3 Steps to Quickly Organize Your Closets

One of the rooms at the top of my sister Laura’s “TO ORGAINZE” list was her master closet. It was stuffed, and overflow items were haning in other closets.

Step 1: Start by Containing Out-of-Season Clothing
The first thing we did was to measure the shelves and buy large clear bins, for their out-of-season clothing. We placed her summer footware on the bottom, covered them with plastic, and then layered all the summer clothing that could be folded. As we went along, she tossed or donated everything that didn’t fit well or look great on her. Now, only a few long formal dresses are hanging in the guest room closet; everything else fit into the bins!

Step 2: Contain Footwear and Jewelry
Then, we hung a shoe bag on the right side, with all her cold-weather shoes, and put her boots on the floor. Just to the left of the shoes, we hung the jewelry organizer.

Step 3: Organize by Category and THEN by Color
We lined up the clothes by category and then by color within those categories, with long dresses at the far end of the closet. I recommend using the same kind of hangers throughout—it gives a more peaceful feeling.

We did the same thing for her husband’s side of the closet, then organized her make-up in the top drawer. In 4 hours, she had an organized closet!

BONUS: Professional Organizer’s Best Practices to Store Out-of-Season Clothing

Because many of you are swapping out your summer clothes for your winter ones, here are our best practices for storing out-of-season clothing. The last one may surprise you!

Please let me know if this was helpful for you!

  • Store clothes in the main part of the home; avoid storing clothing in attics and basements. Clean garments before storing.
  • Hang clothing on good quality hangers, not thin wire ones.
  • Never store clothes in plastic dry cleaner bags; the chemicals in the plastic will damage garments. Use fabric garment bags.
  • Don’t hang knits or beaded garments that will stretch out. Store them in acid-free cardboard boxes or sturdy plastic bins. Lay sweaters flat or use acid-free tissue between folds to avoid creases.
  • Don’t use mothballs; the smell is almost impossible to remove and the chemicals are harmful to skin and eyes. Use bags of cedar and herbs. Don’t put cedar blocks directly on clothes (the oil might stain fabric); instead wrap them in acid-free tissue.
  • Store pricey cashmere in the freezer. Put the item in a zip-top plastic bag with some cotton batting to absorb moisture. The cold will kill insects and keep fabric fresh.

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