3 Easy Ways to Organize Your Closet Like a Pro

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3 Easy Ways to Organize Your Closet Like a Pro

Lisa Wright · Mar 1, 2022
Woman declutters and organizes her closet.

The new year brings with it a slew of potential organizing projects as many of us look to our homes with an eye for minimizing clutter, maximizing storage, and above all, achieving home organization that will set the course for the upcoming year. And where better to begin any organization project than in your closet?

Closets tend to be places that are generally overlooked when it comes to organization, especially for those of us who live in smaller spaces. In cases like these, the closet tends to become the catch-all for storage. Often a place that’s a home for more than just clothes, it becomes a black hole for any and all of our possessions that don’t have another home in our apartments.

While spring cleaning isn’t technically scheduled for a few more weeks, there’s never really a bad time to tidy up a closet that’s become messy, disorganized, and cluttered.

Below, we’ve outlined some of our very best tips for getting your closet under control, as well as some helpful products and tools that are tried-and-true storage superstars:

Breaking Up is Hard to Do

Whether it’s interior design or organization, the first step to any successful home makeover is to up the ante with some pre-organization. This involves an initial decluttering and often purging of unwanted and unnecessary items — perhaps the hardest step, but also ones of the most important ones.

Start with Big Items

Re-evaluating the usefulness of your largest items first will help to give you a good idea of what needs to go. Can something be moved to another location, or is it time for larger items like suitcases, sports equipment, and camping gear to find a new home?

Tip: Sometimes larger items can be moved to alternate locations, especially if they aren’t being used on a daily basis. For example, your vacuum cleaner can stay close by, but your bicycle can perhaps be moved to a basement or storage shed.

Sort Items into Categories

Beginning with a preliminary sweep, sort items into categories like trash, keep, and donate. After all, just because you don’t need or want something, doesn’t mean someone else won’t! Items in good condition that are undamaged can easily be donated or even sold, depending on their quality and potential value.

Tip: After an initial sorting, be sure to go through your items again. After all, it’s easy to get sentimental when trying to decide what to toss (using a third party here may also help).

Time to Get Organizing

Person separates items from their closet into neat little storage dividers.

Now that you’ve decided what should stay, what should go, and what’s relocating to a more suitable location, it’s time to get organizing! Realistically evaluate your closet space and imagine its new layout, purchase new storage options (or reposition current ones), and decide on a strategy that works best with your lifestyle and available space. Before you know it, you’ll be well on your way to clean closet country.

Tip: Depending on your closet’s size and layout, you may need to measure your space and plan ahead before purchasing any new storage. For example, the typical closet setup generally has a standard rod for hanging clothes — but not all closets are created equal! Yours may not have a rod, or even doors, so be sure to only purchase items that fit with your closet’s layout.

The Best Organizers Out There

Now that you’ve decided on an organizational strategy, it’s time to get to work. Below are some of our best picks for getting your space sorted on the double.

Tip: Sorting items by season is a great place to start – just remember to think about how you’ll access items once they’re stored. You don’t want to have to tear the whole closet apart just to find one item. Everything should be within easy reach and stored accordingly (holiday decorations, heavy coats and sweaters, and accessories like belts, handbags, scarves, and gloves are all top offenders here).

Put Your Best Foot Forward

Shoes can be the bane of any closet’s existence, as they can be some of the most difficult items to store. A classic solution is an over-the-door organizer, as they tend to be great for small spaces. Even if you can’t fit all your shoes inside, organizers like this one from Amazon are a huge step forward (and it’s less than $10!) Can’t fit all your shoes? Try organizing them by season, color, or style for easier access.

No Dresser, No Problem!

Many storage experts recommend placing a dresser beneath the hanging items in your closet. While this is a great storage solution for smaller spaces, it might not always be possible to wrangle a dresser in your closet. Why not opt for the next best thing? Storage bins! Here are some of our top picks:

Best in Stackable: Pinkpum Stackable Plastic 4-Pack Storage Bins

Best in Customizable: Puroma Cube Shelf 6-Cube Storage Organizer

Best Open-Front: Granny Says Closet Storage Bins

Best Stylish Storage: Simple Houseware 3-Tier Closet Storage

Just Hanging Out

On-the-floor storage? Check. But what if you want to utilize wall space in your closet, or maximize the hanging space on your standard closet rod? Below are some of our top organizational picks for hanging out, closet style:

Best Tension Shelf: HDAIUCOV Expandable Tension Shelf

Best In Hangers: KLEVERSE 4-Pack Space Saving Hangers

Best Closet System (with Hanging and Shelf Storage): Closet Maid Shelf Track Adjustable Closet

Best Hanger Variety Pack: Hampton Direct 30-Pack Cascading Hangers

Now that you’ve got the tools and the know-how at your fingertips, organizing that cluttered closet will be a snap. All it takes is a bit of planning and storage magic to achieve the closet of your dreams. And let’s be honest: is there really a better way to ring in the new year?

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