Wardrobe Purge. Do you?

As the weather finally started to feel like summer it was time to clean my wardrobe, transferring my winter clothes to storage and substituting with summer appropriated ones. Instead of just adding them mindless inside my wardrobe, I did a purge. A lot of my sewing items were either rejected or put on the refashion pile. Lauren and Leila are selling their handmade items that doesn’t fit anymore, where Dixie recently refashion some of her skirts.
I want to know if you revisit your unused handmade items?
How often? Do you keep them even if they don’t fit? 
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  • I purge at the end of every season. I sew so much that I need to make space. My pieces are given to the Salvation Army or a group like that. I’ve refashioned a few things but the majority of them are passed on.

  • I only started sewing this year. I do try to purge every season and this is the first one that I made a refashion pile. I did make a Scout Tee out of an old maxi dress which will get a lot more wear than the maxi ever did.

  • I recently did that. Threw away masses of stuff, including some things I had made. Next time, I’ll do a refashion sweep instead, sounds like a better idea.

  • Hello Rachel, I think yes even if they don’t fit I would always keep handmade clothes. A) because I often spent a long time making them, its hard to say goodbye and B) perhaps one day a daughter or a niece might come along and LOVE IT…the amount of times my mum has said, oh I used to have (and I made) exactly that when i’m drooling over some crochet dress that I would love to make but cannot crochet. …then again I am a bit of a hoarder. xx happy summering~ !!

  • I tend to use the same criteria for handmade clothes as I do for purchased ones. If it doesn’t fit (and is unlikely to fit again), is hopelessly out of style, and especially if the fabric isn’t such good quality, it goes into the donation bag. That said, my older handmades were not made so well, not fitted well, or were made with less than ideal fabric. So, in that sense, it is also editing of my own work. Perhaps as my skills get better, then I will tend to keep things…

  • I tend to keep things if they’re good quality and I like them… I have hoarding tendencies, but I also love rediscovering old clothes and I think my daughter will enjoy it in the future. So instead of letting everything squish up in the wardrobe I put clothes I’m not currently wearing away in a few lidded boxes.

  • I purge regularly and sell or give to charity depending on the items. I make new stuff quite frequently and tend to wear some things to death and others not so much. To encourage myself to not wear the same pieces over and over again, I have a clear out every now and then. If I sell any pieces I re-invest the ££ in new fabrics.

  • Me too. Clothes is clothes far as I am concerned. In the unlikely event a garment reaches a point where I no longer wear it while still being presentable, I sell it or give it to charity. Chances are however, garments get culled due to indelible grease marks on the front, rips where I’ve caught something on a door knob, etc. I am hard on my gear! 🙁

  • Oh I have no space and share a tiny wardrobe with my boyfriend so I have to purge every now and then. I kinda follow the rule of “has it not been worn or thought about in 12 months” get rid of it. For some things I just rescue the notions and for other I put them on the fix/refashion pile.

  • I’m totally ruthless when it comes to making space in my wardrobe. One thing I did for the first time this year was hold a giveaway on my blog for some of my handmade clothes that I never wore. It was really satisfying seeing them go to good homes and get much more wear than I could ever give them! x

  • I regularly go through my wardrobe (every 6 months or so) as I like to keep it fresh. If there are items that don’t fit me, I send it off to charity. I haven’t quite got into refashioning but this the next step as I quite like what I give away most of the time and it is a great way to work out designs and improve techniques!

  • I’m remaking nearly all my Sew Weekly things, as a lot of them were ‘thrown together’. Or maybe that’s just me being a lot more critical now … Anyway, anything I don’t like anymore goes to charity, but I’m a lot more selective now that I’m older and firmly believe in ‘less is more’. That means I think more about what I buy/make, which in turn makes life a lot less complicated too! Less to purge at the end of the day!

  • Kim

    I’ve just been thinking about this issue this weekend, when I started sewing I’ve made some knitwear items in my class, which are actually pretty bad looking at them now.. But I can’t decide wether to throw them out so they’ve been lying on the floor for a while now.. And I wanted to wear one of my first dresses which I’ve made (a Truffle from Colette) and it is way too big! Now I have to take it in,but it is going to be a lot of work because I lined the top..
    Ahh yes, I don’t like to purge, but it is good to do every now and then!

  • I very rarely throw RTW or home made garments away. I even save daughters old clothes if I like the fabric much to her disgust, she thinks it is weird. They all go into a selection of patterned boxes sitting on top of my wardrobes ready to be refashioned some time in the future.

  • Rachel, great post.. I clean my closets at the end of each season.. I usually take all my clothes [handmade and RTW] to the Salvation Army ,when
    they don’t fit, or I just don’t wear them any longer.
    I have to make room , for more sewing.ha

  • I purge all the time – although mostly it is my RTW stuff that I am just not happy with. I send it all off to the charity bins, in fact we have a collection this week, so I am about to see what else I can get rid of! I don’t have an attachment to RTW at all. My me-made stuff is a different story. I have a theory, if I haven’t worn it in a year, I am not going to!!

  • I get my RTW clothing from thrift stores, which I think of more as a clothing lending library than a store. That way, when it’s time to purge my closet, it just makes me realize that I can probably find something similar later, if I ever regret giving something up.
    My handmades are kept to be learned from, experimented upon, remade or given away.

  • I really need to do this as I am running out of room in my wardroben but I find it really difficult as i am a bit of a hoarder. I occasionally manage to move things into a box under the bed to be refashioned, but now that is getting full too. I think I need to be a bit more ruthless.

  • I have been purging. My wardrobe was bursting at the seams and some of the items just needed to go – even the handmade ones. I did keep my dresses – I have lots and lots of dresses since I as 16 (I know, eeek!. However they are all special and classics of their time so I keep them for my girls (or at least I tell myself that…)

  • I’m a constant purger! I’ve got really limited space for clothes, and find that I generally wear only a small fraction of the clothes that I own, so I try to clear out the rejects every new season. If the clothes are nice but don’t work for me, I pass them along to friends or to Goodwill, but if they’re worn, stained, or not sewn well, I hack them up to use for pocket linings or facings, and I pull out zippers and buttons and stuff to reuse. 🙂

    • You are so good… I’m a bit of a hoarder and every time it’s always something I Could do to save it. My clothes rarely get worn out as I’m careful with washing and wear them in rotation, just pjs get ridiculously bad, but that’s when they are the most comfortable

  • I have had to purge about every six weeks while losing weight. The sewn by me clothes are the hardest, but I made them to fit me where I was at the time. I saved a few I really loved or loved the fabric to refashion, but donated the rest. I have also slowed down on sewing garments until I lose a bit more because getting rid of them hurts!

    • Well done on your weight lost. Yes, hurt badly… I have at least 6 pretty dresses I love and I have to re sew them because it’s too big. It will be like sewing them over again… I found sewing knits on these tradition period quite helpful. Less alterations

    • I agree with knits. They are saving me right now. I find they are simple enough I can even take them in a few times before they start to look strange.

  • I purge probably once a year. It’s hard though to get rid of clothes I’ve spent so much of my time making. I feel kind of guilty about letting them go, especially because in all likelihood if I donate them to a thrift store they won’t get put on the sales floor but rather be recycled. A sad end to my handmade clothes. 🙁 Ugh, that’s while I still have some favorite items that are too big but can’t easily be altered. I just can’t let them go!