Brushing back the vines, you peer into the darkness and swing your torch to cast a glow upon the tangled unknown. Your machete clears space to walk as you venture forth. You’ve been here hours, days, or maybe weeks. It all seems to blur together but, at last, as you squint into the unknown, you think you can spot your treasure. Hope and exhaustion has you frantically clawing your way through the wild. When your tired fingers finally grasp onto the bounty you let out a victorious cry and thrust it, in all of its glory, above your head. It’s magnificent. It’s amazing. It’s your shoe and you can finally leave for work (45 minutes late).
While your adventurous side is admirable, it may be time to clean up that closet before the stress dreams start or your boss grows tired of your tardiness. We’ve got you covered. Here are five steps to a beautifully organized closet.
Trim the Fat
The first step in closet reorganization is always to trim the fat from your wardrobe. If you aren’t going to wear it, it’s time to toss it. If you have a mess of clothes that don’t fit (This isn’t always a negative, by the way. Lots of people have their old clothes still hanging there after dropping a lot of weight.), then don’t let them crowd your closet. This step is the easiest. If you sort unwanted clothes and shoes by their condition, it’s easy to see what should be donated and what is destined for “upcycling” or textile scrap.
Stop, Coordinate & Listen
Now that you’ve freed up some hangers it’s time to get to the actual hanging. Arrange everything first by style (pants, tops, jackets etc.) and then by color. Keep in mind that hangers are made with certain clothes in mind. Sturdy wooden hangers will keep the shape of your jackets and blazers while plastic hangers are more for lighter shirts and tops. Cushioned hangers are available for clothing with delicate fabrics. One thing I have to stress is that wire hangers have no place in your closet. They’re flimsy and ill fit to holding the shape of your clothes - so give them the boot! Once everything has found its place on the color and style spectrum, finding that black button up for work will be less of an epic quest and more of a simple task.
Fold & Stack
Some clothes are more suited for a folded life and shouldn’t be allowed to hog any hangers. (We’re looking at you, t-shirts and sweaters.) Even the smallest closets come with an upper shelf and if you don’t have room in your dresser for t-shirts look no further than said shelf. Inexpensive shelf dividers can have you stacking your t-shirts and sweaters sky-high with no fear of a clothing avalanche.
You can make your shoe search easier and free up precious closet space by taking advantage of the back of your closet door. Over-door hanging shoe bags and racks put your shoes at eye level, eliminating the bending, squatting and crawling through your closet in search of footwear. With your shoes decorating your door, your floors will be barefoot-friendly and upper shelves will be free to store whatever your heart desires.
‘Tis the Season to Be Tidy
Life isn’t always fair. Proof: Some people have tiny closets. To make the most of your closet space, divide your clothes by season. In the summer, pack those sweaters and bulky jackets away in long, shallow plastic containers that are easily stored under your bed. Alternatively, in the winter, there’s no point in flip-flops, tank tops and shorts taking up what little space you have. Store those seasonal items out of sight and out of your closet.
After completing these five steps, you’ll be able to bask in the glow of complete closet harmony. With all of the extra time you’ll save not having to frantically search for your clothes and shoes, hitting the snooze button a few extra times is totally justified.