Of every area of my house I’d have to say that my closet is the most disorganized, disheveled, chaotic mess. I toss things in, mix things up and have no defined methods of organizing it what so ever. Even my handy little t-shirt box hanger is full, instead, of everything from scarves to sweater dresses. I’m usually in a rush when I get ready to go somewhere so I don’t pay much attention to what I’m riffling through 20 minutes before I have to leave. Then again, I’m usually in a rush when I put stuff up as well. The result: total mess.
I know I’m not the only one who suffers from a highly unorganized closet. We start out with a perfect system and the best intentions – but fail to maintain it when our days get hectic. Things are shuffled around, tossed in the wrong area and eventually we lose track of them. Often the biggest problems are having too much clutter we never use and having a large space with no designated areas to work with.
Getting Organized: The Closet
Know What You Have and What You Need
The first step is pulling it all out. Yep, you heard me – take it all down. Separate your clothing, shoes, bags and more into areas showing how often you use them. A good way to judge how much you need an item is according to the last time you used it. If it’s a seasonal item: did you use it within the last year? If it’s a year round item: did you use it in the last 6 months? If not – don’t keep it. The same goes for those ‘when I get skinny again’ clothes.
As you’re going through your closet, keep a notepad and pen handy. You can easily jot down notes about what you’ll need to replace, what you may want to give to friends, and what needs to be put into storage for next season.
Set Your Spaces
When you’ve gone through your ‘inventory’ and decided what you’ll be keeping, it’s then time to plan how you’ll sort and store it. What will be hanging? What can be folded? What can be placed in boxes? Does anything need floor space? Knowing what types of storage you’ll need will help you best decide how to arrange your space.
Multiply Your Space
There are different ways you can actually create new space just by adjusting the space you already have. The best example is your hanging rod. Most closets have one single rod that goes all the way across. Just adding a second, lower rod for slacks, scarves and bags can double your closet space. Using bins, baskets and small side shelves can also help you create new levels and store more in a smaller space.
Keep Your Lifestyle in Mind
If you go to your closet for a sweater more often than to pick a dress, make sure your sweaters are more easily accessable. Have more shoes than slacks? Give your sneakers and heels the lion’s share of shelf space. Make sure you won’t have to dig through just to get to the items you use daily.
Try Professional Closet Organizers
If you plan to be in your residence long term – consider a permenant organizational system. Many of us don’t fully grasp just how much space we really have in our closets until we see examples of how it can be arranged and used. Professionally designed custom closets can turn your disheveled walk-in into a organized wardrobe and dressing area. If you have a reach-in closet it can help you maximize your space and create easier access.