Leggings and coffee cups. Bed sheets and toys. What these things have in common is more than their address of residence inside your home: We all have our favorites.
We all have that favorite piece of clothing we go to in a pinch, that cup our coffee tastes best in and that comfiest set of sheets that make us feel like we’re sleeping on a cloud.
And it started when we were young -- even the kids have that favorite race car or dress-up outfit that they favor over other things.
What that means for many of us as we have matured and ultimately stayed the same is the same now as it was then. We have too much stuff.
By nature, most of us are more likely to use the same things over and over while everything else collects dust. And, particularly as spring is here and the urge to clean is stronger than any other time of year, there is simply no reason for it anymore.
Most of us could get rid of about 80 percent of what’s in our closet, at least according to fashion columnist and boutique clothing store owner Faye Wetzel. That number may seem shocking, especially if you apply it elsewhere in the home.
Yet that is why incorporating some sort of purge into your spring cleaning routine is that much more crucial. Because cleaning out the old does more than make way for the new.
The best place to start? The closet.
“I’m of the mind that getting organized is really not something you should do all at once and only in the spring time,” says Wetzel. “Instead, I’m a believer in curating your pieces on an ongoing basis.”
Starting in the closet is smart because it’s where a lot of our days start, Wetzel explains. Using a 5-5 rule, she suggests touching five pieces (or spending five minutes in your closet) five times a week.
“How do you eat an elephant? One piece at a time,” Wetzel says. “That way, it becomes an organizing habit you can take with you to other parts of the home as well.”
While Marie Kondo’s take in “Spark Joy” may be a bit extreme for the average person, Wetzel says there is value in the idea that things that don’t bring you joy in your home are indeed just disposable things.
“Curating sounds to me like a lot less of a chore because it’s something all of us can do,” she says. “Why would you want to have things around that don’t make you happy or bring you joy?”
Instead, Wetzel supports quality over quantity, starting in the wardrobe but expanding elsewhere as well.
“I know from 27 years of (working in the business) how much stress a wardrobe can add to a person’s life,” Wetzel says. “Yet I believe that our clothes are the armor with which we face our every day battles …If we go out in the world in the morning feeling good in what we’re wearing, feeling confident, we are that much more likely to have positive experience and bring positive experiences to the lives of others.”