Your Dream Closet without the Nightmare Cost
Closets to Armoires, Have Beauty and Function for Your Dream Closet
by Lorraine Brock
One of the best ways to freshen up a closet or armoire is to evaluate your current usage, purge unnecessary items, and maximize the space with creative organizing tools. Just because you may not have the budget for a custom closet, it doesn’t mean you have to close the door on an organized space or your dream closet. With a few organizing tools, creative use of space, and some snazzy storage techniques, your ‘Freshen Up Friday’ project could give you your dream closet without the nightmare cost.
To help you get started, I’m going to let you in on a little professional organizer’s secret. We call it S-P-A-C-E: Sort, Purge, Assign, Containerize, and Evaluate.
First, Sort your closet by category. Shoes can be sorted by heels or flats, and accessories as scarves, purses, belts, and jewelry. Depending on the type of closet storage, you might have old photos, camping gear, or gifts that you been saving for just the right occasion.
Once you have finished sorting and can evaluate the number of items in each category, it is time to Purge unwanted or unneeded items. Sometimes you do not even realize that you have four pairs of the same shoes in the same color!
The next step is to Assign. Think of a kindergarten classroom with designated areas for reading, painting, or playing kitchen. Assign areas in your closet for your categories. Base your decision on frequency of use and your tendencies and habits. Shoes may be on the bottom near the door, while scarves might be hung on the rod by your sweaters.
Now comes the fun part: Containerizing. Whether you are purchasing products to maximize space or finding the right container for smaller items, it’d time to go shopping. Measure your walls and any shelving lengths, heights, and depths before heading to the store. Taking the time to do this before you shop will payoff later by getting the right products the first time. As a professional organizer, I have a few favorites that I recommend to clients.
Dublet Adjustable Closet Rod Expander by Umbra® – Instantly creates more room for hanging clothes. Adjustable and installs in seconds without tools or additional hardware.
Komplement® multi-use hanger – Takes up as little space as a clothes-hanger, but can store at least 28 accessories. This item is at IKEA and is the best low cost solution for scarves I’ve seen. You can even use it to hang ties as well.
Peg Boards – Think outside the box of the old school pegboards. This company has limited colors, but they come ready to hang on your wall. Hang jewelry, strapped shoes, hats, and wire baskets for smaller items.
Shoe Storage Ottoman – A creative way to gain additional storage space in your closet. This item can be used as a furniture piece and holds up to ten pairs of shoes.
Simple Division Closet Rod Organizers – I love these to divide clothing by size or by categories (too small, too big). My husband has a section in his closet labeled “No Tie Shirts”. He hates getting a shirt from the closet when he’s in a hurry and realizes it is too tight in the neck to button.
Once you have your closet organized, every now and then you should Evaluate. Doing this allows you to refresh your spaces and keep them organized. Lifestyles change, likes and dislikes change, and items you once used now just collect dust. Every year make sure your organized space is working for you. If you find that you no longer wear scarves, then rid yourself of something that is just taking up precious space.
In our profession, we find that clients may purchase an armoire to make up for a lack of closet space. These pieces have big, open spaces and wind up as a collection point for boxes of old photos, unsorted junk mail, and clothing or sheets that rarely see the light of day. For your next Freshen Up Friday project, use S-P-A-C-E to create a more usable piece of furniture. Sort the contents, purge the unwanted items, decide what you want to assign to the space, containerize small items or purchase products or systems to make the space more efficient, and make sure to evaluate the choices you made each year. The armoire may become the storage place for extra gifts and photo boxes or it could be used for out of season clothing or workout gear.
An armoire is the perfect place to utilize organizing tools. If it has adjustable shelving, change shelf heights to accommodate the contents. Use wire shelving, often used in kitchen cabinets, to maximize shelves with like items in a variety of heights. You can pick from silver, white and in some styles, bronze finishes. This allows you to make good use of every inch of your shelf spaces. Consider hooks on the interior to hang belts or hats and other accessories, and fabric bins to hold smaller clothing or jewelry. If you opt to store photos or mementos, there are many sizes and styles of archival boxes on the market. An armoire is a great place to store extra sheets, blankets, and pillows. To save space, fold your sheet set and store inside the pillowcase. It looks neat and keeps the entire set together.
Most people dream of an organized closet. It allows for a smooth start to the day and less stress in locating items we know we own. Schedule time for your Freshen Up Friday closet makeover using S-P-A-C-E and make that dream a reality.
Lorraine Brock is a professional organizer, family coach, speaker, and founder and owner of Get Organized! Get Organized! is a professional organizing company in the Dallas, Texas area. Get Organized! specializes in organizing and de-cluttering homes as well as implementing systems in the home for better family management. A popular media guest, Lorraine has appeared on Dallas’ two top morning television shows: Good Morning Texas and Good Day Fox, and has been featured on various radio outlets. She has been hallmarked in many local, regional, and national print and online magazines, such as the Dallas Morning News, The North Texas Kids Magazine, SheKnows.com, and Daily Candy Kids. To get more information about Lorraine, visit www.GetOrganized.ws. You can connect with Get Organized! on Facebook, follow Get Organized! on Twitter and connect with Lorraine Brock on LinkedIn.