So, you should be in the car and at least four miles down the road and instead, you are on your knees hurling shoes behind you not caring whom they hit and maybe even hoping for contact. You’re frustrated and late and if you’re like me … SUPER annoyed that you’ve started sweating and now curly hair is now a complete fail.
Life with a cluttered closet is like that.
So, you decide to make a change. Maybe you take over the closet in the hallway, or by the front door. You could even take over your husbands closet or his space in your shared closet at least. (Let’s be honest – he has too much of it anyway. How many hobby t-shirts should one person own anyway?) Your shoes are DYING to breathe.
Ok, you you could do that – if you haven’t already OR you could do this:
1. BEGIN WITH THE END IN MIND
“If you don’t know where you’re going, you’re never gonna get there.”
What does your perfect closet look like?
I’m serious, what does it look like? If you don’t have a clear idea about what you want, it doesn’t matter what you’re doing, you will never get it.
PICTURE YOUR PERFECT PLACE
Are all of your shoes displayed? Are your sweaters neatly folded? Can you see the floor and the walls? Do all of the hangers match? What is hanging in this perfect closet of yours? Does everything fit? Is everything wearable?
Once you’ve seen the future, prepare for it!
2. TAKE EVERYTHING OUT
Temptation: Should you remove these hangers? I mean, they are good hangers. Someone could use them. It seems like a waste to throw them away or not to use them. What am I, too good for unmatched hangers?
Truth: In this closets vision we saw matching hangers, so these need to find a new home. We gave ours to a relative who recently moved into their own place.
Getting the closet ready is part of the process of putting it back together.
The canvas is ready. Let’s pick out paint!
FIND ALL YOUR CLOTHES, ACCESSORIES COUNT!
By this time you have moved everything out of your closet and into a pile in a different room. But, unless you never store an out of season item anywhere else, you’ll need to make the pile bigger before we can sort it out.
Find your winter jackets, summer flip flops – anything that you have stored in another room or a different place. Closets, drawers, attics, basement, your sisters closet, your car… Whatever, where ever. Find it, and pile it.
TIP* if you have a bin of winter clothes, take the items out of the bin. If you have shoes in the box, take them out.
3. TOUCH EVERYTHING
If you see a shirt and touch it. Do you love it? You may realize, it’s not the shirt you love. It may be what it represents.
I recently gave away a pair of shoes that I’ve been carrying around for 13 years. They were a sentimental pair of men’s size 13 shoes and I didn’t love them. I loved the person who last wore them.
If you love it, it stays. If you don’t LOVE it, it goes.
Sort shirts with shirts (I love you, I love you not), pants with pants, shoes with shoes, etc.
If you have never done this with your closet, your piles should be about the same size when you are finished.
4. FOLD, FOLD, FOLD
If you’ve made it this far, you’re in the home stretch and this is getting fun!
Fold all your foldable clothes. We chose to add containers to this closet to use every inch of space. Each container holds anywhere from 3 pair of jeans to 15 t-shirts. All folded and easy to see.
I try to encourage a kind of folding that will keep things neat for years to come.
Watch my mentor explain the art of folding.
5. HANG, HANG, HANG
Hang anything that needs a hanger now. (And these should be the first items you put back in your closet!)
You may find a few items that you don’t LOVE on second touch. Discard them immediately.
Do not give space to anything you do not LOVE.
You might be tempted to quit, or put things on hold about now. Please keep going!
The biggest killer of progress is lack of momentum. If you are rolling, keep rolling. Roll right over that finish line!
6. PUT THINGS AWAY!
This is my favorite part of any organizing project. I love finding a home for each item I have decided to keep.
In this closet, you may notice we had to add a shelf. (Hey, sometimes you need to do that!)
The purses are full of purses and the shoe box is full of out of season shoes.
In this closet we found space for:
Winter clothes, summer clothes, summer shoes, winter shoes (including boots!), winter jackets and coats (there are 3), shorts and leggings, and those are just the things you can’t see!
There is nothing in this closet that is not in consistent use.
Imagine how much time you would save not scrolling by those items you scroll by every day…
Before you crack the champagne, remember the last step:
7. MOVE ALL DISCARDS OUT!
Why is this part of the closet? After all these items are not longer residing in my closet… Adding this step to your list ensures your won’t have to touch the bags, boxes and piles again. It also ensures you won’t make a different decision about the items in a moment of weakness.
Keep the momentum going and get the discards gone.
Be sure to move the discarded ple out of your home as soon as possible. If you are able, take it to the donation center today!
You may feel compelled to give a few items to friends or family members.
Before you do, consider this: Is the item something they need and will LOVE?
If you can’t say yes to both of those questions, you might be doing them a bigger favor by discarding the items yourself.
I have a sister that is very sentimental. I am careful about what I give her because I know that when the time comes to discard it, she may be riddled with guilt because I am her favorite sister, and she loves me so much and I “gifted” this item to her…
If you love someone, give them a gift they need and will love. Otherwise, can you even call it a gift?
Here is the final discard pile, it left with me and was donated within 24 hours.
If you can dream it, you can do it.
Just be sure you make your decisions with the