Not In Jersey: Conquering My Closet Conquering My Closet - Not In Jersey

Conquering My Closet

Thursday, June 14, 2012

As I mentioned yesterday, it's closet organization time! My favorite organization blog, IHeart Organizing, declared a Conquer Clothing Clutter week while we were away (and I do still plan to post about our trip!), and I was suitably motivated to start with my closet. Here are the steps I took to reorganize my closet:
  1. Buy hangers. I chose the Huggable Hangers that Jen mentioned in her post.
  2. Buy a shelf to increase storage at the top of my closet and help keep sweater piles separated.
  3. Take before picture.

  4. Cringe and have heart palpitations at the thought of this task. Although my closet has a system installed, I was not using it to it's advantage at all. I was just shoving everything in where ever it fit and as you can see, that was not working.
  5. Make a smoothie.
  6. Return to closet, decide to go to the bathroom, look in the mirror and remember I was supposed to be at a haircut appointment. Oops! Drive to the appointment and return to closet later.
Once I was actually ready to start, I began at the top. I removed anything I hadn't worn or was obviously too small, added the shelf you see on the above left of the below picture, and set out refolding clothes. On the top left I stacked a few sweatshirts that I rarely wear but could come in handy at some point. Under the added shelf is a bulky sweater I knitted and a shawl I knitted. On the top next to the shelf I folded my Enwrapture Vintage skirts - I haven't worn them in a long time but I can't part with them just yet. Beside those are dress pants that I also haven't worn in a long time but are probably good to have just in case. Under that is sweaters I have knitted with thinner sweaters on the right side. On the lower shelf are my skirts in piles of brown, black, and grey, and a stack of pants that I do wear.

One of the problem areas in my closet was the right side where there is a hanging bar, but the clothes on the bar were hanging on top of one of the shelves, lowering the efficiency of the shelf. I decided to shift the shelf and the lower hanging bar over to the left to make a bit more room on the shelf. To do this, I had to remove everything off the hanging bar and pile it on my bed - scary!

At this point I moved to the bottom of my closet, since with the clothes out of the closet I could actually see what was in there. I filled a garbage bag with shoes that were worn out and old. I moved my hiking boots and two pairs of fancy dress shoes to the top shelf. I photographed a few pairs of shoes that were rarely worn and I'd like to sell. I was left with only 10 pairs of shoes including slippers! (1 slippers, 3 sandals, 2 fancier type shoes, 2 clunky type shoes, Keens, and running shoes).

Then I started to go through the pile of shirts on the bed. Most were too small or just old, not my style, or stained. I filled a garbage bag as well as 2 donation bags, plus I saved some (as well as some too small skirts) to possibly use their material in crafty projects. I moved those to the walk in closet in the guest room (which needs a clean up of its own...) and hopefully I will decide whether to keep them or not soon. I also ended up removing all of my suits which I never wear but could need for fancy occasions in the future (??) and hanging them in the guest room closet.

In the above picture you can see where the suits were hanging before. I decided to use this space to hang up cardigans (not visible) and shrugs, which are shorter and don't interfere with the shelf below them. You can also see my hand knit shawls, which I decided to hang with shower curtain hangers, again above the lower shelf. In the before picture, the green hanging bag held all of my scarves and shawls. I decided to remove this bag and make things prettier!

As for that shelf? The one I wanted to maximize the space on? There's hardly anything there! The first pile on the left is shorts, the second is jeans, and the third is sweaters - over which you can sort of see my shawls hanging down.  You can also see what remains of my shirts. There is some serious lack of color there! I think I need to buy a few more things now that I've gotten rid of so much.

This is the left hand side hanging bar where the green bag used to reside. The lower shelf is now a bit under this bar as well, and I've used that space to hang more scarfs and hair coverings. To the far left I hung my dresses (all 2 of them), following by sweatshirts and a sweater.

Here is the after picture:

All done! Or am I?

This is what was left on my bed. A huge slew of hangers, which I proceeded to sort into child-sized hangers (why were my clothes hanging on hangers meant for kids' clothes??), wire hangers, strong plastic hangers, and clunkier and store hangers. My next project is causing those heart palpitations to come back - I need to organize all the kids' closets so that the right sized hangers are being used in each one! I also promised Gabbie the smallest plastic hangers for her new doll closet! The clothes in the above picture aren't on the bed anymore, thankfully! I am also planning to use shoe boxes to organize my underwear and socks inside my dresser drawer, so the shoe boxes I removed from the closet are still on my bedroom floor, and the hangers remain on the bed.

I think it's time for lunch.

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