The Victoria Day Long Weekend is the time when many of us make the closet switch from our winter wardrobe to our spring/summer wardrobe.
Stylist Malorie Bertrand will help us put away our winter wardrobe with confidence as she shares her simple spring closet cleaning tips and trends:
Clothing storage 101
I highly encourage you to store clothing from previous seasons. It leaves you with more room in your closet so that you can have the stunning, airy wardrobe of your dreams (butterflies fluttering around and all). In all seriousness, having an uncluttered closet means that you can store all of your clothing and accessories in one space (ideally), which in turn makes it easy for you to put outfits together because you can see everything in one go.
Sort clothing into piles
Don’t do this alone though; start browsing Pinterest or Google street style shots of your favourite celebs in outfits that you’d like to copy.
If you have a few key outfits in mind when you’re putting pieces together, the task will be easier. For example, one of my clients loves Jessica Alba’s street style. We put together an inspiration board of Alba’s outfits and used them to figure out which pieces she was missing, i.e. blazers to wear out or to work.
My client already had some great tops to wear under blazers, but she needed some trousers and colourful flats to make the most of what she had.
Here are some of my favourite street style shots that I’m using to style my spring wardrobe right now:
It's important not to donate everything in your closet, leaving you with nothing, no outfits and a long shopping list. Be strategic. Keep wardrobe staples, (more on those below), put together as many outfits with what you have as you can, and make a shopping list of pieces that are versatile and high-quality.
Spring closet staples
Display your clothing
Sort by type - Doesn't have to be in this order but I found this works well for me. I wear tops more often than dresses, hence why they're in the front.
Sort by colour - I like to start with white on the left and work my way through the colours, ending with black. Patterned pieces usually have a dominant colour, sort with that. If it's a mix, just put it beside whichever other piece it matches within its type.
I don't have enough closet space to hang my pants and shorts, so I roll those up and have them in a short drawer under my hanging clothes. My shoes are in the remaining two drawers (the ones I don't wear daily) and the daily shoes are in the front hall closet. Winter shoes are stored in the basement.
Jewellery is hung from a jewellery rack that I bought a while back from Umbra. It hangs at the far right of my clothes. My day-to-day jewellery is in small bowls on my dresser.
I have another hanging rack from IKEA for my belts, tights and scarves.
I only need one drawer in the dresser and this is for my delicates and bathing suits. I bought simple IKEA storage bins to sort my underwear from my bras, socks, bathing suits and lounge wear. I also keep a small box in the back corner for sewing stuff, a lint remover and a lint brush.
There you have it. I hope I've inspired you to try whittling down your wardrobe and given you some tips to make it an easier task. Don't be discouraged if this takes you a few rounds. I am constantly donating things and figuring out what really works the best.
Malorie Bertrand of EF Magazine thinks her lesson in life is to learn to focus. Until she achieves this, she remains a full-time science communicator, a part-time blogger, freelance writer and stylist, and some-time event coordinator and host. You can read her most recent writing in The Guardian and see her styling work on krop.com. She has been writing about ethical and sustainable fashion since 2007 to raise consumer awareness and promote emerging designers. In her ongoing efforts to highlight sustainable style, Malorie consults her clients on how to build a minimalist wardrobe and hosts workshops in her hometown of Ottawa, Ontario.