Is your closet a place to hide things? A cramped space with unknown contents, safe from prying eyes, holding things you’d rather not have to face?
With a little effort, you can turn that all around and create an organized closet that serves you rather than enabling you to keep clutter.
Read on for suggestions how to organize and accessorize your closet for maximum usage.
Purge the outdated
Begin your efforts to keep an organized closet by getting rid of what you’re not using. This seems simple enough, but sometimes we keep clothes, shoes, purses or ties because they remind of us of our younger selves or of memories that we cherish. As you go through your closet clutter, ask yourself if the item in your hands makes you feel great when you wear it, is flattering on you or projects the image you want at this point in your life. If the answer is “no” to any of these questions, away it goes! For a “maybe” item, wear it for a day and see if you can decide then. In most cases, “maybes” are “no” items that you’re just not ready to cop to yet.
With newly-available closet real estate space, you can now begin your organization efforts in earnest.
Find the right closet system
Depending on the kind of closet you have (reach in? walk in?), this might be the time to install a closet system. You can call a company like California Closets, which can design and install the storage components for you, or use a system available from the Container Store, the Home Depot or EasyClosets. Most systems can be self-installed. Do consider your lease before you choose a product that requires involved installation or which might be difficult to remove.
If you don’t want to go the expense of installing a complete closet system, consider using modular pieces, such as rolling storage caddies, hanging storage caddies or stackable boxes and crates. You can easily create your own system using these portable options.
Coordinate your closet decor
When choosing your closet organization system, try matching it to your room’s decor. You can match colors from your room to the shelves or drawer faces, use wallpaper from the room to accent the closet interior, or simply choose a complementary shade for your modular bins and hanging caddies. With attention to color and style, you can make your closet an attractive annex of the larger room.
Create a personal touch
Regardless of how deep or spacious your closet, you can add finishes to make the space feel welcoming and purposeful. If you have room, add a mirror or small framed picture. Use hat boxes, vintage luggage, decorative boxes or decorative metal locker baskets as containers for sweaters and sundries. To creatively store small items such as jewelry, gloves and sunglasses, try cigar boxes, vintage lunch boxes or even a small (clean!) tackle box.
The importance of hangers
Once you’ve sorted through your excess stuff and come up with storage solutions for the non-hanging items in your closet, it’s time to consider the hangers themselves. Choosing the right kind of hanger for each particular clothing item can not only preserve the piece, but create more room, as well. Non-slip Space Saving Hangers are available through a variety of retailers. Sturdy and easy on your clothes, they are also thin, taking up considerably less space than plastic tube hangers or wooden hangers. If space is not an issue, durable wooden hangers for blouses and jackets work very well, however. Use clip hangers to keep skirts wrinkle free and pants hangers to keep trousers looking spiffy. A multi-hanger (also available with clips) is a great way to save space when hanging multiple pairs of pants.
It’s time to embrace your closet’s potential! Maximize every square inch to store the wardrobe you love, and you’ll enjoy wearing and taking care of each piece. When you design a closet space that’s easy to access, you may be surprised at the difference in your motivation to neatly hang your clothes back up at the end of the day!
Photo credit: Shutterstock / Kekyalyaynen