I counted my shoes. Guess how many pairs of shoes I own?
Surely it is not a coincidence that I have 40 shoes during the Lenten season, right? That's how I justify 40 shoes. Biblical significance. It's what God wants, right?
Truly, nobody needs 40 pairs of shoes. So I decided to cull my collection, simplify my shoe choices, and organize what was left.
Here's my step-by-step process, so that you can do the same at your home.
1. Pull all the shoes out of the closet.
I know that seems overwhelming, but it is only 40 things or less, right? (And let's face it - if your shoe problem is bigger than mine, you really NEED to do this.)
2. Put any broken or unusable shoes in the trash.
People tell me that shoes can be fixed. If you've ever done that, good for you! For the rest of us, we need to be honest with ourselves and just toss the shoes.
3. Put any shoes that fit poorly or that are never worn in the donate bag.
I have a bag for donations next to my washer and dryer at all times. It's just a garbage can lined with a trash bag.
Personally, I never wear shoes with bows or black heels. So why did I own 6 pairs of those?
4. Match up all other shoes by style.
I had a few categories:
*fancy flip flops/flat sandals
*special shoes (like my rubber swim flip flops, slippers, and water shoes)
5. Discard the least favorite of any color duplicates.
In each category, consider whether your have too many of a certain style or color.
I had two pairs of brown boots. Only my favorite stayed.
I had three shoes in a camel color. I kept two (a strappy wedge sandal and a regular wedge). I love all three, but honestly only wear the two, since I love one of the wedges more than the other and they coordinated with all the same clothes.
6. Don't toss something that is worn regularly with a specific outfit.
My water shoes are only worn about once every two years, if we hit a beach during vacation. But it would be silly to toss them only to buy news ones each time I go to a beach!
7. Use a fancy shoe holder or dedicated shelf or drawer for fancy shoes.
Designate any space that is a crush-free zone for fancy shoes. These are the shoes that you probably can hide away, as they are for dressing up or go with specific outfits, so don't discount a shallow drawer or the coat closet.
8. Use bins for sturdy shoes, a hanging shoe organizer for flip flops and flat sandals, and a hanging sweater organizer for athletic shoes.
My bins are sorted by color: camel, red family, and brown.
A hanging shoe organizer (shown in the sidebar under "Stuff Mentioned") fits flip flops and flat sandals well, but I need the deeper sweater organizer for boots and athletic shoes.
9. Learn from yourself.
I learned that I HATE black and brown shoes. I prefer natural, camel, silver, or deep reddish shoes. And since those are mostly neutral colors, they go with everything!
(Seriously, try on some camel shoes with your black pants. They pop with style!)
Now that I know my style and what I actually wear, I can shop for comfort and quality. I also don't need a camel-colored shoe. I have two great pairs.
10. Have a one in/one out policy.
If I buy a new pair of shoes, a pair has to go.
I started with 40 pairs of shoes. I am down to 22 (including my water shoes, shower flip flops, and slippers).
How did you do? Let us know!