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Underutilized Wardrobe Items: Keep 'em Visible

  • Blog Post by: Sally McGraw
  • August 22, 2012 - 2:16 PM

We all play favorites. We reach for the same skirt, the same jeans, the same flats again and again. And in order to make that reach less time-consuming, we move those favorites to the front of the closet, the nearest shelf, the top of the drawer.

And this? This means that we may be unintentionally creating closet orphans. Why?

Because if you can't see it, you'll forget about it.* That embellished cardigan that you snapped up on clearance after waiting patiently for the price to drop? It's hidden beneath your gray and black ones. That pair of burgundy skinnies you simply had to have? Buried after one wear, overshadowed by its denim-y cousins. And unless you remind yourself - visually - that these items are yours for the wearing, they shall go unworn. And, eventually, you may apply a rule about length of time unworn and donate them without even giving them a fair shake!

If you've got items that still fit and that you still adore languishing unworn, I recommend moving them to the front of your closet, the top of the heap, or even to a wardrobe staging area where they're in plain sight. Getting them out in the open allows you to consider their possibilities, mull how to wear them, consider moving them into rotation.

And if, after a few weeks of this, they still can't seem to worm their way into daily wear OR if you find that instead of sparking your creativity they're simply stoking your guilt, consider your options. Do you want to make a project of this? Set aside some time to workshop a few outfits around these items? Or has this proven to you that they were bought in error and should be donated, handed down, or sold?

Either way, you've just forced a decision. And potentially saved a garment from an orphaned life.

How do you deal with the items in your closet that hide in corners and remain unworn? Does it help to drag them, kicking and screaming, into the heavy-rotation areas of your closet? Or do you just pass them over and eventually stop seeing them there as you reach for your faves?

*Assuming that you have a fairly full closet and are not a minimalist. Some people own 20 total items! They can see IT ALL.

Image courtesy Apartment Therapy.

Sally McGraw is the author of Already Pretty, a daily blog about the intersection of style and body image. 

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