Week 3: 7 Closet Design Tips

Needless to say, every closet is different, and without actually seeing yours, my comments must be general. Nevertheless, I'm sure you'll find some tidbits here that will help you keep your clothes in order:

  1. Is there an enormous space between the top shelf and the ceiling in the closet? Install another shelf and use it for everyday items or seasonal storage depending on its height. This shelf can be a piece of plain lumber set on two wall braces.
  2. Do you have mirrored, sliding glass doors on your closet? Starting at the far right, set your clothes up with the things you'll grab first. Work back in the order of retrieval. This will prevent you from sliding the doors back and forth looking for one item stored at the far right, the next at the far left, the next on the right side in the middle and so on. These closets are a pain, and if your budget allows, have doors installed.
  3. With drawer space at a premium, most of my clients store sweats and sweaters in neat stacks on closet shelves. These neat stacks tend to fall apart the minute the first item is retrieved. To prevent this, go to a store that sells closet supplies and buy shelf dividers. They are about eight inches high and slip onto the shelf, creating an instant "wall" between the stacks of clothing. While you're at it, keep these stacks in color groups just as you did the clothes hanging in your closet. This is visually calming and makes retrieval very easy.
  4. Instead of stacking woolen sweaters unprotected, put them in clear plastic containers. The colors will be visible, and you can toss in some mothballs for protection.
  5. To avoid a jumble in drawers, you can buy wonderful items that will keep things tidy. There are, for instance, plastic containers for bras, underwear, socks and so forth. You can guess by now that I'm going to suggest you keep all items of the same color together. Women are often amazed at the number of white or black bras they actually do have. When they're in a jumble it's hard to tell if you have 2 or 20.
  6. Items such as belts and ties should be kept on hangers made for that purpose or kept on units that can be installed should you have the wall space. For women's belts that resist this type of solution, try a plastic container or even a wicker basket.
  7. If you've been blessed with a hall closet, keep your coats and jackets there. Grab whatever is appropriate for the day as you exit. This will free up an incredible amount of space in your clothes closet.

Closet solutions go on and on. Depending on your space, put hooks on your closet walls and hang seasonally appropriate hats. Some of my clients have closets that are bigger than some apartments in New York City. I encourage anyone in that situation to put out a pretty vase on a shelf and add some silk flowers. Restore peace to your being every time you have to dress your body. After all, it is the vehicle for the soul.

Read these other closet organizing articles:
Week 3 Introduction
Closet Checklist
Clean Closet Inspiration
Our Emotional Relationship to Stuff

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