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you’ve done this. The clothes in pile 3 could be given to a friend, donated to charity or sold (if they are still current, of good quality and in decent condition).


Now what? You’ve done the hardest part and it isn’t as longwinded as it sounds (I promise!). Now you’ve decided which clothes


to keep, here is how to make the most of them: • Organise garments by categories: coats, jackets, suits, skirts, trousers, dresses, blouses and shirts. Grouping by colour within these categories will give you ideas for combining clothes.


• Get rid of wire coat hangers from the dry cleaners – they will ruin your clothes! It is well worth investing in good quality non-slip hangers. I recommend Morplan economy non-slip suit hangers (www.morplan.com). At £1 a hanger they are not cheap, but they are well worth it and will last.


• Don’t put anything back in the wardrobe unless it’s clean. There is nothing more irritating when pressed for time, deciding on an outfit only to find it has dried egg on it! And be aware that moths love particles of food, dead skin and body odour!


• To make absolutely sure you keep the moths at bay, put plenty of mothballs or lavender bags in your wardrobe, especially near knitwear. I use lavender bags from John Lewis. Alternatively, put a few drops of lavender oil on some cotton wool and stuff it at the back of your wardrobe. Add a few drops every so often to keep it topped up.


• Keep knitwear folded and, if possible, keep cashmere items in plastic bags with lots of lavender around them. If you don’t have plastic clear bags, don’t worry, just put a lavender bag between each layer of knitwear.


• Don’t overcrowd your wardrobe as you will ruin clothes by doing so and items will need pressing again.


• Hang skirts and trousers full length (if possible) to avoid horizontal creasing half way up the leg.


• Before you put everything back in your wardrobe, vacuum and dust it, and don’t forget the moth repellent!


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Put your best foot forward Shoes and boots need to be audited too to ensure the ones kept are earning their place in your wardrobe. Use the same three-pile system for footwear: Pile 1 Shoes/boots in good condition,


that fit well, are current and are COMFORTABLE! There is no point having a wardrobe full of ‘car to bar’ shoes: so high and painful you can’t walk further in them than from the car to the restaurant/bar on a night out! Pile 2 Shoes/boots that need some TLC,


maybe a trip to the cobbler for repairs or a jolly good clean (provided they meet all the above criteria). Pile 3 Pairs you never wear because you


have been keeping them for sentimental reasons, they don’t go with any of your clothes, dated pairs and bargains bought in a sale but when you got them home you came to your senses, and finally uncomfortable or worn out pairs. These you can sell, donate to charity, give to a friend, or if they’ve really had it, find a shoe bank.


Next step… It’s important to keep shoes in good condition. What a shame to ruin an outfit that has taken time and money to put together by wearing a pair of scuffed or worn out shoes. Store footwear properly too. If you have one big basket full of your shoes and boots, not only will you waste time trying to find the pair you want, but they will also get damaged. Keep each pair in a separate box, preferably clear so you don’t have to open it to see what’s inside, and top and tail the shoes with the soles on the outside. For boots I recommend boot trees to help keep their shape. A final tip, avoid wearing the same shoes on consecutive days as they need to air and dry out: perspiring feet produce a fair amount of moisture!


Putting it all together All you need to do now is give yourself a couple of minutes the night before to decide what you want to wear for the next day, or even the next week. If you know you are going to be really pushed for time, check the weather forecast for the week and put outfits on a hanger for each day so


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you can simply grab and dress! Another idea is to photograph what you would like to wear each day, including accessories, and stick the photos on the inside of your wardrobe door for future reference. I am a big fan of accessories and when deciding which scarf or necklace to wear, it is easier if the items are on display. I don’t like my jewellery to be hidden away in beautiful boxes that I don’t have time to open. Remember that saying “out of sight, out of mind”? And, if possible, rather than fold scarves, hang them alongside your clothes. The Morplan hangers are great for scarves as they don’t slip off. So, when you start building your outfit,


say to yourself: “What would I like to wear tomorrow?” and stand in front of your beautifully honed wardrobe. The weather, what you’re doing or who you are seeing will help you decide. I love starting with an accessory which could be a pair of shoes, a necklace, a bag or a scarf. I hold the item in my hand and scan my wardrobe to see what would go well with it. That way an outfit isn’t always centred on the clothes and you could make your accessories your signature style. Having organised your clothes into great colours and shapes, it will be a whole lot easier to look more stylish and polished. And next time you go shopping for clothes you will have a much clearer idea of what you actually need and avoid wasting money on things you don’t. Good luck!


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Anita Feron Clark Personal stylist and image consultant Telephone: 07799 856544 Website: www.feronclarkstyle.com Email: anita@feronclarkstyle.com


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