Clean Out Your Closet and Keep Your Clothes Nice and Tidy!
It’s National Get Organized Month! Yay!
I love to be organized. BUT, I tend to be an organized mess. I love to buy all the cool organizers… that get placed in another organizer until I can find a use for them. I almost bought a super adorable paper organizer at Michaels the other day for $12. But realism prevailed, as I have no idea what I would use it for or where I would even put it.
So onto the main point of this post – my closet. I have a slight obsession with clothes. If there is ever any apocalypse, I won’t have to worry about wearing dirty clothes for at least two months. Maybe even longer.
But, having all those clothes tends to make a mess. My closet originally really wasn’t that bad. I did a purge around Halloween-time when I got all my winter clothes out. But it still wasn’t…. right. I had so much dead space and so much just shoved in the back of my closet. Also, my primary goal with this was to get ALL my clothing into my closet. I didn’t have much not in my closet, but enough to be in a couple of different drawers.
The first step of cleaning is taking EVERYTHING out. I mean everything. Yes, it is a pain in the ass. Too bad. It helps. I had SO much crap in my closet.
My bed before emptying my closet (yes I have a super cool tardis blanket):
My bed after emptying my closet:
That doesn’t even show the amount of crap on my floor.
Completely emptying makes you look at what you have. Touch everything. Smell everything if you really need too.
It also helps you see where you have dead space that you can take advantage of.
For example, I have this tiny bit of space right on the short inside wall of my closet.
Typically, the floor area right here becomes a dumping ground for out of season clothes I forgot to pull or clothes that don’t fit. And on top of those, I just throw all my hangers there. But you can see the bit of wall space that isn’t being used. It is right between the door frame and the wire rack.
I knew I needed to do something. I saw a bunch of cool hanging basket ideas on Pinterest when I was researching for this post. Most of them show big baskets hanging on the back of closet doors. I don’t have closet doors, I have curtains. So I improvised.
I had the baskets already. I used them on my desk when I had one. They were only a buck at Dollar Tree. I think they may still carry them. If not, they carry a bunch of different little storage baskets to choose from.
I tend not to use tools because I usually f’ something up or break something (me). But I wanted to make it work this time. I chose to use the hooks that screw right into the wall. The first three I was able to screw in just by force. The other three I had to drill first, then screw. I just popped the baskets right over the hooks and tada! It worked.
I did end up turning them long ways because I forgot that hangers were longer than the shelve depth. Still worked though. I put my boot toppers in the baskets. I love the way they look with boots but never wear them because I never remember to grab them. Now they will be in my line of sight.
Next was to work on the back part of my closet. It is a bit of a pain in the butt for me. I wish the ‘door’ went all the way to the end of the closet. I always just shove the stuff I never really wear or use all the time back there. I also shove stuff back there that I don’t want to get rid of, but I don’t have anywhere else to put it.
I had two big bins on the floor. They are FULL, and I mean to the brim full, of sample stuff. I won’t have to buy shampoo for like three years with all the sample packets I have. And that’s not including the full-size bottles I will take when I move out. Ursula decided to help me by jumping all over everything.
I figure I can put these in the attic. They don’t need to be in my room.
So what to do with all the rest of the junk?
First I put back the really fancy dresses I have. I have no plans to get rid of them because they are very expensive dresses. So I just shoved them in the back, back in the same place I pulled them out from.
Next came the bags. I have a BAZILLION bags. Not joking. I got a bunch of super expensive laptop bags at Kohls with a coupon glitch. I’m not about to throw out $100 laptop bags. But I also don’t want them just shoved in my closet. I found a hanging organizer thing that was in a bin on the top of my closet. I figured it would work great to hold my bags. And purses. And bookbags.
I was right. 🙂 There is a lot shoved in there.
Next comes my dresses. Since I’ve gained weight, I don’t really wear dresses anymore. But I still need them. Usually, they take up the rest of the bar. I didn’t want that. I have seen the “pop tab” trick over and over on organizing posts. But I didn’t have pop tabs. Or the need to drink enough pop to get the amount needed.
So I used my brain. CIRCLES! Ok, they aren’t really circles. They are the plastic rings that scarves come on. I have a ton of them for organizing my scarfs (I scored big in a dumpster once.) I decided to try using those.
It’s super easy to do. Just drop a circle over the hanger top and hang a hanger off the circle. Repeat until done.
You can use shower rings in place of the scarf rings. OR just try asking some clothing stores if they have any extra they don’t mind giving you. You could probably also use zip ties. It just won’t look as pretty.
I organized my dresses into four parts: clubbing, LBD, other fancy dresses, and casual. Easy-peasy and none of them were too long.
Now the second part of the cleaning: the getting rid of stuff part. For every piece, ask yourself these questions:
- Is it in good shape? If it is ripped or has pit stains or a zipper is broken, toss it. You don’t need it. And you would have fixed it already if you wanted it.
- Have I worn it in the past year? If you know you haven’t worn it, trash it (or donate it.)
- Would I buy it in store at full price today? Clearance prices sometimes get to me. I bought a skirt once for $3 that was short enough for my niece to wear as a skirt herself. Even at a size 2 I will never wear that in public.
- Does it fit me and/or is it comfortable? This one sometimes gets to me when I decide to do a purge. I try to keep my “too small, but I will fit eventually” to one trash bag. I’m not going to throw away my $200 jeans if I think I will eventually get back down that skinny. If you have too small or too big clothes, keep the ones you love and toss them in the attic. Also, if something isn’t comfortable, don’t keep it. You can look pretty and be comfortable at the same time.
Whatever is left after you answer those questions, you get to keep.
So now onto my everyday clothes. I keep my sweatpants/yoga pants/leggings on my wire racks. I couldn’t figure out what to do differently. They just get so messy and not pretty looking. I decided to take the leggings off the racks.
I bought a 12pk of shower rings at Dollar Tree. I just hooked them on a normal hanger and fed the leggings through the rings. Super easy. I had just to hang some over because I ran out of rings. I’ll have to buy another pack and make some more hangers for my extra ones.
The rest of my pants just got folded up neatly and put back on the shelves.
Now to my tops. I have about a hundred hoodies. Or at least 50. More than I actually need. Not that I threw any out. 🙂
I put them on my top rack because there is more room. I grouped the colors together. I then did the same with my tops. Then I rearranged my hoodies to be in the same color order as my tops. OCD much?
The last part of my closet is my drawers. I only did the top drawer. I have absolutely no clue how to organize the 30 tank tops I have, so I just left that alone.
You can see that it is messy. Organized-ish, but messy still.
In the same place I found the organizer for my bags, I found some box organizers. You can get these at Dollar Tree too! It’s where all mine came from. They fit my drawer perfectly. I was finally able to get rid of my cardboard organizers. I don’t think I’ve not had cardboard organizing my undies in the last ten years.
I organized my bras into two separate sections: one for normal everyday bras and one for workout/comfy bras. My socks got three sections. One for normal short socks. A second for long socks. And a third for fuzzy socks. My undies got organized into two piles: stretchy undies and everything else. I have about 100 pairs of underwear, 98% of them from Victoria Secret/Pink. So no thinning out my undies. 🙂
Hopefully, I will soon find something awesome to do to organize all my tanks.
Have you cleaned out your closet lately? Have any awesome organizing ideas? Let me know in the comments below!