Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living

How to Love Everything on Your Wardrobe and Never Say 'I have nothing to wear!' Again with Lisa Malone #086

January 23, 2024 Caroline
How to Love Everything on Your Wardrobe and Never Say 'I have nothing to wear!' Again with Lisa Malone #086
Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living
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Living Clutter Free Forever - decluttering tips, professional organizing, minimalist living
How to Love Everything on Your Wardrobe and Never Say 'I have nothing to wear!' Again with Lisa Malone #086
Jan 23, 2024
Caroline

Want to know how to create a clutter-free paradise for your wardrobe? Listen to get the invaluable guidance of professional organizer Lisa Malone. Feel empowered to breathe new life into your personal space, discovering the joy of selecting outfits from a curated collection that truly reflects your unique style. With Lisa's expertise, we peel back the layers of clothing clutter, revealing a boutique ambiance in your closet that elevates your daily routine into a delightful experience.

After significant life changes, such as embracing parenthood, our style often takes a backseat. But fear not, as we tread this path together, sharing stories of swapping stilettos for sneakers and recognizing that our attachments to clothing are more than just fabric deep. We delve into the psychology behind our wardrobe choices and the transformative effect the right pieces have on our confidence and self-expression. It's a celebration of the clothes that "spark joy," and a compassionate look at the emotional ties that make purging our closets a deeply personal affair.

As the episode unfolds, we don't just stop at emotional anecdotes; we arm you with actionable strategies to tackle the practical side of decluttering. Discover the sense of release that comes from letting go of the unworn and unloved, and learn how simple tools like a donation bag or unified hangers can revolutionize your closet space. We also touch on the wisdom of investing in experiences and self-care over temporary material thrills, guiding you towards a wardrobe that's not only stylish but also smartly curated. Join us in this conversation that promises more than just a clutter-free space—it's a stepping stone to refining and embracing your personal style.

Links from this episode:
Join the online membership Clutter Free Collective HERE

Links mentioned by Lisa Malone:
https://www.youhavearrived.net
Grab your FREE guide here https://www.youhavearrived.net/purgingguide 

I would LOVE to hear from you. Text Message me here.

Thanks for listening! For more organizational motivation, support and free resources:
Join my online membership Clutter Free Collective
Join my podcast Facebook group Living Clutter Free Forever Podcast: KonMari® Inspired Organizing | Facebook
Visit my website www.caroline-thor.com
Come and say 'hi' on Instagram @caro.thor
Follow me on Facebook @carolineorganizer

Show Notes Transcript Chapter Markers

Want to know how to create a clutter-free paradise for your wardrobe? Listen to get the invaluable guidance of professional organizer Lisa Malone. Feel empowered to breathe new life into your personal space, discovering the joy of selecting outfits from a curated collection that truly reflects your unique style. With Lisa's expertise, we peel back the layers of clothing clutter, revealing a boutique ambiance in your closet that elevates your daily routine into a delightful experience.

After significant life changes, such as embracing parenthood, our style often takes a backseat. But fear not, as we tread this path together, sharing stories of swapping stilettos for sneakers and recognizing that our attachments to clothing are more than just fabric deep. We delve into the psychology behind our wardrobe choices and the transformative effect the right pieces have on our confidence and self-expression. It's a celebration of the clothes that "spark joy," and a compassionate look at the emotional ties that make purging our closets a deeply personal affair.

As the episode unfolds, we don't just stop at emotional anecdotes; we arm you with actionable strategies to tackle the practical side of decluttering. Discover the sense of release that comes from letting go of the unworn and unloved, and learn how simple tools like a donation bag or unified hangers can revolutionize your closet space. We also touch on the wisdom of investing in experiences and self-care over temporary material thrills, guiding you towards a wardrobe that's not only stylish but also smartly curated. Join us in this conversation that promises more than just a clutter-free space—it's a stepping stone to refining and embracing your personal style.

Links from this episode:
Join the online membership Clutter Free Collective HERE

Links mentioned by Lisa Malone:
https://www.youhavearrived.net
Grab your FREE guide here https://www.youhavearrived.net/purgingguide 

I would LOVE to hear from you. Text Message me here.

Thanks for listening! For more organizational motivation, support and free resources:
Join my online membership Clutter Free Collective
Join my podcast Facebook group Living Clutter Free Forever Podcast: KonMari® Inspired Organizing | Facebook
Visit my website www.caroline-thor.com
Come and say 'hi' on Instagram @caro.thor
Follow me on Facebook @carolineorganizer

Caroline Thor:

Hi there, I'm Caroline Thor, professional organizer, konmari consultant, teacher and mum of three. I started off my life as a mum feeling overwhelmed, disorganized and desperately trying to carve out some time for me amongst the nappies, chaos and clutter. One day, one small book called the Life-Changing Magic of Tidying changed everything and I began to learn strategies for making everyday life easier. Today I have the systems in place that means life can throw almost anything at me, and I want to share them with you. If you're an overwhelmed mum struggling to keep it together, then this is the podcast for you. Grab a coffee and settle in for a quick chat with someone who gets your reality. Hello and welcome to the latest episode of the Living Plutter Free Forever podcast. I hope your week has got off to a good start if you're listening to this on the day that it comes out a Tuesday, and I know you're going to love what's coming up in this episode. But before we start with that, I am so thrilled for the members of my membership, the clutter free collective, because they have been making so much progress and they are being so supportive of each other. It's just an amazing community. As we come towards the end of January and head into February, there are going to be some very exciting developments in the membership, so I would love to have you there as part of that. If you would like to check it out, go to caroline-thorcom forward slash clutter, and if you sign up for a month and find it's not for you, then, no questions asked, you can cancel your membership. So you have absolutely nothing to lose. Until the end of February, I am still offering the founding members fee of 22 euros a month, which is the lowest price it's ever going to be. So if you would like to get in and fix your price at that, then come and join us for the rest of January and into February and take advantage of everything that's going to be happening. Caroline-thorcom forward slash clutter. I will put the link in the show notes, but we would love to have you join our vibrant community.

Caroline Thor:

If you listened to the last episode, you will have heard me talking about how to organize laundry whether that's the system that you use or your actual space where you do your laundry and there has been amazing feedback from that episode. It obviously touched a nerve with many of you and today's episode, although I recorded it actually before Christmas, follows on really nicely from the topic of laundry. Today I'm talking to Lisa Lisa Malone. She is a professional organizer based in the US and she is also the co-founder of the online course you have Arrived. Her aim is to empower women to create a wardrobe and a closet that is full of clothes they love and that they learn how to find their style, so that we never make those buying mistakes again. I can't wait to let you hear what we talked about, so let's not wait any longer, lisa welcome. Thank you so much for joining me today.

Lisa Malone:

Thank you for having me. I'm super excited to be here.

Caroline Thor:

I love that. I keep connecting with professional organizers all over the world and you're part of Inspired Organizer, which is a group of professional organizers worldwide, and there have been various other members from the group on the podcast. So I'm super pleased to have you on today and I'm excited about what we're going to talk about because I think people are going to love it. So, before we get started on all the good stuff, tell us a little bit about yourself.

Lisa Malone:

Sure, I started an organizing business three years ago. Prior to that I worked in technology, mostly from Microsoft, and I coached technology businesses how to expand their practice. But I had a $25 million quote. That was very stressful. I was a mama for boys. I was kind of burning out after 20-plus odd years in the business and I thought let me downsize a little bit and do a career 2.0 and figure out my passion and start a business a small business. So I didn't realize my passion was organizing until COVID, when my friends and family were looking for help and I just started helping them make their house more functional because their house was now.

Lisa Malone:

Originally houses were for living and during COVID they were for learning, with school working, when everyone had to quarantine and living and things just started going crazy because the house couldn't handle all this new functions. So it led me to start my business in organizing and then I realized that my passion lied in helping caretakers who manage the home actually focus on themselves. So when I was brought in to organize, mostly were women. They were working or stay-at-home moms, they were juggling a lot of things and they were hiring me to fix the home, but they had what they needed. Their husband had their hobbies and all their things and the women had the messy closet and put themselves last.

Lisa Malone:

So I started like let's take a step back in your home and let's focus on your clothes and your bedroom so you're more well rested. So you wake up in the morning, you find everything you want to wear, you feel good about yourself and confident, you walk out into the home and now you're ready to approach the day in a completely different mindset than you did when you were scattered and frazzled and exhausted. So that's where I started in focusing on transforming closets. So I describe it as I help women with a closet full of clothes and nothing to wear transform their wardrobe and their closet into a boutique style shoppable space.

Caroline Thor:

Oh, I like that.

Lisa Malone:

Yes, it's fun too.

Caroline Thor:

It's really fun, and I love the clothes because this episode, although we're recording it beginning of December, it's actually January now when everyone's listening to it, and the Konmari method, which I use, starts with clothes. That's the first category of items that we go through. So this is great for January and people that are wanting to get started and I think for women especially, clothes is absolutely the right place to start. I totally agree with you. So you have developed your business even further because you now have an online course. You have arrived helping support women develop their own personal style. Now my podcast tends to turn a little bit into let's coach Caroline on things that she needs to help with, so feel free to use me as your guinea pig this evening. But what I often think is why do we even need to develop a personal style, or do we actually have one without realising it?

Lisa Malone:

Yes. So the answer is yes to both the challenges. So we talked earlier before we started recording. You wear 20 percent of your clothes, 80 percent of the time, and most of the time that's for convenience, right. You know what you look good in. You know what you're comfortable in. It's an easy pick, doesn't create a lot or need a lot of thought. But you've got all these things in your closet, that some things you love, some things you don't like. So with that, the reason why it's easier to create or understand what you like to wear is it gives you the roadmap when you go into your closet to be able to purge. So, for example, a lot of people hold on to who they used to be.

Lisa Malone:

I used to be a corporate employee. I had business meetings. I had those clothes and I knew how to wear them and what I looked good in, and it was really kind of a tight wardrobe of what I felt powerful in. You know where I would walk into a meeting and I know that I was confident and was well represented and I knew who I was. Where things went a little sideways for me is then I became an organizer, right. So I had my organizing clothes, my joggers. You know, I wore like a neat shirt, so I never looked sloppy because I wanted to really come in looking and feeling as confident with my clients. My gap was in the middle. How the heck, and what do I wear now?

Lisa Malone:

So we all have a personal style. It's just kind of defining who we are today. You know, it's easy to remember who we were. Do we want to still be that person? Probably not, I don't know, maybe. But I also am a big, big proponent of what we can use, what we already own. So, speaking of 2024, my new mantra is 2024 is going to be the year of using what we already own. We have beautiful things, but it takes a little time to understand how to wear them or what to do with them, to create new things, you know, by mixing and matching and that type of thing. So, to go back to the original question, the style and understanding, it is a good roadmap to go into the closet and kind of rethink items without encouraging them.

Lisa Malone:

So I'll give you an example of a stylist that I've partnered with to create this course. She came into my closet and she was helping me find that middle ground and so you were saying you're a good case study. I am the perfect case study when it comes to style. I like to walk up to a mannequin and say I'll have what she's having, because I know it's like kind of what I'm feeling, you know, and I think I want to look like that. But where mistakes happen is where it's more of a trend, you know, like puffy sleeves and, you know, not flattering on me.

Lisa Malone:

So she talked me through my clothes and she was like you don't want to get rid of this work skirt because if you paired it with a T-shirt and a jean jacket and some wedges they would be great for date night. By the way, this was my goal, my style. I wanted it to be dressing nice for date night because it was in between. It was in corporate clothes and joggers and I also was learning how to golf, so I didn't want to look unprofessional in the golf course. Also, I wanted to have distracting clothes to distract from my terrible golf swing. So I thought if I have fun clothes, everyone's going to be like, well, she's cute. You know she can't golf, but she's looking good, right.

Caroline Thor:

I like the tactic.

Lisa Malone:

that's very good Distraction distraction, yes, and fake it to you, make it and all that good stuff. But it really is up to each person one, how you want to feel and two, what you determine to be success. That's why we call the course you have arrived, Because fashion and clothing is a journey. It's not a final destination. It should be fun, not stressful. I would break into a sweat going to the mall, Like I have to find an outfit. I have this event. What am I going to wear? You know any stress that involved picking the outfit for the occasion was occasion for distress.

Lisa Malone:

So, you know, the course is about. Teaching people like this can be fun and easy. Here are the basic steps. My approach to life is all I need is to learn enough to be dangerous, and I've got myself started and then I don't pressure myself. After that I don't even pressure myself to learn enough to be dangerous. So we're trying to take people along with us on that DIY kind of a process.

Caroline Thor:

Yeah.

Lisa Malone:

It's overwhelming to figure out your style.

Caroline Thor:

It is, and I think we regardless of whether you've had a career that means you've got a perhaps a more high powered wardrobe, or even if you've just had your first kid and you've discovered that your feet aren't the size they used to be. I was working with a client this week bless her and she had loads and loads of gorgeous high heeled shoes, pumps, and they were beautiful, but she didn't fit in any of them anymore and it was a long time since she'd had child number one. She's recently had child number two and she was like I am never going to wear these again. One, they don't fit. And two, they don't fit with my lifestyle anymore. I'm not going to be putting these on to run around the playground after the kids, and if I do go out somewhere nice with my husband, I only need sort of one or two pairs of shoes a year. I don't need all of these pairs that I have, and she ended up donating them all and I was.

Caroline Thor:

I was similar. I mean I used to teach in schools in the UK and I had my style for teaching and that involved high heels and I used to totter down the corridor in my high heels to go and teach my lessons. It was just sort of my thing and as soon as I had my first child I've not worn them since. I mean they just don't, and I've kept one pair in case, god forbid, I have to go to a funeral or something and have to look nice. But even now I wouldn't choose to go out of an evening wearing heels. I've just not comfortable in them anymore. I want my. Doc Martins are my go to now.

Lisa Malone:

And, honestly, what I love about today's style is those white tennis shoes are all the rage yes God, because I swear my feet are ruined from wearing heels back in like the 80s and the 90s and pantyhose, oh, awful, awful. So you make a good point about or that made me think about it. When you're talking about your former selves, those things are very emotional. So when you're a mom, especially a brand new mom first time your body doesn't fit in your clothes anymore, you know it's a real eye opener that it's so emotional.

Lisa Malone:

The life you had before kids is something that you loved, hopefully, but now you love this new life and you feel guilty about loving the old life even though you've got this new life that you love, and so it's finding the balance between recognizing this is an emotional experience, which is why it's so overwhelming to purge your closet. But when you get past it, the freedom that that is an edited wardrobe where you can find what you like, you fit in what you have, you feel confident in what you have and you can, you know, have some fun with it. That's the new approach to it and that whole feeling. You know I have arrived. You know I honor the path that got me. I'm here, but I'm determining the path I'm taking forward and that's the big switch in the mindset between you know, being miserable, walking in your closet, going, oh I haven't done this, or I'm too overweight or I, you know, I don't even know.

Caroline Thor:

I've got nothing to wear, right.

Caroline Thor:

How often do we stand in front of a closet full of clothes and say I've got nothing to wear? Yes, because we don't know anymore what we've got, what fits us, what suits us anymore. I've even discovered that my style if I even have one, which I'm very dubious about it's changed even in the last five years. The last time I conmarried my clothes was five years ago, and I've realized this, having done the switch from summer to autumn. Wardrobes this season change. I haven't worn an awful lot of things this summer, an awful lot of things. I just haven't gone for them. They clearly don't spark joy for me anymore, so I've let those go. I took those straight to donation so that I don't have them taking up space for next year.

Lisa Malone:

Yes, so I discovered Marie Kondo a while ago when I was still working corporate and I love using the phrase spark joy because I used to shout it out. I've got four boys and a husband and they would be like, okay, and I wanted to do their closet, but Marie says no, you don't do other people's stuff, they have to do it. So I just was enjoying all in my own drawers and my closet, but it's such a freeing thing to just appreciate the article of clothing and then let it go, guys, that it doesn't serve you any longer. And yeah, so it just was a whole awakening.

Caroline Thor:

And this idea that everything you have in your closet you love, that you would choose to put any of them on in the morning. I mean that is just so freeing. And I had quite an interesting conversation with one of my children's therapists recently and she had said to me that that's not possible, that's not a thing, but we can't all just have clothes that we love. I was like, why can't we? Why not? Then don't buy things that you don't love. And it's a case of finding out what it is you feel good in and what you feel comfortable in and what makes you perhaps feel sexy sometimes, what makes you feel confident. And those are the items that get to stay, because for different things they spark joy.

Caroline Thor:

And I'm wearing this awful looking jumper this evening because I had planned to not be wearing for the video but, as I was explaining to Lisa before we started recording, I'd come down to half an hour before to set everything up to find that there was rain lashing against the window in the room where I was going to record. So I had to quickly move everything and I didn't have time to change. This sweater that I'm wearing is 26 years old and it's very bubbly all over, but it hasn't got any holes in it and it's so comfortable and it keeps me warm and it's the one I wear every winter If I'm at home or I'm going to take the dog out for a walk. So you get to see me in my dog clothes.

Lisa Malone:

Yes, you need it. So this thing that I'm wearing, it was a work outfit and I bought it because when I would go to conferences I would be cold, so I could take this off and it's like it's got sleeves, but it's kind of capy, and then I could take it off and I could put it back on when I got hot. But the thing I like about it is everyone compliments me when I wear it because it makes my eyes greener. It's a good color for me, it's a unique cut and I like to, you know, a little different, so it's not boring. But when I have clients that they're like I love this sweater, I wear it every year. I've owned it for 30 years. I'm like then, keep it because you feel good in it. Yeah, and that's it.

Lisa Malone:

And I learned from my business partner, the personal stylist. She said it doesn't matter what you wear, it's how good you feel in it, because the confidence is what brings out the final touches in an outfit. Yeah, and you know like if you buy something trendy and you're guessing and you're like but everyone has it and I want to try it, but it's uncomfortable, you catch yourself in the mirror and you're like good Lord, why am I wearing this? You're all of a sudden shrinking. You're. I want to go home. You don't want to talk to people. You're not smiling. You know it completely changes your whole look. Yeah, so just you know, learning about your body type, learning about your coloring, learning about what you know. Like you said, spark's joy makes you feel a little bit with a kick in your step that is going to transform the clothes in your closet into something that you love.

Caroline Thor:

Yeah, and those should also be, even if it's your casual clothes, your gym wear or your sweatpants that you're wearing, that you just pop out in the morning to drop the kids at school or whatever even though should be the ones that you feel great in, not the sweatpants that are a bit tight around your bum or a bit tight around your waist or actually not that keen on the color. I got rid of all those ones and I've only got two pairs now, but I love them and I feel I look awful in them, because I shouldn't be really running around wearing sweatpants. But I love wearing them because they're comfortable and I've got to the stage in my life where I'm past caring what anyone else thinks. I just want to feel comfortable if I'm doing stuff like that and I can suck it all in a bit for other things when I need to Right.

Lisa Malone:

But that's why I love that joggers came out, because joggers they're still sweatpants, but they don't look like sweatpants. You know, it looks like you've cared a little bit to not go swapping off in your sweatpants. Yeah, but a little more tailored. You know you can match it with something and anyway, but yeah, the point of determining your style, even, like you were saying, you're not 100% sure of it, you know what you feel confident in. So I have a purging guide that's free, that you can download. I gave you the link to it that you can share it with the viewers.

Lisa Malone:

Because, regardless of whether you've developed your style or not, the first step is to go into your closet and get rid of everything you don't like, you don't wear, even if it has a tag on it, the damage is done. You bought it, you haven't worn it, somebody in need needs it more than you need it to be hanging in your closet and you will uncover all the items I can't. Every client says to me oh my God, I've been looking for that. I love this. It's because it's sandwiched between all the clothes you don't wear and you can't find it because there's too much stuff in the space.

Caroline Thor:

So and they don't get cheaper just because you leave them hanging there. I mean, if you spend an awful lot of money on them, they don't become like less. It's like having a gym membership and you never go. It still costs the same amount.

Lisa Malone:

Right and the money is never coming back to you. No, exactly, tell it yeah, you will not sell it and get that money back?

Caroline Thor:

No, yep, no, and another. Just going back to the other thing that I mentioned at the start, do we actually have a personal style without realizing it? My children have actually proved to me that we do in a very entertaining way, in that if I go clothes shopping with my daughters even like five years ago or so, when they were much, much younger they will walk around the shop and they will go oh, look so, and so would like that. Oh, auntie Kathy would like that. Because they have noticed the style that my friends have, without even being aware of it. That that's the sort of thing that Kathy wears, or that's the sort of thing that Bianca wears, and they will point them out, or they'll bring stuff to me and say, oh look, mummy, this is really you. And so we do have a personal style, even if we're not necessarily really aware of it ourselves. Other people are exactly yes.

Lisa Malone:

So that is a good point, and it lends me to also mention that you need to be careful about trends, because people know what looks good on you, but when you are comparing yourself to someone else instead of thinking what looks good on me, then you will find yourself buying things that are not a fit. It's the pressure of the peer pressure. But if you went with a friend and they're like how do you think this looks? You want to take a friend who's going to be honest and not, you know, try to dress you like they would dress you. And a side story I went to a department store that offered free stylist, so you had to buy the clothes there.

Lisa Malone:

But they would pull all kinds of clothes, but they would ask you a million questions like what do you like? You know, what are you doing, what's the goal, what's your occasion? And I would buy them a bunch of clothes and every once, every three or four years, I would use them to add to my wardrobe, my work wardrobe. So it was great. It was a great experience. I bought things that I love, that I still have today, from this one woman.

Lisa Malone:

But the next time I went it was a different woman and she was younger, bless her heart, and she wanted to dress me like she dressed. She didn't ask me any questions, she put me in all these things and I returned everything. I was like, who am I kidding? I was like, oh sure, she thinks this younger looking outfit would look good on me and that would be flattering and you know it would be the way I wanted to feel. But I was like, literally no, it was just she was dress me wrong. So take to heart what makes you feel good, what people compliment you on, what people are seeing you, because your daughters would not tell you. Kids are honest, right.

Caroline Thor:

Yeah, brutal.

Lisa Malone:

They would tell you when something doesn't look good. When they say, mommy, this looks like you, they mean this looks like you when you look great, right. So you're leaning into those type of items will get you further down the road in developing your personal style than not. And in the course we talk about, like, what are types of styles? There's preppy, there's classic, there's sporty, there's blah, blah, blah, whatever. But you can be a combination of them.

Lisa Malone:

I think of myself where I did. I wanted to be preppy, but preppy clothes aren't necessarily flattering on me because I'm a rectangle, even though my business partner doesn't like to associate our bodies with shapes or fruits. So I needed things like a shorter jacket or things that cinched me in the middle because I was just kind of like, you know, straight up and down, shoulders and hips same width, waist same width Out of out of style, yeah. So I figured preppy isn't really me, even though I desperately wanted to look like I walked out of the Ralph Lauren catalog, it really wasn't working 100% for me, so I figured out ways to make it evolve to be a preppy type of classic style. I also don't like to shop, so I'd rather buy a classic item that doesn't trend because it will last across years and no one will know. I didn't just buy it yesterday.

Caroline Thor:

So also, once you've gone through your closet and you're very clear about what you look good in and what you like to wear, you don't feel so bad paying a little bit more for an item because you're not going to have as many items and you know you will just wear it, wear it. Wear it because it's one of your go-tos, because you haven't got that much choice anymore. And I've picked up a couple of things in the last few years that have cost more than I would have paid in the past. But they're being worn multiple times a week and I, every time I wear it, it's like that's when they do get cheaper, because every time you wear them Cost per wear.

Lisa Malone:

Yes, it costs per wear.

Caroline Thor:

And they still, because they cost a little bit. It's not always the case that things that cost more wear well and don't fuzzle and all the rest of it, but on the whole they generally do, so that's a really, really good thing. So what do you think are the top three mistakes women make when they're editing their closets?

Lisa Malone:

Not trying things on. We talked about changing of our body shape. So you go in and like I love this, I know it's my size, I'm going to keep it. But if you haven't tried it on or worn it in the past couple of years, you need to try it on because bodies shift. You could be the same exact weight, but you know, like shoes, all not the same. Yes, yeah, so that's.

Lisa Malone:

The first mistake is not trying things on. The second mistake is giving up too early. If you take a little bit out of time and you do it in achievable parts, not getting overwhelmed, then you can get through it. Just don't give up. Just start with one section at a time and as you go through hanging clothes, for example, turn the hanger backward. When you decide you've tried on that outfit or that piece and you're keeping it, you know, don't, don't do it again. Just turn the hanger backwards and then you'll know you can continue on with the next set of hangers or what have you.

Lisa Malone:

And then the third thing is not having a donation bag, box or bin on the floor of your closet. This is huge. Yes, a lot of people take off to the point on an item and they don't like it and instead of giving it away, they put it back on the hanger and been like. I'll deal with that later. So if you just create something super easy to toss things into when it gets full and make it something that you can throw in a bin you know, in in the States there's a in every parking lot of every store. There seems to be a donation for clothing. So if in the bottom of your closet is just simply a garbage bag, then you can tie that garbage bag up, throw it in your car you know when you're dropping off the kids are going to the grocery store throw it in the donation bin. Then you're just making things an easy way to get out of the room instead of putting it back on the hanger. Do not put it on the hanger. No wait, do I get a fourth thing?

Caroline Thor:

Yeah, go for it. We're always up for more tips here.

Lisa Malone:

Yes. The fourth thing is standardize your hangers. So if you've got a wire hanger, a wooden hanger, plastic hanger, if there's, that's a lot of visual noise. That's not calming, doesn't make this space calming, but more importantly, it also takes up a lot of space. It's so the plastic hangers, things, fall onto the floor. That's when the pile on floor starts is because you're one thing down there, you don't know what it is, but with the heck, let's throw some more things down there. The wooden hangers are too wide, so a thin felt hanger will give you that visual aesthetic but it also will keep the clothes on the hanger. It's thinner so you can hang more clothes in the space and it's just a better decision than trying to manage. And then you can recycle your wire hangers back to the dry cleaners. If you dry clean your clothes, you can use the thicker hangers in different areas of the home, but in your closet clothing closet it's better to have standardized than hangers.

Caroline Thor:

I totally agree. I made this mistake Years ago nine years ago when I first did the Konmari method or first applied it in my home, and I decided I wanted everything to look standardized. And I happened to be an IKEA, I think and I bought their wooden hangers and I just bought loads of them and I hadn't really thought about the fact which I now know through experience that they are so wide that they end up making your closet really full very, very quickly. I'm fortunate and I really don't have very many clothes left, so it's not an issue in my closet. But for someone with more clothes than I have, I always say to them you know, you really need to get the thinner felt covered ones for the reasons you just said, and also I'd spent money on them. I do actually like the look, so I decided I would keep them. I wasn't going to replace them, but it was a mistake. It definitely was a mistake.

Lisa Malone:

Yeah, and there's things to have a client who has wooden hangers and I wanted her to switch for her sake because she had so many slippery clothes that fell off.

Lisa Malone:

Yeah yoga instructor, but I got these rubber strips to put on the top that create the traction to keep it from falling off. But I really, really want her to switch because I want to be able to have a before and after picture to show everyone while she has the space it would take it's like for eight inches of wooden hangers. It's two inches of clothes for the thin line hangers with clothes on the top. Yeah, anyway, maximizing space is another approach to getting organized is, you know, utilize what you didn't think about using before to store it. But hangers are like the best.

Caroline Thor:

Yeah, no, definitely. I totally agree, and it's important to think about things like that. If you're not worried about the aesthetic of how it looks, then fine. If you're not someone that is bothered by the visual clutter. But I personally, I just wanted to finish the job. I just want to do, I just want to go. Okay, I've done that, and then it all looks the same, so that's cool. So I personally have been very fortunate in that I have never bought something that cost a lot of money and then regretted it and thought I can never wear that again. But I have obviously worked with an awful lot of clients who have this guilt of letting go of things because they cost so much. What advice do you have for people when they've got this guilt and I can't possibly let it go, even if they don't fit in it anymore?

Lisa Malone:

Yeah, I mean, the only thing that I suggest to clients who are feeling that way is try to help somebody else. You know, I had a co-worker who was telling me the story about how she bought these Louboutins which I don't even know if I'm saying it right the high heeled, super expensive shoes. And I was with her at a Microsoft conference in Vegas when she bought them. And I walked into the store with her and like I don't want to say anything but I'm like I don't know where you get the name you think you're going to wear those. Because she was very much like me, like getting things done, you know, always on the move, like those shoes are not possible even going out to a lovely place. But she just had to. I mean, you can consign those kind of shoes, you can get some of the money back on those kind of shoes, oh yeah. And then she decided to just donate them and I'm like good for you. So I think you have to find the satisfaction of helping you know, obviously not with the rich shoes someone less fortunate or someone who might need them. You have to replace that kind of emotion because if you won't let yourself off the hook, the guilt for spending the money. The money's gone. You know it's a learning lesson, right? Think about what you gained from the experience. Think about it. You got the feeling of the rush of buying it and that's one thing.

Lisa Malone:

I was still talk about the dopamine effect of shopping. It's so temporary, it's you come home with whatever. You're super excited. You put your stuff in the closet but odds are you've crammed it in there so you forgot what you bought because you can't find things. So what you want to do is you want to create that dopamine effect in your own closet, and you can get that when it's a shockable boutique space where everything in it is something that you got excited buying in the first time and now you're excited about wearing it. It's kind of a shift from the rush and the dopamine of shopping to the dopamine of creating a cool outfit of the things you already own and you found and were excited when you bought it. So now let's wear it and let's find a cool match that you didn't think about before. You know, one of the things we teach in the course is when you buy something, you should think about three ways you can wear it. And if you can't think of three different places or situations. Where you can wear it, don't buy it.

Lisa Malone:

So our oldest son got married two years ago, to begin December, and I bought this beautiful dress. It was $400, which I thought was a good price considering the stuff that is out there. I will never wear it again. I probably should have rented it rented from the runway, you know, I didn't even think about that because I think, you know, this is really a special occasion and I'm gonna be in pictures and it's gonna be. You know this thing. But honestly, I could have got met from Rent the Runway. I could have. I don't even know what I was thinking. So I have this $400 dress in my closet that will never wear again because when my three other kids get married, I can't wear it because it will be in the pictures. Everyone will. I'm out of a blur, so anyway, wedding dress is unique and special, let's let's back that up a minute.

Lisa Malone:

But anything else you buy, can I wear it with jeans? You know this is a cute top. I could pair this with jeans. I can pair this with yoga pants. I can wear this to shop in the grocery store. I can wear it on date night. I can wear it in a business meeting, you know.

Lisa Malone:

Then you're on to something right. Then you're like this is worth it, this is what I'm gonna take back, and I am going to walk into my closet and I'm gonna get rid of something because you odds are you're gonna put it next to something you already own. That's something similar, because you do have a type, you do have a style. So think about that as well. Cream is my jam. I have like so many cream things, but then I realized the cream thing that I'm buying home is very much like the cream things I already own. But then I will take that opportunity to get rid of something that might be a little worn and you know, just so I'm maintaining a certain amount of stuff in my space. So that's another tip for people who you don't want to refill the closet after you've just perched right.

Caroline Thor:

Yeah, no, definitely.

Caroline Thor:

And I have suggested to some clients who have a bit of a clothes tick.

Caroline Thor:

They get a real buzz out of buying clothes and therefore by the time I come into their lives they've got lots and lots of shoes or lots and lots of handbags or lots of very expensive coats.

Caroline Thor:

And we go through and we do the joy checking and we get it down to the things that they love and they want to wear and we go through the process of understanding that it's okay to let these things go and are we gonna try and sell them or are we going to donate them and all this sort of stuff? And then I suggest to them always that when they next feel this urge that they have to buy that item, that they look how much it costs and they take that money and they put it into a saving account and they gradually gather together a large amount of money over time by not spending on new items of clothes because they have enough at home already and then using that money for something that they wouldn't normally have been able to afford because the money had been spent on clothes and that could it could be that you've got a tick for buying kitchen appliances or whatever it happens to be, but that works really well and that really helps you get some perspective.

Lisa Malone:

Absolutely yeah. That's when, with our course we're we're planning to cut it down into more manageable pieces, but our price point is $497 and we do promotions all the time.

Lisa Malone:

You know it's not always $497. But when people are like, ooh, you know, I'm not sure I want to spend that. It seems like a big price tag. But then I ask people what do you think? How much do you spend when you go to the target? I don't know if you have targets in Germany, but target is notorious. Every time you walk in there you go in for one item and you come out spending $200 to $300.

Lisa Malone:

The clothes are super cute, they're trendy. Oh, by the way, these shirts only cost $5. But you buy, you know all of the things, and then it adds to your closet, which is already full of stuff you don't wear, and you now you're depressed because you don't have anything to wear. You still have a closet full of clothes and it's kind of this thing. So I love your approach to saving money. Go on a vacation, go do experiences. You can do so much with it. The clothes are flashing the pan in your life and you aren't on your deathbed wondering or wishing you would want more clothes. You're on your deathbed wishing you would have spent more time doing things with the people that you love, but you couldn't afford it. Or you know, whatever it may be, that's it's all perspective, right, yeah, and we very often will buy things to make us feel better in that moment.

Caroline Thor:

So if we know that we're putting this money to one side and perhaps we can afford a massage once a month, or we can afford to go and get a facial or pamper ourselves a bit instead of buying the things, then a bit of self care in a different way goes a lot further to making your life feel much more enhanced without needing to spend the money. Yeah, absolutely, and I think that's a good thing.

Lisa Malone:

Yeah, absolutely. And speaking of self care, a lot of my clients and students of the course I found that they spend money on everyone else but themselves. You know, the kids have everything and they're in the sports and they're in the activities, they have all the supplies, the husbands and no, I'm not man-bashing, we should all be the same way with ourselves. The, you know, hobbies are taking your. Do not hesitate because they know it's what they want to do. But we feel guilty.

Lisa Malone:

We see all of these things and so we'll go to the bargain basement discount store and buy something that's on sale and we're super proud of ourselves and excited. It spent, it cost $11, but it doesn't fit and it doesn't flatter. But then we feel guilty because we spent the money and we need to save it and we should wear it and we talk ourselves through this whole process, but we didn't buy the nicer things. I don't even know sometimes what we think. We're our own worst enemy. I'm the same way, I've done the same things, and it's just like let's change perspective now. So now I get excited to get dressed. I have so much more fun in my closet and I talk to it and we have a wonderful morning every morning and it's just like a good experience and like I want that everyone else and that's why we created the courses is we just?

Lisa Malone:

we want it to be affordable, to teach you what you want to learn as much as you want to learn. You can go deeper, you can go like enough to be dangerous to go and start doing things for yourself.

Caroline Thor:

Fantastic, so where can we find out about you? Have arrived.

Lisa Malone:

So we're online at you have arrivednet. So go to the website and you can follow us on social media. We also have a Facebook group that's private and we share our stories about how we're finding our style and how we're organizing our spaces, just so we can support each other, and you can join that through the website. So just go to the website. At you have arrivednet.

Caroline Thor:

Perfect and the resource that you mentioned earlier for the purging your closet. I will put that link and the link to your website in the show notes that if anyone wants to find out a bit more about you, that's where they can go. Thank you so much for your time today, Lisa. It's been absolutely fascinating. I've learned some stuff as well.

Lisa Malone:

So it's always a learning experience. Yes, thank you.

Caroline Thor:

You're very welcome. Well, I don't know about you, but I found that's super inspiring. I have a couple of great takeaways from that episode. I think one thing that has become really clear to me is that I perhaps need to think about those key pieces in my wardrobe that I can mix and match with other things to create more outfits than I perhaps currently wear them with. It means I'm going to get more opportunities to wear the clothes that I have in different situations, so I absolutely love that.

Caroline Thor:

And I think the other thing that I'm taking away from this episode is that we probably do have a style already. We just probably have never really given very much thought to what it is that we like to wear, what we feel comfortable in certain situations, the fact that sometimes it's okay to be wearing things that are old or not on trend, especially if we're hanging around at home, and therefore, when we go shopping and we see something that we think, oh, we might like to buy that, that we are really thinking about how it fits into the wardrobe that we already have. Does it match anything else? When are you likely to wear it? Is it similar to clothes that you already have? Ie, does it fit with the style that you already love, because that will mean that you are more likely to wear that item if you do choose to buy it.

Caroline Thor:

So some amazing takeaways from that. Now I would love to know if you think you have a style. So hop on to Instagram you can find me at carrowthor and shoot me a DM and let me know whether you think you've got a style or not, because I sort of thought I didn't at the start of this episode and now that I've talked with Lisa through it all, I think I probably do, but I need to go back and sort of hone in on exactly what that is to inform any future buying choices. So hop on carrowthor, send me a DM and let me know your thoughts on this episode and whether you think you've got a style or not. It's been amazing to have the opportunity to talk with you today. So, as ever, until next time, I'm going to guide you on your journey to find your clutter free ever after.

Transforming Your Wardrobe
Emotional Journey of Purging Closet
Personal Style and Dressing for Confidence
Organize Closet, Let Go of Unused Items
Saving Money and Finding Personal Style
Personal Style