On page 23 of Unclutter Your Life in One Week, I promote the idea of discovering your style to help you keep clutter out of your closets. If your closet is limited to clothes that fit, clothes you want to wear, and clothes that project your desired image, you’re less likely to find yourself overbuying or with a mess you can’t control:
You may not know exactly what you want your clothes to say about you, but you probably have a good idea what you don’t want them to say. When I was in my twenties and leading a forum on school uniform policies, a group of high school students told me I dressed like a “frumpy pants.” It was a few seconds after that moment that I decided I didn’t want my clothes to say that I was a “frumpy pants.”
Years later, after reading Carrie McCarthy and Danielle LaPorte’s book Style Statement, I figured out a more proactive concept for my wardrobe choices. I’ve found that having a defined style has made it a lot easier to keep clutter out of my wardrobe. Nothing comes into my wardrobe that doesn’t project my image.
I like to think of my wardrobe as being an exclusive club that only the best of the best can get into. I’m the bouncer, and I get to decide what items make it past the red velvet rope, and what items don’t.
I’m not a fashionista, and if you knew me in the world beyond the computer screen you would probably laugh at the suggestion that I even think about my clothing. I predominantly wear solid colors. I have three of the exact same dress in black, gray, and white. I have three styles of t-shirts in four colors (black, gray, white, and navy blue). I have three pair of black pants from the same manufacturer but in different cuts. And, I look nice in these things. They work for me. They say, “uncluttered,” which is what I want them to say. Clothes that say, “complicated” or “fussy” don’t make it past the imaginary red velvet rope into my closet.
Discover your style, stay true to it, and get the pieces of clothing that don’t represent you out of your wardrobe. If you don’t know your style, check out the following resources:
- Carrie McCarthy and Danielle LaPorte’s book Style Statement, which I mentioned earlier. Most of the images in the book are female-focused, but men can get just as much out of the text.
- A lot of my female friends swear by The Lucky Guide to Mastering Any Style. Only 10 styles are in the book, and they’re all female styles, so it’s not a comprehensive text.
- As far as men’s fashion goes, I like Details Men’s Style Manual. It starts with the extreme basics and moves on from there.