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How to Create and Organize Your Dream Closet

Your closet is one place you visit every single day, so whether it’s tiny or palatial, it should make you happy. 

So first things first: Clean it out! What is the point of storing and organizing items you no longer wear, want, or use? After you have cleaned out your closet, then its time to start organizing!

Find a system that works for you.

Whether you are working with a walk-in closet, a dresser and shallow closet, an armoire, or some other combination, determine the best way to store your clothing, shoes, and accessories.

Two common solutions: by color and by item type. I’m a big fan of the latter, as it easily allows you to see all your options when choosing an outfit and getting ready in the morning.

For example, hang items such as dresses, skirts, and button-downs. Drawers and dressers are great for pants and t-shirts, and always fold sweaters (hanging will stretch them!). Use your dresser top or shelves to display accessories and jewelry. IKEA Billy bookcases are wonderful for storing both accessories and shoes, and are budget-friendly to boot.

Keep items accessible.

Chances are, you bought your clothes because you think they’re pretty, so put them on display! Plus, keeping them visible and easily accessible prevents you from forgetting about (and therefore not wearing!) everything in your closet. Try clear (or clearly-labeled) bins and baskets for items like scarves and small bags. Rotate out seasonal items, as well: Sweaters can go into hidden storage during warmer months. Making sure you can see and thus grab everything will make it much easier to get ready in the morning.   

Make it pretty and personal.

In practical terms, look for storage solutions to help you organize your space, like shoe racks, jewelry towers, and more. And this is where it really gets fun! Try wallpapering the back of a bookcase for a pop of personalization and color or display a piece of art that makes you smile while you get dressed.

Lighting is also super important. You want to be able to see all the cute stuff in your closet! If you’ve got a walk-in, make sure the overhead lighting is adequate. In smaller spaces, clip-on lamps and LED lights for shelves can be lifesavers (check Target, The Container Store, and IKEA). Adding mirrors where possible will expand light and, of course, let you check out your outfit.

Finally, spruce it up! Huggable hangers are incredibly luxe and will double your hanging space. Throw a plush rug down, and if you have the space, you might even consider creating a small nook with a chair to ponder all the wonderful outfits you can create. (It’s also a great place to sit and put on shoes.)

Short on space? No worries!

Even the smallest of studios can have a glamorous, organized closet. You just have to be a bit more creative! Hanging racks can be quite pretty and practical, and even serve as room decor when you feature your prettiest items. This hanging corner bar from CB2 is perfect for small spaces. Also, a petite chest of drawers underneath would make for a nice little dressing corner.

Article adapted from by Abigail Brennan.

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