Arabella On: Life After The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying

Arabella On: Life After The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying

As a Fashion Director, I have, as you can imagine, accumulated a rather large wardrobe. Although I try to cull it regularly to make room for new stuff each season, this is easier said then done. Why is it I can edit a rail of outfits for a shoot - but not my own clothes?

When a fellow fashion hoarder told me about Marie Kondo’s book ‘The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying’ I was so overwhelmed by my already overflowing wardrobe I was willing try anything.

Although I had everything organized and arranged in sections and colours, there wasn’t a spare inch, and I couldn’t find anything. I couldn’t even remember what was in there, and was still craving something new.

This is how my life with Marie Kondo and magically tidying began, and after a very intense weekend, I got rid of 6 bin bags of once treasured items.

You are probably familiar with the Marie Kondo method. No? Then let me summarize. You keep what sparks joy and then roll it (literally!) Don't deviate from the path. There. Simple.

So what tips can I pass on after 6 months of being #konmarie…..

1. Take the plunge and dedicate time to this. Be ruthless. It’s so worth it.

2. Go with your gut instinct. Don’t keep something for when you loose weight, when you are invited to Prince William’s coronation or when you retire to the country in 20 years time. Bin it.

3. Don't ask a friend to help. This is about your gut instinct - not theirs.

4. Rolling clothes saves so much space. I can even close the drawers now.

5. Roll with the tag at top, so that you can see the label without having to unroll the whole thing.

6. Roll and store in boxes that fit inside drawers. Ikea have some great ones.

7. Do this seasonally, as tidying in winter I couldn't think what I would be wearing next summer.

8. You are not choosing what to discard - but what to keep. What brings you joy. Keep asking yourself the question – what do I really need and what do I love. It gets easier.

And how joyful is my life now??

Well I have adapted the Marie Kondo method to work for me and my wardrobe. I personally don't want to roll my shirts. Too much ironing. I can't roll my jeans. The space in my wardrobe doesn't work like that.

Getting dressed in the mornings is so much less stressful as I don’t have to pull everything out to find that one sweater at the bottom of a pile. Plus I am sleeping better as the bedroom is a much less cluttered place and feels surprisingly calmer. I think it even said thank you at one point.

By no means have I got an empty wardrobe. Far from it - but it is more orderly and accessible. And surprisingly, I actually want less stuff.

What I got rid of might make some people recoil in horror. How could I get rid of those Valentino Rock Stud shoes or that Chloe Paddington bag? But it was just clutter.  Even unwanted designer clutter is still clutter.

Regrets. As the song goes - I've had a few. A grey wool hoodie from APC that would be perfect now the 90’s trend is back, and as the gorgeous naval coats paraded down the runway at the Prada A/W16 show this season, I did have a small pang as I remembered a similar old Ferretti coat that I had binned.

And when I’m out shopping, standing in the changing room, wondering about another navy sweater. I ask myself. Does it bring me joy Or just a 15-minute shopping high.

Need more tidying tips? Check out The Cult Of Tidy: Why Marie Kondo's Konmari Method Can Change Your Life...

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