How To Purge Your Closet

Merlin Mann over at 43folders mentions a tip from Peter Walsh to help you trim your closet to size.

What it entails is getting all the items that hang on hangers and put them up ‘backwards’ with the open end of the hook facing outwards. Then you set a date – a month or so.

Now each time you wear an item and put it back in your closet, you hang it the opposite way with the open end of the hook facing inwards. At the end of your set date you should have a bunch of clothes you’ve clearly warn, and some that you didn’t touch.

This makes things easier when you’re deciding what you need to get rid of. Are you wearing these clothes? So why keep them hung up?

You think to yourself “Oh, I wear this all the time. I couldn’t possibly throw it out.” But humans are notoriously awful at accurately estimating these kinds of things — I know I am anyway.

To just build on this idea, how about we do the same thing for the rest of your clothing – assuming you don’t just hang everything up on hangers.

In and Out

My first suggestion would be an in and out box. Everything begins in one area where you pick up the items you want to wear. Then when returned, you put them in the ‘out’ box. Same principle as before.

What usually happens with things like shirts, that you stack in piles, is your most popular items stay on top while the lesser-worn stuff stays buried underneath. In this case you can just systematically purge the bottom layer.

Peter Walsh’s clever hanger trick – [43folders]

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