If you open your clothes closet and want to groan in frustration at the tightly packed and sloppy space, you’re not alone. In a 2016 survey conducted by Closet Maid of 1,000 adult women between the ages of 18 and 55, 25 percent of respondents said their closet is disorganized and 10 percent got depressed when looking through their closet. Nearly half said they struggle to find something to wear to work and 57 percent said that having an organized closet would make it easier and faster to find what they want.
Numerous products are available for you to install yourself to enhance your closet space even if you’re on a budget. You can also hire someone to install closet organizers or hire a professional company to custom-create your closet.
One side benefit of a highly organized master bedroom closet is that you may be able to eliminate the need for a dresser or at least reduce the number of dresser drawers you need. Getting rid of a dresser can make your bedroom feel larger and less cluttered.
Getting started on closet organizing
If you opt to do-it-yourself, start by breaking down the project and evaluating your needs. While it may take some time, it’s best to remove every item from your closet, including all clothes, shoes and accessories. Sorting those items is essential to determining the best possible arrangement for closet organizers.
Closet Maid’s survey found that the average woman has 103 items in her closet, 21 percent of which is unwearable because of the size or comfort and 12 percent of which is never worn. So part one of your closet project should be a ruthless purge, getting rid of shoes that pinch your feet and clothes that you don’t wear.
Measuring and counting
Once you’ve donated or tossed some items, count how many pairs of shoes you have, how many shorter items you own such as blazers and blouses, how many dresses and how many long items you have. Next, measure the inside of your closet to see how much space you have to install shelves and possibly extra closet rods.
Think about whether you have doors that can be opened wide so you can use the back for hanging items or whether they are sliding or folding doors. A great first step is to figure out how you want to store your shoes to get them off the closet floor and yet visible and accessible. Shelves with clear boxes, hanging vertical organizers or pockets off the closet door are all options that are easy to DIY.
Splurging a little on a set of thin velvet-covered hangers can instantly add space to your hanging clothes. Specialized hangers can be used for scarves and belts. Baskets and bins can hold purses and other small items.
If you’d like to eliminate dresser drawers, see if you can add shelves to hold folded clothes in bins or baskets that slide in and out for easy access. Decide how you like to store your jeans and pants: hanging from clipped pants hangers or folded.
Once you’ve measured and decided whether you have the space to add double clothes rods or rows of shelves, you can start shopping for DIY products at home improvement stores.
Be careful when you put everything back in your closet to do a second check on every item to make sure you want it, that it doesn’t need repair and that it’s clean. Then organize your clothes to a system that works for you. Separate your clothes by season if you live in a four-season climate and then decide if you’d like to color-coordinate your clothes or put business attire in a separate section from casual clothing.
Maintaining your Zen-like closet is easier once you have the right configuration and products to maximize your space.