You’ve taken that final exam and gone through rounds of job interviews. You’re excited to start the next chapter of your life. But throughout your four years in college, it’s possible you’ve accumulated just a little too much stuff to bring with you on your next adventure—from books to apartment decor to bags and accessories you no longer need.
And then there are the clothes.
Clothes, clothes and more clothes. Clothes from costume parties, mixers, sporting events and more that you just really don’t have a use for anymore.
This stage in life is the perfect time to do a closet cleanout and assess which pieces you need to transition into your new life and which pieces you need to part with. It is easy to be sentimental and want to hang onto your things, but it is also a necessary time to be practical.
Fortunately, whatever you don’t need can be sold or passed on to someone else. Knowing that someone else can make good use of your clothes (and have a little cash in your pocket!) can make parting with them that much easier.
Start By Taking Inventory
Start by taking an inventory of what you’ve got. There are the obvious choices to get rid of—like that dress that you only wore once to that one formal event. Then there are the basic staples that you know you will wear again and again.
It’s those in-between pieces that pose a problem. When you get to those “maybe” pieces, try to remember when the last time you wore it was. If you can’t remember, get rid of it.
If it’s something you got for a job interview and you think it will come in handy down the line, keep it! At the same time, remember to use discretion. You don’t want to keep pieces that you’ll never end up wearing.
Sell Your Clothes Online
This is the fun part! Do not throw anything away! There is money to be made from your gently used college wardrobe. Who doesn’t want a little extra cash to take with you into your next adventure?
A great place to start is a consignment store. When you don’t have all of the time in the world to take measurements, snap photos and monitor your sales, consignment stores will take on the work for you. You’ll have plenty of time to focus on your job hunt, rather than worry about keeping up with your online listings.
Simply bring your clothes to the shop and they’ll take care of assigning prices and making sure the products are sold, and you’ll get a cut of the profits. For even more convenience, consider sending your clothes to an online consignment shop. With thredUP.com, for example, all you have to do is request a Clean Out Bag, fill it up with your gently used clothes, and send it off.
Organize an On-Campus Event
For pieces that are a little too loved to sell online (or for those sentimental items that you’re struggling to part with), have a spring cleaning or graduation-themed “yard sale” with your friends. An underclassman, or even a friend who’s graduating with you, may have a use for the clothes you no longer want.
This is a fun way to get a group together promoting the fashion circle of life. It can be exciting and reassuring to know where your piece is going to end up. You can share your favorite stories and memories that go along with your collection and feel comfortable knowing your clothes are going to have a great new home.
Reinvest in Practical Pieces
Now that you’ve sold everything you don’t need, it’s time to put that money to use and buy pieces that will serve you throughout the next phase of your life. Start by investing in high-quality workwear, such as dresses and blazers in neutral colors that you can mix and match with the rest of your wardrobe.
Parting with your unwanted items can be an extremely cathartic experience, and at this transitional time in your life it can be a super useful exercise. Whether you opt to sell your clothes online or decide to make an event out of it, it’s a great way to lighten the load as you move—and make some money while you’re at it.