100 Dresses

So it’s Saturday afternoon, and I’m ready to get started with Step 1 in my KonMari decluttering journey. Dresses.

I decide to use my living room as sorting area. Which means I’m walking back and forth from my closet to my living room, arms full of dresses, well, too many times.

Some dresses are hanging nicely from a hanger. Some hangers carry 2 dresses. Some dresses are crumpled on the floor of the cupboard, having fallen from their hanger. Some are in the pile of half clean/half dirty clothes. One is still in the shopping bag, not even unpacked.

I’m playing some nice music, drinking tea, the sun is shining, I’m excited. I decide to keep track of how many items I’m keeping vs. not keeping. I’m careful not to write ‘throwing’ away because I’ve decided I’m giving everything, somehow.

I get started. Quickly it’s clear that there are some items in there I never even liked, even when I bought them. Looking at them, it’s very easy to put them in the ‘away’ pile and my mind drifts to the time in my life when I felt so awkward about my body that I would buy anything that fitted somehow. It saddens me. But it also makes it even easier to discard them, as if I’m forever saying goodbye to that time of my life.

Then I get into dresses that I fell in love with, but never really fitted or looked good on me. They do ‘spark joy’, looking at them, but when I pick them up I remember what I feel like wearing them, which is not great. Sometimes I put them on and run to the mirror. Some of them are actually wearable but mostly they make me feel not so joyful so ‘away’ they go.

A few dresses make me feel joyful even though I never wore them. I hesitate. Marie says if you hesitate you shouldn’t feel forced to discard them. So I keep some of them. Mainly some that actually look good on me. Or one fabulous silk piece that is pretty much bag-shaped but has a print that makes me smile. Maybe I’ll turn it into a pillow. It stays.

I find a couple dresses that actually don’t fit well, don’t spark joy of themselves, but have beautiful appliqué or beading. I set them aside. My plan is to remove and keep the sparkly bits and put the dresses ‘away’.

My final count is over 100 dresses. And I don’t even wear a dress every week! I get rid of about 30%, which is good, but still leaves me with an obscene number of dresses.

Looking at the ‘away’ pile, I actually notice most of them have hardly been worn. They are in perfect condition and I would say the average cost of each item was probably 100 euros. What a waste! I’m thinking someone could probably sell them and make a little money. Not me, cause it’s just too much trouble when getting rid of so many things, but someone. So I place an ad on Facebook. Anyone willing to take them and sell them can keep a good commission of whatever they make. Thankfully, one friend replies and I decide to give her the dresses.

Feeling elated, I immediately plunk all my trousers, jeans, shorts, leggings and jumpsuits in the middle of my living-room and start going through them.

My findings are even worse. I probably have 25 cheap black pants that I hoped I’d wear in the office but just don’t fit. Same for shorts. Leggings are the opposite. I wear them so much that I keep them all. In the end, I keep only about 50% of my bottoms. The rest goes in a bin bag. I enthusiastically get out of the house to put them in the clothes bin for recycling. It’s full. I look up the closest alternative bin and lug my bags to it. Putting the bags into those bins, knowing or rather hoping that they will be useful to someone, I feel satisfied and I grin like a madwoman. Then I head back home, ready for more.