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6 steps to get (and maintain) an ideal wardrobe

1. Sorting, the basis of an organized wardrobe

Sorry for anyone dreaming of jumping on the “highly Pinterestable wardrobe” box without going through the “I-filled-50-110-litre-bags-and-didn’t-have-to” step. -not-even-touched-the-winter-coats”. Before setting out to run the small eco-responsible fashion brands, a massive sorting is essential. The concept: you put all (yes, ALL) the clothes you own on your bed, as well as accessories and underwear. And we review them each, to be sure to keep the pieces that still suit us, in which we feel good, that we wear with pleasure.

“For those who find it difficult to part with their belongings, I recommend creating a “second chance” stack, explains Anne Montecer, author of the book The ideal dressing room: the wardrobe to reconcile with your image and consume differently (Ed. Leduc). We keep them for a while, just to see if we miss them, if we want to postpone them… or recycle them!” As for the clothes that you want to donate or throw away, it is better to get rid of them immediately once the sorting is finished. Otherwise, they may find a way to reinfiltrate the bottom of our cabinets without our paying attention.

After this deep cleaning, a seasonal sorting is strongly recommended to keep a tidy dressing room, composed only of clothes that fit and that we wear.

To see more clearly, the survivors are hung on hangers (trousers, coats, t-shirts, etc.) The only exception: wool sweaters, which would thus become deformed. We prefer to fold them and store them on a shelf or in a drawer.

Tip to keep in mind: Before you start sorting, write down your criteria on a sheet of paper. For example “I get rid of all the clothes that I haven’t worn for a year”, “I only keep the clothes whose material I like”, “I put aside everything that reminds me of my time Miley Cyrus» (we do not judge!), etc. Once we tackle the sorting, we will have clearer ideas in case of doubt on this super beautiful little sequined sweater but which scratches too much, or on this pair of pumps which gives us a crazy look (hello , Kate M.!) but that we haven’t worn since Camille and Simon’s wedding in 2014…

The bad idea: “I’m not a fan of the idea of ​​joy, dear to Marie Kondo, which I find too strict and military, notes Anne Montecer. In my opinion, moods change very quickly. I have a much more pragmatic vision: I keep what I wear.”

2. No, the basics are not boring!

    It was after the birth of her second child that Anne Montecer had the click: “I have always been immersed in fashion, I was stuffed with trends, photos. Everything was going too fast, I couldn’t keep up! And despite the large sums I spent on fashion, I always had the feeling of having nothing to wear, of being very stressed every morning in front of my wardrobe.

    “Initially, I undertook this process to simplify my life. And it worked so well for me, that I decided to share my story on Instagram, then in a book.

    Thus, Anne Montecer stopped buying ultra-trendy pieces that went out of fashion very quickly to invest in beautiful, durable and eco-responsible basics. A real paradigm shift! “The basics are our best friends, the ones we can always count on. And I promise, they are far from boring! You can wear them in a thousand and one ways, accessorize them, make them match the style you want.

    How to choose your basics? Alone, the garment must be beautiful, have a beautiful material, a beautiful cut. “A white t-shirt bought for 10 fr. in a fast-fashion brand has a good chance of deforming on the first wash”, observes the specialist. While a quality basic, chosen in a noble material, will make all the difference and will last over time. The basis of responsible dressing!

    Where to find his (new) basics: At Les Sublimes, Anne Montecer’s brand, but also on Fair’Act, which lists avant-greenist Swiss fashion brands and boutiques. Be chic Be ethic also offers a directory of e-shops meeting its “slow fashion” requirements.

    3. Sustainability as a beacon in fashion

      The fashion industry is ultra harmful to the planet. Textile is the third sector that consumes the most water in the world, just after the cultivation of wheat and rice. It also represents 10% of global greenhouse gas emissions and has disastrous social consequences in many countries such as Bangladesh or Pakistan. Like more and more consumers, Anne Montecer could no longer turn a blind eye to this disaster: “Once we look at these aspects, it is no longer possible to consume as before. It really gives a different view of things.”

      “People are more and more aware of this, I feel it. We can no longer say “I don’t care” in 2022.”

      For the French expert, fast-fashion is “evil incarnate”, even if she refuses to throw stones at customers: “It’s easy to blame people for going to Zara or H&M, but we don’t does not get to the heart of the problem. It is up to the States, to the governments, to take the necessary measures. It’s beyond me that brands like Shein or Boohoo can continue to sell like this. And the youngest are the targets of this aggressive marketing.”

      The right reflex to have? Go to thrift stores. But beware, this requires patience and anticipation: it’s impossible to be sure to find THE camel coat you dream of or the jeans you need for this fall. Several “treasure hunts” are often necessary. It may also be relevant to scour second-hand sales sites such as Ricardo or Anibis if you are looking for a specific part.

      The good habit to anchor: Anticipate the seasons by concocting a list of accessories or clothes to get (also to be done for the children’s dressing room: there are nuggets second-hand, provided you go about it well in advance). This will make it easier to create, over the weeks, your ideal wardrobe for winter, spring, summer or autumn. What’s more, it will make it possible to space out expenses… and save money! The second-hand is much less expensive and often allows to afford pieces of very good quality.

      The trap to avoid: Second-hand is not the new fast-fashion. The idea is not to consume more, whether the garment is sold new or already worn! Beware of temptations…

      4. Labels, our new BFFs

      With their unknown signs, they frighten. Often, they scratch or bother, we end up cutting them without even paying attention. Mistake! If you want to consume fashion differently, it is imperative to know how to decipher the labels. Because no, not all materials are equal, far from it. “Polyester, derived from petroleum, is to be absolutely avoided, explains Anne Montecer. It is arguably the worst material possible, as it releases microparticles into the wash waters and then into the oceans. Plus, polyester makes you sweat.” The specialist also notes acrylic (which scratches), elastane (another petroleum derivative) and nylon (idem!) in the list of materials to be banned.

      What materials to focus on? Natural materials, of course! Organic cotton, linen, silk, wool… We validate. Even if they are not perfect (cotton, in particular, requires a lot of water), they are much more comfortable and age better. Cupro (100% biodegradable fiber) and lyocell are also environmentally friendly. Finally, viscose is not ideal, because its process requires the use of toxic polluting gases.

      Resources that help us: You hesitate before offering yourself a piece? Take a look at the values ​​of the brand, at its different labels. Céline Séris’ YouTube channel is perfect for familiarizing yourself with this vast field, punctuated with many pitfalls. Videos to watch absolutely to become, you too, an expert in the subject (do you have it?).

        5. Find your style to avoid compulsive shopping

        How to be? Many of us dream of it: finally finding THE style that will reveal us, that will make us happy, comfortable in his sneakers (or his leopard boots, according to his preferences). To decipher the clothes that flatter us best, in which we feel good or strong, Anne Montecer advises taking a picture of yourself every day. “Very often, through the clichés, we see the style that suits us emerge,” she observes. We see immediately what suits us. And we end up knowing her wardrobe by heart! It stimulates creativity.”

        A real plus when it comes to fighting against compulsive shopping: impossible to end up with a magnificent blazer but which does not go with any other garment. “You also have to learn to say ‘no’, to distance yourself from the opinion of the sellers. And never go shopping to cheer yourself up, the benefit you get from it is so fleeting!”

        What if we stopped wanting to find the pearl? Having a fashion signature, an identifiable style at first glance, let’s face it: it’s not within everyone’s reach. And so much the better! What we love with clothes is the idea of ​​being able to tell stories, to feel feminine, masculine, elegant, extravagant… If we feel lost, let’s get back to the basics, to the clothes that correspond to our way of life, to the good basics that make our daily lives easier and give us style with next to nothing. Let’s get to the point, let’s get rid of the superfluous. Fewer headaches in the morning, more money at the end of the month: an option you can’t refuse.

        If you decide to buy anyway: We avoid sales at all costs. The ‘bargains’ and ‘incredible discounts’ signs have a knack for making us buy anything at any price. In your phone or in your diary, you create a list of sustainable clothes you dream of. Before releasing the Maestro, we take the time to ensure that the new purchase meets our criteria and is on the famous list. A doubt? It is certainly that this crack does not correspond to our needs and our values.

        6. What if we always dressed the same?

          The author of Ideal dressing room hammers it loud and clear: “There is nothing wrong with dressing the same every day!” Brands, trends and certain influencers are struggling to make us believe otherwise. We often feel forced not to wear the same clothes as the day before, because “what will our colleagues think?”, “it’s not done, you have to change your clothes every day”, “it’s the Shame to be dressed the same two days in a row!”. Tss tss tss: what if we threw away these archaic rules?

          Steve Jobs, Inès de la Fressange, Jane Birkin… More celebrities than you might think always dress the same way. And frankly, how good does it feel to arrive at the office without being deciphered from head to toe! “It’s a way of encouraging our interlocutors to take an interest in what we say, in our ideas, rather than what we have on our backs, observes Anne Montecer. By always wearing the same look, the creator of Apple explained that it gave him time to focus on the important things in his life. He had also noticed that people listened to him more when he spoke.

          The mantra to keep in mind: No, talent is not in our clothes! And wearing the same thing every day is anything but serious. Long live the uniform, if it frees us and allows us to have more self-confidence.

          Say “bye bye” to your washing machine: It’s a fact: we wash our clothes way too much. It pollutes, uses water, wastes us (a lot!) of time, damages our clothes… Let’s learn to recognize really dirty clothes from those that just need a little freshening up. Often it is enough to air them for a few hours. Take the test!

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