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Seasonal Clothing–Swap it O-U-T!

Even living in what seems to be a season-less city like Los Angeles, you’d be surprised at how swapping out just some of those tank tops and shorts for bulkier sweaters makes for more room in a crowded closet. The ushering in of a new season can be an obvious green light for when to tackle this project but for those of us that need more accountability and pointers for conquering this task—dive into these tips below.

1. Set a date. Sure, Daylight Savings is a great indicator of when to swap out your clothing but to ensure that you’ll actually tackle this project, write it in your calendar. And nothing equals accountability like having a partner-in-crime. This could mean getting the entire family involved or inviting your best friend over while you transition your seasonal clothing.

2. Create Piles. Swap out day has arrived and you find yourself asking—what’s next?! Start in one corner of your closet and work your way around the space until you arrive back where you began. Look at each item and decide it it’s seasonal. Place items that are getting stored for next Summer into a pile. I also encourage you to donate any items you didn’t wear this past season to make even more room for your winter wares (this will be your second pile).

3. Swap it O-U-T. The next step is to swap in your winter clothes and remove your summer attire. Again, take advantage of this opportunity to purge the clothes getting swapped in. Since you haven’t seen these items in a good while, what seems no longer relevant? Are there any moth holes in the items? What needs repair before wearing? Taking care of these to-do’s now will make for an even easier morning routine when getting dressed (you may have more piles after this 3rd step).

4. Storage Ideas. You might be asking where to store seasonal clothes—and for everyone, this will look different. For me, a duffel bag containing last seasons clothes on one of my shelves works just fine. For you, it might mean a couple of weather resistant bins stored in the garage. You’ll just want to make sure each container is properly labeled with an index of what’s stored inside. Other ideas include under-the-bed bins, a top shelf in the spare closet or moving clothes to a less accessible part of your closet.

5. Protection. Before storing clothes for the season, make sure they are freshly laundered as bugs and moths are attracted to perfumes and lingering scents. Moth balls and cedar chips go a long way in keeping unwanted guests and above all, do not store clothes in any spot that gets too hot. Extreme heat can do a number on your clothes, breaking down the fibers and accelerating bug infestation.

Image from Flickr user  LizMarie_AK used with permission under Creative Commons License

Beth Zeigler knew she was on an organizing path when at the age of 5 she was maximizing her closet space to function as a second bedroom for her dolls. Throw in her background of delegating tasks to her younger brother throughout childhood–and her transition to organizing developed quite organically. Check out her web site at Bneato!

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