Sort Your Closet to Save

Minimalist Fashion
If your closet is filled with clothes you hardly ever wear, switching to a minimalist wardrobe can be a great way to save time and money. If you're overwhelmed by the thought of clearing out your closet, here are a few ways to get started.

The first step is deciding what to keep and what to toss. The clothes that remain should range within a color palette that looks best on you. If you need a little help, check out sites like With just a few clicks, you can learn which hues compliment you the most, based on skin tone, hair and eye color.

Once you've discarded all of the "bad" colors in your closet, the next step is to reduce the patterns in your wardrobe. Solid colors make mixing and matching much easier, so keep the patterns to a minimum if you want to spend less time and money on outfits.

Finally, if you're still having trouble cleaning out your closet, try using the "one year rule." If you haven't worn something in over a year, it's time to get rid of it. An easy way to help identify these pieces is to turn the hanger around when placing an item back on the rack. After one year, the clothes that are still on backwards hangers can go, and then rest can stay.

So, if you're looking to get organized and use less of your fashion budget, use these tips to downsize your wardrobe. You'll be surprised at how much time and money you'll save every day.

Ways to recycle your old clothes
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Sort Your Closet to Save -- Savings Experiment
What better way of honoring your wallet than making it out of your old baby clothes or torn/stained/unwanted garments? I used the pattern from Amy Karol's 'Bend-the-Rules Sewing' and used pretty bits of fabric from a little girl's dress I found at a thrift store (it turns out I have three boys) and other scraps of fabric from cast-offs.
These sweaters were too flamboyant to wear. But my friend Larissa came up with an easy, super-cute handbag pattern to make 'em beyond wearable. Talk about a new life!
This hat, made from four panels cut from sleeves of felted sweaters, is a cute and warm way to use your suddenly too-small or moth-eaten pullovers.
My friend and I have a great time cutting up accidentally (and on-purpose) felted sweaters to make hats. But what to do with the rest of it all? Why not a fashionable "pulse warmer" with a crocheted edge and some pretty buttons.
Can you use a sewing machine *at all*? You can make a hat out of a sweater in five minutes. Measure your head's circumference (most adults are between 21-23 inches), half that number, and cut two rectangles that width (i.e. 11 inches) and about 15 inches tall. Sew up the sides and top and presto! Hat.
Living somewhere warm and no longer use your great 90s-style scarves? Can't stand the fringe? Gifted a pretty-but-scratchy muffler? Use Martha's idea: make a gorgeous fringed stocking out of your useless accessory.
Got holes? Patch up your kids' clothes with bright scraps of fabric that add personality and (importantly) full knee coverage!
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