Tackle your wardrobe and seasonal closet clutter with these 8 Easy Steps to Closet Cleanout.
Spring fever and the extra hour of daylight spur many of us onto spring cleaning. We are still in the height of Spring Cleaning frenzy so if you haven’t yet tackled the closets, there’s still plenty of time before the heat of the summer and seasonal vacations and kids summer breaks are upon us!
I’m not suggesting you hire a closet re-design company and I’m not suggesting you buy a bunch of supplies.
Start with what you’ve got and take a room by room assessment of your wardrobe to determine what would make your closets work better for you.
Look for inspiring ideas for storage and closet solutions on websites like Pinterest and Houzz. If you think you need help with a particularly difficult area consult a Professional Organizer or ask a friend to come help you.
- Make a list: I’m a pen and paper gal myself, but if you prefer your tablet or Macbook, no matter – just get listing. Begin by identifying all the closets within your home. Do you have a food or butlers pantry, closets in the bedrooms, a linen closet, a coat closet?
- See what’s inside: Open each closet and write down what you see/how you feel about the use of space. Is it overflowing and in need of a sort/purge, well lit, do you need more/better hangers, etc? What’s working or, better yet, what’s not working in each closet? If you have a “junk drawer,” so be it, but a “junk closet” isn’t and shouldn’t be a thing for a reason.
- Prioritize & Schedule: Let the first closet you tackle be the one that you need the most help with or use the most frequently. Determine the time you think it would take to tackle each closet. A small closet might take half an hour while a large walk-in could take the better part of a day. The idea is to minimize clutter, so avoid stripping the contents from your largest closet on a busy day. No one wants to come home to or be surrounded by a mess. Can you complete 1 closet by simply adding a small light and hooks on the door? If knocking out a couple of small closets keeps you motivated, by all means go ahead and take care of the easy ones first.
- Gather supplies: Do you think you need some basic supplies that you’ve just been putting off? If so go ahead and purchase items you really need (like hangers, hooks, dividers, brackets, etc). This can also wait until you’ve purged so you will be certain to only buy what you really need. You will also need post it notes, bags, boxes, baskets, hangers, hooks (I like command hooks which work anywhere), a notepad and pen. Designate a box or bag for donation, consignment items, another for trash and a place for things that don’t belong.
- Divide and conquer: Sort items to keep, donate, toss, etc. Purge the obvious things first, expired foods, clothes you hate or that don’t fit, broken items (if you haven’t fixed it already, how likely are you to fix it now?), etc. Pull everything out, sorting and putting back only what belongs. Keep in mind that sometimes the whole closet isn’t a problem…it might be just one or two areas. Don’t stop to put things that go in other areas away, just sort them out and plan to re-locate them later.
- Tidy up: Give the space a good cleaning; dust, vacuum and wipe down shelves. Install any new “accessories” you might be including like new baskets, dividers, hangers, lights or hooks before returning the contents.
- Re-store: Return the contents of items that belong while grouping like objects and using containers to corral smaller items. Don’t overlook valuable door storage space, use hooks, over the door sorters and other creative solutions to maximize space.
- Out with the old: Schedule donation or consignment/resale items. Consider if consignment/resale or maybe a Spring Yard Sale is worth your time and effort. Consignment items must be clean, hanging, in good condition and seasonal.
After-Above & Below
Wow, now doesn’t that make you feel great? Suddenly the closet isn’t a hiding place. I’d love to hear your closet clean out stories below!