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 399 »

Fit Breathe tie-back tank by

Gap

Buy Now

Velvet kimono top by

Gap

Buy Now

Fit Breathe V-neck tee by

Gap

Buy Now




  • Millennial Pink Coats Are In! Shop The Prettiest Picks Of The Season Now

    Millennial Pink Coats Are In! Shop The Prettiest Picks Of The Season Now

    Style

    1 day

  • These Cute Bun Hairstyle Ideas Are Perfect For Mornings When There's No Time To Blow Dry

    These Cute Bun Hairstyle Ideas Are Perfect For Mornings When There's No Time To Blow Dry

    Beauty

    3 days

  • Nordstrom's Bestselling $19 Leggings Are Back In Stock--Grab A Few Pairs Before They Sell Out Again

    Nordstrom's Bestselling $19 Leggings Are Back In Stock--Grab A Few Pairs Before They Sell Out Again

    Style

    3 days

  • Weekend Project: Make Your Own Cleansing Facial Wipes

    Weekend Project: Make Your Own Cleansing Facial Wipes

    Beauty

    3 days

  • The One Hack That Will Forever Change The Way You Shop At Zara

    The One Hack That Will Forever Change The Way You Shop At Zara

    Style

    4 days

  • Hurry! This $39 Tunic Sweater Is Selling Like Crazy At Nordstrom Right Now

    Hurry! This $39 Tunic Sweater Is Selling Like Crazy At Nordstrom Right Now

    Style

    4 days

  • This Is The One Hand Cream You Absolutely, Positively <em>Need</em> For Winter...

    This Is The One Hand Cream You Absolutely, Positively Need For Winter...

    Beauty

    4 days

  • Nordstrom's Super Popular Peacoat Is Now Available In Red... And It's Only $37!

    Nordstrom's Super Popular Peacoat Is Now Available In Red... And It's Only $37!

    Style

    4 days

  • 5 Ways To DIY Eyelash Growth For Longer, Stronger Lashes

    5 Ways To DIY Eyelash Growth For Longer, Stronger Lashes

    Beauty

    4 days

  • Drop Everything - Here’s How To Win Free Lush Products RIGHT NOW

    Drop Everything - Here’s How To Win Free Lush Products RIGHT NOW

    Beauty

    4 days

  • Score A Gorgeous Leather Rebecca Minkoff Bag For Under $100 With Our Exclusive Promo Code

    Score A Gorgeous Leather Rebecca Minkoff Bag For Under $100 With Our Exclusive Promo Code

    Style

    4 days

  • Upgrade Your Fall Look With These Creative Ways To Wear A Scarf

    Upgrade Your Fall Look With These Creative Ways To Wear A Scarf

    Style

    4 days

  • It's Trench Coat Season! Shop The Best Styles For Fall RN

    It's Trench Coat Season! Shop The Best Styles For Fall RN

    Style

    4 days

  • 5 Beauty Products Sephora Can’t Keep In Stock Right Now

    5 Beauty Products Sephora Can’t Keep In Stock Right Now

    Beauty

    5 days

  • First Look! Check Out LG SIGNATURE's Stunning Collection On Display At Bloomingdale's

    First Look! Check Out LG SIGNATURE's Stunning Collection On Display At Bloomingdale's

    Style

    5 days

  • This Is The Best Maybelline Foundation For Oily Skin

    This Is The Best Maybelline Foundation For Oily Skin

    Beauty

    5 days

  • Chip & Joanna Gaines' Target Home Collection Just Made Your Holiday Shopping Super Easy

    Chip & Joanna Gaines' Target Home Collection Just Made Your Holiday Shopping Super Easy

    Celebrity

    5 days

  • Forever 21's Plus Size Line Just Got a Fabulous New Makeover

    Forever 21's Plus Size Line Just Got a Fabulous New Makeover

    Style

    5 days

  • A Beginner's Guide To Using Crystals To Relax & De-Stress #WellnessWednesday

    A Beginner's Guide To Using Crystals To Relax & De-Stress #WellnessWednesday

    5 days

  • 5 Target New Arrivals To Shop Before They Sell Out

    5 Target New Arrivals To Shop Before They Sell Out

    Style

    6 days

  • Here Are The Best iPhone X Cases For Every Kind Of Person

    Here Are The Best iPhone X Cases For Every Kind Of Person

    6 days

  • Get A Sneak Peek Of MAC's Holiday 2017 Collection (You're Going To Want It All!)

    Get A Sneak Peek Of MAC's Holiday 2017 Collection (You're Going To Want It All!)

    Beauty

    6 days

  • Here's Why Those Urban Decay Vault Combos Are TOTALLY Worth It

    Here's Why Those Urban Decay Vault Combos Are TOTALLY Worth It

    Beauty

    6 days

  • This Is The One Blouse You Need To Purchase For Fall

    This Is The One Blouse You Need To Purchase For Fall

    Style

    6 days

  • Once And For All, Here's How To Take Off Eyeliner Without Scrubbing Your Eyelids

    Once And For All, Here's How To Take Off Eyeliner Without Scrubbing Your Eyelids

    Style

    6 days

  • Sale Alert! The Best-Selling Tarte Shape Tape Concealers Are 25% Off Right Now

    Sale Alert! The Best-Selling Tarte Shape Tape Concealers Are 25% Off Right Now

    Beauty

    6 days

  • Use Our Exclusive Promo Code To Score The Best Rain Boots Ever For 20% Off

    Use Our Exclusive Promo Code To Score The Best Rain Boots Ever For 20% Off

    Style

    7 days

  • 5 Things You Need To Know About Nordstrom's Return Policy

    5 Things You Need To Know About Nordstrom's Return Policy

    Shop

    7 days

  • This eBay Hack Will Help You Get Some Serious $$ From Your Old Purses

    This eBay Hack Will Help You Get Some Serious $$ From Your Old Purses

    7 days

  • Drop Everything--These Are The New Launches Our Editors Are Shopping Now

    Expect To See A LOT Of This Hat In Your Social Feeds

    Shop

    7 days

  • Gift Alert! All The Beauty Products Our Editors Want This Year

    Gift Alert! All The Beauty Products Our Editors Want This Year

    Beauty

    7 days

  • 5 Best Sephora Shampoos For Thinning Hair That Won’t Break The Bank

    5 Best Sephora Shampoos For Thinning Hair That Won’t Break The Bank

    Beauty

    today

  • 8 Gucci Fashion Dupes That Look Like The Real Deal

    8 Gucci Fashion Dupes That Look Like The Real Deal

    Style

    today

  • Here's Everything You Need For A Harley Quinn Halloween Costume

    Here's Everything You Need For A Harley Quinn Halloween Costume

    Style

    1 day

  • 6 Amazon Beauty Products Under $5 With Amazing Reviews & Reputations

    6 Amazon Beauty Products Under $5 With Amazing Reviews & Reputations

    Beauty

    1 day

  • These Hunter Boots Knock Offs Are Seriously Cute And Functional

    These Hunter Boots Knock Offs Are Seriously Cute And Functional

    Shop

    1 day

  • 5 Cheap Natural Products Dermatologists Swear By For Callus Removal

    5 Cheap Natural Products Dermatologists Swear By For Callus Removal

    Beauty

    1 day

  • Hold up -- Did Kendall Jenner Photoshop Her Latest Instagram Pic?

    Hold up -- Did Kendall Jenner Photoshop Her Latest Instagram Pic?

    Celebrity

    3 days

  • Target Booties Our Editors Love (And Are On Sale!)

    Target Booties Our Editors Love (And Are On Sale!)

    Style

    3 days

  • Are Gwen Stefani & Blake Shelton Having A Baby Together?!

    Are Gwen Stefani & Blake Shelton Having A Baby Together?!

    Celebrity

    3 days

  • The Best Coats Under $100 This Season

    The Best Coats Under $100 This Season

    Style

    3 days

  • What's In The Gigi x Maybelline East Coast Glam Collection? Here's Everything You Need To Know About Gigi Hadid's New Makeup Line

    What's In The Gigi x Maybelline East Coast Glam Collection? Here's Everything You Need To Know About Gigi Hadid's New Makeup Line

    Beauty

    3 days

  • Sophia Grace from Ellen Looks SO Different Now

    Sophia Grace from Ellen Looks SO Different Now

    Celebrity

    3 days

  • The One Drugstore Powder You Should Stop Using, According To A Dermatologist

    The One Drugstore Powder You Should Stop Using, According To A Dermatologist

    Beauty

    4 days

  • Everyone Thinks Joe Jonas And Sophie Turner Are Expecting & We're Freaking Out!

    Everyone Thinks Joe Jonas And Sophie Turner Are Expecting & We're Freaking Out!

    Celebrity

    4 days

  • 7 Things Every Fashion Girl Over 30 Never Wears

    7 Things Every Fashion Girl Over 30 Never Wears

    Style

    4 days

  • Um, Did Jennifer Aniston Not Realize Her Top Was Completely See-Through?

    Um, Did Jennifer Aniston Not Realize Her Top Was Completely See-Through?

    Celebrity

    4 days

  • The Ultimate Guide On What To Wear To An Office Holiday Party

    The Ultimate Guide On What To Wear To An Office Holiday Party

    Style

    4 days

  • The One Drugstore Cleanser You Should Stop Using, According To A Dermatologist

    The One Drugstore Cleanser You Should Stop Using, According To A Dermatologist

    Beauty

    5 days

  • 5 Pairs Of Leggings That Don’t Actually Look Like Leggings

    5 Pairs Of Leggings That Don’t Actually Look Like Leggings

    Style

    5 days

  • Your Ultimate Guide On What To Wear To Thanksgiving Dinner This Year

    Your Ultimate Guide On What To Wear To Thanksgiving Dinner This Year

    Style

    5 days

  • Ashton Kutcher Explains Why He'll Never, EVER Post Pictures Of His Kids

    Ashton Kutcher Explains Why He'll Never, EVER Post Pictures Of His Kids

    Celebrity

    5 days

  • Kylie Jenner Just Showed Off Her Baby Bump On Snapchat & Everyone's Freaking Out!

    Kylie Jenner Just Showed Off Her Baby Bump On Snapchat & Everyone's Freaking Out!

    Celebrity

    5 days