Keep Your Closet Organized With These 7 Simple Habits

Large Editorial Image


March 15, 2016

Cut the closet clutter for a lifetime — and save money too — by learning how to bring home only clothes you love and need.

By: Jennifer Phelps, Houzz Contributor

You’ve banished your excuses, sorted your stuff and lightened your load. Your closet looks great! You’ve celebrated your accomplishment and are basking in the glory of your newly purged space. So … now what? Nature abhors a vacuum, as they say, so you may feel compelled to fill it to the brim right away. But you can limit the clutter and continue to breathe easy if you adopt just a few healthy habits.

1. Take a picture — it really will last longer. Take a photo of your newly organized closet and refer to it regularly. Keeping a record of your closet at its best will inspire you to keep it that way.

2. Keep your eyes on the prize. Arrange clothes so you can see them all: by style, color, purpose — any manner that clicks with you. In drawers, consider organizing pieces like pretty little logs so nothing gets overlooked at the bottom of a stack. When it’s there at a glance, you’re more likely to wear what you have and less likely to purchase accidental duplicates.

RELATED: 11 Stylish Bedroom Storage Solutions

3. Don’t be tricked by magic gadgets. It may be necessary to invest in a few (a very few) effective and space-appropriate bins or dividers to help you wrangle your wardrobe. However, avoid expensive and gimmicky systems that really don’t suit your space or your stuff.

4. Cut the stress by making more with less. If you keep your wardrobe simple by pairing more classic and versatile pieces with a few trendy pieces and accessories, you can keep the clutter down and make getting ready a breeze. Pair what you have in several different ways to create new outfits, and you’ll see how abundant your newly trimmed-down wardrobe really is. Then purchase only the essential items that will allow you to stretch your core wardrobe even further. Choose quality over quantity; wear what you love and wear it until it wears out.

RELATED: Browse Thousands of Stunning Closet Designs

5. Check yourself at checkout. Big budget or small budget, this is by far the most difficult challenge for many. Take a close look at your purchasing habits and get a grip on impulse buys. They cause clutter, waste money and can make you feel bad about yourself. Frugality in the moment does not equal self-denial in the long term. It simply allows you to prioritize expenditures for what is truly most important to you. Do you want to travel, take a class, buy an important gift for someone else or maybe save for an emergency or investing? Look at what you spend on clothes, and you might be shocked by what you might have accomplished with that money. But if you can’t resist buying, return the item as soon as you see the light. Unworn clothing is nothing more than wasted cash hanging in your closet.

RELATED: Find a New Dresser on Houzz

6. Be true to yourself. Be sure that your wardrobe suits your actual lifestyle and is an authentic reflection of who you are. Having too many clothes can suggest you haven’t really found your own personal style, so once in a while take a fresh look at your entire wardrobe. Lay out only the pieces you love. Is there a theme, a common cut, color, style, comfort, fabric feel or fit? Keep this in mind as you shop, and you’ll keep expensive and cluttering missteps to a minimum. It’s worth remembering also that clothes that fit properly, in whatever size, are always more flattering than ill-fitting ones.

RELATED: How to Get Your Dream Closet

7. Make release rewarding. Discover the fun of consignment, find a charity you love or host a clothing exchange party. Honestly, consignment isn’t for everyone. If your nature is to take it personally if the shop doesn’t accept all of the clothing you bring in, then it’s best to steer clear. But if making a few bucks will ease the pain of separation, then consignment is a great way to go.

Find a cause you support — such as a women’s job training program that can immediately use your professional cast-offs or an animal shelter’s thrift store — so when you discover that old camisole stuck in a drawer, you can drop it off the next time you leave the house.

RELATED: Get Organized With New Boxes and Bins

Spice up your wardrobe by having a clothing exchange party with friends. Bring a potluck dish, whip up a batch of pomegranate martinis and fill a bag with clothes to trade. Agree beforehand to take home only half the amount each of you brought and give the rest to charity.

Being honest with yourself about how your closet got so messy in the first place will go a long way toward helping you keep your new space fresh. It’s entirely up to you whether a neat closet will be an ongoing battle or become your happy new normal. In any case, knowing yourself and rolling with life’s changes will help you keep a closet that reflects your most beautiful self, so you can always feel like a million bucks.

[Photo: DJ’s Home Improvements]

 

Shop gap tops

More gap tops | 3 of 374 »

Poplin eyelet bell-sleeve top by

Gap

Buy Now

One-shoulder ruffle top by

Gap

Buy Now

Flutter sleeve tee by

Gap

Buy Now

  • It's #SampleSaturday And We're Giving Away 50 Moisturizers From Kate Somerville!

    It's #SampleSaturday And We're Giving Away 50 Moisturizers From Kate Somerville!

    Beauty

    today

  • This Silicone Beauty Sponge Is A Total Game-Changer

    This Silicone Beauty Sponge Is A Total Game-Changer

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Once And For All, Here's How To Stop A Hangnail From Getting Worse #SHEfindsSolutions

    Once And For All, Here's How To Stop A Hangnail From Getting Worse #SHEfindsSolutions

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Nordstrom Has So Many Cute, Cheap Finds Under $26 Right Now--Don't Miss These Deals!

    Nordstrom Has So Many Cute, Cheap Finds Under $26 Right Now--Don't Miss These Deals!

    Style

    1 day

  • Dermalogica's Daily Microfoliant Is The Best Exfoliator For Women With Dry Skin

    Dermalogica's Daily Microfoliant Is The Best Exfoliator For Women With Dry Skin

    Beauty

    1 day

  • The Perfect Summer-To-Fall Transition Dress Is On Sale For Just $35 At Zappos Right Now

    The Perfect Summer-To-Fall Transition Dress Is On Sale For Just $35 At Zappos Right Now

    Style

    1 day

  • Pin These Pretty Side Part Hairstyle Ideas For Those Days When You Need Simple Hair Inspo

    Pin These Pretty Side Part Hairstyle Ideas For Those Days When You Need Simple Hair Inspo

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Use Our Exclusive Promo Code To Get 30% Off The Allure x Case-Mate Selfie Case

    Use Our Exclusive Promo Code To Get 30% Off The Allure x Case-Mate Selfie Case

    Shop

    1 day

  • Sneak Peek! Here's Your First Look At A New Day, One Of The Awesome New Brands Coming To Target For Fall

    Sneak Peek! Here's Your First Look At A New Day, One Of The Awesome New Brands Coming To Target For Fall

    Style

    1 day

  • Get Winky Lux's Brand New Mini Lip Pill Kit For Only $12 With Our Exclusive Promo Code

    Get Winky Lux's Brand New Mini Lip Pill Kit For Only $12 With Our Exclusive Promo Code

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Weekend Project: Make Your Own Soothing Cuticle Cream

    Weekend Project: Make Your Own Soothing Cuticle Cream

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Love Your Legs? Show Them Off In An Asymmetric Hem Dress This Summer

    Love Your Legs? Show Them Off In An Asymmetric Hem Dress This Summer

    Style

    2 days

  • 9 Kiehl's Products Every Woman Should Own

    9 Kiehl's Products Every Woman Should Own

    Beauty

    2 days

  • How To Make Your Own Wonder Woman Halloween Costume

    How To Make Your Own Wonder Woman Halloween Costume

    Style

    2 days

  • Drop Everything--The New NARS Velvet Matte Foundation Stick Is Now Available At Sephora!

    Drop Everything--The New NARS Velvet Matte Foundation Stick Is Now Available At Sephora!

    Beauty

    2 days

  • 5 Target Beauty Products Every Woman Should Own

    5 Target Beauty Products Every Woman Should Own

    Beauty

    2 days

  • Fear Not! These Crop Top Outfit Ideas Will Totally Inspire You To Try One ASAP

    Fear Not! These Crop Top Outfit Ideas Will Totally Inspire You To Try One ASAP

    Style

    2 days

  • This Is The Best End-Of-Summer Mask If Your Skin Needs Some Serious TLC

    This Is The Best End-Of-Summer Mask If Your Skin Needs Some Serious TLC

    Beauty

    2 days

  • Shop The Best Slip Dresses Under $50

    Shop The Best Slip Dresses Under $50

    Style

    2 days

  • Ivory Ella's Leggings Are <em>So</em> Soft And Comfortable--Add A Pair To Your Collection ASAP

    Ivory Ella's Leggings Are So Soft And Comfortable--Add A Pair To Your Collection ASAP

    Style

    2 days

  • We Tried Peel-Off Lip Stain--And Here's What Happened

    We Tried Peel-Off Lip Stain--And Here's What Happened

    Beauty

    2 days

  • I Tried Hanacure’s Skin-Tightening Face Mask, And This Is What Happened

    I Tried Hanacure’s Skin-Tightening Face Mask, And This Is What Happened

    3 days

  • 9 Natural Products You Need From Sephora For Your Hair, Skin And Nails

    9 Natural Products You Need From Sephora For Your Hair, Skin And Nails

    Beauty

    3 days

  • 4 Foundation Hacks Every Woman Over 30 Needs To Know

    4 Foundation Hacks Every Woman Over 30 Needs To Know

    Beauty

    3 days

  • Here's What's Coming To Zara This Month--Yas!

    Here's What's Coming To Zara This Month--Yas!

    Style

    3 days

  • A Beginner's Guide To Aromatherapy & Essential Oils #WellnessWednesday

    A Beginner's Guide To Aromatherapy & Essential Oils #WellnessWednesday

    Beauty

    3 days

  • These Are The Best Wireless Bras That Are SO Soft And Make Your Boobs Look Amazing

    These Are The Best Wireless Bras That Are SO Soft And Make Your Boobs Look Amazing

    4 days

  • Urban Decay Is Launching 15 New Vice Lipsticks--And You HAVE To See Them

    Urban Decay Is Launching 15 New Vice Lipsticks--And You HAVE To See Them

    Beauty

    4 days

  • What To Wear To Disney World: Rose Gold Minnie Mouse Ears And More!

    What To Wear To Disney World: Rose Gold Minnie Mouse Ears And More!

    Style

    5 days

  • FYI, Nordstrom's Bestselling Moto Leggings Are Back In Stock (But Probably Not For Long)

    FYI, Nordstrom's Bestselling Moto Leggings Are Back In Stock (But Probably Not For Long)

    Style

    5 days

  • These Loafers Are Anything But Boring--Invest In A Pair To Upgrade Your Shoe Collection ASAP

    These Loafers Are Anything But Boring--Invest In A Pair To Upgrade Your Shoe Collection ASAP

    Style

    5 days

  • Did These Celebs Really Not Realize Their Skin Was Really Oily?

    Did These Celebs Really Not Realize Their Skin Was Really Oily?

    Celebrity

    today

  • Are Emma Stone And Andrew Garfield Back Together?

    Are Emma Stone And Andrew Garfield Back Together?

    Celebrity

    1 day

  • Here's Everything You Need To DIY A Hot Dog Snapchat Filter Halloween Costume

    Here's Everything You Need To DIY A Hot Dog Snapchat Filter Halloween Costume

    Style

    1 day

  • This Dutch Model Looks EXACTLY Like Gigi Hadid & We're Freaking Out!

    This Dutch Model Looks EXACTLY Like Gigi Hadid & We're Freaking Out!

    Celebrity

    1 day

  • HUDA Beauty Just Announced Something Major & Fans Are Freaking Out!

    HUDA Beauty Just Announced Something Major & Fans Are Freaking Out!

    Beauty

    1 day

  • The One Lipstick Mistake Women Over 40 Make That’s Aging Them

    The One Lipstick Mistake Women Over 40 Make That’s Aging Them

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Did Beyoncé Really Not Realize That Her Outfit Was Completely See-Thru?

    Did Beyoncé Really Not Realize That Her Outfit Was Completely See-Thru?

    Celebrity

    1 day

  • All The Fashion Girls Are Wearing These $35 Mules From Target

    All The Fashion Girls Are Wearing These $35 Mules From Target

    Style

    1 day

  • 7 Celebrity Exes Who Are Still Friends

    7 Celebrity Exes Who Are Still Friends

    Celebrity

    1 day

  • Here's Everything You'll Need To Be Eleven From 'Stranger Things' For Halloween

    Here's Everything You'll Need To Be Eleven From 'Stranger Things' For Halloween

    Style

    1 day

  • What Is Rihanna Wearing? She's Practically Naked!

    What Is Rihanna Wearing? She's Practically Naked!

    Celebrity

    1 day

  • The One Hot Drink Doctors Say You Should Have For Your Hair, Skin & Nails

    The One Hot Drink Doctors Say You Should Have For Your Hair, Skin & Nails

    Beauty

    1 day

  • The Weeknd Just Released New Merch Apparel, And Fans Are Freaking Out!

    The Weeknd Just Released New Merch Apparel, And Fans Are Freaking Out!

    Style

    2 days

  • ThirdLove's 'Fit Finder' Will Make You Believe In Online Bra Shopping Again

    ThirdLove's 'Fit Finder' Will Make You Believe In Online Bra Shopping Again

    Style

    2 days

  • Kendall Jenner Just Cut Her Hair SO Short & We Hardly Recognize Her!

    Kendall Jenner Just Cut Her Hair SO Short & We Hardly Recognize Her!

    Celebrity

    2 days

  • Celebrities That Are Much Older Than You Think

    Celebrities That Are Much Older Than You Think

    Celebrity

    2 days

  • 5 Times Celebs With Big Boobs Wore Shirts As Dresses And Were Total #FashionGoals

    5 Times Celebs With Big Boobs Wore Shirts As Dresses And Were Total #FashionGoals

    Celebrity

    2 days

  • Did Kim Kardashian Really Not Realize That Her Outfit Was Completely See-Thru?

    Did Kim Kardashian Really Not Realize That Her Outfit Was Completely See-Thru?

    Celebrity

    2 days

  • The One Morning Vitamin Doctors Say You Should Have For Your Hair, Skin & Nails

    The One Morning Vitamin Doctors Say You Should Have For Your Hair, Skin & Nails

    Beauty

    2 days

  • Drop Everything You're Doing -- Target Just Released Some Major News!

    Drop Everything You're Doing -- Target Just Released Some Major News!

    Style

    3 days

  • 6 At-Home Remedies For Peeling Feet

    6 At-Home Remedies For Peeling Feet

    Beauty

    3 days

  • Hold Up - Kylie Cosmetics Is Worth HOW MUCH?

    Hold Up - Kylie Cosmetics Is Worth HOW MUCH?

    Beauty

    3 days