Closet organization can be a daunting task – especially if it’s been years since you last purged an item of clothing. The change of seasons is the perfect time to organize your closet. It allows you to get rid of pieces you haven’t worn in a while, and at the same time you can also group clothing seasonally, which makes staying organized a much easier task. I have one rule when it comes to keeping my closet from becoming an unruly monster, and that is “one piece in, one piece out”. We are living in a consumer based society, where fashions change quickly and we are constantly buying new pieces to add to our wardrobe. But most of us don’t have the space to keep adding to our outfits without occasionally getting rid of a few pieces. So each time I buy an item, I also have to purge something. It forces me to look deep into my closet and rid myself of something that will never likely see the light of day again! I also try to live by these 10 steps to keep my closet looking great and functioning well.
Start by taking out every last item out of your closet and dusting it out. By removing everything, you can sort the pieces methodically and only put back what you really want. Don’t just rifle through your items; you may end up removing one or two pieces but leaving a whole heap of mess.
Pick up some new hangers.
Make sure you get the slim style. Not only are they more attractive, they’ll save you space. Having coordinating hangers helps keep the closet looking neat and organized, and makes it easier to find certain items. Make sure you have some pant hangers for your work pants and skirts.
Pick up some stylish storage boxes.
Now you can sort your scarves, belts, tights, underwear, anything that can be rolled or folded. There are loads of options on the market now, so find boxes that will fit your drawers and shelving, and look great at the same time!
Ask yourself some questions.
This step is vital to proper organization of your closet. Does the item still fit? Is there any fading or damage? And most importantly, do I love the way I look in this piece? If you feel great wearing something, chances are you’ll choose that piece over and over again. But if you worry about how you look in something, it’s time to let it go!
Separate items by seasons, then by colour.
Since we’re moving into the cool crisp weather of fall, it’s time to pack away the summer sandals and tank tops, and pull out the sweaters and boots. Use storage bins and boxes, and pack away anything you won’t wear until next year. The bins can be placed under your bed, or at the back or top of any closet. This gives you easy access to what you need for the season at hand. Hang items by colour so you can quickly find the pieces you’re looking for.
Use the backward hanger strategy.
For all those items that make it back into your closet, there will still be some that never get worn again. This strategy lets you see which pieces you wear repeatedly, and which ones you haven’t touched since you cleaned the closet out. Hang all the hangers over the back of the rack, so the hook of the hanger is facing towards you. This is the opposite way you would normally hang clothes in your closet. When you take something out to wear, put it back in with the hanger facing the normal way. When you go back through your closet in a few months’ time, you’ll easily be able to see which pieces you haven’t worn at all.
Heavier items shouldn’t be hung anyway, as they are likely to become misshapen, so fold your sweaters and shawls. Stacking them into drawers or boxes will free up some more hanging space.
Organize your folded clothes.
Separate short sleeve T’s, long-sleeve T’s, hoodies, and sweaters and sort them into folded piles in your dresser. Use drawer inserts to keep smaller items organized.
Store shoes and boots neatly.
Use a shoe storage rack on the bottom of your closet, or if space is an issue use a hanging shoe bag on the back of a door. You can also line shoes up neatly under your hanging clothes if there’s no room for a rack.
Make some money & feel good too!
Sort through your pile of discards and separate everything into three piles. The first pile will be the items you can sell; name-brand, designer, and better quality clothing that’s still in good shape will sell online or through a local consignment shop. The second pile will be your donation pile; worn but not damaged clothing and footwear can be donated to women’s shelters, hospitals and thrift stores to help people of lower income to dress well. The third pile is the old stuff that you can’t sell or donate, but you may be able to pass on to a fabric recycler to give it a new life. Search for someone in your area, they may even pick it up from your home!
Following these ten tips seasonally, or even just twice a year, will help keep your closet looking like it’s right out of the pages of a magazine. And once you’ve done it the first time, it’s much easier to take on this task 6 months from now!