Clean With Me: Bedroom Closet


Cleaning out your closet can be a daunting task. I know I’ve been putting it off for a while, but I decided enough was enough and set to it. I’ve laid out a three wave process that makes tackling this chore manageable and efficient. So let’s get to it!

What You’ll Need

To start, gather up a couple of bins. I use one for clothing which will be donated, and the other for clothing to pass along to family and friends. Grab your vacuum cleaner, an all-purpose cleaner, a microfiber cloth, and a garbage bag. Locate a large flat surface, where you can lay everything out. I used my bed, but the floor works too. And if possible, solicit some help if you can get it.

Closet Cleaning: Wave One

The first phase is pretty straightforward as it only involves one step. Remove absolutely everything from your closet and place it on that flat surface. We stripped our closet bare including all of the clothes that were sitting on the top shelf, the clothes that were hanging, and the clothes that were in the drawers. We also moved all of the other stuff that was clogging up our closet, blankets, suitcases, shoes, shoe boxes, old purses, hampers, and even my wedding dress. The closet was completely bare when we were done. I highly recommend doing the same.

Closet Cleaning: Wave Two

This one shouldn’t take very long, but it’s important that this gets done before bringing anything back into the closet. Clean the actual closet! Spray and wipe all the horizontal surfaces and give the closet a good vacuuming. Then throw away any garbage at this time.

Closet Cleaning: Wave Three

It’s also time to call upon patience and persistence and all the mental energy you can summon. This wave takes quite a while and can become a little bit overwhelming. So take your time. You are going to touch each and every piece of clothing that you removed in wave one and decide whether it stays or whether it goes. If it’s going to be donated place it in that bin. If you think a family member or friend will love it, place it in that bin. And if it’s going back into the closet hang it up or fold it neatly to be put away.

Remember, if you haven’t worn it in 6 months, it has to go. If it was a gift that you never wear, but you’ve felt obligated to hang on to it, it needs to go. If you keep passing it over in the closet, say bye-bye. This is your chance to hold yourself accountable for the state of your closet. By doing this you will get a more tranquil, less cluttered closet and getting dressed becomes a lot easier as well. Those clothes you decide to donate or give away get a chance at a second life with someone who might actually wear them, so feel good about that. Also, use this opportunity to purge hangers; fewer clothes mean fewer hangers! Keep the best ones and part with the others.

Task Complete!

When I was done I had four huge bins of clothes that went to a better place. But there’s one last decision that I’m having a hard time making and I think I might need your help. My wedding dress has been sitting in my closet and I love it dearly, but I haven’t worn it or frankly even looked at it since our wedding day. I can’t imagine parting ways with it, but I know that so many people donate theirs. So what do you think? Is it worth donating? Or do you hang on to it for sentimental reasons? Let me know in the comments down below.

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Melissa Maker is an entrepreneur, cleaning expert, founder of Toronto’s most popular boutique cleaning service, and star of the Clean My Space channel on YouTube (but she still hates to clean!). Every week, Melissa delivers new videos dishing expert advice on cleaning products, tools, DIY substitutes, and practical, timesaving solutions to everyday problems. Melissa has appeared on the Today Show, and has been featured in InStyle, Real Simple, and Better Homes and Gardens.


  1. Same here. I got married two years ago and I can’t imagine giving away my wedding dress. It just makes me so happy to look at it every single day and think about our happy wedding day. And it also reminds me of the day that my syster and I went to this wadding dress shop and picked this one, and afterwards we had coffee in my car when it was raining outside and then she couldn’t start her car so we spend more time together waiting for it to be fixed and just enjoyed our quality time together. And offcourse the other day when I tried on the dress at the shop when it was ready and my mom looked at me and got so excited. This beautiful dress stores so many great memories and gives me good energy (“sparks joy”) so I definitely gonna keep it for myself for a long long time 🙂

  2. You can also donate it where they make special dresses for babies that are still born or have a very short life. They are given to the family for burial during this most difficult time.

  3. I made a purse for my daughter’s wedding using my mother’s dress fabric and my own. The purse was so special to her because it was the something old… my mother is no longer here and in a special way she was still present at the wedding. Just an idea if you have a daughter and she gets married someday.

  4. I’ve kept mine for 34 years. In ways I wish I had donated it right after the wedding. It would have been simpler. Now, I have 5 daughters, 3 of them the same size I was when I got married. Yet its not likely they will use it. The style is very dated. But I can wish. After they are all married I may donate it (youngest is 11 so its a ways away).

    I pulled everything out like this once. I was overwhelmed trying to decide what to get rid of, so I began by just putting what I knew for a fact I wanted to keep back in my closet. After hanging them up and turning back to the stack on my bed, I did a literal double take. I had 20 “everyday” shirts in my closet already. Does anyone who owns a washer and dryer really need more than 20 everyday shirts? I gleefully packed up and donated the rest of them (over 200 tops). Did the same thing for every category. Where my closet used to be packed to the gills, now its airy and light. 🙂

  5. Save for your daughter. She may want to reuse some of the fabric for her wedding gown or Christening gown for her future baby.

    • great idea!….there was fabric from my mother’s wedding dress in a cedar chest and one sister who sews has made hankies for all brides in the family since, christening pillows,…it’s been a lovely memento of my mom who died in 2006 and has missed many of these occasions that have come since.

  6. Donate or sell it. In case you have a photographer or a friend with a camera, have a fun photoshoot and then say thank you and pass it on to someone else 🙂

  7. Donate it. You have your pictures. My wedding dress was my something borrowed, and I’ve never regretted that. Someone will love a beautiful dress, for a much more reasonable price.

  8. Hi Melissa. Donate! There are so many women out there who would love a beautiful dress to wear on their wedding day but just can’t afford a new one. If you find a place where loved and used wedding dresses can be bought by someone who will be ever grateful.

  9. ???? it is hard to part with the wedding dress but I made mine into pillows and little purses for my daughters. I was pregnant at my wedding so hopefully my girls will not need a dress that size????, but the material is so lovely and I thought they should have something that they could carry with them on their wedding days is if they would like. Thank you for the video, Melissa! Merry Christmas to you and your family!


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