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Are You a "Closet Clutterer"?

by Betsy Fein, Clutterbusters  |  1190 views  |  3 comments  |        Rate this now! 

Do you spend more than two minutes each day prying apart your clothes trying to find today’s outfit because your clothes are all squeezed together and you can’t really see them?

Do you have jumbled piles of shoes, clothes, hats, belts, or other items piled on the floor or the shelves of your closet?

Are you afraid to open the doors of some closets for fear that something may fall out on your head or your toes?

Do you have some closets where you open the door slightly, throw something in there, and quickly slam the door to prevent anything from falling out?

If so, you may be a “Closet Clutterer”.

Closets are one of the most commonly disorganized spaces in the house. There never seems to be enough room to hold all your “stuff”. And as you accumulate more “stuff” as the years go by, the problem just seems to get worse.

Here are a few simple things you can do to take back control of your closet.

  • When starting your project, break your closet down into areas such as shelves, hanging items, shoes, and so on. This makes the task a little less formidable and forces you to tackle one thing at a time.
  • Get four boxes and mark them "Garbage," "Donation," "Garage Sale/Ebay," and "Belongs somewhere else.”
  • Don’t hold onto old clothes that no longer fit as an “incentive” to lose weight. When in doubt, try it on. It may no longer fit or be out of style. Pack them up and store them in your basement, sell them, give them away, or donate them.
  • If you haven't worn something in the last two years, you will probably never wear it again. Clear it out to make room for the new stuff.
  • Keep shoes off the floor in unsightly piles. Invest in an enclosed shoe organizer to keep them neat. Make sure it is one that allows you to see through it, so you can find what you want quickly.
  • The majority of closets have only one top shelf that goes entirely up to the ceiling. You can't stack that high without items toppling over so you inevitably end up with a lot of "dead space". Add another shelf at the midpoint section and store less frequently used items on your new top shelf.
  • Get rid of your wire hangers and replace them with permanent, sturdy plastic or wood hangers. These will keep your clothes less wrinkled and make them easier to find.
  • Purchase shelf dividers for your usable shelf sections. They clip onto shelves and are a great way for keeping sweaters, hats and handbags separated and accessible.
  • Hang a small towel rack on the inside of your closet door to hang scarves.
  • Where possible, hang a second layer closet rod. Use the top one for jackets and blouses and the lower one for skirts and slacks. If two rods won’t fit, consider lowering your top rod and installing a storage shelf above it.
  • If you sometimes purchase clothes that you end up not wearing, consider keeping the tags on and pinning the receipt to the clothes. If you end up not wearing it for a few months, it will be easy to return it.
  • Put your clothes back in the closet according to a system. If you have installed the second bar, one method is to hang shirts, blazers, and blouses ("tops") on the top rod and all skirts, slacks, and "bottoms" on the lower bar. Of course, you can also organize by color—just find a system that works for you and stick with it daily!
  • Creatively use organizing products: multi-tier hangers for skirts, slacks, and shirts, Vacuum-sealed bags, under bed storage bins, and over door storage.
These are but a few of the things you might consider when reorganizing your closet. The satisfaction and peace of mind you’ll get from a clean, organized closet will help you start your day on a positive note.

About the Author

Betsy Fein is the owner of Clutterbusters.com and mother of 2 (10 yr old and 7 yr old)

Read more by Betsy Fein, Clutterbusters

3 comments so far...

  • We were forced into organizing my teenage son's closet when it broke down - literally. The top shelf and hanging rod pulled out of the wall and fell, throwing the entire contents of the closet into the middle of his room. Of course, this happened at about 1 AM, when all were sleeping. We call it The Night the Closet Vomited.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by Daisy on 13th July 2008

  • I live with Mr. Neatnik, but have been an Oscar all my life. I pick up after myself throughout the whole house (four floors). The only place I can let it all hang out-- literally-- is in my closets. Open those doors and you risk your life.

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by KatieK on 27th October 2007

  • I was forced out of closet cluttering when I moved into this home, built in about 1912 with - yes, indeed - TWO closets. Neither of them in my room. Or in the front hall. My bedroom is now equipped with shelves that run across 3/4 of one wall, with a clothes rod bridging the gap between the end of the shelves and the wall. There we hang anything that must be hung, with shoes underneath. BUT, because the whole thing is visible ALL the time, it has to achieve basic levels of order. I hate visual clutter.

    I love the idea of enclosed shoe racks. I will have to look into those...

    Flag as inappropriate Posted by MaryP on 22nd August 2007

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