Wardrobe culling and the revelations that come with it...

Now this post is not about what I culled over the weekend (I will write about that in time), but rather it is about how I culled and the horrible realisations that I made immediately after and in the following 24 hours.

In the past I would cull my wardrobe bit by bit.  I understand now that this is the noncommittal way of doing it. Yes, you will successfully cull your wardrobe slowly over time, but you will probably not make any revelations about the "state of play" of things - to put it tactfully.  It will be a rather painless and unemotional experience with nothing being learned about yourself or your shopping habits.  So if you are reading this and thinking 'gosh, how ho-hum' or 'but I'm a fashion masochist' - then do it my way! Read on...


On Sunday morning I found myself suffering from an upset stomach (I blame a funky olive that I ate) and hay fever - both excellent reasons be anti-social and to stay at home.  I decided to undertake a pre-Summer cull.  I did this by removing EACH AND EVERY item from the hanging rails in my wardrobe and I tried each item on.  Let me tell you... my next purchase will not be a silk top or tulip skirt - it will be a push bike!
The number of pieces that were hanging in my wardrobe that were slightly too tight or TOO SMALL was staggering (granted I've owned some of the dresses I culled on Sunday for many years and as we get older our bodies change... or so I tell myself).  No wonder I have been finding it tough to find clothes to wear each morning if for every one item there are two that fit poorly!

Even though I have known for months now that I need to loose a few kilos, there is nothing like seeing a MOUNTAIN of too small culled clothing on the bed to spring one into action!
During my culling process on Sunday I documented each item on a spreadsheet, be it staying or going... I found this to be a very interesting exercise indeed and I'm surprised by exactly what I own and in what quantities and whether each item it's actually a truly perfect piece (a post for the future I think).


There is that philosophical question which makes one question human perception and the knowledge of reality: "If a tree falls in a forest and no one is around to hear it, does it make a sound?" .
In relation to one's wardrobe, this question can be phrased in whatever manner currently describes one's situation and way of thinking, but for me it goes something like: "If I get rid of all these clothes so that I can't try them on anymore (to see exactly how much weight I've gained) and buy new clothes that fit, does it mean that I don't really need to loose any weight?"
I realise now that before this day I saw one of the benefits of culling to be a self-validating experience.  In that in some cases one culls so that they can continue on their merry way of exercising the same behaviour until the next big cull. 

My Oprah-style light bulb moment came last night, about 24 hours after I had finished my cull.  A friend posted pictures from Saturday's garden wedding on Facebook... I don't think I need to write the words here, but suffice to say I was upset with what I saw (I hope it was mostly the angle).  So a mountain of culled clothing plus horrible Facebook pictures and I realised something which I have subconsciously known but consciously denied for a year... I need to shape up again.
Another realisation that I made about the state of my wardrobe is that I don't like the style and fit of the majority of skirts and bottoms that I own (which actually isn't that many).  I have always found it difficult to buy the perfect bottoms.  This realisation helped explain why there are no less than 30+ dresses hanging in my wardrobe and why I own some beautiful tops that have hardly been worn.


In reading the preceding paragraphs one may think that I'm going to hold on to my "skinny clothes". I am not.  This is my action plan going forward:
  1. I have decided to sell or give away almost everything that I culled on Sunday.  A lot of the pieces are pre-house acquisitions meaning that they are getting a few years old now anyway.  Furthermore a lot of the pieces aren't exactly classic, so not to my current liking.  If I cut my losses now, while most of the items are still in style and the brands are coveted, I may actually make a little bit of money.  If I wait but inevitably cull everything again down the track, I may miss out all together. 
  2. I will keep some of my favourite, more special "skinny clothes".  I think though these items need to be moved into my spare closet, so as not to confuse me each morning into thinking that they are an outfit choice (when in fact they are not).
  3. I am returning both skirts that I have bought in the past week to the stores they came from. Neither are perfect and furthermore each skirt is one or even TWO sizes bigger than the clothing I culled on Sunday.  Although one of the skirts is quite flattering to my current shape, by buying new clothes in my current size I am in effect accepting a figure which quite frankly makes me unhappy.
  4. I must stop shopping for the time being and focus on the bigger picture (see next point).  I have decided that I will not buy anymore pants or skirts in my current size.  I will make do with what I have.
  5. Lose weight (but because this is not a weight loss blog, I will not go into, how, what and when).
So there you have it, hardcore wardrobe culling and the revelations that come with it.


  1. Sounds like a good plan. My problem is that I eventually circle around to half the clothes that I tire of at some point. I hate to get rid of things because I'm not sure which are the ones I'll never wear again and which are the ones I'll eventually resuscitate. But I hear you on the weight/size dilemma. I'm giving myself a few months to a year to stabilize my post-partum weight, and then I'll reassess.

  2. I just need to lose a dress size... harder than it sounds though. All my yummy cooking has gone straight to the butt and thigh - damn it!
    I'm not worried about getting rid of most things as my style has evolved a little. I look at some of the stuff I have culled and wonder why on earth I bought it in the first place - not a good sign.