December 1, 2022

A professional organizer shows you how to organize your closet

A messy closet could set the tone for the day. Here’s how to organize that awkward area in your bedroom.

Now is the time to purge your wardrobe, before the holidays.

It has been said that our mood for the whole day is largely determined by the first four minutes we encounter upon waking up.

Does our day start with joy and a sense of calm, or do we encounter stress and chaos? Believe it or not, the simple act of opening your closet door each morning could be indicative of your daily life and the changes that may be needed.

What’s inside your closet door? Are there shelves overloaded with stacks of T-shirts about to topple over? So many shoes scattered on the floor that the door barely closes? Handbags hanging everywhere there is space, piled up clothes, tangled hangers and dirty laundry mixed with clean clothes?

Imagine having to find your favorite sweater quickly on the way to work. The stress mounts. You get the picture.

This time of year is actually the perfect time to clean out closets. The cooler, drier air of fall induces more productive energy in our home, and let’s face it, we need to purge and organize our things now before the upcoming holidays bring even more clutter.

Here are some great tips for organizing your closet:

• Begin by removing all clothes hanging from your closet rod. Purge everything you can. Donate clothes you no longer wear to a local shelter or charity, and throw out bad, worn, or stained clothes.

• Get rid of any hangers still lying around in your closet. They have no place there. Take them to your local dry cleaner. My favorite tip is to replace the plastic hangers with velvet or wooden hangers. Nothing creates a more uniform look in a closet than all matching hangers, where the shoulders of all clothes are exactly equal, all the way down the rod.

• When organizing your closet, place a small piece of ribbon around the top of each hanger. Every time you wear something, remove the tape. After a year, any clothes that still have a ribbon wrapped around the hanger should be discarded.

• Double your hanging space by adding a second clothes rail. You don’t have to wait for a handyman with a power drill to install it. Hanging rods that hook onto existing rods are available and inexpensive.

• If space permits, add a second shelf above your closet.

• If you have a walk-in closet, install a few valet hooks to plan next day’s outfits or hang your handbag.

• Organize similar items together so you know where to find things. All shirts and blouses in one section, skirts in another, pants in another and so on. And if possible, organize specific colors together, like all your white shirts together, then beige, then yellow, blue, etc. Not only will you easily find what you are looking for every day, but your wardrobe will look fabulous!

• Use the back of the closet door. Shoe racks are available above the door or install hooks to hang handbags, necklaces or belts.

• Baskets. Place baskets on shelves to group items together, such as t-shirts, handbags, makeup bags, or scarves.

• Try a hanging shoe bag to lift your shoes off the floor and see them clearly. Instead, use your closet floor for labeled bins of stored items or storage baskets.

• Canvas hanging shelves are ideal for creating extra space for folded garments.

• Shelf dividers work well for separating stacks of folded sweaters or t-shirts, keeping them all neatly in place.

• Clothes need air and space to retain their appearance and scent. Don’t put too much in your closet. If space is tight, store off-season clothes in an alternate closet elsewhere in your home, armed with cedar shavings slung in a mesh bag.

• Do not hang any clothing that is stained or needs repair. Clean or repair it first.

You will find that after organizing your closet you will have created some extra space and you can rest assured that you are likely to be more likely to greet the day with calm rather than chaos.