I am generally very strict about managing my closet. I use a one-in-one-out approach to make sure that I don’t grow out of my closet space over time, and items that I’m no longer wearing get passed on or go into an out of sight holding zone. But there are exceptions. These aren’t orphans — I know how to wear them and have plenty of items to wear with them. I keep them because it makes me happy to see them in my closet, or because I have a hunch that it won’t be long before they are back in rotation. Here are four examples that are in my closet right now.

First, I’ve had a vintage tomato red dress for thirteen years. I’ve worn it to three weddings and many a night out in the past. The last time I wore the frock was in 2010, when it was hot enough to do so and the setting was perfect. I have no intention of getting rid of that dress because I love it so much. Seeing the colour and its delicate fabric hang in my closet puts me into a good mood. I’m sure I’ll wear it again one day, when the moment and weather are just right. But for now, it’s serving its purpose by decorating my closet. 

Second, about three years ago I had a style epiphany and swore off all jewellery apart from watch and wedding ring. Before that I frequently wore chunky white faux pearl necklaces of all shapes and sizes. I still have them, and they make quite a visual statement where they hang on the hooks I installed for them. I have no intention of wearing these necklaces any time soon, but seeing them as I enter our closet makes me happy. White pearls will always hold a special place in my heart, so they’ve become sentimental. 

Third, I have two older white Anne Fontaine button-down shirts that I haven’t worn for years. They are very tailored and right now I prefer more fashionable fluid and oversized fits. So instead I gravitate towards my boxy white tuxedo shirts, or the Anne Fontaine shirts that are a little less fitted. But I’m keeping them in my closet because I know I’ll wear them again when I want a more tailored look.

And fourth, I have two pairs of Chie Mihara low-heeled pumps that are beautifully made and extremely comfortable. I don’t wear them because I’m off round toed pumps for now. But as Queen Fussy Feet, I generally don’t get rid of comfortable shoes unless they are falling apart or I’ve found a superior replacement. So they’re staying in my closet, waiting for my round toe pumps mood to return. 

I believe that closet edits are important, and I’m all about keeping my closet to a manageable size. But sometimes it’s a good idea to hold onto items that you have a hunch you might wear again in the not too distant future, or even just because they make you smile.