Walk out of your wardrobe and into a new decluttered one
Did anyone else miss the boat on spring cleaning their wardrobe? With the new year in full swing and a pretty glorious summer happening here in Melbourne I set myself a declutter challenge--reduce my wardrobe by 25%.
Why would I want to do this? Well, most of us girls--and some guys--have a lot of stuff. With the majority of my wardrobe remaining untouched, I decided to do something drastic about it. Enter Fitted for Work. I've long heard of this organisation and what better motivation than to donate items to a worthy cause.
Fitted for Work has a huge and noble mission, to help disadvantaged women get work and keep it. A not-for-profit service based in Melbourne and Parramatta, a core part of their offering is a free personal outfitting and interview service. This is crucial in helping women to enter the workforce, feel confident and be appropriately attired.
I recall watching an Australian documentary recently on five women who were homeless, looking for work and really doing it tough. I pretty much moved into action straight after that. I took one look at my old corporate wardrobe and decided there were women out there who would greatly benefit from these articles of clothing.
It can be an overwhelming task when you first start, we can become attached to our clothes at times and it can bring up mixed emotions. Or there is a fear of letting pieces go as we hold a lot of memories in our clothing too. Knowing that each item you are removing is getting an woman closer to financial independence, is a pretty good feeling though.
It took me a day or so, and this is what I ended up donating:
Fitted for Work's board member Megan Quinn ,former co-founder of luxury online boutique Net-a-Porter, advised me that the rate of women experiencing disadvantage in Australia is increasing each year. I interviewed Megan last year on her involvement with this not-for-profit. It is pretty exciting that a pioneer of the fashion industry is starting to make great inroads with helping this organisation to gain momentum.
There's a lot you can do to get involved and be a part of what I can a 'wardrobe walkout'.
Donate any unwanted clothing items to Fitted for Work. They need to be suitable for work, clean and in the best possible condition they can be. This includes clothes, shoes, handbags and accessories
Become a volunteer and personally help in the boutique or office
Become a mentor and utilise your skills in assisting women into the workforce
Shop at Dear Gladys, where your purchase helps Fitted for Work as well
The ways to help are incredible diverse and fulfilling. You'll also gain a level of satisfaction knowing you are contributing first-hand and making a difference. Also, being able to look at an organised wardrobe was a massive plus for me to:
And if you ever feel like you need a little wardrobe top-up, Fitted for Work run a pre-loved designer clothing sale on the last Saturday of every month.
Venue: Basement, Queen Victoria Women's Centre, 210 Lonsdale Street, Melbourne VIC 3000 Last Friday and Saturday of every month: Friday 11am - 7pm & Saturday 11am - 3pm Contact Details: Kathi McCulloch on 03 9662 4028
Fitted for Work are based in QV. If you need to contact them or organise to drop in, I have included their details below:
Queen Victoria Women's Centre
210 Lonsdale Street
The opening hours are:
9am to 5pm Mon-Fri
Wednesday 10am - 3.15pm
Thursday 10am - 3pm
Every second Thursday 6-8pm
Every Friday except the last Friday of the month 12-4pm
Good luck de-cluttering and if you have any feedback or need any advice, please drop me a line. I've set a mission to reduce my wardrobe by at least 50% this year. I've found the more I start, the easier it is to keep going. The true motivator is knowing you are helping a brilliant organisation give women a new lease on life.