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The Chaos of Closets

When siblings share the space, closet, or chair, the situation can become downright overwhelming! Here’s an easy checklist to enable you to not only attain that organized space, but also maintain it.

 

BEFORE
Dismantling the Disarray

Trying to figure out what to wear in the morning is often somewhat stressful, and when there’s little order to your space, it becomes an even greater challenge. Add to that equation discarded articles of clothing flung onto that nearby chair or stuffed onto a shelf, making them difficult to find when needed. When siblings share the space, closet, or chair, the situation can become downright overwhelming!

Here’s an easy checklist to enable you to not only attain that organized space, but also maintain it.

Step 1: Empty the contents of the closet.

Are there items in the closet that aren’t clothing? We tend to store things we don’t need on our closet shelves — memorabilia like stacks of photos or other half-done projects. Try to fi nd a new home for these items, using storage containers like the Ikea Tjena storage boxes with lids, which are neat, easily stacked, and inexpensive. Ideally, keep that top shelf in the closet empty so you can use it for out-of season clothing and accessories.

Step 2: Sort the clothing and shoes by season and, if it’s a shared closet, by the individual.

Divide the clothing and conquer it by fi guring out what you still need and what should be donated or thrown away. Trying on the clothing is usually the best way to gauge what stays and what goes. Personally, I feel that less is more, and the less you have, the more calming the space will be.

AFTER

Step 3: Set up your closet and make it work for you.

Do you have too much hanging space and not enough shelves? Try sticking a small, three-drawer dresser inside to create that custom-closet feel without spending much. I love the Modway Urban Design Three-Drawer Dresser ($267, walmart.com). It’s small but leaves enough room for undergarments, pajamas, socks, and the like. File folding (a method of folding clothing so it resembles a standing fi le) will create more space so you’ll be able to fi t more inside the drawers, as well as actually be able to see what’s inside!

Another option is to place some open bins on the shelves and place your clothing inside. The Creative Scents Shelf Bins from Organicer in Boro Park (also available on Amazon for those who aren’t local) come in three widths and two colors, and seamlessly blend into any closet.

Step 4: Hang whatever you can.

Not only is it easier to see what you have when it’s hung, but also nothing else in the closet will get untidy when you remove an item. Lately I am loving the Made by Design hangers from Target. They come in a few colors, they’re modern, and they totally elevate a space!

Step 5: Tackle those out-of-season items.

Here is where the top shelf of the closet comes in! Using a bin with a cover and a label will keep your closet neat and functional. The Container Store sells Grey Cambridge Storage Boxes that serve that purpose exactly. They’re streamlined with a handle that makes them easy to pull o­ the shelf, and roomy enough to hold a lot. Store bathing suits, goggles, and summer T-shirts during the winter months in hopes that you can get away with your family and use these items come January.

These tips should help you break down closet organization into actionable steps that will help you eliminate that morning chaos!

Reva Lieberman is an organizer who creates functional and beautiful spaces for clients so that they can easily maintain them. She works in Brooklyn and the Five Towns. You can see photos of her work at Yourpersonalorganizer.

(Originally featured in Family Room, Issue 709)

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