Taking an Honest Look at Your Space
Before we start doing any major closet work, first spend some time thinking about your closet and how you want to improve it. Do you have enough shelves? Adequate lighting? Sufficient accessory storage? Figure out how much work you might want to invest into renovating this space. Do you want to gut your space and start from scratch? Or just add a few pieces to make it more functional?
Obviously, if you’re renting, you have to think about ways to improve the space without making a huge remodel. Consider buying an organizing piece of furniture that you can place inside your closet to provide some easy and practical organization solutions. You could also add staggered shelves and clear plastic boxes to store handbags, hats, perfumes, and other small pieces.
The Great Clothing Sorting
Now is the time to go through every item in your closet and sort it according to the following categories:
- Keep it: These are items that fit you today and you love them. They belong in your closet.
- Throw away: These are items that no longer belong in your house. They need to be donated to a local shelter or if they are beyond repair, tossed in the trash.
- Save for memories: These items are clothing pieces that no longer get worn, but cannot be thrown away due to sentimental reasons. Maybe it’s the baby’s first outfit, or your wedding dress. These will go in a labeled plastic box and stored in the basement or attic. Resist the urge to save too many items for sentimental reasons.
Closet Design Guidelines
Now that you’ve redesigned your closet and thrown away all the unnecessary items you no longer use, it is time to start reloading the closet. As already mentioned, keep items of the same category together, and within each category, keep all items of the same style and color together. When arranging clothes within the subcategory, organize by color from light to dark, starting with white and moving through the rainbow and ending with black. Keep pants on pant hangers, jackets & shirts on padded hangers, and strappy tops & lingerie on notched hangers.
Drawers should be labeled and organized like the closets, sticking to one type of clothing item. Store socks with socks, T-shirts with T-shirts, underwear with underwear, swimwear with swimwear, and so on. If space is limited, you can combine categories into one drawer, but the important thing to keep in mind is to make sure everything is visible and accessible when the drawer is opened.
If you take shoes off when you enter your house, make sure you have ample shoe storage by your entryway. As usual, keep like shoes together – all sandals together, all flip flops together, all dressy shoes together, all sneakers together, etc. If you wear shoes into your house, then store your shoes on the floor in your bedroom closet. You could either use low shelves to store your shoes or repurpose some boxes into shoes boxes.
To view the rest of the posts in the Home Organization Series, please click here.