Project 333

I have too much stuff.  Clothing in particular.  Clothing that I don’t wear–ever.  I know exactly how it got this way:  I gained weight so I bought more clothes I could fit into.  I was sent coupon after coupon for 40% off Banana Republic and Gap.  I saved the clothes I couldn’t fit into just in case one day I can again.  It adds up, and when you are trying to live in a 750 square foot apartment (and eventually someday a smaller studio apartment in the city) you have to become a minimalist.

I stumbled upon Project 333, a very effective way to minimize/simplify your life, when I was reading the Chic Life blog last month.  Her take on this way of simplifying is called the Parisian Closet, her original post is here.  After reading both blogs, I realized, I should need to do this!

The rules (you can read the official rules here, I did modify some because my work clothes are uniforms, not clothing you can wear out):

1. For 3 months, you can only have a selection of 33 articles of clothing, shoes, accessories

2.  What isn’t included?  Undergarments, workout clothing (thank goodness!), lounge clothing—however—workout and lounge clothing can only be used for those purposes.

3.  Store your unused clothing (in my case, mostly off-season) in a hard-to-access place, to ensure no cheating :)4

4.  Anything unworn during the 33 days?  Donate it.

I started immediately.  I started with the closet first because it was going to be the easier of the two areas I keep my clothing.

Before:

Not too bad, mostly scrubs and shirts

Not too bad, mostly scrubs and shirts

After:

Again, scrubs, and in-season shirts and jeans

Again, scrubs, and in-season shirts and jeans

See how empty??

Now for the drawers.  Oh the drawers, this was difficult because they were so unorganized to begin with!

Before:

IMG_1280

IMG_1281

After:

IMG_1444

So, how did I do it?

Anything I didn’t love went into a pile, along with ill-fitting/looking clothing.  It left me with quite a few items I still wanted to keep!  Then I separated it by season.  Obviously with summer coming up, I packed away my winter clothes.  Then I started making outfits that would be interchangeable, and kept a couple of dresses.  As for the shoes….well I have more running shoes than regular shoes so it was easy.

The purge:

The Purge!

The Purge!

What I kept: packed away in a  suitcase

What I kept: packed away in a suitcase

Goodwill pile

Goodwill pile

I ended up having about 107 articles of clothing, not including shoes, jewelry, and handbags (again, I don’t have many of those three categories, so they all pretty much stayed).

So, what stayed?

Green BR Factory dress

Green BR Factory dress

a maxi-dress

a maxi-dress

2 sleeveless shirts

2 sleeveless shirts

The black shirt in this picture didn't make the cut (but it's packed away)

The black shirt in this picture didn’t make the cut (but it’s packed away)

1 cardigan, and a tank top

1 cardigan, and a tank top

2 pairs of jeans

2 pairs of jeans

t-shirts

t-shirts

t-shirts

t-shirts

3 pairs of shorts

3 pairs of shorts

2 pairs of casual pants

1 pair of casual pants, the grey didn’t make this cut, they are a bit heavy for summer

A lightweight cotton jacket, and a rain jacket

A lightweight cotton jacket, and a rain jacket

Two Prana yoga tops that can be worn as regular tops, and three Old Navy tanks

Two Prana yoga tops that can be worn as regular tops, and three Old Navy tanks

Always need a lightweight hoodie

Always need a lightweight hoodie

The black heels were replaced by the nude peep toes in the next picture

The black heels were replaced by the nude peep toes in the next picture…and yes I have a thing for Keen and Clarks shoes.

Love these and they are super comfy (Clarks--this season--they run true to size)

Love these and they are super comfy (Clarks–this season–they run true to size)

Two necklaces--the gold from Victoria, the green from Seattle--both local artists :)

Two necklaces–the gold from Victoria BC, the green from Seattle–both local artists 🙂

What else stayed?  My scrubs, my Danskos (for work), and my hiking boots. Won’t be wearing any of these unless I’m doing the activity that the article is made for.

I also ended up donating a few of my workout clothes–some running skirts, shorts, tanks, and tees, but that was just because they didn’t fit, or I realized I didn’t need 3 of the same colored tank top.

I’m very excited to do this challenge.  It starts today (May 1st) and the next cycle will start on August 1st.  I’ll have a one in, one out policy to ensure I’m not overloading my closet again.

Interested?  Start here.

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