I am a little too hard wired to cynical to be someone who can open heartedly embrace self help or lifestyle fads. I like the idea of slow living and of daily rituals that make you feel good but I’m not the type to throw my faith out to the universe and see what comes back. So this article really isnt The Life Changing Magic of Tidying. I love things to be organised, taken care of, easy, but if I’m honest I think the main pleasure of a tidy home is to enjoy it and mess it up again. I have perused The Life Changing Magic of Tidying and house cure’s on Apartment Therapy, I’m happy for any tidying tips that make life simpler, but I think I wasn’t the target market. As a new mum who had a long maternity leave, clutter and cleaning are now dealt with on turbo charge and we are never going to have a sterile, uber organised space even if I wanted one (which I don’t, I think houses have to breathe to feel homely) with a rampant toddler. Moreover, when it comes to clothing, past the 6 monthly clear out and vacuum bag packing of out of season clothes, my wardrobe is a bazaar of haphazard semi-chaos which I like. But something that gives me space in the most unashamedly cluttered part of my life? Yes please! So with this in mind, I am sharing the kind of tip that will not change your life but may solve a problem we share.
This is such a simple life hack that it almost feels silly mentioning, but simplicity can be genius and I’ve become quite evangelical with friends about it so I’m sharing here. Have you ever bought clothes hangers? To me this had always seemed something for people who need order beyond the normal, or maybe fashionistas, but not an average girl staple. It seems like a massive indulgence when you’ve bought enough clothes as a teenager to have a wardrobe entirely taken up by matching Topshop ones – actually I always liked that my hangers looked the same and interchangeable, it makes it easier to see the actual clothes. But when I happened upon some gorgeous blush and mint ones in Tiger, 5 for £1, I was tickled so much by the colours that I bought some. When I put the hangers I’d bought in the wardrobe I had a bit of a game changer moment. The space created! Not just a little bit, but with 15 new hangers I could now get my arm in and thumb through my clothes!! I then picked up some copper effect ones in Primark similiarly cheap and invested in some Hay & Nomess Copenhagen ones from Amara. The difference. Oh my goodness the difference!
I think your wardrobe does tell a story and both quantity and variety are an absolute necessity. Wardrobes should be like Narnia and contain whole worlds of things that interest you and tell a story about your likes and personality, can spark confidence for particular occasions or just comfort the everyday. Yes we only wear 20% of our clothes yada, yada, yada. So my Vivienne Westwood animal claw toe boots don’t serve any purpose other than to make me smile, remind me of youth, and wink the unlikely opportunity to be worn again. But I love that they’re there, I have sold a lot of Westwood from my student days and made a big profit, but these are my museum piece and my pleasure. However, I admit that keeping relics takes space, if you’ve hit 35 like me you legitimately own more than 5 pairs of jeans or 30 party dresses or more pairs of ballet flats than you care to admit, and don’t get my husband on knitwear! Most of my everyday wardrobe flits around mummy life with a touch of kooky but that doesn’t mean I will never need to wear something beloved from the past on particular days I fancy it. These hangers allow me to do just that, to have a wardrobe which can house the everyday alongside beloved or interesting pieces from my past.
If you want to fit more in your wardrobe or you want to get more space in an already crammed one then hangers are a product to put on the shopping list. Quite specifically hangers like these pictured, they are so much thinner than plastic ones from the store or the wooden ones my husband has which are total space stealers, and they truly do give you back somewhere in the region of 30-40% usable extra space. My mother was worried they may damage my clothes but I don’t think this will happen, whilst they are thin there is support and some kind of coating that cushions the raw material. I will update if my garments end in a sorry state later, but for now I’m fantastically impressed by what only 50 or so pieces of wire can do for your clothes organisation. Tiger don’t sell online in the UK, but I did notice some fabulous mustard green ones in store last week… Go forth and prosper!