I have no pants. Ah, thought that would get your attention. As alarmist as that may seem, it’s true. I have three pairs of jeans and three pairs of casual cotton pants. The rest of my trousers, along with two-thirds of the contents of my closet have been cleansed and donated to our neighbourhood Cabrini Charity Thrift Store.
What happened? It took aesthetic consultants White-Starr (a stylist and a gallerist) four hours last Saturday to help me assess my wardrobe, help me better understand my style, provide advice and re-organize my clothes.
In the process I learned lots —
* such as that yes, Jay was right and I did have a lot of clothes
* and that I apparently purchase things I like in multiples
* and that the straight-legged, mid-rise pants I never try on are actually the ones that would most suit me
* and that I could happily banish button-down shirts from my life
* and how this ‘layering’ thing you northern hemispherans are born understanding actually works (A-ha!)
And that less, a lot less, is actually more.
There is only exhibit ‘a’ above, as I forgot to take a ‘before’ photo of my closet. (Hmmm….) Simply picture the same space stuffed with three times as many items in a non-functional way. Hangers entirely tangled; it was sometimes a feat more akin to tackling a piece of stationary gym equipment to get in there. (Plus, yes, I admit there was clothing in Calvin’s closet and formal wear in Jay’s too — no more.)
Now I actually feel calm when I open the closet door. And with the clothes laid out the way they are — part of the great White-Starr service — I feel like I am shopping in my own closet. Not only that, but I am seeing new connections between the clothes I own.
Hopefully Andrea and Karyn will feel bucked that a) I carted off the cleanse piles and donated them within a hour after they had left (no room for second guessing), b) that I’ve been implementing their advice (including wearing that red dress this week) and c) that I’ve received an unprecedented level of spontaneous positive feedback.
That’s a short gratification feedback loop, especially considering that this is the first time I am ‘coming out of the closet,’ as all but a small handful of people knew that I’d signed up for the service, and none of their comments are counted in c above.
So as opportunity (read: finances) allows, I will be adding a few essentials, such as trying out some comfy hose to extend my dress-dominant (so practical for me) wardrobe through winter. (I just discovered what may be the most outrageously-priced pair of cotton velvet ones at Wolford, which was filled with Europeans buying these in bulk!)… and yes, buying two new pairs of pants. No more, because, you know, less is exponentially more.
Yes, clearing the closet is ALWAYS a therapeutic experience! Giving away the shirt or pair of shoes that we’ve forgotten we own to someone else who would appreciate it is such a good exercise for the soul that is used to buy, buy, buy…Wish we all do it more often.