10 Secrets Only Professional Closet Organizers Know
Three pros share their keys to success. Implement these strategies at home to transform your closets.
Hybrid Zones Are Trouble
If there’s empty space, leave it! Don’t fill it with random items that don’t belong just because there’s room. Professional organizer Barbara Reich of Resourceful Consultants stresses that “the most important principle in closet organizing is to group like things together: Shirts with shirts, pants with pants.” That way, there’s no question about where to find those items when you need them.
Shelves Are Flexible
If you have at least 12 inches of space between shelves, that’s an opportunity to add in an extra shelf for more storage. “Customize shelving to work for you and your things,” says professional organizer Jeni Aron of Clutter Cowgirl, “not the other way around.” If you have a lot of tall boots, move the shelves up so they fit. If you have mostly folded clothing move them down so the stacks don’t become unwieldy and topple over.
Items Should Be Stored by Frequency of Use
If you only use the air mattress a few times a year, don’t stash it front and center in the linen closet. Aron says to tuck it—and other lesser-used items—away in the back or on a high shelf so you don’t have to maneuver around it when searching for those daily-used pieces.
Categories Are Key
“Hang clothes using simple systems that you can easily maintain for the long-term. Group all tops together, all pants together, all dresses together, and color-code each category,” says organizer Clea Shearer of The Home Edit. Aron suggests that you also break it up by season. “If there are six whole months when you’re not wearing a heavy wool skirt, that piece can be placed with her winter sisters in another spot.”
A Rug Can Give Your Space a Boutique-y Feel
A little pattern or texture (like a sheepskin rug) will instantly transform your storage space into a zone that you respect just as much as any other room in the house. Reich suggests adding a chandelier as well. “These small decorative touches will force you to keep that space in check so you can continue to enjoy it not just for storage, but for the esthetic pleasure it offers,” says Aron.