Tips for reorganizing and reinventing your wardrobe

Wardrobe consultant Lori Wynne recently visited Annie Payne and went through her closet, organized its contents and offered tips for putting together outfits. Wynne also happens to be Payne’s sister.

Once a year I get a visit from a wardrobe consultant.

Lori Wynne helps doctors, authors, mothers and teens dress for a variety of events: conventions, book-signings, television appearances, proms and galas. Recently, she paused from her jet-setting from coast to coast servicing her clients to help me.

Why? She has to, she’s my sister.

In the weeks before Lori arrives, my jeans are in a pile on the shelf, jackets are hanging next to T-shirts, and I find myself wearing the same 10 items over and over again. But after her visits, I have a more organized closet and a fresh perspective on my wardrobe and personal style.

Here are a few of Lori’s tips for reorganizing, rejuvenating and reinventing your wardrobe.


Cull items from your closet that are stained, worn-out, or out-dated.

If you haven’t worn it in the past year, you don’t love it. If you don’t love it, you won’t wear it, so why let it take up valuable real estate in your closet?

Consider consigning or donating your well-maintained, but not loved, items.

Next, organize according to type: tops, bottoms and dresses.

Then hang them according to season. If you have a place to store your off-season clothing, do so to make more room for current season clothing.

Finally, hang your clothes by color. A person should only have so many black T-shirts. Hanging colors together will give you a chance to see if you’ve hit that limit.

For neater display and storage of your clothing, Lori suggests clear plastic boxes for shoes and swivel head hangers. Lori loves the all-in-one hanger that allows you to hang a complete outfit, bottom and top, on the same hanger.


Perhaps you have outfit combinations in your closet that you may not have thought of before.

That’s where a fresh perspective comes in.

Last spring, Lori created 30 days worth of outfits from clothes I already had in my closet.

The skirt I hadn’t worn in months, she paired with three tops I had previously never even considered wearing with that skirt.

Lori then created a spread sheet to help me remember which items she put together. I looked like I just went shopping, even though I hadn’t spent an additional cent.

Lori encourages her clients to dress in threes: Add a third element to your outfit such as a scarf, vest, jacket, belt, even a substantial chunky necklace could be considered a third element, to achieve a cohesive, “put together” look.


In western Colorado the calendar may say it’s fall, but it still feels like summer. Until the weather cools down, Lori suggests wearing linen in dark colors such as black, brown or garnet.

Switch out your thin, strappy sandals for a more substantial sandal, perhaps with wider straps and a chunkier heel.

For fall, Lori likes the upcoming trends of jewel-colored suede shoes, especially pumps, to really make an outfit “pop.” The color champagne pink and nude-tones are what’s hot for formal wear and she really likes the trend of the wide belt to accentuate an hourglass figure.

A word of warning from the wardrobe consultant about dressing too trendy: If you have worn the trend before (remember the slouchy boots from the ‘80s?) that look is probably not right for you now.

Conversely, if you are a teenager embrace the trends. Try them all. Now is the time to experiment with your personal style.

Wear those “jeggings,” booties and annihilated jeans. Everyone needs to have photos of themselves they can laugh at 20 years from now. (Can you say, “parachute pants”?)

Finally, there is one extra service my wardrobe consultant provides only to me and not her other clients. She offers me her hand-me-downs.

She has to, she’s my sister.

To find out more about wardrobe consultant Lori Wynne and her services, go to

For more on an unpredictable variety of other topics, visit Annie Payne’s blog,, at


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