Just because you can close the door on your closet doesn’t mean you should neglect organizing it. Worried it will take too much time and money? Don’t!
Whether you’re looking for a few small fixes or a complete overhaul, here are some tips for creating your dream closet on a dime.
Take everything out.
The best way to see what you have is by taking it all out of your closet. Make piles of similar items, whether hanging or not: short-sleeve shirts, long-sleeve shirts, pants, dresses, tops, scarves, belts, purses, shoes.
Smaller items can be put back in the closet together, saving space for the larger, more important hanging items.
As you sort, ask yourself these questions before you put anything back in your closet:
- Do I use this item regularly?
- Do I love it?
- Am I saving it just in case?
- Do I have multiples of it?
- Could something else I own do just as good a job?
Hang like items together.
Start with the bigger hanging items, and put them back into the closet. Place like items next to each other on the rod, such as shirts, pants, and dresses.
Next, put back the smaller items you grouped together. You can hang items such as tank tops on a single hanger using plastic shower curtain rings, which can be purchased for a couple of dollars at your local discount store.
“S” hooks can be used a lot of ways. Use one hook and some chain, both available at your local hardware store, to create a vertical hanger for multiple tops or pairs of pants. You can also hang purses or other accessories from “S” hooks just about anywhere in your closet.
If you have space on the inside of your closet door, try installing one or two towel racks. You can hang items such as knit scarves directly on the rack, or hang items such as mittens or knit caps from shower curtain rings with clips. Inexpensive towel racks and shower curtain rings with clips are available at your local hardware or discount store.
Or put similar items together in a basket.
If you have the shelf space, purchase plastic baskets at your local supercenter and fill them with like smaller items, such as purses, shoes, or other accessories.
Try this in your kids’ closets, too. It’s a great way to get toys off the floor.
Double up existing space.
You can add more “shelf” space by purchasing inexpensive wire racks from your local supercenter that sit on top of an existing shelf. Another way to organize a long shelf is by purchasing a divider that can separate the shelf into different zones, as well as keep folded items propped up.
Decide what really belongs on the floor.
It makes sense to keep shoes on the floor, but stack them up. You can purchase a shoe organizer that sits on the floor for $20-$30 at your local supercenter.
To keep boots upright, you can stuff them with cut-up pool noodles or wine bottles. If you don’t want them to sit on the floor, you can use clip hangers to hang them from the bottom rod of the closet.
Start a donation box.
The best tip for organizing your closet: Don’t put back in things that you don’t want or need. However, sometimes it’s tough to decide what you won’t wear again, or it’s scary to get rid of a bunch of things all at once.
Here is one way to find out if you wear your clothes as much as you think you do. While your clothes are hanging on them, turn all of the hangers around on the rod. When you wear something, put it back facing the “right” direction.
At the end of the year, see which items are still facing the other way.
If you keep a box at the bottom of your closet, you can collect those items that you’re not using. When the box fills up, take it and donate what’s inside.
Take a look at these “after” photos as inspiration for your own closet makeover.
Stacey Rayburn is the owner of Organized Chaos With a Twist.