taking stock

burgundy bag fall, organize closet, how to organize closet for fall, burgundy purse

So, here is an actual thing that just happened: For the last couple of weeks, I have been seeing burgundy everywhere (as is so often the case during fall). And I started thinking to myself that what I really needed this season – needed, mind you – was a burgundy bag. Something simple and classic, ideally with a crossbody strap (because I am getting increasingly lazy). Naturally, my first instinct was to immediately begin obsessively scouring the WWW for the newest object of my affection. Weeks later, while perusing the website of one of my favorite designers, I had the ultimate forehead-slapping moment. “Ooh, I like that bag!” I thought. “I wish it came in burgundy.”

Slowly, the wheels started turning. “Wait…do I…? Didn’t it…?” organize closet

Yes, friends: that bag did come in burgundy, and was presently sitting in my closet. From last fall. When I absolutely had to have a new burgundy bag.

But of course, we all do this, right? (Please, in the spirit of solidarity, tell me we all do this!) We fixate on something, we search high and low for it, but more often than any of us would care to admit, if we would stop our surfing and spend five minutes in our closet, we just might hit paydirt. That short-sleeved navy silk blouse I had to have last spring became mine when I realized I already had the perfect version, just with a pair of extraneous sleeves attached (which were awkward and ill-fitting anyway). I took it to the tailor, and $10 later, I had simultaneously purged a shirt I didn’t like and acquired one I loved.

I do this little song and dance just about every season, and I’m only lately realizing that I could save myself immeasurable amounts of stress, not to mention money, if I would take an hour at the start of every season and study the shelves in my closet with the same concentration and focus I normally devote to the latest round of Shopbop markdowns. How many times have you pulled your sweaters (or coats, or boots…) out of storage in the fall, only to exclaim, “Ooh! I completely forgot I had this!” Then, you do that little euphoric happy dance, and pat yourself on the back for having such excellent taste.

Now that the seasons are officially changing, I’d like to suggest a little exercise: this weekend, take stock. Unpack those sweaters. Pull that towering stack of jeans out of your closet and actually go through them, piece by piece, to see what you have. Look through your shoes, realize that you never once wore those striped espadrilles you had to have, and send them on their merry way. While you’re at it, you’ll probably spy a dusty shoebox in the back of the closet. Open it up, and who knows: you might find that perfect pair of black loafers you’ve been dreaming of since August.

Tell me, friends: What’s the last thing you remember being shocked to find in your closet? Before I officially check myself into the loony bin (or volunteer to be the next contestant on Hoarders), please tell me I’m not alone!

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7 comments on “taking stock

  1. A

    Black cardigans. Not very exciting, but I had three of them in pretty much the same style/cut. And they were all pretty fug.

  2. Archana

    oh i remember this bag. I went out and got one too. And later gave it away to a family member who loved it after i was not happy with the color.

    i have too many gray shirts. All of them different. And everytime i put them away for summer and bring them back in, i feel like i am missing one of em. Happens every year.

  3. Roxy from Wholesome Hedonist

    You are singing my song, sister. I have a lot – A LOT- of pretty much everything. And, if I’m being honest with myself – it’s because it is easier to keep the newest thing that I bought online than to actually figure out how/when it will be functional within my current wardrobe. I recently moved to a new house with more space, but only unpacked a third of my clothes (after giving another third away) and realized that I rarely missed – or even remembered! – the ones that were packed up! I wish I could say that I donated all those boxes to some worthy cause and now live in a state of Zen minimalism, but let’s be honest – shopping is my cardio, too. So I am slowly releasing the things I don’t need, reimagining ways to wear my existing pieces (whereas before I had so much stuff, that i could afford to be lazy and wear them only one way) and – yes – redicovering things in the back of my closet (the latest was a dove grey midi knife pleat skirt that I *HAD* to have, discovered I already had, I have yet to wear it.) It’s a process, for sure, but I am buying less and wearing more. Small steps, right? Onward…

  4. Annika

    I had been searching high and low for a red & blue plaid button down, when I saw a picture of myself from a few months before in the precise top I had been hunting. Then I realized I had consigned it in a fit of closet purging. -_-

  5. shoppingsmycardio Post author

    Archana: You are awfully nice to pass that bag on to someone else! I bet they loved it. And I’m with you on grey shirts – I always think I’m lacking, but they do seem to multiply in my closet.

    Roxy: Baby steps…and you can feel free to send that second dove grey pleated midi my way 😉

    Annika: Oh, I have been there so many times – such a “punch in the gut” moment!

  6. Brittany

    Hahaha, you’re definitely not alone my dear, not by a long shot. This is the very reason that I try to keep items in my closet highly visible. 😉

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