How to Organize Your Closet Around the Pandemic

The beginning of a new year is the ideal time for a closet audit, but figuring out what to keep, donate or toss is proving to be a challenge for those of us who've been housebound a whole year.

Prior to the pandemic kicking all the way in, I had taken time to pull out all the clothes, shoes and accessories that no longer served me with the promise of selling online or donating. But after a year of not getting dressed-dressed, I’m feeling very territorial about my pieces. Things I thought I could part with are now being looked at with a post-pandemic eye, where anything could be a moment that 2020 didn’t let happen.

With the uncertainty involved in our return to social norms, the best way to finesse your style options is to respect the zeitgeist and prioritize those things that fit within it. Organize and store the good stuff you can't wear strictly because the pandemic won’t let you live life to the fullest. Now is not the time to be hasty about tossing and giving things away. Until we return to our normal social climate, having a little hoarder in your spirit isn’t necessarily a bad thing.

Organize your wardrobe for these pandemic streets

Toss anything ill-fitting, old and worn out.

This is an easy one. Get rid of anything that doesn’t fit or is not in good, wearable condition. Exceptions can be made for items that have sentimental value, but be careful with that. Make sure the purge extends to your underwear drawer and toss those old bras, panties, boxers, etc.

Invest in good loungewear and athleisure. Working from home and having limited opportunities to go out, it’s very easy to get into a rut or just stop caring about how you look altogether. Don’t let the devil use you. The loungewear and athleisure gods have our backs on this one. There are tons of brands offering cute, comfy, affordable pieces to get you through your Zooms, quick trips to the grocery store and all those days and nights on the sofa, with style.

Keep all your fancy clothes… for now. Dressier clothes are usually a one-and-done deal, which makes them perfect for resale and donating. That said, if you’ve been following Covid safety guidelines and staying home, you’ve gone at least a year without a proper dress-up moment—everything is fair game. Gather your fancier pieces and store them in garment bags. If you’re not sure you’ll ever wear something, hold on to it until we’re all able to party the way they do in Atlanta and decide then what’s worth keeping.

Go for footwear that makes sense. I’m not telling anyone to stop buying shoes, ever, but I’m also not the girl wearing stilettos in a blizzard, meaning I respect practicality. These days, if you’re leaving the house, chances are you’re doing something that requires comfortable footwear—walking the dog, making a Target run, etc. Investing in sneakers and low-heeled boots that allow you to take care of business and quickly get out of folks’ faces is the best move. As for your fancy footwork, follow the rule for dress clothes and store them for now, because you never know.

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