How are you doing on the January organization calendar? I’ll admit I’ve done almost all the tasks, but not in the order on the chart! Organizing your master closet was a task this past weekend, and I wanted to share a few tips and tricks we used to get our closet clean, neat and sorted out in about an hour. After clearing out a bag of trash (mostly old dry cleaning bags and worn out clothing) and three bags of clothes and shoes to donate, the space feels fresh and almost empty– perfect for filling up with clothes we’ll use and love instead of garments we don’t like or wear.
We got so into the project that I didn’t even use my good camera for photos; these phone pics were about as good as I could do in the cleaning frenzy. I promise my carpet isn’t mauve, it just looks that way on the computer.
Here’s the BEFORE. Read on for the AFTER!
Here’s 6 Closet Organization Tips that will get your Closet Organized in (About) an Hour!
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Tip #1: TOUCH EVERYTHING. A two-person closet is a two-person job. However, my husband and I have different methods for clearing out old clothes. But both involve putting your hands on every. single. item. My husband goes through each piece of clothing in the closet and throws discards out the door (where I’m waiting to sort into either the trash, donate, or dry clean pile). I like to take ALL my clothes out and only bring back in what I love, sorting the leftovers into the same piles as I go. Both accomplish the same thing: we get rid of clothing we can no longer wear and make room for carefully selected new clothing that we love.
All of this was extra stuff was living in our closet, including that box of kids’ books.
Which method do you prefer– the toss out or the bring in?
Tip #2: THRIFTY SCARF ORGANIZING TRICK. I came up with this idea because I didn’t want to spend $15 on a scarf organizer. Quite frankly, I’d rather spend that money on an actual scarf. I used a rare 6-pack soda holder (we don’t usually drink soda so I don’t know where it even came from!) and hung it on a hanger. Then, I added my scarves! Easy, neat, and completely free. More scarf money for me!
I store my out-of-season scarves using the 6-pack trick, but the others I keep out with my clutches and belts on hooks on the back wall. Makes them easy to see and grab when needed:
Tip #3: HOW TO KEEP YOUR BOOTS FROM FOLDING OVER. This easy trick makes boots looks incredibly neat and extends their life by keeping them straight instead of getting folded and creased from flopping over. Simply roll up a magazine and stick it inside your boot. Now they stand at attention, ready to be your fashion warriors at a moment’s notice!
TIP #4: TURN THE HANGERS THE WRONG WAY. What? Why would you do that? This easy trick will tell you whether you actually wear something or not. At the beginning of the season, turn the hangers the wrong way and after you wear something hang it back up the RIGHT way. At the end of the season, you can tell in a glance what you’ve worn and what can be weeded out. It also challenges you to wear items you wouldn’t normally choose because you can instantly see which ones need some attention.
Tip #5: UPGRADE YOUR HANGERS. Each time I’m at HomeGoods or a similar store I purchase a package of ‘higher end’ hangers. Upgrading your hangers to the slim velvet style, wooden hangers, or even nicer plastic hangers extends the life of your clothing because it doesn’t create as much of a crease and eliminates those embarrassing shoulder bumps if you hang something wrong. We still have plenty of the wire hangers due to dry cleaning, but every few months I gather them up and take them back to the dry cleaner to be recycled.
TIP #6: HAVE A COLLECTION SPOT FOR LOST SOCKS. Every time I find a lone sock, I’ll toss it in a specific bin in our closet. Every few weeks I’ll match them up, and it makes this process a breeze! Having a landing spot is a must in our house– I think we have a sock monster that separates socks from their partner every load of laundry.
I also keep an electric sweater shaver in the closet to fix us sweaters that have started to pill or get fuzzy. Even my expensive clothes don’t seem as well made any more, so I’ll pull out the stops to keep them looking good as long as possible and this little tool has helped.
Now that all your clothing, shoes, and accessories have been weeded out and styled nicely, give your closet a good cleaning and vacuuming. Stand back and rejoice in the vastness of your space. Extend your arms and spin like Maria in the Sound of Music, you can even let go with a song if you wish. YOU DESERVE IT.
It isn’t a glamorous closet, but it’s a nice size and gets the job done. I think my husband needs to go clothes shopping.
Sidenote: my poor husband. When we moved in together, I basically packed away all his bachelor stuff from various travels or only let him display it in the closet. Here’s a weird ‘souvenir’ from a trip to Germany. Let’s vote: does he stay in the closet or not? (My vote? STAY).
Though in reality, no matter how much you organize if you have kids they’ll tell you what’s what. Please, Cookie, don’t eat my TB’s!
Here’s a quick comparison. Not too shabby for just over an hour of work (the shoe organizer is missing in the second photo, I was too caught up in my Sound of Music moment to put it back before I took the photo):
Now you have all the closet organization tools you need to get going. How do you organize your actual clothes– by color, style, length? Please share!
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