Top 10 Closet Cleaning Tips

by Laura Kronen on December 26, 2010

closet2-main_fullDo you have some time off this week? The pending New Year is a great excuse to clean out your closet. Bring in a huge leaf bag and be prepared to put together a sizable contribution to Goodwill.  Follow these rules and you will be a lot more organized, have a lot more room in your closet, AND have the the perfect excuse to go shopping.

Ideally, you should remove everything from your closet and start with a blank slate, only letting the best pieces return, so if you can go that route, definitely do it!

1.  Start by filling your donation sack with anything you haven’t worn in the past two years.  If the occasion hasn’t presented itself to wear those gold satin pants yet, it probably never will. There are always certain exceptions, such as formal or dressy clothing, but it is important to be entirely realistic with yourself.

2.  Dump anything that isn’t flattering to your body, or that is too short, too big, too long, or too out of style.  This includes all pleated pants.  They flatter no one.  And also discard anything damaged, pilly or in general disarray.

3.  Know who you are.  If you wear jeans every day, you definitely do not need five pairs of black pants hanging in your closet.

4.  Do not justifying keeping things.  A familiar excuse I have heard (more than once) is “Well, I could wear this if I was going to an 80’s night theme party in the future”  Really?  Toss it.

5.  Another method of cleaning is with a “keep” and a “toss” pile.  There should be no “maybe” pile.  Make the immediate decision whether to keep or toss.

6.  When you return everything to your closet, group, group, group!  For example, keep all tank tops together, jeans together, workout clothing etc.  If you want to get crazy you can even group by sleeve length or pant length.  Personally, I group by color and it makes me happy.

7.  Invest in all of the same hangers.  It makes all of your cleaning efforts pay off even more when your closet looks orderly and neat.

8.  Handbags on shelves tend to get messy. For those who have wall space in their closets, a great solution would be to purchase belt racks and hang them vertically instead of horizontally. That way, the bottoms of the purses don’t bunch up in the same place. This also works for scarves and ties.

9.  Belt hooks can also work well for hanging necklaces, earrings, bracelets and other jewelry on your wall too.  This is one of my favorite organizing tips.  Having an accessory wall makes your closet visually interesting plus you will get a lot more use out of what you have when you don’t have to go searching for it on shelves or rummaging through drawers to find it.

10. Heres a little trick to make cleaning your closet even easier next time:  When you put back your clothing, put the hangers in backward on the rod but then when you wear a piece of clothing, hang it facing forward. At the end of the season you’ll know what you’ve never worn and can easily make another Goodwill bag.

Happy New Year and Happy Cleaning!


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