Organized Bedroom Closet

So I got my ass into gear uncharacteristically fast and took some photos of my bedroom closet. As promised, I am sharing these photos with you, along with some bits of "wisdom" about how to keep a closet organized.

Our bedroom is so tiny that to get this photo of the closet, I had to stand on the bed at the opposite wall of the room. As you can see, it is a standard issue small bedroom closet.

The closet has sliding doors, which I am not particularly a fan of, but I've learned to live with them. Regular doors that swing open would not work in this tiny space. And yes, I could theoretically replace the doors with pretty curtains, but we live in a rental apartment, and I would have to keep those doors somewhere until we move out, and we have no extra storage. So, I live with the doors.

When you slide the right door open, you get a peak into my obsessive-compulsive personality closet.

As you can see, I tried to use the vertical space in the most efficient manner possible.

On the shelf on the top (which was already in the closet when we moved in), I store my larger handbags. To keep them separated and easy to reach, I bought this organizer from The Container Store and turned it on its side. On top of the handbag organizer, we store our extra pillows that come out when we have guests sleeping over. Our apartment doesn't have much storage space, so we have to keep stuff other than clothing and accessories in our bedroom closets. Next to the handbags, we keep an extra comforter.

Perhaps I don't own as much clothing as some women, but my closet is still pretty full. Hanging on the rod, I have skirts, jeans, pants, cardigans, button-down shirts, and blazers. I read somewhere that using the same type of hangers for everything helps make the closet appear more organized, and so I bought a bunch of these hangers from Ikea on the cheap. I think they do the trick nicely!

To maximize the use of the lower space of the closet, I bought a ClosetMaid cube organizer from Target (like this, only six cubes) along with three fabric drawers to match. On top of the shelving, I keep my warmer winter sweaters. We don't have extra storage elsewhere to do a rotation of winter and summer clothing, so the sweaters are always stored here. In the top row of cubes, I have my "home clothes" on the left (think sweat pants and t-shirts that never leave the house), my smaller handbags in the middle, and long-sleeved shirts on the right (usually those two stacks are full, but we haven't finished doing laundry yet...). My short-sleeve shirts and tees are actually not in this closet - they are in a dresser that also lives in the bedroom. On the bottom row of cubes, I have a drawer with underwear, another drawer with some of my dresses (that are ok to store folded), and the third drawer contains miscellaneous items, such as various cables and electronics.

The other side of the closet looks less "spectacular".

Hanging on the rod, I have some of my fancier dresses, a bathrobe, and belts (on a hanger that looks like this). I also have a sweater organizer hanging on the rod that helps me store lots of little items, like scarves, gloves, swimming suits, etc. in a way that utilizes vertical space well. Some luggage and backpacks reside on the top shelf, and things like rain boots, basketball, and hand weights are on the floor below the dresses. (Full disclosure: my shoes reside in D's closet, which is even smaller than this one. Yes, it's not fair. But he has less clothing than me, and I have organized his closet in a way that fits all his stuff AND my shoes. So it works out ok.)

I also hung some removable hooks on the inner walls of the closet for even more storage. It's an easy way to store frequently used clothing, like these yoga pants, for example. But you can also use such hooks for belts, scarves, or handbags.

So there you go! A tour of my bedroom closet is complete, and now you have all seen that my wardrobe is full of blues, greens, and neutrals, and that I am definitely fashion-challenged. If you want some tips on how to maintain an organized closet, here is what I learned as I was whipping this closet into shape over the past year and a half:
  • Maximize the use of vertical space. This is especially important if you have a small closet and limited storage in general. You can do this by adding free-standing shelving or hanging tiered organizers on the closet rod.
  • Use dividers to keep things easy to reach. Seriously, if you have to dig through ten handbags to find the one that you want, more often than not, you will end up with a messy pile of stuff you have to sort through, and no desire to organize it. Dividers (like the handbag organizer on the top shelf, or the cubic shelving on the floor) help prevent messes from happening in the first place, making it that much easier to keep the closet organized.
  • Periodically go through all your stuff and PURGE! Not everyone is a compulsive purger like me, but you can still do this once or twice a year. If you have clothing with tags on it that has been hanging in the closet for years, chances are you will never wear it. So sell or donate it, and make room in your closet for things you really love. Give your favorite items some breathing room, and you'll be more likely to find them in your closet the next time you stand in front of the mirror and exclaim that you have nothing to wear.


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