How to Do a Wardrobe Audit and Why It Helps Develop Personal Style

How to Do a Wardrobe Audit

Even when your wardrobe is full of clothes you love it can still feel like you have nothing to wear. That's because without a good grasp of your personal style, putting together cohesive outfits can be a struggle. Taking a closer look at your fashion choices with a wardrobe audit is the best way to uncover your unique style and identify some style goals.

A wardrobe audit is a useful exercise that reviews all the clothing in your wardrobe. Unlike a wardrobe declutter, which helps to clear space by getting rid of the clothes you don't wear. The aim of a wardrobe audit is to help identify your personal style, help style the clothes you already own, and encourage better purchasing decisions. The goal of a wardrobe audit is to create a dream wardrobe with outfits you get excited to wear every day.

What is a wardrobe audit?

A wardrobe audit means going through your entire wardrobe and assessing each item piece by piece. It's about making a more functional wardrobe by identifying style goals and defining personal style so that better clothing purchases can be made in the future. A wardrobe audit is a great way to reflect on your relationship with clothes and become a more conscious consumer of fashion.

How to Do a Wardrobe Audit

A wardrobe audit is the first step towards achieving a more organised, efficient, and sustainable approach to fashion. It's a transformative process that will allow you to refine your wardrobe so that each item of clothing reflects your personal style. as it involves assessing every item in your wardrobe and considering the impact of your shopping habits.

Prepare for a Wardrobe Audit

Before a wardrobe audit, you'll need to make sure there are no unwanted clothing lurking in your wardrobe. Any items that are the wrong size, ill-fitting, damaged or stained, and any clothes that haven't been worn in 12 months need to be decluttered. The best time to do a wardrobe audit is during or after a wardrobe declutter as it will save time in the long run! So declutter first by following this step-by-step guide to decluttering clothes.

Create a Wardrobe Inventory

Once your wardrobe has been decluttered, the next step is to create a wardrobe inventory so you know exactly what is in there and how much it aligns to your personal style. Having a wardrobe inventory provides an overview of your wardrobe, which makes it easier to be objective about the items you own and whether they reflect your personal style.

To create a wardrobe inventory make a list of every item of clothing you own. This can be as simple or as detailed as you want to make it. Separate everything into categories, such as clothes, shoes, and accessories, and include the name and a photo of each item. This is an example of a wardrobe inventory.

Wardrobe Audit Questions

Unlike a wardrobe declutter where the purpose is to evaluate clothes based on whether you wear them or not; the goal of a wardrobe audit is to assess clothes based on how you feel about them. Instead of focusing on whether an item is in good condition and fits well, focus on how the clothes make you feel and if they match your style.

A wardrobe audit can help understand personal style, develop a cohesive colour palette, and improve clothing purchases. It's a way to achieve a curated wardrobe that reflects both your lifestyle and your outfit choices.

Use these wardrobe audit questions to analyse your style preferences, from the colours you wear to the words you use to describe your style. Consider your answers as a way to better understand how to improve your wardrobe.

  1. Why do you want to do a wardrobe audit?
  2. What do you hope to achieve from a wardrobe audit?
  3. What's your main focus for auditing your wardrobe?
  4. What 3 words do you want to describe your style?
  5. What 3 words actually describe your style?
  6. How many items do you think you have in your wardrobe?
  7. How many items do you actually have?
  8. How “old” is your wardrobe? How long have you owned each piece?
  9. What are the dominant colours in your wardrobe?
  10. What items did you exclude from your audit?
  11. What do you own enough of?
  12. What does your wardrobe need?
  13. What can you get rid of?
  14. What do you want to replace/buy more of/buy less of?

How to Review a Wardrobe

The best way to review your wardrobe is to ask yourself the wardrobe audit questions as you try on different outfit combinations. Consider how the clothes make you feel and whether they reflect your personal style.

A wardrobe should be as fun as it is functional. It should be tailored to your aesthetic preferences while still being practical for the life you live. Assessing your previous clothing purchases and how they influencer the way you dress will help you to understand your style and how to make better wardrobe purchases in the future.

A Wardrobe Audit

Setting Style Goals

After a wardrobe audit it's time to set some style goals. From answering the wardrobe audit questions, it should be obvious where you need to focus your attention in order to bring your wardrobe in alignment with your style preferences.

Maybe you have too many clothes you don't enjoy wearing or perhaps your wardrobe is lacking a cohesive colour palette. You might not have enough versatile basics or lack practical shoes that are comfortable to wear all day. Whatever the pain points are in your wardrobe is where you should focus your attention.

Here are a few style goal ideas to use as inspiration:

  • I'm going to create a capsule wardrobe
  • I'm going to stick to a colour palette
  • I'm going to find new style inspiration
  • I'm going to invest in versatile basics
  • I'm going to prioritise comfort
  • I'm going to try dopamine dressing
  • I'm going to shop from a wardrobe wishlist
  • I'm going to thrift for clothes
  • I'm going to avoid fast fashion brands

After a Wardrobe Audit

With every item of clothing assessed, all the questions asked, and a few style goals set—the wardrobe audit is over! You should have a good grasp of what's in your wardrobe, whether it reflects your personal style or not, and how to align your fashion goals with your style aesthetic.

The next step would be make the most out of your existing wardrobe by looking for style inspiration with outfits to recreate. This will help with understanding how to create a capsule wardrobe that reflects your personal style.