Decluttering clothes using KonMari method
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The KonMari Method: Confronting Clothes

Welcome to the second post in my KonMari Method series. In the series, I share how I am using the The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up by Marie Kondo to declutter for my June 2018 move. Whether you are following along with me in (almost) real-time, or you’ve stumbled upon these posts long after Spring 2018, I am confident that you will glean something from the information that I plan to share.

In my first post, I shared my reasons for choosing this popular decluttering process to help thoroughly purge my home of unnecessary items. Before diving in to the first category, clothes, I would like to share a few important tips about the KonMari method.

Declutter By Category, Not By Location

If you’ll recall, one feature that makes the KonMari method unique is that decluttering and purging is done by category, not by room or location. This ensures that you go through all items of the same type at the same time, purging once and for all.

I personally like this idea. I don’t know about you, but I am notorious for storing like items in different rooms. For example, how many of you store the bulk of your clothes in your bedroom closet, with out of season or “it doesn’t fit now but I’ll fit into it one day” pieces in a guest room closet?

Me too! Yes! I see you, girl!!! 

So, no room by room decluttering! Here are the recommended categories, in order from least difficult to most difficult:

  1. Clothes (this is where we’ll start in this post. Yay!)
  2. Books
  3. Papers
  4. Komono, or Miscellany (further broken down into categories such as ‘kitchen ware’ and ‘electronics’ )
  5. Sentimental Items
A Few Things To Remember
  • Place all items on the floor.
  • Handle each item, one at a time, asking yourself if it “sparks joy.” If it does not, thank it, then discard it.
  • If you are having difficulty letting items go, ask yourself what role the item played in your life. Has it fulfilled its purpose? If it has, thank it and let it go.
  • Important: avoid organizing items until you have completed the purging process for each category.

Because I’m using the KonMari method to purge for my move, I will be focused initially on decluttering to make packing more efficient, and to stop the cycle of transferring unused and unloved items from place to place. I will share storage and organization methods after I am in the new apartment. 

Fashion And My Self-Image

Here are a few pictures of me over the years (note in the caption the approximate year and/or age when the photo was taken).

Using The KonMari Method for Clothes Declutter
High School, Mid to Late 90s
Using the KonMari Method To Purge My Clothes
2008, 29th Birthday Weekend
New Years Eve 2017

I have never been one to keep up with the latest fashion trends. You see, I struggled with weight and body image issues in my adolescence, teens, and early adult years. For example, the denim dress in the first photo, though not the most flattering and trendy, even for the 90s, was one of my favorites because I didn’t feel self-conscious when wearing it.

As I got older and my confidence level increased, I broke out of my comfort zone, and started wearing clothes that were more flattering to my figure, like the dresses in the second and third photos. Despite my confidence level growing with age, I have still never been much of a fashionista, always shopping for the latest trends in fashion. Needless to say, I have never had a vast wardrobe because fashion has never played a significant part in my life.

Shedding the Weight, Keeping the Clothes?
The bulk of my wardrobe consists of dresses, with a few pairs of pants shown towards the top left of the photo. Also shown are a few coats (top right).

This photo represents the majority of my wardrobe. It isn’t much, is it? There are more pieces that I sorted through that were not worthy of being photographed!! Looking through pictures of others’ KonMari clothes declutter sessions, I have seen floors covered with so many pieces that you could barely see the white sheet that they were laid out on. While I am grateful that I did not have to sort through mountains of clothes, my purging process was no less challenging.

Since July 2017, I have lost over 25 lbs and have gone down a dress size. Needless to say, the majority of my clothes simply did not fit my frame anymore. I considered keeping many of these dresses, thinking I could pair them with a belt to cinch them in the waist so they wouldn’t look too baggy. Then I thought to myself…why would I do that? Why would I want to buy belts so that I could keep over-sized dresses? Simple. I thought that I should hold on to them just in case my weight changed again.

I know I’m not the only one.

Weight loss is just as much psychological as it is physical; there is often a lingering fear associated with possibly gaining the weight back. This fear leads many of us to hold onto clothes that are now too big, so that we don’t have to go through having to buy a bigger size after we have lost the weight.

My Most Loved Dresses

 

Decluttering clothes using KonMari method
Clothes To Donate

Despite my initial hesitancy, I managed to let go of pieces that were either too big or no longer fit. The photos above are of items I decided to keep, as well as all of the items I am donating. Even though my closet is pretty empty now, it feels great not having to spend too much time deciding what to wear. Having a smaller wardrobe makes that process much easier. I also feel good knowing that I am no longer holding onto pieces served that my fear of regaining weight. Instead, I am living for today, enjoying the pieces that are both flattering to my new figure and that I truly love.

Tell me, have you ever lost weight, and were afraid to let go of clothes that no longer fit? How did you overcome your fear?

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2 Comments

  • Debbie Kitterman

    Malika – I love your name, it is as beautiful as you are. what does your name mean? I am sure it is something beautiful, but also warrior like at the same time. Ok, I have to admit, i am going to need to follow your KonMari series of posts. I am not moving, but I definitely need to declutter and I am so guilty of “I am keeping it even though it doesn’t fit” Just today, I thought, I really need to go through my closet and get rid of things and donate… thanks for the post and inspiration to do just that. Also, thank you for stopping by and visiting my site today and leaving a comment. I wanted to come do the same and also to invite you to linkup your posts each week with my weekly linkup #TuneInThursday.

    • Malika

      Hi Debbie! Thank you so much for for the kind words. My name means ‘Queen’ in Arabic. 🙂 I really enjoyed your post on meekness! Thank you for visiting my blog and commenting. I think many of us struggle with clutter…it just accumulates without us realizing it. The KonMari method is really showing me how my clutter has gotten out of hand. I would love to join your link up…Thank you so much for the invitation. 🙂

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