Don’t wait for closet spring cleaning. The real organizational pros clean out their closets in September, too.

It’s the start of a new season — time to retire faded swimsuits and make room for that new fall hat you’ve been eyeing.

Spending a Saturday cleaning out the closet always sounds like a great idea, but it’s easy to get stumped once in you’re in there. Scroll down to discover these 10 things in your closet you need to get rid of now, and make room for fall!

photo by chad wadsworth

Anything you haven’t worn in the past year.

Take a hard look at any items you haven’t worn in the past twelve months. If it isn’t a speciality item (ski clothes, formalwear, etc.) there’s a strong chance you’ll never wear it again. Consider tossing or donating anything you haven’t worn in the past year — your closet will thank you for it.

photo by lucy williams

Shoes that hurt.

Oh, super cute ill-fitting shoes… you are like that bad bad boyfriend we just can’t quit. When will we ever learn that you always ruin a perfectly fun night? Dating habits aside, get rid of those blistering t-strap heels and start living a happier life.

Expensive mistakes.

We’ve all been there. Keeping a never-worn dress season after season, simply because it’s too expensive to get rid of. If you haven’t forced yourself to wear it by now, you’re just not going to. Forgive yourself. Learn. And donate that outfit to someone who’ll be super stoked to have a never-worn designer garment!

photo by Winnie Au

Books, electronics, and magazines.

Okay, so I’m not saying to get rid of these things. I’m just suggesting that you get them out of your closet. Your closet will feel more organized and serene when it’s totally dedicated to your wardrobe, and you’ll probably enjoy your books and magazines more when they’re in a more accessible place in your home.

“Skinny jeans”.

This is more of a personal theory, but I no longer believe in the skinny jean. And no, I’m not talking about the tapered leg silhouette that’s so 2013… keep those if you want. I’m talking about those jeans you haven’t been able to wear in years, because you are not actually a teenager anymore. If you’re working on slimming down, cool. But wouldn’t it be more fun to reward your future self with a brand new pair of butt-hugging Mother denim? When you stop looking to recapture the past you can start embracing the magic of the present. Live in the now!

photo by Kristen Kilpatrick

Seasonal items you (almost) never wear.

These are the ski goggles, tap shoes, wetsuits and other absurdities taking up space in your closet. You might not want to get rid of them, but they definitely don’t require everyday accessibility. Consider moving these items to an attic, basement, storage unit, or other out-of-the-way spot to make more space in your closet for everyday things.

photo by Hannah Haston

Bras with bent hooks or underwire.

This actually goes for all of your broke-down underwear. Get rid of anything that technically qualifies as embarrassing and upgrade yourself with some new pieces from Third Love. ‘Cause hey. You NEVER KNOW.

Crappy hangers.

One of the simplest things you can do to dress up your closet and feel like a certified adult is to upgrade to wooden or velvet hangers. They’re actually NOT that expensive and can make your closet feel so luxurious! Pro tip: I find that my wooden hangers also serve as a volume checkpoint — when I run out of hangers, it’s time to clean out and purge a few things.

photo by jenn rose smith

Borrowed items.

You know that pretty Self Portrait dress you borrowed for your last destination wedding? Your bestie probably wants it back, and preferably before the season ends. Be courteous and prompt about laundering and returning borrowed clothes. That’s how you’ll get to borrow again!

photo by chad wadsworth

Things that don’t fit.

I know how it goes. Staring at a dress 3 sizes too big I bought on super sale last year with the intent of having it altered… and never did. News flash: it’s not gonna happen. Give that dress the life it deserves and donate it to someone who will wear and love it!

  1. 1
    Wendy | September 15, 2018 at 10:28 pm

    I’m trying so hard to purge my closet. I’ve offered to GIVE items away to friends and family. Nobody will take the time to look at the 200+ shoes I have and take some home. My Blog is http;// For some reason, the website field won’t accept my blog URL so I’m putting it here.

  2. 2
    Fortune Dushey | September 16, 2018 at 10:31 am

    Great List! I also do a closet edit in the fall! It feels so good to let go of what I no longer need and make space for the things I do!

  3. 3
    Michelle & Watson | September 16, 2018 at 4:14 pm

    This is no easy feat! Especially the expensive buys and things you love that *slightly* don’t fit anymore. I will say though, using Poshmark and hosting clothing swaps with my ladies makes it easier, because I know things I once loved are going to a good home <3

    Woof Xo,
    Michelle & Watson

  4. 4
    Natalie | October 1, 2018 at 9:27 am

    I need to get rid of so much 😛

  5. 5
    Gitana | September 12, 2019 at 1:46 pm

    This is exactly the fire under my butt that I needed. Our closet is huge but super cluttered right now and I need to get rid of some stuff and reorganize. There are definitely clothes in there that I haven’t worn it easily a year. <3

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