Tuesday, July 10, 2012

How to Clean out your Closet

This was a process.
The closet in question is actually a storage/junk heap where we've been cramming stuff that we don't have room for elsewhere in our little apartment for the last year.
It is the kind of closet that, when someone texts you letting you know you are throwing an impromptu party at your place in 20 minutes, you throw everything into and squeeze the door shut.
That kind of closet.

And it was starting to leak out sneakers and books and half-glued craft items and pens and birdseed and baubles and socks and all sorts of odds and ends. The time had come...
And it was difficult. It took me a week to do, working on and off.
Here is how I did it:

And keep in mind that this isn't some kind of whacked out serious housekeeping blog.
This is my humorous photo diary of me cleaning out my closet, which was absurd.
It may not work for you. In fact, it probably won't because you're not me.
But if you are a slob that despises cleaning and finds any possible way out of it, more power to you!

MUSIC.  Here are a few songs from my playlist--
A bit random I know, but the oddity goes hand and hand with the bizarre shit I tend to find in the closet.

Home -  Edward Sharpe & the Magnetic Zeros

Paradise - Coldplay

Daydream - Lupe Fiasco

How It Ends - Devotchka

Live and learn - Cardigans

Flying at Tree Level - Brand New

Maneater - Hall & Oates

Solitary Man - Neil Diamond

just to name a few... You might need something more hardcore, or something more relaxed. It depends on your cleaning style. And if you tend to dance around the room at odd moments to "take a break" from cleaning, which I wholeheartedly embrace.

Get going.  Maybe you want to form a plan of attack, or maybe you just want to attack.

2aI started with sorting through the excess of clothes, picking those that needed to be washed, those that were clean and could be put away, and those that I was ready to donate.

And some that I decided I should alter myself to get more wear out of them.

Like this!

Yes it is a bit raggedy and perhaps trashy looking, but I ended up wearing it on Independence Day and I happen to like it!

2b: Try on some of the clothes in question, to see if they even still fit you--both physically and stylishly.  I'm one of those people that gets attached to certain clothes because of the memories I associate with them, so I have a hard time letting go when I should.

Sometimes, out of this desperation to find a new way to wear something that I love, I invent new styles.

I should probably mention at this point (if you can't tell) that I really hate cleaning.  I don't mind it, but usually there are so many other things I prefer doing that I just put it off. Or do it half-assed.
Life is just too short to live in a sanitized home!
Yes, I love having a clean place and being organized (and when I am in the rare mood, I find cleaning therapeutic), and when it comes to my work life I am crazy organized!
But my personal life...well I like to be more of an artiste (yes I know how pompous that sounds). And I consider myself more disorganized than unorganized.
The place may look a mess to you, but I can tell you where 98% of things are!
Eli has learned this nifty trick. He doesn't bother looking for his things anymore (even though he put them down last). He will always ask me "where's my hat?" (bless him, he is so absent minded with that thing) and I know where it is! Always.  It is one of my great tricks.
Moving on...

3: Get discouraged.
Then give up for the day.

Step 4: Decide that it will be much easier if you pull every damn thing out of the closet and throw it about the room. Then you can see what you're dealing with.

Hang some things up. Put some nails in the wall for those racquetball rackets.
Feel productive.
Maybe even say out loud "this isn't so bad!'

Step 6:
Gather the clothes you're giving away in a big sack that is far too heavy to carry and will later have to be divided into several smaller sacks.
You don't have to take it to donate it now, just get it together.

Step 7:
Get distracted and read.
 Vicky gave me this book for my birthday last year and it is full of hysterical and useful quotes.


8. Re-discover your cute calendar of paintings of cats and spend 20 minutes deeply amused.

9. Lose your mind over how cute the cats are and get really vain and take pictures of yourself at strange angles making stupid faces.  It will make you happy.

And that's it! You're done!

You have a nice clean closet! It won't last, but A for effort.

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