apple Our Fifth House: Master (Closet Organization Ideas)

Wednesday, January 30, 2013

Master (Closet Organization Ideas)

closet_organization_ideas

There are a number of alternate titles I could have used for this post like "How to Make Wire Shelves Look Less Hideous" or maybe "How to Make the Most of a Small Walk-In Closet".  They would equally work well.  But really, this post probably has the most to do with my take on "How to Share a Closet With a Man"  - not just any man - a clothes loving man.   I've mentioned before that I'm married to a well-dressed man which means he has just as much if not more clothing than I do.  (I know this is a hard concept to grasp, but they do exist.)

shared closet spaces

I've showed you before how I maximize our clothing storage by thinking outside the closet.  Since I do a closet clean-up-clean-out about twice a year and just finished up the January session I thought I'd share a few tips and things I've learned over the years about how to keep your closet organized, how to handle sharing your closet space, and how to maximize every inch of a small closet while keeping things looking pretty and not too cluttered.

First and Foremost - Be Choosy
Hanging and shelving space is limited in my closet.  We each have one hanging rod and one shelf. 

closet storage ideas

master closet

So before I purchase any article of clothing I ask myself, "Is this worth the closet real estate it's going to use?"  Basically, do I really need it and will it fit in my closet?  More often than not, I edit as I bring in new things.  If I buy a couple of new blouses I will take an inventory of what I already have and decide if I should donate anything.  This makes it so that I never have more than I have room for, and it also helps me make better clothing purchase decisions.  Rather than just buying something because it's on sale; I only buy it if I really, really love it and it's worth the closet real estate.  So I end up with a closet of clothing I love, and I avoid those "why did I buy this purchases?".  I also believe the jewelry makes the outfit (like how a cake is nothing without the frosting), so I think "less clothing more accessories" which is helpful when you have a smaller sized closet as accessories take up much less space than clothing.  

Thankfully, my hub also subscribes to this method of wardrobe editing, so while he has a thing for dress shirts he typically only brings in new when he has a few old to discard/donate. 

Maximize Your Vertical Space
Our closet, while it is a walk-in, has a fairly small footprint.  To really get the most out of it we use as much of the vertical space as possible.  Last year I lined one wall with fabric scraps to add a little pretty to an otherwise boring wire-shelved closet.  This year I decided to get the most out of that wall by using it as a giant pin board for jewelry, shoes, belts and handbags.

master closet storage

jewelry storage ideas

jewelry storage

DIY Shoe Rack 
Make It Convenient to Put Things Away
Okay, so I know all men aren't slobs, but if you know of one that isn't I'd love to his name.  ;)  In all honesty, I don't think my hub is necessarily "messy".  He just doesn't like to put in too much effort to put things away.  If he has to jump through hoops to make it happen - it ain't going to happen.  This is the main reason I have a chair in my closet.  We use it as a step stool (though, I'm not recommending that you use a chair as a step stool - it can be dangerous, but this particular chair is quite sturdy). 

closet chair
Goodwill Chair Makeover 
Having this chair conveniently available to use makes it near impossible for him to have an excuse not to rehang his clothes which in turn keeps our closet from looking like a dumping ground. 

I also have a few hidden fabric bins for "stuff" and for dirty clothes.  Having an easy to reach designated dirty clothes spot means I don't have to deal with boxers on the bathroom floor.  ;) 

fabric storage bins

Re-evaluate & Re-adjust
 If an organization system has any chance of staying organized it needs to be re-evaluated and re-adjusted from time to time.  This is one of the main reasons I do a closet clean-out about twice a year - once in January and then again in June or July.  It's good to rethink things that aren't really working out and make any necessary changes.  One thing that had turned into a bit of a problem for my hub was his ties.  He has a lot of them.  He was using a wooden tie hanger that hung on his closet rod which made it difficult for him to see them and put them away - which means there were ties all over our bedroom and bathroom.  I decided to ditch the hanger all together and use a cafe rod instead. 

neck_tie_storage

Now he can see them all very easily and the bonus for me - he can put them away just as easily.  

closet_organization

 I also recently labeled the fabric storage bins at the very top of our closet.  I've used them for a few years now to store out of season items.  However, I'd often forget what was in each bin.  I bought some dry erase ceramic labels to solve that problem. 

organization_labels

Now I can easily see what each bin contains and can make changes as the seasons change.  

Shop Outside of the Storage Department
Some of the best organization items are those that don't come from the storage department of the store. I've not only used a cafe rod for neck ties as I mentioned above, but I'm also using a drapery rod and a piece of moulding for heels.  

shoe storage

These shoe shelves did come straight from the organization area of Target (a few years ago) but even a bookcase would work.  

shoe shelves

Trays, bowls, jars, empty containers and even cup hooks are being used for accessory storage. 

jewelry storage

closet organization ideas
Cup hooks for hanging scarves

jewelry storage ideas


Do you have any closet organization ideas, tips or tricks?  Maintaining an organized closet keeps me sane  - am I the only one who feels that way?  

Take a look at Phase 1 and Phase 2 of our master closet.  Now that we're on Phase 3 I'm wondering if there will be a Phase 4 next January - hmmmmm......maybe wooden shelves will happen next year?! (a girl can dream right?)

If you're a small closet owner you might appreciate this post here for more clothing storage ideas!

small closet organization ideas

Need some help figuring out how to keep your wardrobe well edited?  Check out this series on wardrobe essentials here!

wardrobe essentials

38 comments:

  1. I love how you have totally maximized this space, Carmel. And it looks pretty too!!!! My husband is a clothes horse too and our closet is insane. It makes me feel all flustered to go in there. I need to attack it soon, so thanks for sharing all these fabulous ideas!
    Another idea for scarves is to put shower curtain rings on a hanger and slip the scarves through the rings. A ton can fit on one hanger.

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  2. I love seeing all of the possibilities of using different types of things for storage, especially things that you wouldn't regularly think of like the hardware store railing to hang shoes!

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  3. such a chic closet!!! one day i hope to have mine half this organized! it's not a mess by any means but it doesn't look so lovely and systematic.

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  4. I completely agree about making things easy to put away. Once I reorganized our closet, I found I didn't dread laundry quite as much. Also I've found that by "merchandising" my accessories I wear them more often.

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  5. Thanks for the tips. Loving the cafe rod for ties. Think we need to implement that one ASAP.

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  6. great tips! our closet is teeny tiny, so my clothes are the in the guest room blah. BUT i definitely need to purge and use the space better. i love all these tips!
    -- jackiejade.blogspot.com

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  7. Thanks for all the great tips! We have a ridicuously small master closet too. I think this weekend I may need to do some organizing in there because my shoes are slowly taking over the entire space. Haha!

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  8. Your closet looks fabulous & these are some really great tips!! Great job girly!

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  9. I love the basket you have for your flip flops!

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  10. I love your jewelry hanging boards! Seriously, why have I never thought of that!?

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  11. so pretty! I cannot wait to move into our house because there is a walkin closet there and my soon to be hubby is the opposite of yours and could care less about how many clothes he has so that is just going to be more room for me! I am hoping to make a shoe organizer like yours! Thanks for the inspiration

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  12. i love the shoe storage idea! Awesome! Too bad where I live (Turkey) apartments have no closets. ;/

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  13. You've given me sooooo many great ideas Carmel!! Our closet needs a serious overhaul and I also have a well-dressed hubby who happens to like clothes so it makes it an extra challenge. Isn't there a song, "every girl's crazy bout a sharped dress man"? Is that ZZ Top?? LOL! Anyway...I digress...all that to say thank you for the fantastic inspiration my friend! :-)
    Vanessa

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  14. Carmel, I have a husband who is on Television on the evening news, so you can imagine how many clothes he has, both professional and casual. We recently moved into a different house, and my closet space was cut more than in 1/2. Seriously, We each used to have our own huge walk in closets, and now we are sharing one that is less than 1/2 the size of only one of closets used to be! When I went to start organizing our closet, I broke down in tears. We must have been crazy to give up that closet space, but we moved to a much better location. Anyway, your closet appears to be the same size as ours, but maybe a little bigger, I can't tell. I would really love to see a full shot of your closet all at once. Is that possible? I want to see how you have it laid out. My dad came over and re did the inside when we moved in to maximize the space as much as possible without spending a huge amount, but I am not sure if I am maximizing my space as much as I could be. Thanks!

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    1. I'll try to add a full picture to this post for you.

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  15. I need a closet intervention, badly! Love all your functional & pretty ideas for keeping it organized so easily!

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  16. Great tips I plan to implement this weekend. My closet needs lots of help. I am in the market for a consignment store in Lexington, KY. Do you have any recommendations for a consignment store in Lexington that would specially give me cash for my clothes. My family and I moved here from MD 6 months ago but we are in a small KY town with very little options. We travel to Lexington about once a month so any leads would be appreciated!!!

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    1. Apres Vou takes womens and mens clothing, but they don't pay cash up front.

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  17. Looks really great! Thanks for sharing. Gave me some ideas for shoe racks and ties :)

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  19. I love your closet. Mine is nice but not this nice...makes me want to go and change things around again. Hmmm!
    (I'm lucky enough to not have to share my walk-in with the hubby, his is a mess ;)

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  20. You would laugh at our pathetic little closets. Yours is amazing! Some many great little details.

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  21. Dreamiest closet ever! For real my friend, I have closet envy! You have made it a fabulous haven and I adore all of your special little touches! I am now eying up the shoe rack in the bottom of my armoire, I think it wants to be Sharpied!

    xo,
    Jen

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  22. I am so behind. This is AMAZING. I LOVE the idea of hanging heels on the molding. Holy smokes that is brilliant. And the sharpie addition. . .genius. My hubby doesn't know it but we are jazzing up the closet this weekend . . in between football plays. Ought to go over well.

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  23. looks great! seems you've made the most of your space:) btw, what is your closet size?

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    1. I'm not positive since I've never measured but I'd say it's almost 5 ft by 4 ft and the ceilings are 9ft.

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  24. I love it! I like the animal prints (my hubby would never go for that!) and the pin board for jewelry. I currenlty have a "dressing room" that serves as my closet so that my clotheshorse hubs can have the master one, but when we get pregnant (we are currently trying) I'll lose that closet to the baby! So it's nice to see ideas for sharing a small closet when you both love clothes! I LOVE the ribbon wound through the wire shelving, and the gold Sharpie on the black shoe shelves. What a great thing, to make it a little more beautiful since you look at it so often.

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  25. Well we finally updated our old shoe rack to shoe shelves and I totally used the gold sharpe trick. You 100% inspired us to clean out our closet and make the most out of the space we have. Thanks Carmel! (here's the link to our updated closet: http://thriftyandfabulousaccessories.blogspot.com/2013/02/make-most-out-of-small-closet.html)

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    1. Glad to hear it - and it turned out so great! Thanks for sharing!

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  26. This closet is so dreamy! I have a closet about your size and I never know quite what to do with it. I am going to add a second bar to the bottom and lift our top bar up higher like yours. I think this will give us a bit more room. Thanks for the inspiration!

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  27. Your closet is amazing! It's so neat and organized! Space, sometimes, is not a big issue for people who knows how to organize and de-clutter. If you have a small closet space, you can buy dividers or DIY cabinets that you can place on the other areas of your house. Your closet is my new inspiration! Great tips, by the way! Kaylin Herbert

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  28. Loving the closet real estate idea and starting to think that way change the way I think about closet...

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  29. Fabulous idea for making the walls pretty with the different fabrics-to die for. The prettier it is, the more likely I am to keep it that way and stay organized. Just great! I now MUST get started on my own after seeing this :)

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  30. Most of the space in my bedroom is empty. And I want to utilize it in a right way so please suggest me some attractive custom closets so that i can make my bedroom more attractive.

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  31. Funny. You have the same exact earrings and necklaces as me (the tear-drop shaped earrings and the flower necklace)!

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Be nice or I'll tell your mom! xoxo -C

 
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