Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Organizing Your Closets: Tackle Any Closet in 5 Steps (March Newsletter Article)

Closets tend to be overlooked until.........nothing else can fit! Sometimes stuff gets shoved into closets because you're just not sure where else to go with it. You can have closets that are easy to access and contain seemingly more room than before.

Once again, I've taken the basic organizing principles and applied my STUFF System™ to show you how to get any closet (bedroom, linen, cleaning, home office, storage, entry way, etc) organized.


Take Out

Utilize Your Space

Fill Containers


First, clear everything out of the closet that you are working on. As you are pulling stuff out, Sort everything into piles and put like items together. When you sort, you are able to see how much you have of everything.

As you are sorting, Take Out the stuff you just don't need, use or want. Get rid of broken items, donated the unneeded, make a pile of the items that belong elsewhere in the house. Do you really need 12 sets of bed sheets? When was the last time you used that hand-held vacuum cleaner that doesn't really work that well anyway?

After you have sorted and taken out the stuff that doesn't belong in that closet, you are left with.....a big mess! OK, trust me, it gets easier after this point. You are left with the stuff that needs to go back into the closet in a way that will be easy for you to get what you need when you need it and easy to return items when you are finished with them. You want to Utilize Your Space; in other words, make the most of what you have. Can shelving, hooks, or other closet components be added? How can the space be divided for your needs? I like to break my closets down into sections or zones. For example:

  • One shelf for sweaters
  • This end is for wrapping supplies
  • This shelf if for all the master bedroom linens
  • This shelf is for extra office supplies

The regularly accessed items should be kept at a convenient height for the users. For example, it makes sense to keep hooks for the kids' coats down low so they can hang up their own stuff after school.

It also helps to use Containers that are labeled to keep like items together, too. Some common items that work well stored in containers (baskets, boxes, bins, bags) are:

  • Hats, mittens, and scarves
  • Extra toiletry supplies
  • First aid items
  • Hair accessories
  • Belts
  • Seasoning packets

Stacking containers can help make the space in your closet more usable. By doing this, you are using every bit of your space. I also use containers or baskets inside drawers because it keeps like items together.

Once you space is organized, be sure to expect Follow-Up time. Maintaining your organized space is a necessity if you want it to continue to work for you. The more a space is used, the more maintenance it will need. Remove unused stuff on a regular basis put items back after you are done using them.

Check out some closet before and after photos .

For more great Works-For-Me-Ideas visit We Are THAT Family.


Jennifer said...

I will have to remember STUFF. Thanks for the tips!

Arlice Nichole said...

Paula, I think if you saw my closets, even you would run, LOL!

When given the chance, stop over at my place because I have something for you. :)


Helene said...

STUFF...that is so brilliant!! I'm scared to even take everything out of my closet...more scared that I won't find the time to sort through it and put it back!

AudreyO said...

I guess if you take it all out, you must do something with it? I tend to save way too many old clothes.

Post a Comment