The Happy Closet, Part 2 (the basic principles)

I’m back with my second instalment of The Happy Closet today.

Like I said, I was quite overwhelmed by the big response to my last post about this.

Clearly, this is something that resonates with a lot of you.

So let’s start at the beginning by identifying what I think are the basic principles of ‘the happy closet.’

1) The happy closet is not a perfect closet by magazine standards.

2) The happy closet looks different for everybody. My happy closet will be very different to what yours would look like.

3) A beautiful item is one that’s been worn over and over again. It could be an old t-shirt, a faded pair of jeans, a second hand dress or a fake fur coat. Brand, material and age are all irrelevant. It’s all to do with how much YOU love the item, which should be reflected in how much you wear it. The Happy Closet is made up of items that are loved and worn.

4) You should know 100% of what’s in your happy closet. In other words, there should be no ‘black holes’ in the happy closet.

5) Whilst there is no limit on the size of the happy closet, it should be more of a minimalist closet than an excessive one.

6) The happy closet is an organised closet.

7) All items in the happy closet should be easily accessible.

8) The happy closet changes as you move through different stages of life.

9) The happy closet is one that you’re content with.

10) If you have a happy closet, you should feel no inclinication to purchase anything new, including thrifted items (at least not until a big life change).

* * *

So over to you guys….

a) What do you think of the list? Too extreme? Anything you would change or add?
b) Are there any ‘black holes’ in your closet?
c) What are some of the clothes that you actually love to wear?

You can read all The Happy Closet posts here.

27 comments

rooth July 25, 2012 at 11:15 pm

I actually don’t have any black holes in my closet but there are definitely things in there that I don’t wear anymore. You’re right, a purge is completely necessary. I end up wearing my white tee shirts the most that I bought for less than $20. Simple and clean – that’s my style. Can you even call that a style? It just means I did laundry

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 2:30 pm

Absolutely I would call that a style. :)
Ronnie xo

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Chantel July 26, 2012 at 1:14 am

I am so excited for this series! I think this is the week for me to finally let go of a few items that I’ve kept in my closet but hate wearing (so why do I wear them then?!).
My closet is the one place in my house that is actually organized. I have my shirts nicely color coordinated -white tanks, white tees, white long sleeves, yellow tanks, yellow tees, etc.

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Woohoo! That’s the sound of me cheering you on.
Ronnie xo

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vitaminA July 26, 2012 at 3:22 am

I absolutely love your idea of a happy closet! I’m definitely going to purge and organize now that my energy is back! Exciting! I pretty much wear the same thing everyday these days. A striped dress :) like you mentioned in a previous post, I usually don’t have much laundry to do since I recycle the same outfits for a while :X

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Oh I’m so glad I’m not alone! My clothes seriously take up the smallest portion of our laundry every week….
How have you been? I need to come and catch up on your latest posts.
Ronnie xo

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Anna July 26, 2012 at 3:23 am

I so agree with you on number three. If you really love what you are wearing, then that is definitely an important sign of a happy closet :) I think I’m slowly getting there by excluding things that I “might” think I’ll like when I shop, and just buy those that I DEFINITELY love in stead.

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 2:36 pm

Agreed. I’ve fallen into that trap sooo many times in my shopping life.
Ronnie xo

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Jenny July 26, 2012 at 4:38 am

I’m usually just a silent reader but I just wanted to say thank you so much for posting about this! I’ve been going through something similar this past year and it’s comforting to read your take on this very important.. almost… right of passage!!!

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 2:37 pm

Thank you Jenny for leaving such lovely words, it’s always so nice to ‘meet’ a reader!
Ronnie xo

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Latrina July 26, 2012 at 3:13 pm

I completely agree with your list, Ronnie. My closet right now, I would say is… semi-happy. It’s a bit confused honestly! I have quite a bit of clothing that I don’t wear… that I keep for… heck, I don’t even know why I keep them. Sentiment? Attachment? Who knows. All I know is I’m super eager to get rid of them! haha At least I am now that I have read your happy closet entries… definitely inspiring. :)

I think for me… a happy closet is definitely organized and even color-coded… yes, I’m that much of a perfectionist. :P It’s also clean & minimalist with only the items that I WEAR regularly. No black holes in my closet! I will know anything and everything in there… :P

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Pink Ronnie July 26, 2012 at 10:09 pm

I love that our idea of the happy closet is the same!!
Ronnie xo

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thestripedelephant July 26, 2012 at 11:12 pm

Love all your happy closet tips, especially #10 “…you should have no inclination to purchase anything new.” I’m always purchasing new things, so I don’t think I have a totally happy closet. Time to look through old pieces and get rid of them!

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Pink Ronnie July 30, 2012 at 2:31 pm

It’s funny how purging the closet of clothes you don’t wear really does help!
Ronnie xo

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liz July 27, 2012 at 2:34 pm

I absolutely adore this Ronnie. I embarked on a similar journey last year (inspired by Courtney Carver’s Project 333 – building a wardrobe consisting of 33 pieces). I never made it down to just 33 items but my closet is a much happier now. A year later and I’m still paring down my wardrobe. I love that I can see everything in my closet now and that everything FITS in my closet. I used to think that I needed more space, more storage but this process has taught me that what I really need is a well curated wardrobe.

I hope to get to the point you are at now. I’d LOVE to not have an urge to buy anything for 30 days let alone months at a time. :)

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Pink Ronnie July 30, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Wow, that’s amazing. I’m not sure I could ever get down to 33 items either.
A well curated wardrobe is definitely the key rather than more space!
It’s incredibly liberating, actually. I seem to have no interest in looking at anything online or in store these days so I think I have a good chance of making it to year end with no purchases!
Ronnie xo

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eek! July 29, 2012 at 11:35 am

Great posts! I am still working on my happy closet, but am coming closer. I guess I just have a hard time not buying anything at all…

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Pink Ronnie July 30, 2012 at 2:34 pm

Yay for getting closer!
Ronnie xo

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SassandSpice July 29, 2012 at 11:44 pm

I tend to hold on to a lot of clothes but definitely need to purge especially if ends up an opshop and someone else can find a place in their happy closet for it…

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Pink Ronnie July 30, 2012 at 2:35 pm

I agree – it’s such a nice feeling to know that a certain item might end up in someone else’s happy closet!
Ronnie xo

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megan October 2, 2012 at 10:16 pm

i’ve always been so entirely puzzled by people who have an issue with number 4: black holes in their closet. friends who suddenly find items that they never knew they had. or purchase an item only to discover later that they already had one of those. where? is your closet that big? that full, that you LOST it? so odd!

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Amy April 9, 2013 at 2:22 am

I just came over from Becky’s PL post on FB. ;) I love love love this. Everything you describe is me. I am unhappy. Have two children, used to be thinner, and everytime I look at my closet, I think, one day I’ll wear that again. My question is, how do you handle “grubby” clothes: both for working in the yard, and also cleaning the house for example. Also, what do you do for waiting to get back to pre-preg weight? I am 6 mths post partum right now and don’t know if I should throw jeans away or not :/ Anyways, I don’t expect a huge response — I’m just thinking out loud :) thanks again ♥

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Pink Ronnie April 9, 2013 at 11:42 pm

Hi Amy,
Thanks so much for stopping by! In terms of your question about “grubby” clothes – I have to admit my husband is the one who tends to do all the outdoor yard work. His ‘work clothes’ in this regards are usually folded up neatly and stored in a container in the laundry. Having said that, I don’t tend to wash my every day clothes frequently anyway. I can go for a week – or more – with the same outfit. I have a drawer dedicated to these clothes that have been worn but haven’t yet been washed. As for your postpartum question – I have to say that that is the trickiest period to navigate. For my first couple of pregnancies, I held onto a lot of my pre-pregnancy clothes. But if you read my other Happy Closet posts, I talk about how I finally came to the conclusion (possibly some time after my third pregnancy) I was never going to go back to that body shape, and that I just had to accept things had changed. As a result, I pretty much gave away my entire pre-pregnancy wardrobe – with the exception of one pair of jeans which my husband wants me to hold onto for sentimental value (but which I’m quite sure I will never fit again). But everybody is different, and that’s simply what my journey has been like…
Ronnie xo

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I love hearing from you!

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