37 items of clothing, 8 pairs of shoes, 3 bags
My mother had taught me that we don’t throw things away. If an everyday item of clothing is no longer worn regularly, it becomes a leisure thing, a thing you ‘can wear around the house’. And so in my old apartment, a giant wooden chest of drawers held dozens of these other things; t-shirts, tights, shorts, floppy pants and unused underwear.
After I moved, my giant wooden chest of drawers became a tiny white chest of drawers. I had five small drawers to fit my underwear, PJ’s, active and leisure wear. For some time, some of these things sat in boxes, as they could not be contained within the drawers.
As a cleansing was happening in the everyday hanging wardrobe, it was inevitable that a cleansing began in the tiny white chest of drawers. I had to face reality and accept that I wore very few of these other things.
There were layers of rolled up leisure things in the drawers and boxes. I began by taking them all out, and evaluating the purpose of each. This was surprisingly hard to do. My mother’s alarmed voice rang in my head, ‘but it might come in handy!’
I divided the things into categories. I had to force myself to pare down each set of t-shirts, tights, shorts, floppy pants and unused underwear. I felt such guilt for daring to consider sending these things away. ‘Wasteful’, I told myself, however, I persevered through the process. I was slowly learning that I really didn’t need a lot of things. As soon as they were gone, I forgot about them. This is often the case with the other things we don’t really need.
I associated removing these items with wasteful behaviour, however, the wasteful behaviour had occurred when I purchased these items mindlessly in the first place. Now these things were simply clutter. I did not need five t-shirts in the same style, in the same state of neglect.
The tiny white chest of drawers is divided simply now.
- Drawer one contains only dignified lingerie.
- Drawer two contains socks.
- Drawer three contains knits that should not be hung.
- Drawer four contains active wear.
- Drawer five contains PJ’s and leisure wear.
Don’t let the other things take up too much space in your life. Acquire and keep only what you need.