Change of season

Well it’s that time again, another change of season. Although Spring has sprung in the south and Autumn changing the colours in the North it is only this week the I have really started to delve into my more summery clothes. So I am going to assume these changes are happening for most of us to one degree or another.

So now is the time to reassess clothing from both seasons. Declutter clothes that were ignore during the season just gone or you persevered with as the season was ending but are too shabby to keep for next year. And as you bring forward those clothes for the upcoming or current season turn their hangers around on the rod so you can easily identify the items that are being passed over as the season progresses.

And as the seasons come and go certain items of clothing we own may start to become less flattering for our maturing tastes and figures. So let those items go as well. I know I will be doing that as I gradually retrieve my summer wardrobe from the box they are packed away in on the top shelf of my closet.

Footwear from both seasons will also be assessed. Those too shabby will likely end up in the trash, while anything still in good shape but disliked will be donated to charity. I don’t think that I will have any charity items but sadly my favourite pair of boots have worn through the bottom and are not of that kind that can be resoled.

Other seasonal items that can also be assessed at this time of year are gardening items, sporting equipment, recreational equipment and bedding. Perhaps even some cooking items may be seasonal to you, and require using up so they don’t linger on the shelf for months unused.

This year I have the unusual situation of moving from Winter into Spring and then back again into Winter before Summer has barely had a chance to assert itself. So the clothing situation is a little more complicated for me this time around.

There are so many variations on climate throughout the world, so timing and choices are different. I remember my time living in the top end of Australia, where the climate is tropical. There was no clothing change there as were wore summer clothes all year round. The only difference was a few degrees in temperature and how wet or dry it was. That was the simple life.

So what else is there that you need to assess as the seasons are changing for you in your part of the world?

Today’s Mini Mission

Find a single use gadget and really rationalise whether it is useful to you or not. And when you come to the conclusion that it isn’t declutter it.

“If we do not feel grateful for what we already have, what makes us think we’d be happy with more?” — Unknown

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About Colleen Madsen

Colleen is the founder of 365 Less Things and lives in Newcastle, Australia.


  1. Ah yes! I remember those seasonal changes. Good post Colleen. One thing I like about living here in the Phoenix area of the US is that we don’t really have winter. While I do have a hoodie to wear if needed I don’t remember if I even wore it last year. I have a few tops with 3/4 sleeves but am thinking I may declutter them as I don’t really need them. It just doesn’t get that cold as far as I am concerned. I’m blessed that I don’t have to have two wardrobes of clothes.

    • One season on clothing sure does simplify things Deb, that’s for sure. My only problem when I lived in the tropics was that we didn’t know where we would end up next. And since, in those days, we couldn’t afford to just buy a whole new set of Winter clothes we just had to store them.

      • Colleen, I remember having times when we couldn’t afford to get rid of something from one year to the next but hung onto clothes as long as we could. It is still that way but at least I don’t have to have two seasons worth of clothes. Makes for cheaper living.

  2. We’re actually right in the middle of this!
    Next year my daughter is moving to a city renowned for having all four seasons each day and her wardrobe space will be half what she has here.

    • Hi Moni

      All the best to your daughter when she heads off to university! I found with my sons that they very quickly decided that living in small dorm rooms with little storage they wanted as little as possible of everything, particularly clothes, despite the cold winters, snow and rain that they now experience. They also felt that if they didn’t have too much clothing they are more inclined to keep up with their laundry rather than letting it pile up and then having too much to do at once.

    • Sounds like Melbourne Moni. I am sure she will cope though. Just make sure she has lots of things that mix and match.

      • Colleen – I always wondered why the students in that area seemed to wear a lot of black, I guess its easy to mix and match.

      • I live in Wellington, NZ where we also have four seasons in one day. I do end up wearing a lot of my clothes year round. The key is layering. I use ‘heat-tech’ from the Japanese clothes store ‘Unl-qlo’ as a base layer (they have store in Melbourne, I believe). The fabric is really light, I find it as warm as merino (without the itch) washes easily and dries very quickly. As well as being very warm, it seems to adjust to your body temperature so you don’t feel too hot if the weather suddenly changes.

        • Shelly – that’s where my daughter is moving to! She’s going to Massey. My master plan was to buy up lots of merino at end of season sales. We’re in Mt Maunganui so the weather is mild.

          • Definitely go the merino, Moni. Another issue for your daughter will likely be poorly insulated/heated housing. I have merino tops I wear over my heat-tech (so no itch) and live in those and jeans all winter. I just wear lots of different scarves to switch my looks up (I am trying to get down to having just a ‘capsule wed robe’ plus accessories). Glassons merino is good quality and well priced.

            Unfortunately no Uni-qlo in NZ and hard to order online. I’ve just been to Korea and stocked up there. Marks and Spencer’s UK do something similar and have free shipping to NZ when you spend over £30. They should have plenty available now as they are going into winter.

        • I am going to check out Unl-qlo’ as I need a couple of long sleeve Ts for my trip. Thanks for the tip Shelly. I hate the feel of wool. I think I’d rather be cold.

          • You’ll love heat-tech then. It’s brilliant for travelling. They only carry it Autumn and winter though so not sure if you’ll be able to get it in Australia at the moment. If not, try Marks and Spencer’s online.

  3. Here in the United States, those of us who live in hurricane zones should check our emergency supplies and responsibly discard dead batteries, and place surplus non-perishables in the FRONT of the cupboard to be used before their expiration date. Other non-food and non-chemical emergency supplies should be stored away for next season. Batteries still holding a charge should not be stored for next year, but put into general circulation in the home.

  4. I am hoping to get started on this next week although our temperatures are still in the 80s and 90s. The only things that I really switch out by season are my shoes so I’ll be taking a good look at what I really want to keep for next spring and summer. Also about this time last year I boxed up some items that didn’t fit properly; I’m convinced that they won’t fit any better this year so it’s time to let them go.

  5. I finally donated a hardly worn pair of joggers this week. I walk bare foot on th beach and have a pair of comfy walking shoes for riding my bike. The joggers never got used because I needed socks with them and we’re not so fashionable.

  6. I’m going a little off topic here but there is a vague connection to end of season for a couple of items.

    When the cats away, the mice do play!
    My husband has gone to the Chatham Islands for a week and I’ve decided it will be an ideal time to declutter some items. Nothing that belongs to him specifically, definitely ‘ours’ but generally he has held up the ‘out’ process and kinda forgotten about them. Items that he wanted to try to repair so he could maybe get money for them but have been waiting for a few years kind of items.

    • You are gamer than I Moni. I wouldn’t declutter anything that my husband has a mind to keep or declutter his way. Anything communal requires agreement on decluttering in my book. Lets hope he doesn’t notice they are gone.

  7. Hi, Colleen. I enjoyed reading this … shedding unwanted stuff to prepare for what’s ahead is timely. Christmas and other holiday decorations come to mind, as well as festive recipes and unnecessary holiday tasks.

    • Yes Nicole it is a good time to think about culling the holiday decorations. Mine haven’t seen the light of day for at least three years, but that is because we keep going away at Christmas time. Next year, if we are home, I will reassess them.

  8. My daughter has noticed the change of season with a bout of hay fever. This year she has finally realised having a room full of ornaments collecting dust is not helping health. Gone are the stuffed toys from her childhood, photo frames, snow globes, piles of shoes, piles of clothes, books , school notes, special school shirts , candles, jewellery and endless bottles of nail polish. The carpet has been removed and her floor boards polished. Everything was removed from her room so now she is only putting back what she needs and won’t collect dust. I know she found it hard to part with some items but I was glad that she realised there was no point in keeping stuff that she didn’t have a use for. I helped out by sorting what could be donated and what was rubbish. There is still a bit of stuff to sort through but the amount that left the house was considerable.

    • This must be so exciting for you Wendy. My mother-in-law noticed me sneezing when she visited last week and said “I’m glad it isn’t only my house you sneeze in.”. The difference is that I don’t sneeze continuously in my house. Lets hope you daughter doesn’t continue to sneeze now that everything is cleared out or she might think she lost all that stuff for nothing.

    • Wow WendyF, that’s great that your daughter was able to do that. I know you are proud of her.

  9. This is one of the advantages of living in Hawaii. Tropical weather year round just like you experienced Colleen. I do have a few classic “fall-winter” wardrobe pieces for traveling, however, I wear the same things in June as I do in December.
    I also agree that as the season’s pass and we grow older, what was appropriate then is not appropriate for us now.

    • Hi Kimberley, I guess the disadvantage to all year clothing is that when you do travel it had better not be anywhere too cold or you would have to acquire appropriate clothing and then it would be useless to you when you get home. OK if you can get it cheap and secondhand.

      • I have this exact problem Colleen, living in Darwin. I’ve ended up with my ‘winter drawer’, – two pairs of jeans, four jumpers of assorted weights, two long-sleeved t-shirts, a coat and scarf. It used to be three jumpers, and when I went to Brisbane last month I thought, well it’s spring so I’ll just take my light jumper… Cue an epic cold snap right when I arrived! Luckily I had a few hours to browse around Brisbane before meeting family, found a beautiful warm jumper on sale, bought it and put in on straight away! If I go any further south than that, luckily my family rally around beforehand and make sure there is a hoard of coats for me to layer up in 🙂

        • Hi Amelia, yes weather can be very unpredictable. My daughter visited recently in her Brisbane attire and the moment she arrived we experienced a cold snap. Luckily her and I aren’t all that different in size aside from hight. She just borrowed my stuff.
          When I visit my family in Queensland my sister is close by who I can borrow clothes from should the weather take a turn in either direction. I usually manage to cope, due to packing to layer.

          So I know where you are coming from. Packing for my up coming vacation in weather that is way colder than what we experience at home will be challenging. I will once again pack to layer so hopefully the will work out for me.

  10. Idgy of the North

    I live in a 4 season area. Our temperatures range from 35C with humidity in summer to as low as -30 C in winter. I used to store my off season clothes in a box. Now, I have streamlined my wardrobe and layer so all my clothes are in the wardrobe at the same time. At one point last winter, I had 6 layers on! Have managed to pare the wardrobe down to <60 items.

    The only issue is jackets, but not sure if these can be streamlined much more given the climate. I have rain coat (late spring-early fall), cycling/running jacket ( worn only for these activities as other jackets don't breathe enough), soft shell jacket (for when too cold for rain coat, but too warm for parka), down parka (once temps dip below freezing), down "sweater " ( can wear under all my jackets when it's too cold) and ski jacket (we ski weekly in winter).

    • Hi Iddy, even where I live I have several types of jackets. That doesn’t concern me though. I am not about minimalism I am about not having stuff hanging around that isn’t useful to me. All my jackets have been used over and over again during the crazy weather we have had this year where I live so I will be keeping them all. I just hope my warmest one will be warm enough in Germany where it will be colder than anything we experience here.

  11. I’ve been silent for a while, but season changes are messing with my head. I’m decluttering, and noting the season change to Autumn – but I’m less than two weeks away from the trip to New Zealand, so I’ve had to stop myself stocking up on winter clothes. It’s been a strange thing…

    (It’s also amazing, I thought I was done decluttering, I really wasn’t. Fitting things into a suitcase has inspired a whole new round of tossing out.)

    • Niriel – what part of New Zealand are you heading to?

      • Wellington, at least to start with. I’ll be in the country for a year, I daresay I’ll have enough time to explore. 🙂

    • Hi Níriel, bon voyage. I hope your trip is everything you hope it to be. Jetstar Airline does really cheap flights to Australia so perhaps you can come over here while you are in New Zealand.

      As for the winter clothes, I have it the other way around at the moment. There are winter items that are about ready to be tossed but since I am going to be heading into a second winter this year I will persevere with them for a while yet. Once in Germany I may decide they have to go and replace them there. Or if I can struggle though, I could throw them away before coming home.

      • I may well come over to Australia for a visit while I’m in New Zealand – we’ll see! Definitely looking forward to it.

        Even if I am unwittingly “decluttering” October 21st. I leave on the 20th for a one-day flight… and because of the time zones I arrive on the 22nd!

        • If you do come over Níriel you will likely fly in to Sydney. Let me know if you are coming and I will meet you there. Sydney is only an $8 two and a half hour train ride away. Don’t come until after the 15th of Feb when I return from Germany.

  12. Very timely post Colleen.
    I have been going through my drawers and tossing/donating a swag of well past use-by date/ill fitting (on me) tops. 14 pieces of clothing and 3 accessories (bags, shoes) have gone into the op bag, 4 to the bin, and 2 to my daughter. 23 less things!
    There is more to go, most were from just 2 drawers. Next on my radar is the drawer full of uncomfortable bras. Is there such a thing as a really comfortable one? I had a brand/style I liked well enough, but of course they discontinued it. That drawer contains my many failures at finding a replacement.

  13. This has nothing to do with the decluttering discussion but I wanted you to know how much I enjoy reading responses from different parts of the world. It is a great reminder that I am a small cog in a big universe, and yet have much in common with people who live all over. So while it feels like a big universe, it’s a small planet and we are all connected. Thank you for being a spring board to reminding us that we are connected with each other in the simplest of things! (My decluttering continues, although circumstances have slowed a little bit. I am keeping a journal about what goes out of the house and that has been very helpful!.) Carry on ladies!!!