Friday, January 14, 2011


It's time to stop procrastinating and time to finally bring order to that war zone you call your closet. Especially before you get the itch to buy any new spring clothes. Ok I'll admit - I'm a little obsessed with organizing. And I love closets. So I thought I'd channel my obsession into something helpful: a list of tips on what I've found are the most effective ways to organize your bedroom closet.

Did you know that people wear 20% of their wardrobe 80% of the time? Believe it. And you better believe that if your closet is pure chaos, you will be too. Who wants to start their day off on the wrong foot because of something so managable?

Below are my five solutions that will conquer your closet clutter. For this WEEKEND WARRIOR CHALLENGE, I encourage you to put closet cleaning on your list. Even if all you have time to do is a quick sweep. Ready...set...go!!!!

Start from scratch - Pull everything out. While you are taking out each item, access if it's:
  • a keeper; you wear it frequently, it's one of your favs, staple in your wardrobe
  • one to try on; you pause, still love it but are on the fence. Does it still even fit? Still in style?
  • time to donate; out of style, too small, never wear it
  • trash worthy; holes, stains, stretched out

Take a few minutes then to try on the 'iffy' clothes. This is a time to be brutally honest with yourself. If you're holding onto hope that you might one day fit into it, let it go. This isn't the time to reminisce. It's also a time to be extremely selective and follow the Golden Rule of organizing - don't keep anything you haven't worn in the last year. I personally like the 6-8 month rule. While you're closet is empty, vacuum the floor, dust off the shelves or do whatever is necessary to tidy up.

2: Make piles - Now sort through the clothes and make piles of like items - long sleeved, short sleeved t-shirts, dressy tops, tanks, sweatshirts, jeans, dress pants, capri pants, etc. If you don't have a ton of closet space, I suggest you separate the seasonal clothing (Fall/Winter & Spring/Summer) from one another at this time. If storage is an issue, the best bet for seasonal clothing are long plastic bins ($8.99/Target) or fabric store bags ($14.99/Target) that can scoot under the bed. 3: Get hanging - First toss out all wire or mismatched hangers. Major pet-peeve. Wood or plastic hangers are best. If you prefer wood, I suggest the Bumerang clothes hangers from Ikea ($4.49 for an 8-pack). I personally prefer cheap all white hangers that have the notch/indent to hold tank top & dress straps($2-3 for 10/Target). For pants & skirts I suggest using tiered or cascading hangers to maximize space ($13.99 for a 2-pk/Target). And always hang ties and belts on a hanger ($11.99 for a 2-pk/Target). Do not hang sweaters. Over time, the hangers will ruin the shape of your sweater. Instead fold them and put on shelf.

4: Organize - Now assign closet space logically. However the flow works for you is best. Rule of thumb is to place items you wear frequently at eye level. Less worn items lower. And least worn items, high on the shelves. I do suggest that if your closet is nicely divided, you put tops on top, pants on bottom section.

Now it's time to color coordinate each bunch of like items. My favorite part. I personally like to use the rainbow as my guide. Start on the left with reds, then pink, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. Then I'll do brown, grey, black and white. Patterns go together at the end of each bunch. If an item is striped, I will place in the color section of the primary color.
5: Find a home for everything - Most people don't have room to hang & display everything in one closet so embrace the idea of bins. Baskets, plastic bins, collapsible cubes, fabric boxes are all ways to give items a proper place. Even drawer organizers ($14.99-$19.99/Container Store) for the little things like lingerie, hoisery, ties, or undergarments stacked on your closet shelf will work. I personally like boxes with lids so I can stack them and utilize the most space in my closet. Nonetheless, you must have a "home" for each item if you truly want to be organized. In my spare closet, I have two 3 drawer plastic storage bins ($19.99/Target) for things like bathing suits, winter socks, scarfs, belts, tanks, etc. They are very functional and I can always get into them.

My one beef about closet organization however is that there are a million and one organizational products on the market. And you can quickly spend a lot of money on trendy, over-priced storage bins. Keep in mind that you need to find a solution that works for you and your allotted space. If all that makes sense is a boring ol' plastic bin, so be it. Don't get caught up in how cute your closet should look. Above all, it needs to be functional. And most likely, you are the only one who is going to see inside it so what does it really matter!?!
But what about the shoes???? Come back for next Friday's Weekend Warrior Challenge: SHOE SOLUTION! Happy organizing!!

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