I may style it again one day. The 2000’s are coming back you know ^^)

But do not cheat! Do NOT keep 10 items for those reasons!

V/ Find styling options for the pretty items

Usually they are those you wear on a regular basis.

However, when I visit a client’s closet, we often find some unworn jewels. And I do is find styling option for those. In other words, I create outfits featuring other items of the closet or  I counsel what kind of pieces would complete them best (shape, color, fabric…).

Here is what my own wardrobe is made of. The list can be kind of boring for you to read, yet it is useful to make your own. Plus I like lists (I am a maniac, maniac of the list).

It will help you realize how long you wear the items (depending on the quality) and how you could style them.

When I am with a client I do not ask how old the clothes are and just go for the look. But when you do it yourself, I think the analysis is useful. It will make you realize that quality items last way longer. Especially when it comes to sweaters! Which is why my list contains no fast fashion items here.
A chunky knit in bright red wool. Bimba y Lola. 2 months old. Already of of my closet’s faves.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A super fine grey V neck silk and cashmere. 1 year old. Vanessa Bruno. Super useful tucked in high waisted bottoms.
A super fine navy blue V neck silk and cashmere. 1 year old. Vanessa Bruno.  So useful I bought its twin brother in another shade which I usually never do.
A striped breton top. 1 year old. Saint James found at Emmaüs.  Stripes surprisingly match pretty much everything.


A fluffy forest green long sweater. 2 years old. Vanessa Bruno bought in a second hand shop. Perfect with skinny jeans and mini skirts.
A tight navy blue lobster printed crew neck. 2 years old. Monoprix. Nice with high waisted jeans and skirts.
A chunky long navy blue irish knit sweater. 3 years old. Independent spanish brand. Perfect with skinny jeans and mini skirts.
A boxy grey cotton knit with a back zip. 5 years old. Le mont saint michel. Cute with anything tight on the bottom.
Oversize boyish navy blue cotton boyish V neck. 5 years old. Guerrisol (friperie). Cute with anything tight on the bottom.
Mustard yellow crew neck cashmere. APC. 6 years old. Brightens a lot of outfits.


My cashmere, my blond hair and I, London 2012.
Fine cashmere and silk grey pussy bow neck. Comptoir des cotonniers. 10 years old. Sometimes I wear it with jeans but I mostly keep it because I still like it.


Vintage me wearing still in great shape sweater, Classroom in Berlin, 2008.
Fine black boat neck sweater. Bill Tornade. 15 years old. Not used a lot anymore because the black is not so black anymore.
Gold kaki cropped sweater. Super old. Inherited from my mum. Cute in summer. 

When I look at my list I notice the following: only 3 of my sweaters have bright colors. Only two have a print. And the rest are neutrals. I even own 4 navy blue even if all are different.

This listing enables  you to see better what you can still buy and what you shall not buy anymore.

As far as I am concerned, I would recommend myself to stop buying any more navy blue sweaters. Or any other very long sweaters as two are more than enough since they are difficult to style.

And I definitely could use a cardigan!

And you? Do you sometimes clean and edit your wardrobe? Do you feel that getting the help of a personal stylist may help? 

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12 Responses to “My closet editing technic applied on my wardrobe”
  1. Sandra Moore says:

    Yes, I try to edit twice a year during the season change and am a big believer in it. In the United States many people have closets the size of a small bedroom where they collect clothes that mostly go unworn. I am not one of them, and I do not miss it. My small closet forces me to follow a “one in, one out” rule. I have enough to have fun with variety (I can’t do the completely minimilist wardrobe because it bores me to tears) but not so much that I am overwhelmed or forget what I own. Quality varies according to use; my wool dress coat is quality and going on ten years, my trendy lightweight summer top I only plan to wear one season is not. Love your blog because you promote the “being creative with less is actually more” philosophy I believe in. You have given me so many great ideas and helped me avoid mistakes. Merci!

  2. Jimena says:

    Hi!
    Long time reader, first time commenting. I wanted to tell you how impeccable your timing is, I’m planning on doing an edit of my closet this weekend since I noticed the more I buy, the less I wear, simply because I lose track of my clothes in the clutter of my closet and end up falling back on the same handful of outfits. I like the idea of making a list, I’ll implement it as well.

  3. Kate says:

    So funny — I’ve been hanging on to the same Comptoir des cotonniers pussy-bow sweater, but didn’t realize it was 10 years old! I still love it too. I love your blog!

  4. vivien_noir says:

    Hahaha – my list would be SO MUCH longer! I made closet inventory twice, and the last time, I had over 50 pairs of Pants (all kinds and styles and lengths, from pajama Pants to glossy skinny coated Jeans and embroidered summer Shorts).
    I also had over 100 black, short-sleeved T-Shirts. Concert and Band Shirts, but still, over 100 different black Shirts.

    Black still ist overrepresented in my wardrobe, but it’s my main colour, and I won’t Change this 🙂 I’m not changing being goth either 😀

    • Aloïs Guinut says:

      Ahah, my list seemed quite long but it is actually quite short. I think I am being successful in what I try doing because I wear everything I own on a regular basis.

  5. EternalVoyageur says:

    It’s really nice to read a bit about your personal closet and to see a bit of your style. I love that red sweater!

    Also this is right on time because I’ll be editing my closet a bit in the next days. It’s something that I like to do at the end/beginning of the year.

    Also I have edited my closet with Marie Kondo’s method and it was amazing. I had so many pieces that were perfect in theory (fit me, flattered me, stylish, good quality, comfortable etc) but when I held them in my hands they didn’t give me that uplifting spark joy feeling, instead I felt a heavy feeling. When I acknowledged that feeling I often realised that there was in fact something wring with the outfit (reminded me of something, didn’t fit my lifestyle, wasn’t really “me”, bunched or rode up in a strange way, etc)

    • Aloïs Guinut says:

      Oh I am happy you liked this article, I was not quite confident about sharing this much about me 🙂
      Sometimes I dress sophisticated, sometimes casual but mainly a mix of those two at once.
      And yes, the Marie Kondo method is really great! I have read only half the book at a friend’s though. Have to read the rest of it!

  6. V says:

    Quand il s’agit de soi, je trouve toujours très difficile d’être objective et d’avoir un regard doux sur soi-même …les conseils des amies/sœurs/ cousines etc n’y changeant rien…dans mon cas.
    J’ai trouvé plus bénéfique d’avoir un regard neutre et aguerri sur mon dressing et shoesing.
    Bénéfique ne veux pas dire sans douleur quand il a fallu se séparer de quelques pièces tant aimées ( un brin usées, forme inadéquate, taille inadaptée et j’en passe ).La séparation a d’ailleurs duré plus longtemps pour quelques pièces dont je ne me suis résolue à leur trouver de nouvelles propriétaires que depuis quelques mois ..

    Résultat : un dressing avec l’existant que l’on étoffe au fur et à mesure de pièces dont on reconnaît dans “l’architecture “, la longueur et la couleur, un allié de poids.
    Ex : je manque (ais) cruellement de pulls (contrairement aux gilets).
    J’ai mis la main ( en ligne) sur deux pulls fins cols U ( cachemire) en bleu roi (il y a un an) et le même pull en rouge coquelicot ( il y a 3 mois).
    Hier,en boutique, repérage et essayage d’un coup de cœur absolu sous la forme d’un col V fin ( en cachemire) vert anglais qui existe également en rose pamplemousse ( j’adore cette couleur).
    Je trouve être toujours un défi à habiller alors quand la forme, longueur et couleurs me vont ….je ne me pose pas de questions et je peux décliner mes achats “pullesques” sur 2 coloris vitaminés * en général ( non présents dans mon vestiaire actuel qui a déjà 2 neutres : un pull noir et un gris oversize…)
    Ça me permet de me constituer un dressing où je peux limite piocher au hasard et éliminer d’emblée 90% d’achats inutiles ( Dans la mesure ou ma démarche s’inscrit dans la durée ” Make It last” et donc la qualité, toute acquisition a son prix meme si nous ne sommes pas à l’abri de belles déconvenues ).

    ” Buy less, choose well and dress better ” pas encore totalement mais j’y travaille ardemment.

    * Ces couleurs vitaminées ne me seraient pas venues à l’esprit ( en été comme en hiver) s’il n’y avait pas eu de consultation dressing.

    Ps : même si cela représente un travail monstrueux, un grand merci pour la fréquence des posts !

    V

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