Extreme Decluttering

Not my closet!

Not my closet!

Decluttering is cluttering up the internet these days. One of the reasons for the popularity of getting rid of “stuff” is that Baby Boomers are clearing out their parents’ homes and their own as well. For parents, their demise or decline means their homes are no longer functional. For Boomers, once the children have moved out, the family homes are too big and downsizing beckons. All of this leads to…decluttering (a truly ugly word).

I have previously written about Marie Kondo’s popular book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up. Recently I came upon a TEDx Talk about an even more drastic method for eliminating closet clutter. The 14-minute video that caught my attention is Jennifer L. Scott’s “The 10-Item Wardrobe.” For women readers: if you think Kondo’s idea about getting rid of all your clothes except those that “spark joy” was drastic, how about Scott’s recommendation that for every season your closet should contain only ten core items? She suggests 1 pair of slacks, 2 pairs of jeans, 3 dresses and 4 blouses. Ms. Scott also has a recommendation for men’s wardrobes but I wasn’t listening; I was thinking about how this method would mean wearing the same things nearly every day. Then it occurred to me that I already wear pretty much the same thing every day—a tee shirt and pants with a pocket for my phone. It just might work.

The 10-item theory is based on the lifestyle of a Parisian household where Jennifer Scott lived as a college student. Her study-abroad family were chic, lived well and did not clutter their lives with unnecessary items. They used everything they owned. What a concept! The idea seems to be catching on, at least on the internet. It will be interesting to see where it leads.



About Alexis

Alexis Rankin Popik, author of Kiss Me Over the Garden Gate, is an award-winning short story writer whose work has appeared in The Berkshire Review and Potpourri Magazine. She has penned numerous articles about local history that have been published in Connecticut Explored and the University of Connecticut School of Law and The Hartford Seminary publications. A former union organizer, Popik traveled the country educating shipyard workers about health and safety and founded a labor-management health plan before turning to writing fiction full-time. She lives with her husband in New England.
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