Spring is here! With the change of seasons, comes warmer temperatures. This means that all your cold gear can take a “rest”- as Marie Kondo says. Now is the perfect time to swap out those heavy sweaters for springtime and summer pieces. Seasonal clothing swaps ideally happen in the spring and in the fall. This trade out of clothes creates space for the clothes that will be worn the most in that season. It can be so exciting to get a whole new wardrobe twice a year! Here are ten steps to follow to do your seasonal clothing swap:
1. GET READY!
- Think through the amount of time you have and will need. Can you do the whole clothing swap in one day or do you need to spread it out across a couple of days?
- Make sure that you have a good amount of flat surface to use to spread out all your clothing.
- Grab a couple containers for items you decide to donate or consign.
- Turn lights on – maybe borrow a lamp from another room – and have a mirror easily accessible.
- Set the mood of the room: turn on a diffuser, light a candle, turn on your favorite music or podcast.
You want to be relaxed and able to focus and make decisions. Once you have the mood of the room set and your tools you are ready to begin your seasonal clothing swap!
2. TAKE OUT ALL CLOTHING
Time to pull all clothing out and place it on the bed or other flat surface. Make sure every closet and drawer that is involved in the seasonal clothing swap is emptied. Once you have all your clothing out, time to clean the closet(s) and drawers. Dust, vacuum, wipe down, and make the space fresh and ready to house the next season’s clothing.
3. SORT THROUGH CLOTHING
Put all the shirts together, all the pants together, all the dresses together, all the socks together and so forth. This is also a great time to go through your clothes and get rid of any items that are damaged, fit poorly, or you no longer want to wear. Remember that more is less.
4. PREPARE CLOTHING FOR STORAGE
Take some time to make sure that all clothes are clean before you put them to “rest” for the season. Wash, dry clean, and/or mend anything that needs attention. You do not want to leave an item untended until the next clothing swap. You can always use cedar blocks or other items to keep bugs out of your clothes. But this issue leads us into our next step…
5. CHOOSE A SPACE FOR STORING OUT OF SEASON CLOTHING
If you have not already done so, choosing a space for your off-season clothing is very important. The best area for you completely depends on how much space you have. You can store off-season clothing in bins on shelves in your closet or under the bed, or you can store your off-season clothes in another closet or somewhere else entirely. You just want to make sure that the clothing will be safe and dry.
6. PULL OUT IN SEASON CLOTHING
As you are getting ready to put away the past season’s clothing, go ahead and pull out the clothing for this season. You can eventually repeat steps 1 and 2 for all these clothes, too. If you are using bins and containers, they will need to be emptied so that you can containerize the clothes that are going for a “rest” .
7. CONTAINERIZE OUT OF SEASON CLOTHES
Now is the time to put away your off-season clothes. If you are using another closet, you may be able to just hang/fold all your clothes. If you are using containers, make sure you choose a container that will be gentle with your clothes. Plastic and cloth containers are much gentler with clothes than wood or wicker containers. At Abundance Organizing, we love to use clear storage bins and decorative bins.
8. TIME TO LABEL
If this is your first time doing a clothing swap, then you will probably be making labels for the first time. We recommend you make labels that are general and not specific if you are using large clear containers. Otherwise you will need to create new labels every season. We recommend simply using “OFF-SEASON CLOTHING” or something similar for your labels. However, if you have smaller containers and want to be more specific, we recommend labels such as “TOPS”, “BOTTOMS”, “SWEATERS”, “SWIMWEAR”, and such forth. Check out these photos of how we love to label.
9. PUT AWAY IN SEASON CLOTHES
Go ahead and put away all your clothes for this current season. Hang them up or fold them and put them away in your drawers and bins. This can really be fun! You get to think through your current wardrobe and take inventory. This may mean a shopping trip is in the future for items needed in your wardrobe. Don’t forget to do steps 1 and 2 with these clothes. Also, remember that you can add any of these clothes that don’t fit as well or that you do not like anymore to the donate and consign piles.
10. DROP OFF YOUR DONATE AND CONSIGNMENT ITEMS
Once you are finished with your clothing swap, you will want to do this quickly – we promise! Otherwise these items tend to stick around and somehow do not always get to their intended destination. If you are in the central Virginia area, here is a great blog post with donation centers and consignment stores.
We would love to see photos and hear about your seasonal clothing swap! Check out our Facebook Abundance Declutter Group for more.