In a recent article for Simplify Magazine, Myquillyn Smith described a New Year's ritual at her house. She chooses a room to "quieten," and removes everything but the basic furniture. (If you've ever read Myquillyn Smith's home books, you know that her decorating style is not bare-minimalist, so this is an undertaking.) For a short period of time, that space is allowed to just "be," giving it a fresh start. Stripped to essentials, does it feel bigger? Lighter? Is it easier to think in a clean space? The accessories and art are re-introduced gradually and carefully, with appreciation but also with deliberateness.
Courtney Carver's Project 333 could be called quieting the wardrobe. When you empty a closet, what goes back in?
Scarves aren't essential (or quiet), but they're nice!
Do two pairs of pants and one skirt make us feel unburdened, or too limited? How many shirts or sweaters do we need until the next load of laundry? Do some of them suddenly feel like excess? Which things are fine in themselves, but don't work well with others, don't fit our current lifestyle, or (we finally admit) don't look wonderful on us? Pared down to the essentials, what shines through?
I thought about all of this. I realize I could get along with fewer clothes, but:
1. It's winter. I need enough clothes to stay warm.
2. I like most of what I'm wearing, and wear most of what I have.
3. So a good general clean-out seemed like enough this time, rather than trying to pick this over that. I do have a bag of no-that-didn't-work things headed for the thrift store.