Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Closet Synchronicity?

According to the dictionary, synchronicity occurs when two things happen, exist, or arise at precisely the same time.

Saturday I got fed up with the amount of clothing in my closet. I'm not a clothes horse by any means, but by all means, I'm a garage sale addict. That means I've wound up with too much clothing in my closet that I bought on the cheap.

I decided to try an experiment. I took more than half of my clothing out and folded it into large Rubbermaid totes, then had Shane carry the totes down to the basement (a tote full of jeans is HEAVY).

As I did this, I explained to him that I'd read more than once that most people only wear 20% of their clothing in a regular rotation, leaving the rest to be worn only occasionally, if ever.

An hour or so later, my free copy of Frugillionaire by Francine Jay came in the mail. (Click here for my quick review of the book.). I had to laugh as I thumbed through the book and landed on Tip No. 176. Here's what Francine Jay wrote:

176: Remember the 80/20 rule
According to the 80/20 rule (otherwise known as the Pareto principle*), we wear 20% of our clothes 80% of the time. That means the majority of our clothes languish in our closets, rarely worn....
How's that for timing. She goes on to explain how paying heed to the 80/20 rule can save money. For me, it was mostly about saving space. My closet was packed and I was having trouble finding what I wanted.

I'm not getting rid of those clothes just yet. They fit and are in basic -- not trendy -- styles, so I'll be able to wear them when something currently in my closet gets stained, worn beyond repair or just too tiresome to me. I'm loving the extra space in my closet, too.

What do you think? Does the 80/20 rule apply to you and your clothing? Do you think you could get buy with half as many clothes as you have now?


The Cookbook Junkie said...

Oh definitely. I basically rotate the same 5 work outfits every week (well, maybe a few more but not many) and stick to just a few weekend outfits. I just bought some of those thin grippy hangers in Costco. They were about $15 for 50 hangers and I figure that should be enough if I just keep the clothes I wear in my closet. I don't buy many clothes but my sister gave me a lot recently so my closet is packed.

When the weather gets cooler, that's on my to-do list.

Kimberly said...

As the baby bump has started to expand, I am finding that I am severely limited in the things that I can wear. I have lots of cute work clothes - suits, pencil skirts, pants - but only 3 pencil skirts and 2 pairs of pants do not feel "too tight" on the bump. I am planning on boxing the items that I can not wear now, to clear out space for the maternity clothes I will have to purchase sooner/later. Thankfully my tops are still fitting, and I tend to wear all of them on a regular basis.

I use to be horrible about buying clothing jsut because it was cheap/on sale. Now when shopping I do not buy something unless I can think of 3 ways I could wear it. This has helped a lot.

Leanne said...

Absolutely. I had a clearout a while ago of maybe a third of the clothes I had in my wardrobe and even the time I've saved has been a surprise. I fund before that I would iron everything and hang it up and because everything was squashed in there, I'd have to quickly iron it again before wearing it.

Now I have a uniform of sorts which I wear all the time and a mountain of scarves when I feel like a change:)

Tug said...

I really need to do this - with clothes AND shoes. I have a walk-in closet, PACKED. The sad part? I looked for a dress shirt to wear the other day, and had NONE. It's all t-shirts, jeans & capris. (Plus I have 7 dresser drawers full of t-shirts, shorts and sweatshirts.) UGH

Anonymous said...

Isn't it weird when things like that happen. As if you are in line with the Universe. I'm going to start fall cleaning soon since the kids are back in school today. Ya, my first day alone in months!!!!! I don't think I could be any happier. Well, maybe if it stopped raining.