Have you heard of the 80/20 rule? It means that life is divided by series of 80% and 20% effects. For example, 80% of your work come from 20% of your clients. Well, it can also be applied to closets and clothes. 80% of the time you wear 20% of what you own. I’ve been really taking a good hard look at this. I’m moving and I’m looking at ALL the totes of clothes I have and I’m in awe. How can I organize all of this and how can I make it work for me?

I do live in New England, and we have some pretty drastic climate changes, so there is a certain level of extra I need for the winter months, cold weather runs, and speaking events. However, I spend most of my days in jeans and a tee shirt or top. I throw a long cardigan over it and I’m good to go … to my home office. I have two dogs so anything too fussy just won’t do. And honestly, comfort is king for me.

So, as I’m going through my clothes, prepping for spring, and thinking about what I really love, I wanted to share some tips and products with you.

    1. Try everything on. This is not only a nuisance, it’s sometimes downright painful. I hate doing it, but it’s a necessary evil. Otherwise, you’re making decisions on things without all of the information. Make sure you’re feeling good. Possibly you’ve worked out already today and have a cup of something you love by your side. Once you REALLY know what fits, you can make better decisions.
    1. Be extra ruthless with shoes. I find that I go for the same shoes over and over again. They are comfy, cute and can last all day on my feet. However, I have some shoes in the closet that are either uncomfortable, don’t match a lot, or I just don’t want to part with. It’s time to let them go. For me, it’s a pair of yellow flat loafers. Adorable with a navy and white stripe shirt, but that’s about it. Give me strength to donate!
    1. I find I often gravitate to the same brands over and over again as well. Know what you own. Using specially designed apps or even Pinterest boards can help you maintain and remember your inventory.
  1. Now that you’ve stopped to recognize that you have favorite items, ask yourself if they still look good. I have a FAVORITE black tee shirt I wear a lot. However, upon closer inspection, it’s not really black anymore. (sniff, sniff) So I put it in the donate pile and I’m adding “buy a new black tee” to my to do list. If something can be repaired, put it in the car so that you can drop it off at the appropriate service provider.

Do you have closet cleanout tips? There’s more on this coming, as this is an ongoing process for me! Even organizers struggle from time to time!

About the Author
Bonnie Joy Dewkett, CPO® is an organizing expert, author, and motivational speaker. Her company, The Joyful Organizer®, creates and implements organizational systems for the home or office. Bonnie has achieved the designation of Certified Professional Organizer, CPO®, from The Board of Certification for Professional Organizers. She is a member of The National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO) and has published The Joyful Organizer’s Guide to a Joyful Move, which is available on her website: www.thejoyfulorganizer.com.

Editorial Contributors
Danny Lipford

Danny Lipford


Danny Lipford is a home improvement expert and television personality who started his remodeling business, Lipford Construction, at the age of 21 in Mobile, Alabama. He gained national recognition as the host of the nationally syndicated television show, Today's Homeowner with Danny Lipford, which started as a small cable show in Mobile. Danny's expertise in home improvement has also led him to be a contributor to popular magazines and websites and the go-to source for advice on everything related to the home. He has made over 200 national television appearances and served as the home improvement expert for CBS's The Early Show and The Weather Channel for over a decade. Danny is also the founder of 3 Echoes Content Studio, TodaysHomeowner.com, and Checking In With Chelsea, a décor and lifestyle blog.

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