Closets can be a sore subject to many because it’s easy to close a door on that hot mess and forget about it. But as I have spoken to many women about, a clean closet can set you up for success when it comes to getting dressed each and every morning. Locally, women actually have me in to their homes to tackle the mess of weeding out the old, organizing and giving them new ideas on what to mix and match within their current wardrobe. Sometimes it helps to have a fresh set of eyes on the things you look at daily to give you a thumbs up or down. That could even be a friend that you invite over, give a big glass of wine to and let her give you a yay or nay as you sort through your closet! Before we jump into the actual process of organizing your closet, we need to take the first step and declutter.
I get that this probably won’t be fun for you, but you’ll need to keep your eyes focused on the end result…a beautifully organized closet that holds only pieces that you look forward to wearing. Here’s my list of questions to ask yourself while you sort:
- Does it fit me?
- Does it flatter me (both in color and shape)?
- Have I worn it in the past year?
- Does it make me happy?
- Is it age appropriate?
- Does it suit my lifestyle? (I held on to my just out of college and entering the working world Express suits for 10 too many years!)
If you answer NO to any of these questions, it’s time to let it go. You can feel free to donate these things or pass them along to a consignment shop. I use ThreadUp regularly as I’ve found it to be the easiest process to get my unwanted pieces out of sight as quickly as possible. Trust me, I know that having a bed piled with unwanted clothing is not what you’re going for! If you haven’t used TheadUp, you can read about their process here. In short, they’ll send you a garbage sized bag that you fill and have your mail carrier pick up. They’ll sell your clothes and give you a cut of what they sell and donate any other items. Easy peasy.
Once you’ve tackled a major purge you’ll be able to upkeep your closet much more easily. Id say that I do a quick purge at least every other month. All it takes is 15-20 minutes of quickly browsing through and weeding out things you no longer find yourself drawn to. Don’t let yourself get emotionally attached…well, unless it’s your wedding gown or something of the sort ;)
Once the hard part is over, you can start to organize the pieces that you actually enjoy wearing. Here are some steps I follow in organizing my own closet:
Hangers: If you’re using any wire hangers, toss them, now. They don’t do your clothing any favors ;) Stock up on plastic, wooden or non-slip hangers. I wish I could say mine all matched but I’m not there yet. Someday! When you hang your clothes, make sure they’re all hanging in the same direction.
Arranging: If you have a summer/winter closet or you store clothes and bring them out when seasons change, this won’t all apply to you, but you’ll get the gist. I have all of my clothes in our closet, outside of my jeans, sweaters, t-shirts and pj’s which are kept in dresser drawers. I first have everything separated by type. Dresses, skirts, pants, jackets, short sleeved tops and long sleeved tops. From those sections I take things a step further and group them by similarities, ie flannel/plaid shirts, chambray, solids. You can even go a step more, let your OCD fly and group by color! And then you’ll have to send me a pic so I can give you a cyber hug ;) The big upside to tackling this step (in addition to having an organized closet) is that it will be much more visually appealing and allow you to quickly see what you have on hand. And in turn you’ll be able to put outfits together much more easily than before. I frequently find a top I want to wear and run it past all my pants or skirts until I hit the right match, which doesn’t take long at all since I have them all in one place.
Organizing: Everyone’s closet is set up differently, so when it comes to organizing things like jewelry and scarves each set up will be unique. You could take a quick trip into Target or even better, The Container Store if you have one and I’m sure you’d find more than enough options to get your goods in order. I love these shelf dividers as well as these stackable jewelry boxes. Here are a few fun things I came across on Pinterest that I thought would be handy:
If you have the extra wall space, which doesn’t need to be large, you could easily utilize it by hanging your jewelry or scarves. I’m not the only one with an overwhelming amount of scarves am I?!
I love all of these uses for inexpensive S-hooks! These hooks could really be used on any type of bar, and in any area of your home for that matter!
Once you’ve purged and sorted and organized and have everything in place, you’ll be able to enjoy your own personal store, where everything just so happens to fit perfectly! You’ll also save yourself precious minutes getting ready in the morning and you’ll have a much better chance of working together an outfit that you actually enjoy wearing and feel confident stepping out of the house in! That’s the real point of all of this. Not to have an organized space that no one other than you (and maybe your spouse) see, but to create and keep in place a process that keeps you feeling your best. Now, hold on to that thought as you grab your garbage bags and get to it ;)