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Please help me be ruthless getting rid of stuff

(23 Posts)
Jemster Sun 30-Nov-14 11:36:02

I'm trying to have a clear out before Christmas but finding it hard to make decisions on some things.
I've found a pair of next black court shoes, nothing wrong with them but just feel a bit dated, I have had them for many years but not worn much.
Shall I keep 'just in case' or get rid to make more space? What about other similar things? Seems a waste to throw out perfectly good shoes but I just never wear them. I am surrounded by clutter which is getting on top of me - help please any advice?

TondelayoSchwarzkopf Sun 30-Nov-14 11:42:56

You don't have to throw them - charity shop, Freecycle or EBay. That way someone else gets to enjoy your shoes.

IME once you go off an item of clothing there is no way back smile

ememem84 Sun 30-Nov-14 11:44:07

Get rid. I've just decluttered my wardrobe. I worked on the principle that if I hadn't worn it for a few months it needed to go.

I've made a vow with myself not to buy any more clothes unless I need them - new undies/tights etc.

I found things I'd forgotten I had, things is never worn.

Jemster Sun 30-Nov-14 11:45:34

Thanks, yes sorry I didn't mean literally throw them away, I would def take to charity shop. I think I've seen similar ones in there in fact!

AuntySib Sun 30-Nov-14 11:50:11

So with these shoes, imagine when you might wear them. Do you have other shoes that you would wear in preference? Like another pair of black heels that are nicer? Think about how these shoes make you feel - when you put them on, do you think they look great? Or do you feel they make your whole outfit look dated?
It sounds to me like you don't much like them anyway, so not much point in keeping them!
Only keep things you really like- who wants a wardrobe full of so-,so stuff?
And as a friend once said to me, how many black t-shirts/work tops/jeans do actually need?
Decluttering can be really hard, but the more you do it the easier it gets. Do it as you're going along- if you reject the same item on a frequent basis, what are you keeping it for? So if you always pick the same black T-shirt ( for example) over other similar ones, you might consider getting rid of the less favoured ones even though they are ok ish.
Hope that helps - these are tips which have helped me.

specialsubject Sun 30-Nov-14 12:22:14

most people never wear 80% of their clothes. So even if you only get rid of half the useless items, your cupboard will still be 40% emptier.

to the charity shop!

ememem84 Sun 30-Nov-14 23:25:14

I sorted into keeps and get rids. The keeps went into wardrobe. The get rids are currently on eBay. And are out if wardrobe. If they sell they sell. If they don't I usually give them 3 listings then they go to charity shop.

It's amazing how much space I cleared. And how much I realised I had.

Good luck.

LeoandBoosmum Mon 01-Dec-14 01:49:28

I'd give anything away you haven't worn for 2 years - that's a good rule. It stops you holding on to stuff 'just in case'.
If you haven't worn anything over the past two years or so you are very unlikely to wear it again smile
At least giving away would mean some one else benefits. Also, just a suggestion but if you are giving a fair amount of decent stuff away, look up the nearest women's shelter as they always appreciate decent quality womenswear/ childrenswear for women with kids who have left home to escape domestic violence (which, sadly, increases in the run up to Christmas and over the Christmas/ New Year period in general). I think some charity shops take the proverbial pee these days, often charging as much as regular shops (which is hardly the point)

WildBillfemale Mon 01-Dec-14 06:46:09

If you haven't worn it in ages - there'll be a reason that's the case so get rid.

Floisme Mon 01-Dec-14 07:10:48

I'm going to go against the flow here. I used to agree with the get-rid-after-2-years rule but I don't any more. Fashion changes way faster than it used to and none of it is original - most designers don't even bother to tweak things. So if a) the shoes are good quality, b) you always used to like them, it's just that they feel dated and c) you have the space then I would keep them. However I'd get rid if none of those 3 apply.

FrugalFashionista Mon 01-Dec-14 07:43:44

Agree with Floisme to some degree. Plus emptying the cupboards will just allow you to refill them with new not-quite-right items. To get forward, try to find common themes in the items that you are discarding: too dressy, too unconfortable, poor materials, not your style, not compatible with your lifestyle, a part of your former life, a fleeting trend? Then try to find common themes between items that you actually wear and feel great in. This will give you insights about what, if anything, you actually need. Release items slowly and make sure you are not replacing them with other items.

For me, buying clothes and shoes can be an indiscriminate reaction to other needs. I need something, and I feel that a black pointy-toed pair of shoes will fill that hole. I also often think that having variety and options in my wardrobe will feel nicer, when in fact too many options just feel overwhelming and increase clutter.

BlueEyedWonder Mon 01-Dec-14 07:43:47

I'm ruthless (we lack space) and at the end of each season I go through what I have: if its not been worn and I don't love it, it goes. I ebay decent stuff, charity shop or clothing bank the rest.

zipetwhippet Mon 01-Dec-14 08:51:59

If you don't feel good when you're wearing something then what's the point in keeping it?
You said the shoes feel a bit dated, so that's what you'll think if you wear them- I would charity shop.

SuperFlyHigh Mon 01-Dec-14 11:00:42

Oh gawd i need this thread.

My thing is or was vintage dresses.... and shoes...

SuperFlyHigh Mon 01-Dec-14 11:03:46

Can I ask someone about rules for keeping?

right now I have about 2-3 favourite tops and jumpers - that I've bought this season but they're really warm/comfy/stylish etc.

Then I have a green Aran expensive knit - rarely wear it, a caramel Whistles jumper that I like but it creases so badly I don't wear it.

I was panicking thinking I'd binned an Oasis sweater dress and Warehouse black workwear dress but they're here so keep...

But what are your rules?

Notcontent Mon 01-Dec-14 11:42:21

I struggle with this. I have lots of perfectly nice things that I don't wear because they are just not what I reach for when getting dressed.

For work I think I could manage with just a couple skirts and dresses and for outside work I could just live in black jeans and ankle boots.

Frugal - what you say about buying to meet other needs is so, so true. I do that and I am very aware of it.

LeoandBoosmum Mon 01-Dec-14 13:33:44

Superflyhigh - aran doesn't really go out of style..that jumper will be something you can wear year after year but you need to get into it smile

I'd maybe Ebay the Whistles jumper as it's too good to give to a charity shop (unless you're rich). You know you're not going to wear if for the reason stated, so why keep? Whistles stuff does pretty well on Ebay.

SuperFlyHigh Mon 01-Dec-14 13:46:34

LeoandBoosmum - it's a dark green Aran jumper, present from stepdad.

You're right about the Whistles jumper I'd keep the bloody thing if it didn't crease so badly!

msfreud Mon 01-Dec-14 14:07:37

I cleared out lots before moving house this summer and did it all quite quickly which forced me to be ruthless!

The two year rule doesn't work for me because often I do discover an old item in my wardrobe and start wearing it again. But I got rid of everything that felt too "young" (I'm 31 and had some things I bought when I was a 21 year old uni student), was clearly too small for me to ever fit into again, had been a mistake purchase anyway (wrong colour or fit, mostly) and some that were too bobbled/worn looking.

I think I would charity shop the shoes you're thinking about. Oddly there seems to be less need for that sort of smart shoes for events like funerals and job interviews these days? In the past I had shoes for just that sort of occasions but now I would just wear something I wear anyway (black ankle boots, or flats in the summer etc.).

FrugalFashionista Mon 01-Dec-14 14:39:44

Notcontent just sending you a big wave of sympathy. It's not easy, but if you can verbalize some of those needs ("I need a break", "I need some good news today", "I need something soothing and relaxing", "I need some distraction", "I need a treat"...) you will be able to come up solutions that really meet those needs! And yes, I'm the same - I'd be happiest in a handful of items. I crave variety, but am much happier if the source of variety in my life is experiences and people. Variety in clothing is on some level deeply unsatisfying and deeply depressing. So many items waiting for their turn, never being worn...

SuperFlyHigh I hear you. I have so many things that are objectively beautiful and valuable, but not getting worn. re your Aran sweater, is the color right for you? Is it the right length, does it scratch, does it reflect your general style? Or are you saving things for special occasions?

For items that are classics and great quality but 'not me', I sometimes find someone whom I know who will wear them better. If they are too dressy for everyday, there are two options: starting to wear them frequently, toning them down with more casual items. Or acknowledging that they just not compatible with your day-to-day life.

Sometimes letting go is just very hard. It's the 'sunk cost', expectations and money invested. So difficult to acknowledge that you did not get it right... While writing this, I packed up a dozen beautiful pairs of shoes. I've been holding on to them for several years, but they are not getting worn and I have found others that fit my lifestyle much better.

The sweater that creases badly? Sounds impractical... Take note of the cut and color, when you see something like that made of a better material, buy the new item. An alternative would be to deliberately embrace the wabi-sabi of an item. Wear it because you love it and because you can love something that is not perfect, or invest those extra minutes of iroing because you really like the item.

SuperFlyHigh Mon 01-Dec-14 17:45:10

Frugal thanks a lot! Some great advice! smile

SuperFlyHigh Mon 01-Dec-14 17:46:03

Re the Aran sweater it's just I don't know not me. But is lovely and was expensive.

ALittleFaith Mon 01-Dec-14 17:52:15

You need to read this book. It's all about decluttering. Starts with clothes. I always thought I was ruthless with clothes but reading it I realised I was holding on to things unnecessarily. If you get into it, there's a thread in good housekeeping about it.

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