I’ve been incrementally decluttering my closet for the past 2 years, but I’ve always avoided going into my shoe closet because one, I love shoes, two, I ‘invest’ in them, and three, it’s my form of self-expression. Footwear is my ultimate weakness, so giving them up may also mean slowly letting go of a huge chunk of who I am as a person.
But I’m really serious about this new lifestyle I’m embarking on. Even if it breaks my heart, I’ve got to do it.
So here’s how my shoe closet looks like pre-purge. I took them out of the rack because I want to make sure there’s nothing hiding in the corners or whatever.
I have 36 pairs of shoes in total, and I’ve only worn half of it the past year. The rest are just rotting in my closet. Aside from the 3-point criteria I established in Part I, I kept in mind these 2 additional things to know which pair I should either keep or let go:
- I thought of 3-4 major activities I’m often immersed in. What are the shoes that best suit those events/activities? For me, I’m normally in the office, school, in a concert, working out or travelling. Given these situations, it did not make much sense for me to keep my heels and boots so those were no-brainers. I just left with me 3 heels for formal events like weddings and my Chelsea boots because *fashion*.
- Since my shoes is a form of self-expression, I left behind my bright blue Vans sneakers and silver-toed slip ons. Now that most of my clothers are black, I’m afraid to look too boring/monotonous. Keeping these 2 pairs will add in a little variety so I won’t get tired of what how I look like and prevent me from shopping for more items.
With these five things in mind, I’ve transformed my shoe closet to this:
My shoe collection is now down to 16 – a 56% decrease from my previous hoard. It was super helpful that I thought of those qualifications as everything in my closet now has a purpose and function:
I made sure I stuck to the basic principle of minimalism being about keeping things that add more value, function, and purpose to ones life. It’s important to note that you don’t have to give up the things you love to exercise minimalism. In my case, I decided to keep the 2 bright-colored shoes because I felt that not having standout pieces will limit me from expressing myself to other people. Not being able to do so will drive me nuts, so I’d rather keep those 2 pairs with me than get frustrated for not being able to show my style for the sake of decluttering.
Two down. The last purge will be for my toys, books, bags, and other miscellaneous stuff. I’m shortlisting the items I’ll sell after I pin down those I will donate. Stay tuned for that.