I've been working on a project for the past few weeks. I'm decluttering my clothing. This has been the result of a variety of things: reading The 100 Thing Challenge, turning 30, feeling frumpy (jeans and t-shirts every day will do that to you), getting tired of feeling frumpy, and then stumbling across a couple of blog posts on "Mommy Fashion" and Cate MacDonald's interesting Twenty Pieces project.
What I finally realized is this: it is not helpful to have a closet full of clothes that I don't like, don't fit into, and don't wear.
I've had too much in my closet for a long time. Much of the problem started when I had children - instead of having one "teacher wardrobe" with a few pairs of play clothes for my days off, I had maternity clothes. And then "just had a baby" clothes. Nursing tops. Of course I kept all the "skinny" clothes, because I was certainly going to fit into them again! Multiply all this times three children, with different starting sizes each time.
Frugality (perhaps misplaced?) also played a large role here. I didn't want to get rid of anything, because I didn't want to have to re-buy it later when I either lost weight or got pregnant or quit nursing or, or, or. And because I knew that any given item was only going to fit me for a limited period of time, I tended to purchase the cheapest clearance bargains that I could find, regardless of whether I actually loved the piece, or even liked how I looked in it.
I had boxes and boxes of clothes, and too many pieces in my closet, and frankly, too many days when walking into the closet produced tears instead of a cute outfit. When you're staring at 50+ pieces, and you can't find anything that matches, fits, and makes you feel pretty, it is time for something to change.
So I'm clearing out. I don't have a specific numerical goal in mind, like Cate, although I find her minimalistic ideal highly appealing. I'm just aiming for a closet of clothing that is simple, pretty, and that I actually enjoy wearing.