Posted on August 26th, 2020
Some people love fashion and clothing and have overstuffed closets to prove it. Not everyone can afford a three-tiered closet with rotating racks like women have in the movies. We are not fashion moguls, so we are limited in the space we have to store our clothing. When this happens, sometimes we must get creative in organizing clothing.
Empty Your Closet
While your closet will not stay empty for long, emptying everything at once can be helpful. However, do not merely empty everything into a pile. Empty your closet into categories. Summer tops, summer skirts, tanks, slacks, skirts, dresses, shoes, coats, and any other category of clothing needs its own pile. From here, remove anything that is in disrepair. We often keep clothing intending to have it repaired, but we never take it to have the alterations completed. Decide if these pieces are worth saving. If they are, you need to prepare them for repairs this week. Set a deadline. If you do not send them for repairs by the deadline, you must toss them. Look for programs that provide clothing to homeless people or college students seeking their first jobs. Many of these programs will repair clothing or if they’re not fit for wear at all you can consider recycling the items.
Try on Clothing
Try on all of the clothing you have planned to keep. If you have clothing that is too large or too small, determine the likelihood that it will fit again. If you lost 75 pounds, your large blouses are probably not something that you will wear again. Likewise, if you cannot wear the size 32 jeans from high school, you probably should not keep them if you are 45. First, they are probably out of style, but men’s jeans may not have quite the limits that women’s jeans do. However, keeping them 20 years later is not helpful. Get rid of anything that does not fit or will not fit. This also goes for outdated styles. You must be practical.
Don’t Forget Accessories
Make sure that you will wear any shoes, belts, or accessories that you have in your closet. Unless you are attending a formal 80s dinner, the skinny tie that you wore to your cousin’s wedding in 1988 is not likely to fit in. Platform sandals and skinny belts are the same for feminine attire.
Separate the remaining clothing by season. Thinning your closet by season is one of the simplest ways to organize your closet. You can store off-season clothing in plastic bins or totes to minimize staleness. When changing out clothing at the beginning of a season, clothing can sometimes smell stale from storage. Airtight containers can help. Space-saving bags can also be good alternatives, but these bags can tear and puncture, allowing air inside. Airtight containers and bags can also maintain clothing in case of a flood. Underbed boxes and decorative trunks can be great ways to get the clothing hidden without adding to the mess somewhere else.
Fold Smaller Items
Fold your tanks, lingerie, tees, and other non-bulky clothing. Using drawer space functionally can cut down on what is taking up space in your closet. Make the most of the closet space by using a chest of drawers or dresser for the non-bulky items.
Keep Bulky Coats in a Hall Closet or Hang Near a Door
Bulky winter coats can take up a lot of space in a closet. Hang those on a coat rack or in a hall closet near the most used door. This move can keep the most substantial items out of your closet. It is surprising how much space you may save by moving hoodies, puffy coats, and other cold-weather wear to another space.
Return Items by Style and Color
When returning items to hangers in your closet, hang them by style and color. Hang pants together by color. You may also choose to hang work pants and casual pants separately then color-code them. For instance, hang all of your slacks by color, denim next, then leggings or sweats. Do the same with blouses, casual shirts, and sweatshirts (if the hoodies did not make it out). This makes it easier to find black slacks at 6:00 AM if you did not lay your clothes out the night before.
Add a Bar
If you do not have low hanging clothing, consider adding a lower bar to your closet. You can double the hanging space with one bar. Be sure that adding the bar does not make it difficult to locate other things in the closet. If you have chosen to store seasonal clothing on the floor in totes, adding a bar might not be advantageous.
Store your shoes on adjustable shoe racks or in their boxes. I am not a fan of cardboard anywhere, but you can use the plastic shoe boxes instead. Store your shoes in multiple layers to maximize the space.
Place a shelf above the upper bar or between bars of clothing, add a shoe hanger to the back of the closet door, or place accessories on hangers with outfits. If you can hang things from the ceiling without it being awkward or out of reach, consider any space that you have.
Having an interest in fashion and clothing does not mean that you cannot have an organized closet. You can use what you have to your advantage. Consider what you are hanging onto and why. Thin out your clothing and accessories regularly to keep your space looking fantastic. Do not be afraid to say no when your mom asks if you want the pants she bought in the wrong size, or your dad offers you his tie collection. You are not obligated to hold on to every piece of clothing. Make the best of the space you have.