Ease the process of organizing your closet (and your daily dressing routine) by clearing out coats, luggage, and other cumbersome items.
No matter how big they are, closets never seem to have enough storage space. Whether yours is overflowing with clothes you never wear, or packed with miscellaneous items, a quick refresh can help streamline your closet storage and make room for the things you actually wear. Start by clearing out these 11 items, including out-of-season attire and space-consuming accessories. Once they’re out of the closet, you can either store them elsewhere (perhaps in the basement or an entryway closet) or get rid of them altogether. Take just a few minutes to relocate or toss these items and your closet will feel more spacious and organized. (Trust us, you’re not going to miss them.)
1. Excess Hangers
Clunky hangers can occupy valuable closet space,
so don’t hold on to more than you need. Designate a hanger for all of the items you like to hang, then ditch the rest. You might also consider replacing bulky plastic hangers with a more space-saving design with slimline hangers
($12 for 50, Bed Bath and Beyond
). If you buy something new, make it a rule to get rid of one item before hanging the new one.
2. Out-of-Season Items
Warm, waterproof boots are essential when winter weather hits, but in July, your bulky boots are taking up precious storage space. The same is true for your sundresses and strappy sandals in December. Stash out-of-season items in the basement, attic, or spare room, or under your bed—anywhere but in the closet—and switch out items as the weather changes.
3. Anything That’s Not Your Style
Whether you wear all black, prefer skirts to pants, or have a thing for sparkles, you probably know your own style by now. Rid your closet of items that don’t match your personal brand. As a bonus, maintaining a distinct style can make it easier to get ready in the morning, since everything you own already goes together.
4. Bulky Coats
Coat closets exist for a reason. House bulky parkas, umbrellas, and outdoor accessories like hats and scarves in your entryway or in an extra closet outside the bedroom. This will not only free up space in your clothes closet, but stop dirt, salt, water, and other debris from tracking into your sleep space.
5. Items You Haven’t Worn in a Year
Whether it was a gift or clearance-rack steal that was impossible to pass up, we all have those items we never wear. Purge any clothing item that’s too big, too small, stained, or threadbare. As a general rule, if you haven’t worn an item in a year, it’s time for it to go.
Instead of storing luggage in your closet, stash it under your bed or in the basement or attic. Before you pack it away, however, take advantage of the empty space inside and use that suitcase to store out-of-season items or extra linens.
7. Outdoor Accessories
Clear hats, scarves, and mittens out of your closet and instead store them by the door. A small basket or the drawer of an entryway console table works well for storing outdoor accessories in a convenient spot. Then you can bundle up right before you head out the door.
Pretty jewelry can double as art if it’s displayed correctly. Keep your necklaces on a tree and rings in a decorative dish, but keep them out of your closet. Closet space is typically tight, so you might knock valuables over when pulling out a dress or grabbing a bin from the top shelf. Storing jewelry on a vanity is a much safer (and more easily accessible) option for small accessories.
9. Your Wedding Dress
You might be holding on to your wedding dress for the next generation or for the sake of sentiment, but it’s best to store it somewhere other than your closet. Most gowns require special storage and take up a lot of space. Wrap the dress in a garment bag, then store it away from light in a hall closet or under the bed.
KIM CORNELISON PHOTOGRAPHY INC
10. Pet Accessories
Keep any animal toys or beds out of the closet. And if you have a walk-in closet design
, keep your furry friends out too. This helps protect your clothing from pet hair, odors, or potential damage. Dog hair and black pants do not mix, nor do a cat’s claws and leather boots.
11. Food Gifts
Keeping food items or gifts, such as fancy chocolates, in your closet invites a host of pesky problems. Moths, mice, and other critters can be lured in by the scent of food and cause damage to your wardrobe. Always store food items in the kitchen, even if the package appears tightly sealed.