Spring Cleaning with Voot Boot Shaper
By Katy Dee & Co. Fashion Blog
It's that time of year again! The air is getting warmer and it's time for the big switch from Winter to Spring/Summer clothing. Here are my tried and true tips for giving your apartment/house/room a refresh clean, maximize the life of your clothing, and even make a little money. Read on for more!
First thing that comes to mind when I clean out my closet
Is it just me, or do you discover old favorites when cleaning and just decide to start wearing them immediately?
Extending the Life of your Clothing
Aside from the obvious which is to take your hardcore Winter clothing, pack it away, and bring out the Summer items, now is a perfect time to do all of the maintenance for clothing items that you'll forget about until next Winter. For example, take your Winter jacket to the dry cleaner for a refresh and inspect any boots to determine if they need a trip to the Cobbler for new soles or heels. Utilizing a Cobbler (what is the modern term for this person? Shoe Repair, Shoe Dude? Please enlighten me in the comments!) is the best way to maximize on your investment shoes. My first pair of nice boots were below the knee Como Corso tan boots that cost about $240. I bought them 8 years ago and have had the soles replaced about 3-4 times which has greatly extended their life!
Once you've gone through your Winter shoes/boots and have gotten them in good shape, the next step is to prepare them for storage. For boots especially - shapers are great and inexpensive way to keep your leather boots from creasing and extending their life even more! My friends at Voot were so kind to send me a couple pairs of their shapers and they are super effective!
Here's how they work: they easily slip into the boot in a couple of seconds and boom! You're done! I also like that they're not bulky like some molded plastic boot shapers, so any extras that I'm not using can easily be stored in my small apartment (I honestly just slide them into my bookshelf).
Voot makes four different sized boot shapers and I tried out the Prima and the Rodeo. The Rodeo (above) is perfect for boots that hit at the low calf such as Motorcycle boots (featured above) and also short Ugg boots. The Prima (pictured below) is perfect for tall boots and you can double them up for use in OTK boots! They also have a more ruggedized version for cowboy boots (Dura) and a model for thin fabrics of boots that hit at the mid-calf (Bella).
Next is the actual storage part. I have two clear plastic tubs that I use for storing my Winter items. I'll link them below, but one is slim and long and has wheels so that it slides underneath my bed. The other one I store in my large coat closet. Both have clamps which is good for keeping things out, and I also fill each with a couple sachets of cedar/lavender to prevent any moths from wanting to take a munch out of my wool.
- Under the Bed Storage Box
- Closet Storage Tub
- Cedar Sachets
How to Make Money and Do Good While Spring Cleaning
When I'm switching out my Winter clothes for the Spirng/Summer ones, I put them into three categories:
This is pretty obvious, the Keeps go either into the closet or in storage for next Season.
Items in the Sell pile are in good shape with no stains, are often designer items, and are things I don't like wearing anymore or that I haven't worn in years. These items get prepped to be sold on my Poshmark.
If you haven't spent some time on Poshmark, it's a really great site and I often make ~$200 during each Spring/Fall cleaning purge.
Some tips when selling on Poshmark:
- Take time in taking good photos. For example, stage items against nice backgrounds such as a marble or with a nice vase of flowers. I often like to use the barn door divider in my apartment because it's a nice neutral background but adds some uniqueness. Also take some time to iron the pieces, clean off any spots, etc. Avoid taking photos of crumpled/over wrinkly pieces on an unmade bed. It does make a difference.
- Be honest! If an item has a spot/stain, any holes (no matter how small), etc. please disclose the imperfection in the description. If you fail to do this, and the person who receives your item sees the imperfection they will not be happy and might even send it back to get a refund. Poshmark reviews these instances to see if the failure is on the buyer or seller and if someone sends the item back because of this 3 times in a year, you can get your account closed. Likewise, if you disclose imperfections properly, Poshmark will most likely side with you, and I have heard cases of this happening. I even disclose that my house is smoke-free and that I have 1 pet just so buyers know what they can expect - and not send an item back because a single cat hair attached to the packaging.
- Use (somewhat) nice packaging and a Thank You note. Buy a couple packs of fun tissue paper (which are super cheap) or I often just save tissue paper from shopping (Ann Taylor, Banana Republic, etc.) and reuse it. You can also buy some cheap Washi tape and colored markers to make it even more fun. Don't forget to buy some cheap Thank You notes (from Target or Walmart). I make sure to write the buyer's first name on the card and then add a short message inside (usually "Your purchase made my day - I hope this package brightens yours!"). It adds a personal touch that give buyers and incentive to give you 5 Stars.
- Communicate with your buyer. If you aren't going to ship in the next day or two, communicate that to the buyer in the comments section of the sale. Just like when you make an online purchase, you cannot wait to get your package - your buyer feels the same. If you let them know that you're out of town, having late nights at work, etc., they'll appreciate the heads up and it will give them the incentive to give you a higher rating.
- Get free USPS boxes in bulk. The biggest pain about shipping out items is if I run out of boxes. Did you know that you can order packs of 10 and 25 boxes for FREE from the USPS website?
Items devoted to the Donate pile are items that I no longer want to wear but are too outdated, not in very good condition, or that I've been having a hard time selling on Poshmark. My donation place of choice is Career Wardrobe, a neighborhood charity comprised of both a resale boutique and a charity that provides women in need of getting back on their feet with interview suits/clothing. The resale boutique is stocked with clothing donations, the proceeds of which go directly to the charity. Many items I've found there include Lilly Pulitzer and Burberry with the tags still on! If you donate clothing, you get a discount on any of the items you buy in the boutique (I think it's 10-15%), so everyone wins!
You could also find a way to donate to your local consignment shop or donate to Goodwill.
Hope you all enjoyed my Spring cleaning tips! Have a good tip I didn't mention? Share it with me in the comments!