Thursday, January 7, 2016

The KonMari Con - Clothes Day

I'd taken the time to have a think about what needed to be done today. It's been scaring me from the outset. I'm trying to keep to Marie Kondo's principles and this took a bit to get my head around.

I've been talking about the Kondo effect in the last few posts. Marie Kondo is a Japanese Clutter Buster. I would also add that she's an OCD nutcase with a bit of a God Complex. Her book, "The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up" was a bit of a puzzling read. My friends and family found it hilarious that I was reading such a tome - I'm the untidiest person most people know.

Kondo's advice, first up, is when tidying up, start with your clothes.

A week after finishing the book, I was ready to start the journey.

What she recommends is that you place every piece of clothing you own in a space - in my case, the lounge room. Then sort the clothes into piles:
  • Tops
  • Bottoms
  • Hanging stuff (Dresses, suits, etc)
  • Socks
  • Underwear
  • Bags
  • Accessories
  • Clothes for Specific Events
  • Shoes
Okay, I'll be doing the shoes tomorrow, and I've already done the bags. This was the result.

Once this is done, the next task is to go through every piece of clothing and ask yourself, "Does this give me joy?"

This sounds a bit strange, but the rationale is, if this is something you want in your life, it will serve you well. If you don't receive any joy, out it goes. In my case, this means the clothes have been moved down to the local Salvation Army depot and Anglicare Bin in East Melbourne.

As strange as this sounds, it appears to have worked.

Seven large garbage bags of perfectly wearable clothes have left the flat today.

Even stranger, the method of asking, "Does it give me joy?" appears to work well. (Note, with work clothes I see joy as making me look professional and being comfortable). She advocates talking to your clothes.

I found some of my conversations were, "What was I thinking!", "I haven't missed your for a number of years.", "You can go and make somebody else happy and warm." and "I wore you to the Merrill Lynch Ball in 2003 - I don't think I need you in my life any more."

I also threw out about 30 pairs of stockings and tights - I only wear them under duress. They perish when they get old. 

I will add, I've also got a storage filled with "skinny clothes" that I love and that bring me joy parked under the bed. These are clothes that I really want to wear again one day - I just need to lose some weight. Marie Kondo probably wont like this. She also wont like that I didn't talk to my socks while I was putting them away.

So, a day later, I have four empty drawers and there is room to move in my wardrobe - and I feel wonderful. And thanks to Marie Kondo, I can find stuff - park them in the draw vertically - short sleeved tees up one end, long sleeved tees up the other. The wardrobe is sorted from short to long. I also go rid of almost every shirt I possessed. They don't give me joy. They give me no room in the shoulders and gape at my breasts. I don't need that in my life.

I feel a lot lighter and I'm really proud of my days achievements.

The next thing on the list - books. Whereas the clothes sorting wasn't that hard, shedding books is going to be excruciating. 


Plastic Mancunian said...

Hi Pand,

Well done you. Listen, if you want my advice, do not throw away any books at all. They surely must give you joy.




Jackie K said...

Awesome effort. You inspired me when you mentioned you were going to do this, and I did the same thing. I got rid of 5 big garbage bags of clothes and shoes for charity, and two bags for the trash. And I didn't even get through all my clothes! I have a small chest of 3 drawers full of old casual clothes and sweats which I need to go through as well - though honestly I could and should just chuck the lot as I haven't even opened those drawers in 3 years.
I surprised myself with how many things I had bought and never worn (some still with tags on them, years old), how many pairs of black pants I had, how radically my taste has changed over the years, and also found a few things I had 'lost' and would have worn more if I'd known where they were (hanging in my wardrobe, but I just had way too many clothes).
What's even more of a marvel is I thought I went through this process just last year - but obviously wasn't ruthless enough.
This time I got rid of everything I don't currently wear and/or love (or like you, need for work). I kept a couple of 15-year old dresses just to marvel at what size I used to be, but didn't keep anything else.
And best of all, as you say, all my clothes are now folded and sorted in drawers or hanging within easy reach in my wardrobe. The clothes mountain on top of my dresser is gone!
And yes, I certainly did marvel as well at how much MONEY and WASTE this all entailed.
I am happily much more disciplined with clothes buying now - I no longer have the money to waste.

As for books - you may surprise yourself. I did. The year before last I cleared out a whole bookshelf worth of books and have not missed them. Some had in fact given me joy, but I knew I wouldn't read them again, or they felt no longer relevant. And as you know I'm a big book and reading person. But books have changed so much over the last decade or so, and with so much now electronic I don't feel the need to own as many as I did.