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Spring clean your closet

 
The snow is melting, the sun is shining and the birds are chirping - looks like spring is on its way! And what better way to prepare than by doing a little spring cleaning? No silly, not that kind of cleaning. We're talking about your wardrobe. Open those closet doors and dresser drawers, let's get crackin'!

 

 

First things first...
Take everything out. Do it neatly though and form three piles: one for the items you absolutely love, another for the items you love but are starting to look a little ragged and a third for things you will never, ever wear again. Let’s tackle the last pile first. Even though these clothes are at the bottom of your like-list, that doesn’t mean someone else wouldn’t absolutely love them. Look at what’s there and see what is still in good shape and could be passed down to a younger sister or cousin. No younger gals to pass them on to? Drop them off at Good Will! Unless clothes are dirty, ripped, stained or otherwise damaged, there’s no sense in throwing them out.

 


Now let’s handle the pile of favorite clothes...
Determine whether each piece needs to be hung up or folded, and then put it in its proper place. Figure out an organization system that works for you, like sorting hanging clothes by cut (short sleeves, three-quarter length sleeves, long sleeves), by rainbow order, or both! Keeping your clothes in an order that makes sense to you will be oh-so-helpful on those days you just can’t seem to find your very favorite blue shirt.

 


And now for the middle pile...
The clothes that you love and have had great memories wearing, but are starting to fall apart a bit. Take these loved threads and make something lasting out of them! If you’ve got a stack of old t-shirts and you’re feeling super-crafty, make a cuddly quilt out of them! Not so good with needle and thread? There are plenty of companies out there who specialize in t-shirt quilts…just send them the tees and they’ll send back the blanket! Jeans that can be salvaged: dress them up with some cute patches, studs or other embellishments (check out a local bead or craft store for these).  Jeans that just can’t be saved: tear them up! Well, not quite, but use them to create an awesome memory box. Wrap the bottom half of an old shoe box with the leg part of the pants (hot glue guns are best for getting the denim to stick) and cover the box top with the rear of your jeans, with a pocket right in the middle! Then add some finishing touches like a few sparkly studs or a fun colored ribbon across the pocket and voila, the perfect place to keep your memories!

 


Have some old prom or homecoming dresses you won’t wear anymore?
It’s nice to hold onto them for sentimental value, but it’s even nicer to help a girl who can’t afford one become a prom queen. Companies like Chicago’s Glass Slipper Project gather donations of gently-used formal dresses, shoes, jewelry and purses and set up free boutiques every year for high school juniors and seniors who might not otherwise be able to afford a dress. CLICK HERE to check out a list of similar organizations to find one near you!

BY ALLI HOGE ON 4/16/2008 1:47:00 PM

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