Tips to Organize and Get the Most Space Out of Your Closet
A closet doesn't just organize clothes and accessories, it organizes lives. Use these 6 quick and dirty tips from Home Depot's closet guru Kerrie Kelly to get the most out of your closet space.
Getting ready for the world every day is tough enough without digging through a disaster of a closet before you walk out the door. It's amazing what a difference a little organization makes in the closet—and by how simple it can really be.
See also: How to Stop Closet Hunting
Besides the obvious benefits of organization, there's no reason you can't incorporate a little color, a special light fixture, and even new doors into your closet. Remember, the closet doesn't just organize our clothes and accessories; it organizes our lives.
Here are 6 quick and dirty tips to get your walk-in closet working as hard as you do:
Work Your Way from the Outside In
Treat your closet like a destination rather than a pit-stop. Start with new doors. A simple bi-fold, paneled door can freshen up the look and add to the rest of the room, too. Or take it one step further with a solid 6-panel door that makes you feel like you're walking into a place where you could stay a while. Our current favorite is a frosted glass panel door that lets in the light, obscures the content of the closet, and sets it apart from the rest of the room—and the rest of the house.
Do a Hard Edit
When your closet is packed top to bottom, you can't see what you have (and what you have is a wrinkled mess). You know the drill—get rid of anything you haven't worn in 6 months, that doesn't fit, or that fits but really isn't comfortable. Avoid the temptation to fill in the newly empty space with more stuff, and instead focus on how you can organize that space so that getting dressed becomes a peaceful moment for you to get your head together and to get on top of your day.
Organize According to Your Habits
Take a step back and look at what's left in your closet, and another moment to think about what else you'd like to keep there. Many people have clothes and accessories scattered all over the bedroom, but a well organized closet should hold everything you need. There are so many great wire and wood shelving systems out there, so let your imagination run wild.
Ask yourself: Where would some drawers really help? Shelves? What do you use every day, versus once a week, versus once a month? Store accordingly.
Little Details, Big Payoff
Use a consistent hanger style for simplicity of look and function. Categorize: Pants kept together, shirts, skirts, sweaters, coats, etc. Arrange clothes by color, from light to dark. Organize work clothes separately to simplify the morning routine.
Make Your Shoe Storage Shine
Though you'll never hear me say it, most of us have more shoes than we need. Shoes tend to be the element of an outfit that make us feel completely dressed -and they get a lot of wear and tear before you even put them in the closet.
Give them their due: Storage that doesn't add to scuffs and scrapes, that's visible and accessible so that they all get their turn in the rotation. A simple slanted shoe rack on the floor will certainly do the trick, though built-in shoe shelves take it one step further. Shoeboxes with photos of the contents are another great option, as are clear plastic shoeboxes that stack and keep everything visible.
Indulge in the Extras
Top off the whole experience with some extras that really make your dressing routine feel luxurious. Consider jewelry inserts for the drawers, and splurge on hardware with something that makes you feel pampered. Sturdy hooks that hang from the rod are great for purses and bags that you want to keep looking their best. Gift boxes on high shelves are a great looking way to store random items that need a place of their own. Don't forget a dedicated stepping stool for those items up top.
After you've got your act together in the closet, keep the momentum going by adding to your calendar a twice-yearly edit of your closet's contents and functionality.
Interior designer Kerrie Kelly writes on interior décor, doors, and storage for Home Depot. Kerrie is the author of the book Home Decor: A Sunset Design Guide, and provides advice to homeowners based on her professional work as a designer. Closet and other interior doors, including styles referred to by Kerrie, can be found on the Home Depot website here.