Much like the wardrobe in The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe, the depths of my wardrobe used to be a deep, dangerous dark area that I didn’t even try to access. There may have also been a witch in there. I’m not sure. All I know is, it’s where past seasons clothing went to die.

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I, like a lot of people find it hard to part with clothing; we’ve all had the thought of, “…but what if I need this piece”…I remember I had a blue velvet, military inspired Bettina Liano jacket I only wore a handful of times circa 2008 and the thought of donating, throwing out or selling induced a mild panic attack any time I thought of it. I couldn’t part with it because I just may need it “one day”. Guess what? That “one day” never came and I probably never should’ve bought it.

I’ve learned a lot from my various moves. Our move interstate made me become absolutely ruthless with unnecessary clothes, but then when I found space again I added more and more clothing. I have also learned that cleaning out and resetting your style doesn’t need to be overwhelming.

Here are my 8 simple tips to help you out this season!

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Clean out your wardrobe

Get rid of anything you haven’t worn in the past few months.

I will go into further details for you in my next blog post: My Top 5 De-cluttering Tips – stay tuned, amigos.

Reorganise it

Cue some music, because everyone needs some tunes to get in the mood for this. #painfultask

Start by grouping similar items together: jeans, shirts, dresses, skirts. From this, pick a couple of pieces in those pile that you wear the most. Discard the others, we’ll get to them in a minute. You can also use my guide here to discover what you like and dislike.

Don’t cry, be strong.

Colour code

When you look at your wardrobe is it consistent? I have realised over the years that a really colourful wardrobe was harder to style. Same goes with too many crazy patterns.
A cohesive colour palette is not only versatile, it has longevity. Choose a couple of colours that you love – for me I love neutrals and denim. Once you have your palette, begin to colour code – hang your whites together, hang your tans together, et cetera, et cetera.

One of my most read posts this year is “How To Creating A Cohesive Wardrobe”, now is the perfect time to read to help you pick colour palettes and implement my other tips if you haven’t already.

Put away items from Winter / Summer

Now that we’re in Spring for the Southern Hemisphere and Fall for the Northern Hemisphere, we can all think about putting away past seasons clothes. This is a good time to dry clean anything you won’t wear until next year and sell, donate or throw out items you no longer like.

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Sell items you no longer need

First things first: My name is Ally Hayward and I used to be THAT person who pulls clothing from the give-away pile at the very last minute. So, yes, I have found this step difficult in the past.

One of the biggest reasons why I hold onto clothing or accessories for too long is I become attached to them and I hate the thought of not recouping the amount or at least a percentage of the amount I spent on them. In the past I have been so guilty of holding onto something until it becomes obsolete because I experience such a palpable sense of loss.

I have finally realised that an unworn item has no more use to me hanging in my wardrobe than it does on the discard pile.

You may have seen in the past that I have uploaded items to eBay, but that is so time consuming. I have also done markets, but again, you really need to set a full day aside to prepare for them.

I have been using this great app called SHEDD lately. It’s free to upload and it’s as simple as Instagram to use. I love being able to make extra cash by selling the items I no longer need or wear! To sell, you literally take a photo and upload it with a short description. Done. Deal. If you’d like to see my profile and some great pieces I am selling ahead of my USA trip, my username is Ally Hayward. Download SHEDD here to begin!

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Reset / reassess your style

Now that you have sold items and donated items, you can really reset your style. Think about how you’d like to dress. Head on over to Pinterest to create a folder of outfits you love. Mine generally feature lots of street style photos. After you’ve pinned a lot of outfits, assess what you love about each outfit a) Note what they’re wearing b) Note the type of shoes c) Note the type of accessories.

Also: Reassess your lifestyle and work out if you need to change the style of things you buy to suit it. There isn’t any point buying all these beautiful dresses if you never have a chance to wear them. Consider things like a) work restrictions and b) Can you easily move between seasons with the items in your inspiration list?

Set aside money

Instead of impulse shopping my advice is to set aside money. This means – take note of the items you were going to buy, but didn’t really need and use that towards things you know are now your style and at a price you’d like to spend.

I do most of my shopping online these day and I have been using SHEDD lately as it’s so simple. I find because the users are fashion lovers, the items are in great condition. What I love is that when you open up the app you you may stumble across something vintage, designer or high street all in the one place. You can also search the app using hashtags to find something more specific you may be after.

Keep on top of your wardrobe

With these tips today, it’s really about breaking the cycle of buying clothes you don’t know what to do with and never wear. You will feel so good knowing everything in your wardrobe is something you will actually wear.

As the months go by, you will find that you’ll begin to reincorporating more clothes and colors out of habit, but instead of getting to 6 months down the track with too many clothes to sell, try and have a clean out monthly. If you stay on top of things then you’ll find you’ll get into a really good routine, make money and have a much more cohesive wardrobe.

Win, win really!

Next time I will continue with my top 5 tips for de-cluttering!

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*advertorial piece. All opinions are my own. Here at Substance, we only work with brands we genuinely use, love and share the same ethics with.

Author: Ally Hayward

Hi, I am Ally, a writer and creative at Substance. I have worked in the fashion industry for 6+ years as a model and now on Substance. Substance is a lifestyle blog about fashion, beauty, health and self-improvement; hoping to inspire you to live a life filled with Substance. For more: @AllyMayHayward

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