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This Is How Fashion Girls Clean Out Their Closets

We ask editors, stylists, designers, and buyers how they decide to let go.
This Is How Fashion Girls Clean Out Their Closets
IMAGE INSTAGRAM/songofstyle
We ask editors, stylists, designers, and buyers how they decide to let go.

New year, new you...right? While there's no need to completely overhaul your wardrobe for a fresh start, probably one of the hardest tasks a fashion girl's gotta do is (gulp) throw things out. Well, not quite: You're free to segregate into the token keep or toss piles, but how oh how is a gal supposed to decide? We look to the experts for help—here, some of the local scene's chicest editors, stylists, buyers, and designers talk the big closet purge.

How do you decide which clothes to keep and throw out? What's your criteria?

"I keep clothes that I a) definitely love, b) think will go back in style, and c) think I can use during shoots for other people to wear (I work as a stylist). And, I let go of a) the ones that will never fit me (cruel, cruel reality) and b) stuff that are so not my style and c) clothes that I haven't worn (or used for a shoot) in YEARS." Loris Pena, Stylist

"Every six months, I evaluate per item whether or not I can pair it with five or more items in my closet. I use this system in an effort to create a cohesive yet updated wardrobe where I can just mindlessly choose pieces and I would still look put together when I wear them. Extremely helpful for hurried mornings and lazy days." Steph Sison, Editorial Assistant, Preview.ph

"In trying to decide which clothes to keep: If I haven’t worn it in the past three months then I get rid of it. If I can’t think of any three items in my closet I can match it with then I toss it." —Kat Veloso-Torre, freelance art director

"I think I have two main rules: One, do I still fit in it? And second, is it still my style? Trends rotate and so I'm always wary of giving things away, thinking that I could use them again. Usually though, if I can't see myself wearing it anymore or if I find it too difficult to style, it's automatically time to toss it!" —Maura Rodriguez, Associate Social Media Editor, Preview.ph

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"While I admit that there are some things that I hold on to for sentimental reasons or for the purpose of passing them on to my girls, I weed out pieces according to fit (yes, I have to accept the bitter pill that I may not return to my size 2 self), and of course, wear—if I haven’t worn it in a year (save for winter clothing and heavy coats), then I won’t wear them ever. So make three piles: keep, store, and donate/sell.

"One of the commitments I’ve made when it comes to my wardrobe is to make it more sustainable—this means every item in my closet needs to be something I really want, can be worn with many other things, for a longer period of time—because the worst thing you can do to good fashion pieces is not to wear or use them." —Jacqui Salonga, Senior Marketing Manager for Joseph, In Good Company and CK Calvin Klein

"I keep it super simple—I donate/sell things that no longer excite me and keep pieces that I still love. Working in buying and the retail industry has made me realize how much we consume and waste at the same time, so I'm trying to be a bit more conscious about my purchases. I'm also trying my best to shop with quality and longevity in mind—this means steering clear of the high street and buying pieces that will last and transcend trends for seasons." —Steffi Go, Fashion Buyer for International Designers, Harrods

"I’d like to think I’ve gotten better at spotting which clothes I’ll still want to keep in my closet. I usually have a one-liner song that my sister taught me [to hum] while cleaning out my closet. It goes 'let’s all be honest with ourselves...' because really, am I going to want this aztec print top that I bought several years ago? No. It’s the perfect way to entertain myself while I’m decluttering." —Sassa Jimenez, fashion designer

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What fashion item did you have the hardest time parting with...and why did you finally decide to let go?

"Maybe this leather jacket with a newspaper print all over it that I found in an ukay. I figured my sister would wear it more than I would...but it mysteriously found its way back into my closet." Loris

"So far, I have not encountered an article of clothing that I have had a difficult time parting with. When I purge clothes or shoes, I get into a mindset where I condition myself that letting go of clothes will mean more space for new ones, that I have maxed out its cost per wear, and exhausted its social media mileage. LOL." Steph

"I just recently let go of a lot of designer pieces, some I wore to past Preview Balls, and others my dad bought for me when I was a lot younger. I was hoping to pass them on to my daughter when she is older but as much as they have sentimental value, the truth is I've only worn them once and my daughter might actually never wear them at all. The clothes just end up staining and rotting in my closet. Shoes and bags on the other hand are a different story." —Kat

"I tend to keep pieces I enjoyed buying—like a cool piece that was worth more than its actual price! My ukay finds are the hardest to let go of compared to pieces I shop from malls or online shops. In the end, if something doesn't fit me anymore I sadly have to give it away." —Maura

"I was a designer handbag junkie in my 20s; so much so that I would buy myself a purse or two every year. Letting go of two bags that were my perennial faves (one was a white oversized Muse from Saint Laurent that I wanted for a year before I could afford it, and the other was a black Louis Vuitton Epi leather Saint Jacques shoulder bag that my late father gave me as a birthday present)—I was stuck thinking that I shouldn’t dispose of them because I would remember how much I loved them; but one day, I just realized that it was sad to just keep them in a closet, all because of newer pieces I’ve gotten after. I’ve had a handful of bags that peeled and suffered from bad cases of mold, which I eventually just threw away, so I decided to sell them to someone who wanted them. I may not have sold those bags at a great price, but I felt good knowing the people who bought them had every intention of using those bags—which was better than serving them a death sentence staying inside my closet until they’ve become irreparable, which would be a bigger waste in the long run." —Jacqui 

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"I had to let go of a beautiful Rejina Pyo Kate coat that one of my fashion bosses gifted me. It was just time to rehome the piece (a.k.a. sell it on eBay), because I unfortunately needed to condense the number of coats in my closet. I don't feel too bad now about letting it go because someone else is giving it new life!" —Steffi

"I used to collect a lot of sneakers and because it was a hobby, it was a little harder to part ways with some pairs that I’ve accumulated over the years. I now realize that a clean and organized closet is a more covetable asset than having it filled to the brim with pieces I don’t really use. Donate, donate, donate!" —Sassa

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