Hey friends! If your closet has become a black hole where clothes, shoes, and accessories mysteriously disappear, you’ve come to the right place. As an expert in home design with over a decade of experience, I’ve helped countless clients transform their closets from chaotic to serene.
Today, I’m spilling my pro secrets to help you organize your closet like a pro. From assessing your space to maintaining your newfound order, this guide will set you up for closet success. Grab a cup of coffee, and let’s get started!
- 1 Taking Stock: Assessing Your Current Closet
- 2 Decluttering: Keep, Toss or Donate
- 3 Designing Your Dream Closet
- 4 Maintaining Closet Zen: Upkeep Tips
- 5 Level Up: Tech and Professional Help
Taking Stock: Assessing Your Current Closet
Before we can organize anything, we need to take inventory. Start by removing every single item from your closet – yes, everything! Now, you can see what you’re working with.
Next, take measurements of your closet’s length, width, and height. Snap some photos from different angles, too. This will help you evaluate your storage space and determine the best solutions. Speaking of which, here are some key aspects to assess:
- What do you need to store in your closet? Clothes, shoes, accessories? Luggage, sports equipment, seasonal items? Understanding your storage requirements is step one.
- Are there certain items you need quick and easy access to, like work clothes or gym wear? Make a note of these so you can plan optimal placement.
Existing Storage Set-Up
- What is your current shelving and hanging rod situation? Take notes on the type, size, placement, and condition.
- Are there minor annoyances you want to fix, like wobbly shelves or dim lighting? Identify problem areas so you can address them in your new design.
- Does your closet extend to the ceiling, or is there wasted vertical space? Measure to determine unused vertical storage opportunities.
- Can you knock down or move any walls to gain more space? Even a few extra inches can make a difference.
- Is there empty floor space that could accommodate freestanding storage units or even a tiny island? Measure and outline open floor areas.
Once you’ve assessed all these factors, you can start planning your dream closet layout! But before we get there, it’s time for every organizer’s favorite step: decluttering!
Decluttering: Keep, Toss or Donate
Decluttering your closet is liberating – trust me. But it’s also tricky. You don’t want to regret tossing something later. My best advice? Be ruthless. If you haven’t worn it in over a year, it’s unlikely to come back.
Follow these decluttering tips to separate the treasures from the excess:
1. Try the “Reverse Hanger” Method
Simply turn all your hangers so they face the opposite direction. As you wear items, return them to their average hanger direction. After 3-4 months, anything left in reverse is not part of your regular wardrobe. Be brave and let it go!
2. Assess Condition
Hold each garment up to the light. Check for tears, stains, missing buttons, and other damage. Be honest – if it requires extensive mending, is it worth keeping?
3. Check the Fit
Try everything on. Just because it was the perfect size two years ago doesn’t mean it still fits well. Don’t cling to an idealized former self – move forward with what flatters you now.
4. Analyze Usage
How often have you worn this top or dress in the past year? Just for special occasions? It’s probably time to pass it on to someone who will wear it more frequently.
5. Consider Cost Per Wear
This one takes a little math, but it’s eye-opening. Take the original cost of an item and divide it by the number of times you’ve worn it. A $50 sweater worn 25 times has a $2 cost per wear. But a $50 sweater worn only twice has a $25 cost per wear. Let pricey, seldom-worn items go to new homes.
Once you’ve gone through everything using these criteria, split your items into “keep,” “toss,” and “donate” piles. Take the donate pile to a local charity, recycle the toss pile, and pat yourself on the back for a job well done!
Now for the fun part – reinventing your new, decluttered space!
Designing Your Dream Closet
With your blank canvas and storage needs in mind, start designing the closet you’ve always envied. Here are some elements to consider incorporating:
Think about how you want your closet laid out. Some options:
- Vertical space maximizer – shelves and rods going floor-to-ceiling
- Island – freestanding unit with storage all around
- Walk-in – entrance “hallway” with storage on sides
Sketch a few layout options before committing to one.
Consider which of these storage solutions make sense for your space and needs:
- Shelving – Enclosed, cubbies, wire, or mix and match?
- Hanging rods – Single, double, adjustable height?
- Drawers – Perfect for folded clothing, underwear, and accessories.
- Baskets – Fabric bins for those odds and ends without a home.
- Specialty organizers – Shoe cubbies, jewelry displays, scarf rods, and more.
Custom vs Pre-Made
Pre-made and modular closet systems like IKEA’s Pax line make customized closets affordable. But for a truly bespoke wardrobe, invest in custom-built cabinetry designed precisely for your space.
Style and Finishes
The cherry on top is choosing aesthetically pleasing elements like the wood type for cabinets, drawer pulls, shelf lining, and accessory trays. Go modern, traditional, or something in between – make it you!
It’s time to move in once you’ve brought your dream closet design to life. Follow these tips to keep your new oasis of organization humming happily.
Maintaining Closet Zen: Upkeep Tips
You put in the work to create your dream organized closet – now the fun part is living in it! Follow these habits to keep closet chaos at bay:
1. Put Things Back Right Away
After pulling something off a hanger or shelf, please return it to its designated home. Don’t let rogue clothes pile up!
2. Do a Weekly Tidy
Set aside 15 minutes each week to dust shelves, vacuum the floor, wipe down surfaces, and return stray items to their places. Ahh that feels better already!
3. Designate a Donation Bin
Keep a basket or bin in your closet for donating clothing and accessories. When it’s complete, drop it off without delay.
4. Rotate Seasonally
Swap your heavier sweaters and coats for lighter dresses and T-shirts when winter changes to spring. Store off-season items sealed in vacuum bags to save space.
5. Revisit and Revamp
Re-assess your closet organization every year. Update storage solutions and overhaul the layout to adjust to your changing needs and style.
Level Up: Tech and Professional Help
Once you’ve mastered the basics of closet organization, it’s time to step up your game with next-level assistance:
Closet Organization Apps
There are some fantastic apps, like ClosetSpace and Stylebook, that catalog your clothing and accessories. Features like outfit planning, wardrobe analysis, and packing lists simplify getting dressed!
Top-tier companies like California Closets and The Container Store offer custom closet builds and professional organizers to design your ideal space. Some will even purge and catalog your belongings for you – closet bliss!
Though nothing beats an in-person closet overhaul, virtual services are also available to troubleshoot and advise if you hit an organizational wall.
Let’s quickly recap the key points that will transform your closet from cluttered to chic:
- Assess your existing space and storage needs
- Purge excess belongings ruthlessly
- Design a functional layout with adequate storage solutions
- Maintain order with habits like quick tidy-ups
- Use apps and professionals for an elevated organization
These pro tips help make your closet the tranquil oasis of your dreams! Remember, an organized closet reduces stress and makes getting ready each morning enjoyable.
If you have any other closet dilemmas that need solving, ask away in the comments! I’m always here to share my organization obsession.
Call to Action
If this post has inspired you to take on your closet, I have one final challenge: set a timer for 15 minutes and see how much you can organize today. Sometimes, just getting started is the hardest part. But I know you can do it!