The Last Thing You Have to Declutter Before You’re Ready for Spring — Spring Cleaning on Your Time

This year, we’re on a mission to help you tackle spring cleaning on your time. Each weekday until April 13, we’ll guide you through a plan to clean and organize different areas of your home, but you’ll have the flexibility to choose exactly what to work on and how long you have to dedicate to the job.

This is it! Our final spring cleaning mission. For two weeks we’ve been working through our homes, handling both big and small missions to make our homes cleaner and happier than they were when we started. If you’re a veteran of Apartment Therapy’s homekeeping programs, you know our motto: This is about progress, not perfection.

If you didn’t finish as much as you’d have liked to, that’s OK. Give yourself some grace. And if you want to — you absolutely don’t have to — you can go back and revisit all of these spring cleaning posts anytime to check off any boxes you may have missed.

Now, if you’re ready for the final lap, let’s dig in…

Today’s Task: Your Wardrobe

Decide how much time you can dedicate to decluttering your wardrobe today, then choose your micro-mission:

If you have 1 day…

Sort your entire wardrobe into four piles: keep, mend, discard and donate. It’s easier said than done, I know, but the best method is just to pull everything out of your closet and dresser and work through it piece by piece. Anything you love and wear regularly, hang it back up in the closet or fold it neatly back into the dresser. If you have pieces you love but don’t wear because they’re broken or need tailoring, set those into a “mend” box and set a reminder on your phone to take them in for work.

Ideally, after those two steps, you’ll have a bunch of pieces stand out as things to discard and donate, but if that decision doesn’t come easily, try to employ some sort of checklist or rubric that allows you to be a bit more ruthless. I love Laurel Kinney’s four key questions — her advice helps you really focus on only quality clothes that make you feel great. If you struggle with keeping things for sentimental reasons, there are strategies for that, too.

If you have 1 hour…

Wash and store your winter staples. This is weather permitting, of course, but if you’re done with things like scarves, hats, gloves, tights, sweaters and your coat for the season, it’s time to wash them and put them away.

Small items are usually safe to hand wash in a bowl with warm water and a bit of detergent. For bigger, bulkier items, take them to a dry cleaner or follow the instructions on the tag.

If you have 10 minutes…

Rotate your clothes so current season clothes are front and center. If you have seasonal clothes stored away, now is the time to lug those bins out, unpack ’em and officially rotate your wardrobe to be ready for spring and summer.

If you have 1 minute…

Put one thing by the door to go to the tailor or cobbler or cleaner for repair. Just grab one thing you know needs some love, and leave it in a spot where you’ll remember, so you can’t keep putting it off.

Phew… that’s it! Let me know how the wardrobe decluttering went, but also let me know how the whole spring cleaning went for you this year. I’d love your feedback on the program, too. (I promise I read every comment, even if I don’t reply to each one!) What worked for you this year? What didn’t? Is there anything we skipped that you’d like to see when spring cleaning rolls around next year?

Happy spring!

If you want to revisit any of the spring cleaning series, you can find every 2018 post here: Spring Cleaning on Your Time

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