Wardrobe Detox

At least once a year I like to have a clear out to reorganise my wardrobe and get rid of things that I no longer wear. This January I had the biggest wardrobe detox ever and listed almost 200 items for re-sale. Initially I was motivated by raising extra funds to care for my poorly pug, Dorothy, who was diagnosed with a serious condition in October last year (protein losing enteropathy). Her vet bills escalated to £7,000 in 3 months. But the more I listed, the more I realised I wanted to let go of a lot of things in order to have a more streamlined wardrobe. So far I have raised £3,000 which will help fund Dorothy’s ongoing veterinary care. There are still lots of items left for sale, pictured and detailed below. Close-up photos of each piece are on my Instagram page @theladysmaid_preloved. Email: info@theladysmaid.com for more info or to purchase.

1. **SOLD** Kitri Studio – pink gingham dress

2. Laurence Coste – pink quartz earrings. £125.

3. Baukjen – blush pink cotton V neck jumper. £30.

4. Kezmay London. Pink tweed Alice band. £30. 

5. **SOLD** Monsoon – Pink tie neck dress.

6. Mango – pink and green cotton midi dress. Size: Medium. £30.

7. Mint Velvet – pink colour block top. Size: Small. £25.

8. 2 Birds Dubai – pink Chinese blossom wrap dress. Size: S/M. £35.

9. Really Wild Clothing – sweet pea pink dress coat. Size: UK 10. £250. 

10. Stuart Weitzman – Leigh 95 desert rose heels. Size: UK 6. £175.

11. Oasis – pink broderie cotton summer dress. Size: UK 10. £30.

12. HM – pink blossom print blouson sleeve midi dress. Size: Small. £25.

13. HM – pink cat eye sunglasses. £15. 

14. HM – pink/purple check tie neck mini dress. Size: Medium. £30.

15. Jewelled pink Alice band. £15.

16. Zara – Pink v neck dress. Size: L. £30.

17. Vintage silk dress. Size: UK 10/12. £60.

1.     Rixo – burgundy Elsie Dress. Size: UK 12. £200. 

2.     Hobbs – red leather loafers. Size: UK 6. £45.

3.     Zara – burgundy pleated midi dress. Size: medium. £30.

4.     Vintage Ciner earrings. £75.

5.     Vivien Sheriff – Burgundy wool felt baker boy hat. £100.

6.     HT hats Burgundy wool felt trilby style hat. £85.

7.     Ethereal London – dark floral silk midi dress. Size: UK 10. £175

8.     Zara – Burgundy leather high block heel boots. Size: UK 6. £40. 

9.     Warehouse – Burgundy silk swallow print dress. Size: UK 10.

10.   Camilla King Millinery – Burgundy velvet headband. £40.

11.   Greylin – burgundy velvet jumpsuit. Size: Medium. £85.

12.   Top Shop – Burgundy short sleeve top. Size: small. £20. 

13.   Burgundy jewelled headband. £15.

14.   Vaai London – Burgundy silk palazzo pants. Waist measures approx 40cm when flat – has drawstring to adjust smaller. £175.

15.   New Look – Burgundy faux leather clutch. £10.

16.   Oasis – red polka dot dress. Size: UK 10. £30.

17.   Top Shop – small red basket bag. £20. 

18.   Libelula – red jessie dress. Size: UK 12. £100.

1 . Suzannah London –  emerald silk tea dress . Size: UK 12. £285.

2. HM – green floral cotton summer dress with puff sleeves. Size: Small. £20.

3. Vintage earrings. £45.

4. Glossy Paris – mint green mohair mix tank top. £25.

5. **SOLD** Monsoon green gingham cotton dress.

6. Boden – emerald satin midi skirt. Size: UK 12. £75.

7. Jewelled headband. £15.

8. Jigsaw poppy print maxi dress. Size: UK 10. £60.

9 Top Shop tartan maxi dress with puff sleeves. Size: UK 10. £45.

1. The Pretty Dress Company – navy coat. Size UK 10. £75.

2. Zara – turquoise blue floral wrap dress. Size: Medium. £35.

3. Tropical animal patterned scarf. £40.

4. Zara – royal blue zip neck top. Size: small. £20.

5. William Morris & Co. x HM – blue floral printed shirt dress. Size UK 10. £35. 

6. ** SOLD** Luella – Baby blue cashmere/merino mix tank top. One size (fits UK 8-14).

7. GP & J Baker x HM. Floral midi dress. Size: UK 10. £35.

8. Guinea London – navy merino wool cardigan with velvet trim. Size: small. £50.

9. Dune – large navy mock croc envelope clutch. £20.

10. Mango floral mini dress – Size UK 10. £20.

11. Zara – Navy Peter Pan collar dress. Size: Small. £25.

12. Karen Millen – Navy/white striped mini skirt. Size: UK 10. £30.

13. Mango – royal blue dress with flared sleeves and notch V neck. Size: small. £20.

1. Top Shop – I saw a unicorn T-shirt (SOLD).

2. Warehouse – Little black dress with lace back panel, Size: UK 10. £25.

3. Zara – tweed midi skirt. Size: Medium. £25. 

4. Nine West – black leather flats. Size: UK 6. £15. 

5. Vintage 1920s sequin shrug. £50.

6. Black & white bandeau dress. Size: UK 10. £60.

7. Warehouse – Little black dress with lace panels. Size: UK 10. £25. 

8. Karen Milen – short grey coat with black leatherette panel. Size: UK 8. £35.

9. M&S – Black & white knitted midi dress. Size: UK 10. £30. 

10. Zara – Black and ivory patterned midi dress. Size: small. £20. 

11. Yosuru – black suede low heel shoes with detachable camellia leather shoe clips. Size: UK 6. £75.

12. Zara – black blazer. Size: small. £25. 

13. Mango – black and white V neck mini dress. Size: small. £20.

14. Top Shop – black / ditsy floral shirred bodice Bardot mini dress. Size: small. £25. 

15. Mango – polka dot dress. Size: UK 10. £20.

16. Pure Collection – houndstooth blazer. Size UK 12. £65.

17. Top Shop – vintage style black velvet top handle bag. £25. 

1. Miagiacca – ivory tweed jacket. Size UK 10. £250.

2. HM – V neck tank top. Size: Medium. £20.

3. Zara – faux patent leather shoes with large pearls. Size: UK 6. £15.

4. Zara – faux leather slingback flats with pearls. Size: UK 6. £20.

5. Zara – polka dot shirt dress. Size: Medium. £30.

6. Faber Novella – rose gold heels. Size: UK 6. £65.

7. Ethereal London – merino long line loungewear cardigan. Size: S/M. £60.

8. Dune – camel leather flats. Size: UK 6. £25.

9. Top Shop – ruffle high neck blouse. Size: UK 12. £20.

10. Zara – pearl bucket bag. £28.

11. Hobbs – ivory cotton jumper. Size: small. £20.

12. L.K. Bennett – gold glitter heels. Size: UK 6. £65.

13. Zara – peach/white short sleeve top. Size: small. £15.

14. Yosuru – gold leather flats with detachable Swarovski crystal buckles. Size: UK 6. £80.

15. Karen Millen – nude patent leather heels. Size: UK 6. £35.

16. Carvela comfort. White leather sandals with gold studs. Size: UK 6.

17. Jigsaw – gold V neck jumper with sequins. Size: small. £40.

18. Mango – nude leather slingbacks with block perspex heel. Size UK 6. £35.

19. Top Shop – Silver diamanté Alice band. £20.

20. Whistles – tiered silver sequin dress. Labelled size UK 12 but has been altered slightly smaller so would fit a 10/12. £100.

1. Vintage 1960s wool coat. Size: UK 10/12. £85.

2. **SOLD** Zara pearl slides.

3. Zara – polka dot wide leg trousers. Size medium. £35.

4. Jigsaw – A line mini skirt. Size UK: 12. 

5. **SOLD** Zara – sleeveless jumper.

6. Pure Collection – coral v neck dress. Size: UK 12. 

7. Zara – brown leather handbag. £50.

8. Accessorize – pink frame sunglasses with brown tinted lenses. £15.

9. Noa Noa – Brown mohair blend tank top. Size: small. £40. 

10. **SOLD** HM – floral maxi skirt. 

11. HM – sparkle knit jumper. Size: small. £20.

12. M&S – floral midi dress. Size: UK 10. £30. 

13. J. Crew – pink leather belt. Size: small. £20. 

New Year Wardrobe Detox


Many readers of my book Wardrobe Wisdom have commented on how the second section – Wardrobe Organisation – has really motivated them to have a proper wardrobe detox and declutter their clothing collection. This is a process that seems daunting initially but once completed is really transformative – to your wardrobe and to your mind. I’m not a neat freak and am not keen on rooms that are overly minimal – but I know which image below makes me feel calm and which gives me anxiety!

If your wardrobe is chaotic then it will make the process of dressing much more difficult each day – sometimes the feeling of not having anything to wear is because you can’t easily locate what you have. Clearing out clothing clutter will also help you to identify what gaps you may have in your wardrobe – garments that you may need to purchase to get the full potential out of the clothes you currently have, enabling you to create outfits with ease and take the stress out of dressing.

A survey in 2017 by Weight Watchers estimated that the figure of wasted expenditure on clothing was £10 billion, with only 55% of the clothes women own actually being worn. Whilst some people may be hanging on to things for posterity, or “just in case” they may need it/fit in to it one day, there is undoubtedly a hoarding of unworn or unnecessary clothing going on. And if you don’t have the luxury of wall-to-wall walk-in wardrobes to store mountains of clothing, then a periodic clothing cull is a necessity for most people.

So, if you have had a post-Christmas sales splurge and need to free up space for your new winter additions, why not release your inner “Marie Kondo”, ditch the New Year diet and detox your wardrobe instead!

Cleanse your Closet

When you go through your wardrobe, be realistic about the clothes that you wear day to day; hanging on to garments that you no longer wear takes up space unnecessarily, so try to adopt a ruthless sorting process. Divide into the following groups:

  1. Keep, wear regularly
  2. Keep, but need to supplement with new purchases in order to wear
  3. eBay/re-sell
  4. Charity
  5. Storage (out of season)
  6. Discard/recycle

If garments no longer fit or you haven’t worn them in a while, try selling them on eBay first or donate to a charity shop. Popular designer and high-street labels and occasion outfits/dresses tend to sell better than casual clothes on eBay, so consider sending casual clothes straight to the charity shop, if they are in good condition, or to a clothing recycling bank. I had a clothing clear-out just before Christmas and donated to The British Heart Foundation – they will collect the bags of clothing from your door (see the BHF website for details). You could also support charities like Smart Works, who accept quality second-hand workwear donations, which they then offer to women seeking employment.

High-end designer labels will also sell well on designer second-hand clothing websites, such as Vestiare Collective. Head over to my Recycle blog post where I have listed some other places where you can recycle your clothing.

Keeping Organised

To keep your clothing collection at a manageable level with a wardrobe that is accessible and wearable, try to resist purchasing any unnecessary items; focus instead on filling the gaps in your wardrobe that were revealed after the clear-out. Group 2 (things that you are keeping but need to supplement with new purchases in order to wear) is likely to be full of separates which only work if they have something to work with. Make a list of things you think your existing wardrobe would benefit from and focus on acquiring these items the next time you go clothes shopping. Your goal is for a versatile and manageable wardrobe to fit in with your space and lifestyle. Resist the temptation to purchase new one-off garments unless you think they will complement what you already own.

Once the detox is complete, your remaining wardrobe needs to be efficiently organised so that you can easily locate specific garments. It will be much easier to avoid clutter creeping back in if everything is suitable stored. Check out Wardrobe Wisdom for more tips on effective wardrobe organisation.

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