Almost Spring...

While March 21 is technically the beginning of spring, once we turn the February corner and inch into March, it starts to feel like spring, no matter the weather.  With that date quickly approaching, I started thinking about pieces that I'd like for spring and started looking into my closet at the items that currently live behind the doors. There are some pieces in there that I haven't worn in years, but can't seem to part with, and most of the time it's because I acquired them for a "really good deal" and I feel as if I'm losing out on something if I find them a new home. What's a girl to do?

Have you ever noticed that no matter the size of your home - it could be a four bedroom house in the suburbs or a studio apartment in the city- it is always filled to capacity?  As Americans, if we have the space, we're going to fill it with more clothes, holiday decorations, 500 yards of gift wrap (it was on a massive sale, so how could we pass it up!) and everything in between. With the much needed spring cleaning rapidly approaching, I've been thinking about ways in which I can streamline my life, as well as that of my clothes.  Here are five ways that I am going to pare down my un-necessities:

1) I love a good bargain.  And to be honest, sometimes I find myself more excited about the price than I am about the actual item.  If an item was originally $100 and it's now selling for $25 and it's in my size, how could I pass it up? Think of the massive savings! For some time, I found that I was accumulating 'stuff' that I have never worn and was solely buying said item for the thrill of the savings. Now, before purchasing, I ask myself "Do I like this enough to buy this for the original price on the price tag?" If the answer is "yes" than it's a purchase.  If the answer is "no" then it goes back on the shelf.  The item may be a great price at $10, but if it's something that I'll never use or wear, than it's $10 that I wasted, rather than "x" amount saved from the original price.

2) Have a clothing swap with your gal pals.  Make a party out of it! Gather clothes that you no longer wear and have the girls over for a party.  Make or order food, have drinks and use it as an excuse for everyone to get together.  The idea behind the swap is to exchange clothes, shoes and bags with your friends.  For example, I have a shirt that is in great condition, that I adore, but is a little too snug. What's better than sharing something you love with a friend? Whatever items are left over can be donated to one of the organizations below.

3) Go through your closet and pull items that are out of date or you no longer enjoy wearing, and make a donations to Goodwill.  They accept housewares, clothes, shoes and bags.  If you're not adverse to wearing vintage clothes, take a lap through and see what you can find.  (I know the idea is to pare down, but sometimes you can find designer jeans at a ridiculous savings.)  The donations are also tax deductible, just be sure to ask them for a receipt.

4) Gather up the work appropriate clothes and take them to a local Dress for Success.  The organization helps low-income women get back on their feet and into the working world, by offering suits and business attire.  Donations made to the organization are also tax deductible.

5) Lastly, donate almost anything else to Purple Heart (service only in four states on the East Coast), which is military based or the Salvation Army, which is church and religiously based.  Once you schedule a pick-up, both organizations will pick up from your home anything from clothing to cars. All donations are tax deductible.

After I have cleared out the items that I haven't worn in years I feel less overwhelmed when I look into my closet and say,  "I have nothing to wear."  Considering I'm a few days ahead of the March 1 date, I am feeling confident that I will be organized and ready to welcome spring's arrival with open arms!  One, because I'll be more organized and two, because I'm ready for the warmer weather to be here already!