The closet is one of the places in our homes that most people do NOT take for granted. So when I decided that this year I would do a complete home decluttering, I knew I needed to start with the closet. Not only is it the one place that is completely mine in the house, but it is also a place of significant tension.
It’s the classic too many clothes, nothing to wear, story! A woman’s closet can make or break her day based on its cleanliness and its ability to offer her the answers she seeks; namely, does she have clothes that she loves that also fit!
If you are like me, then finding some way to declutter and organize your closet is key to really enjoying all that your closet can offer. We aren’t alone in this pursuit, in fact nearly 1000 internet searches a month are from people looking for small closet organization ideas!
Luckily, I have compiled this list of some simple things you can do to declutter your closet and then organize the things that remain!
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How do I maximize space in a small closet?
One of the best small closet hacks is to maximize the available space, and here is what you need to do.
1. Purge and declutter
One of the reasons why you may not have enough space in your closet is clutter. The chances are you don’t wear a significant percentage of things in your closet. We are all guilty of wanting to cling on to things that we may get into again, but we must understand that always seeing these items that no longer fit or that are out of style only leads us to frustration and feeling like we have nothing to wear.
When organizing your closet, the best small closet hack is to take some time to go through your clothes and set aside the ones that no longer fit, are worn out, or are out of fashion. You can give away the clothes in good shape and dispose of the torn ones. This way, you will create more space for items that you need or to simply minimize the items you have to manage (hello less laundry!).
2. Rotate wardrobe
By rotating your wardrobe, you will create space for the items you need during the different seasons while keeping the rest in storage. Start by evaluating the items and identifying when you wear them. Also, think about the purpose that each of the items serves.
Categorize the items according to the ones that are in season and the ones that are off-season. Organize the ones that are into season in your closet and put them away until their season is up. Rotating your clothes like this will help ensure you have adequate room during the current season.
Small Closet Hacks Pro Tip: Using labeled storage bags for each season can help ensure that you can easily access the clothing you need in each season.
3. Use baskets
The good thing about baskets is that they can be stacked. This means that you will provide storage for your items and still save a lot of floor space. There is possibly no item that cannot be stored in a basket. You can also use these baskets to maximize shelf space!
Be it shoes, clothes, jewelry, or accessories, they will be perfectly organized in the baskets creating more room in your closet and reducing clutter in the room.
Pro Tip: Use baskets of differing shapes and sizes to be able to coordinate your closet space and keep like items sorted.
4. Utilize space under clothes
Depending on how high the hanging rods are installed, there will be space under hanging clothes. I keep a basket here for clothes that may need to be donated and also a laundry basket. If there is a lot of space, you can include a shoe rack or even add DIY shelves.
Small Closet Ideas Pro Tip: Using compartmentalized baskets can help you sort different types of items you may want to store under the clothing racks.
5. Shelving systems
DIY closet shelves and rods will also come in handy in creating more space for your item. They are budget-friendly options to make room in your closet. The shelves can be used to hold folded clothes, shoes, and accessories. DIY rods will add more space for hanging your coats, dresses, and much more.
Small Closet Ideas Pro Tip: Even something as simple as adding a tension rod or hanging rod can help increase the available space in a small closet
6. Use top-shelf space
DIY closet organizer ideas like making drawers or shelves at the top shelf space can be a lifesaver. The idea is to use as much storage space as possible to ensure everything fits and stays organized, and there is no clutter in your room.
DIY small closet organization ideas will take only a few hours, and it will be so worthwhile. But in case you aren’t handy or don’t really have the time to invest in purchasing items and then building, then there are some awesome options that can be purchased.
Pro Tip: If you have higher shelves in your small walk-in closet, consider storage bags with multiple access points. This will allow you to easily access items you may need.
7. Utilize the back of the door
So this is one space where we can literally go wild with small closet organization ideas. There is a treasure trove of options for how to use this often neglected space. You can hang a wide range of items from clothes and scarves to bags and shoes in this space.
Pro Tip: Wait until you have outlined a space for most everything in your closet and then determine how to use the back of the door.
8. Utilize wall space
There are countless ways you can utilize the wall for storage. Walls provide you with space for additional DIY closet organizer ideas. That includes storage options like DIY shelves and cabinets. You can couple the shelves with boxes and baskets.
9. Use stackable bins
Stackable bins will provide extra vertical storage. Since they are stackable, you can use as many as you want and reduce the closet’s clutter. This will make it possible to maneuver your way in the closet comfortably, without struggling with a pile of clothes falling off.
With adequate space, you will even prevent your clothes from creasing, making ironing easy.
Pro Tip: Using clear stackable bins can help you make sure you can still visualize everything you have in your closet
10. Maximize drawers
If you have drawers in your closet or bedroom, then they can be used to help maximize space in your closet. This small closet organization idea is great for those with lots of small items, or unmentionables. Use the drawers to sort the different items out.
Once sorted out, items can then be folded and placed in different drawers. Remember, however, that undergarments and socks should also be sorted and decluttered first before organizing.
Pro Tip: Using drawer dividers can help you organize many different types of items in a single drawer, furthering the small closet maximization.
11. Add a clothing rack
This will mainly be helpful with the stacking. Hanging clothes in a small closet makes things worse. This is primarily because it eats up the vertical space. To maximize the closet, get a separate rack. Use the rack for hanging clothes and the closet to stack the folded ones.
A free-standing rack will provide additional space for storing items even when you are in a hurry. Through this, you will avoid interfering with the organization of the closet.
Pro Tip: Don’t be afraid to use any available space. Whether that is in the closet or outside of it. Having an additional standing rack can help!
12. Get closet shelf dividers
Dividers will help you partition the closet, helping you further with the organization process. Finding items in a small closet can cause headaches. Items are usually cramped together, and people often have a hard time remembering where they stored certain items.
Pro Tip: Paring shelf dividers with rack dividers can make organizing even simpler. This would allow you to separate dresses from pants, and blouses from sweaters for example.
13. Try the hang by a thread method
Hanging by a thread is a method that will maximize the available space in your small closet. Instead of using six hangers for six sweaters, you can use a single hanger to hold the six sweaters through hanging by a thread. This small closet hack is perfect for over the door racks and standing racks as well.
Pro Tip: Consider using this method for pants and jeans. Have a single multiple hanger for jeans and one for your dress pants.
14. Try Using Hanging baskets
T-shirts are not meant to take up so much hanging space. They are usually light, and if you are smart about storing them, you will have an incredible space. Hanging baskets have proved to be the perfect storage for t-shirts. All you need to do is roll up the t-shirts and store them in the baskets.
The exciting part about this is that all your t-shirts could fit in a single basket. You can imagine how much space you will save and how easy it will be retrieving the t-shirts.
Pro Tip: Using hanging baskets can be used for items that are often deemed “hard to store” Such as hats, flip/flops or flat shoes, or bulky sweaters/t-shirts.
15. Stack items that can be stacked
Stackable containers are great for maximizing space and organizing a small closet. Stacking helps create horizontal space. Most clothes are stackable when folded. If you see that hanging the clothes in the closet is eating up a lot of space, then you might want to consider folding them and stacking them instead.
You will be impressed by how much space you will create by using this idea.
Pro Tip: Finding matching stackable bins and baskets can help make your closet look cohesive and this simple hack can make your closet feel more organized.
You don’t have to pay a professional closet organizer to get your things in order. With the right DIY small closet organization ideas, you will achieve all the space you need in your room.
The DIY closet organizer ideas above are easy to implement and will ensure that your room looks the best throughout.
How to maintain an organized closet
How many times have you spent hours trying to organize your closet, only for things to fall apart after a week o two? Sadly this happens to many of us, and it is so discouraging. This may be why many of us decide to stay with disorganized and messy closets instead of continuously cleaning and organizing.
Many times this happens because most people do not have a plan for maintaining their closet organization. Once you are done with your closet organizer process, the next thing you should think about is how you will maintain the organization. Here are some tips for you.
1. Wash clothes regularly
You cannot keep dirty clothes in the closet with the rest of the fresh ones. For this reason, you are likely to leave the clothes lying around and create a mess in your room. Even with laundry baskets, its easy to let it get the best of you.
The best way to go about this is by avoiding piling dirty clothes. Wash your clothes regularly so that the remaining dirty clothes can fit in the laundry basket and not lie around.
2. Put clothes away immediately after washing
Washing clothes can take a few hours. The bone of contention is usually with the folding. People take weeks and even months before they fold their clothes. You might be tempted to squeeze the pile of clothes inside the closet, but it is a recipe for disaster.
The best way to ensure that your closet looks its best at all times is to be vigilant with the folding. It might not be a desirable job, but it will save you the pain of an unsightly closet. Once the clothes are dry, fold them immediately. If you ignore them, you will likely never fold them until they find themselves in the laundry basket again.
3. Keep floors clear of clutter
Develop a habit of keeping the floors devoid of clutter. If you haven’t noticed, clutter tends to take up more space than storage baskets would. You are better off having organized storage in the space instead of leaving clutter lying around. If you stay organized, you will be motivated to keep things that way.
4. Use Donation bins
Having donation bins in your home will support regular decluttering. Decluttering cannot be just a one day job. From time to time, you realize that you don’t need something. The moment the thought crosses your mind, you should put away the item in a donation bin.
5. Teach yourself to return items where they belong
One of the things that lead to awfully disorganized closets is people not leaving things as they found them or better. Make it a habit to return items in place. If your closet is organized, you will be motivated to maintain it, the moment things start looking messy, you lose the zeal.
Use these small closet organization ideas to clear the clutter
Having a small closet should not be an excuse for a disorganized room. There are so many small closet organization ideas for maximizing the available closet space. Adding extra storage like boxes, baskets, bins, hanging baskets for t-shirts, and installing DIY shelves are some of the ways you can free up space in your closet.
It is also vital to normalize letting go of items you no longer need and decluttering. Donate them and create more space for items you use. The guide above will help you organize your closet and also maintain the organization for a clutter-free space.
If you are interested in more tips for decluttering your home, check out our 60 day minimalism challenge and create a decluttered home in 60 days.