Haven't posted much - sorry it's long. But I got so much inspiration from this thread.
I was rained in over a 4-day Memorial weekend, and ended up donating two packed car-loads of clothing and other things to Goodwill. I pulled out all my clothes from closets and drawers, piled them on the bed; and sorted them into keep, donate, and rag/toss piles. I spend almost an entire day going through my jewelry – mostly costume, and most of it unworn for years. Took me hours to untangle chains and necklaces.
I didn’t think to count until after the first carload of stuff went to Goodwill, but I got rid at least 150 things (jewelry and clothes). I’m still shocked that I had that much. I also haven’t counted what’s left, but I kept about 6 pairs of pants, several knit skirts, and assorted sweaters and tops that go with all of the bottoms. Most everything is solid colors – no patterns except for lots of Breton stripes – guess that’s my uniform. More than what’s needed for a capsule wardrobe, but a lot of the stuff spans seasons, and is enough that I shouldn’t need to shop for clothes for a long time.
I was ruthless in what I got rid of – I had some beautiful, quality things that are now 2 sizes too small. I’ve held on to them for years because it felt wasteful to let go of things that I might be able to wear someday. I also got rid of a lot of newer things that fit, but don’t suit my middle-aged self – I was buying things that worked for the younger me. That was kind of painful – money thrown away, and facing the middle-aged spread. Hopefully, someone else will enjoy them.
My color palette is now very limited (black, blue, white, gray, and a little pink), the stuff I kept is very basic, simple, and comfortable – the things I reach for every morning while bypassing trendier things. I won’t be as stylish as I would like, but for now that works. I’ll have to look into scarves to add a little interest – I worry a little that I’m settling into a kind of comfortable frumpiness that will make me invisible, but whatever. It's only clothes, and I can change what doesn't work long-term.
Best of all - I love opening drawers and closets in the morning and seeing what I have, and finding what I want right away – everything is nice, neat and organized instead of crammed into overstuffed drawers. It no longer takes 5 minutes rummaging through the jewelry box to look for the earrings I want – I only kept the 6 pair that I always wear.