How many times have you started your morning, gone to your closet, and stared at your clothes for too long?
One of the most common complaints is, “I have a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear.”
- “I’m tired of wearing the same thing over and over again.”
- “I have so many clothes but no outfits”.
- “I don’t feel like myself in anything I wear.”
Do any of these sound like you? Then it’s time to take control of your style. Keep reading for the surprisingly simple changes you can make today for a better wardrobe.
Table of Contents
What to Do When You Have Nothing To Wear
As professional stylists, we’ve seen it all, and we can tell you: having phenomenal style doesn’t have to be this hard. All it takes is having the right pieces in your wardrobe.
Today, we’re breaking this down into eight simple steps. We’re not talking about quick fixes that won’t last more than a week. Follow these tips to regain control of your closet and find the style you’ve always wanted.
1. Clean Out Your Closet
Are you wondering what to do if you have nothing to wear? Start with your closet.
The root cause of every style slump is a bad closet.
No matter your age, gender, job, or size, if your closet isn’t in tip-top shape, your outfits won’t be either.
For example, let’s say you have a messy closet. You have clothes on the floor, too many things piled onto one hanger, and disorganized drawers stuffed to the brim. Just looking at that is going to stress you out.
This was a client’s closet before the cleanout.
You won’t be able to find what you’re looking for, you’ll end up with damaged items, and you’ll pull the same couple of pieces you can find repeatedly.
If you want to get your style on track, it’s time for a closet cleanout. Take everything out of your closet. That way, you can see what you own and what you’re missing.
Then, try everything on. We know it sounds like a lot of work. But it’s all worth it. By trying things on, you see what you like, what fits, and what you can turn into an outfit.
This is what their closet looked like after a cleanout.
Donate anything you don’t need or want anymore and take note of the gaps in your wardrobe.
You’re already far away from that anxious, “lots of clothes but nothing to wear” feeling.
2. Color Coordinated Closet
Now that you’ve paired down your closet to what you’re keeping, it’s time to reorganize.
Our suggestion? Color coordinate. Sort everything in your closet by category, from light to dark. That way, you can easily see what’s in your wardrobe. No more guessing or rummaging through piles.
You’ll know all your black tops are in one place, all your grey pants in another, etc.
3. Refocus Your Color Palette
Speaking of colors, let’s refocus your palette before everything goes back into your closet.
One of the most significant issues we see with clients is that they have the wrong color breakdown. No, we won’t try to sell you on “getting your colors done.” Those color analysis trends limit you.
If you want a versatile capsule wardrobe that’ll give you the most use, follow our Hierarchy of Color.
The idea here is to reign in your color palette so mixing and matching is more effortless. It avoids the boringness of an all-black closet, and the business of a closet overstuffed with loud colors and patterns.
The Hierarchy of Color works like this:
- The largest percentage of your closet should be made up of core colors. These are black, white, navy, and gray. Why? Because they’re neutrals, and they go with everything. Remember, versatility is key.
- The second largest third of your closet goes to tonal colors. These are tints and shades of core colors, including other neutrals like brown and olive. This is also a great place to incorporate textured items. (Think a ribbed knit beige sweater or coated blue jeans.)
- Lastly, the third and smallest piece of your wardrobe is for accents. Here you can play with bright or bold colors and patterns.
By keeping statement pieces to the smallest portion of your closet, you make your outfits more cohesive and give those show-stopper items more room to shine.
4. Hang Out
At this point, if you had a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear, you should be feeling a lot lighter now. You should have much more room in your wardrobe and less clutter.
Now, it’s time to get everything back into place.
As a general rule, we recommend hanging as much as possible. This is because it’s easier to see clothes when they’re hung up and easy to get to.
If you can’t see it, you won’t wear it. Invest in high-quality, lined hangers and say goodbye to overflowing drawers.
You can hang just about anything on hangers, from pants to tops, to even jumpsuits.
The only place where it’s worth folding is knits. You can either neatly fold those and place them in a drawer or shelf or fold them in half and then over the flat part of the hanger.
Never hang delicate knits like this on a hanger:
That’s a surefire way to stretch out your sweaters and end up with knobbly knits and pulled threads.
5. Find Your Fit
If you’ve got lots of clothes but nothing to wear, you probably struggle with sizing. Don’t worry. Every single person has fit challenges. That’s because clothes are mass-produced based on patterns and fit models. They’re not tailor-made to you, so you can’t expect everything to fit perfectly off the rack.
So what do you do?
The answer isn’t glamorous, but it’s the truth: You have to measure yourself, try on many different options, and open up to alterations.
The four measurements you should know are:
Jot down these measurements so you can have them on handy every time you shop.
(Please note: Do not measure yourself if you struggle with body image or eating disorders. Instead, have someone you trust take those for you and keep those numbers to themselves.)
Then, based on those measurements, you can try on different brands, silhouettes, and styles until you find what works best for you.
If you find yourself in between sizes, you may need to work with a tailor in the future.
(That’s one of the benefits of working with a personal stylist. If they’re experienced, they can take all this information for you and research brands that’ll fit you best.)
6. Back to Basics
Remember what we said at the beginning? If you have a closet full of clothes but nothing to wear, you don’t have the right pieces.
Everything in your wardrobe should be something you:
This will look different for everybody, but there are a few universal, must-have basics:
Product by The Perfect White Tee, shop here.
So many people overlook Tees. Instead, they only have T-shirts for workouts, sleeping, or a few college Tees from back in the day.
T-shirts are incredibly versatile. You can tuck them into trousers, layer them with a jacket or blazer, or wear them as is. They’re an essential ingredient for any dress code.
The secret is to pick out one with a luxe fabrication and impeccable fit.
Product by 7 For All Mankind, shop here.
People often have too many pairs of jeans but not the right ones. Some are too slouchy, others too tight, and others too worn out.
When shopping for jeans, try on a lot. You need to see different silhouettes, brands and rises on your body to determine what suits you the best.
For the most part, we find either a mid or high-rise works for most of our clients.
Lastly, tailoring here is a MUST. Find a well-reviewed alterations specialist who can get you the perfect inseam, waist, etc.
Looking for more closet must-haves? Sign up for our newsletter in the sidebar, and you’ll automatically receive a PDF download for the three pieces every polished professional should have.
7. Turn ‘Fits into a Formula
At this point, your closet’s organized, you figured out your fit, and you have the right pieces in your closet.
Do you still feel like you don’t know how to create outfits?
Follow our three failproof outfit formulas. Think of these as outfit ideas when you have nothing to wear.
From styling various clients, we found that most people struggle with building outfits. So, we came up with formulas that anyone can follow.
These simplify getting ready in the morning, and they always look put-together.
Practice these formulas, and soon you’ll feel more comfortable mixing and matching your clothes. Before you know it, you’ll have the confidence to style yourself without a second thought.
8. Rotate Your Faves
Our final step for conquering that “I have lots of clothes but nothing to wear” feeling? Move all the items you haven’t worn in your closet front and center. That way, whenever you go to get dressed, you’ll see them and be more likely to wear them.
You’ll also catch yourself if you’re constantly pushing the same pieces to the back of your assortment.
Extra Credit: Find A Style Role Model
Style is incredibly visual. For many people, it’s easier to see what you like about an outfit or how someone dresses than to describe it.
On top of that, you learn from seeing.
For extra style points, find a style role model. Look on Pinterest or Instagram and find someone with the style you want.
We especially recommend seeking someone you can look up to careerwise as well. Like the best-dressed female CEOs or young entrepreneurs. That way, you know their style can work with your lifestyle and personal goals.
Look at the ensembles they create and break them down into individual pieces. That way, you can look at the items you already own and see how they fit into those outfits.
You’ll see the potential in your clothing and know what gaps you have in your wardrobe.
Tired of having lots of clothes but nothing to wear? Get the wardrobe of your dreams with the help of Next Level Wardrobe.
Our experts have experience working with diverse professionals looking to elevate their style and take control of their closets. We’ll teach you how to shop, create easy outfits, and define your personal brand.