With the onset of warmer weather comes the green light to wear your summer attire. Flowing dresses, bright colors, broad brimmed sun hats, shorts and sandals are just the beginning. Summertime offers an entire new wardrobe of possibilities for your look, giving you a chance to let your personality shine without having to cover it up with a big coat. As you prepare your closet for the summer, this is also a great time to take inventory and do a little organizing. Keep these suggestions in mind as you go through all of your clothes and accessories this season.
Step 1: Remove Everything (Yes, everything!)
The best way to do a thorough organizing job is to remove everything from your closet and start fresh. This will allow you the opportunity to analyze every article of clothing or accessory you own. We often forget about items we have not worn in a long time or that have simply been hiding out behind other pieces. This is also a great time to clean your closet before replacing anything. Wipe everything down, replace shelf paper (or add it) and vacuum it out, using an attachment to reach the small spaces. Now you are ready to organize.
Step 2: Get Rid of Winter Items
Winter clothes can take up quite a bit of space, so separate your winter clothing out from everything else. You can then choose to either store all of it away or take the time to sort it now and remove pieces you never wear or that no longer fit.
Since you won’t need your winter coats for a few months, take them to the dry cleaners and then put them away for the summer. You can also use this opportunity to get them waterproofed again so they will be ready for next winter.
You are going to need some storage space, so put your winter clothes away in bins, drawers, or unused closets. Look for spaces that are currently unused (such as under the bed) where you can store these warmer clothing items.
Step 3: Sort the Remaining Items
Now that you are left solely with summer clothing and accessories, it is now time to sort these into categories: keep, maybe keep, discard. The “keep” you can place back into the closet and the “maybe keep” items get to have a second look. Since it is summertime now, you can be a little more lenient on these items if you have a new look you want to try or had just forgotten about the item. Try this trick to make sure you actually end up wearing these items: First, you can put the “maybe keep” clothes in with the hangers facing the wrong direction. Once you wear the clothes, put them back facing the correct direction. If you make it to fall and have hangers still facing the wrong way, you went the whole summer without wearing that clothing item and can give it away with little to no regret.
The “discard” needs to leave you. From clothing swaps with friends, to donating, to hosting a garage sale, there are many ways you can give these items another chance with someone else. If you choose to have a garage sale, you might even consider teaming up with friends or neighbors to get more traffic, as suggested in these awesome tips.
Step 4: Put the Items Back in an Organized Manner
Once you have completed the sorting, you can put your clothes and accessories back in their rightful place. Hanging clothes should be limited to blouses, pants, and dresses. T-shirts can be folded and put on shelves or in drawers to give you more space. If you do not have a system already in place for how to organize your clothes, here are two main ways to approach this:
- Like with Like: Organize your clothing by keeping all items that are the same together. For example, all short sleeved tops together, all casual dresses together, etc.
- By Color: Some enjoy organizing their clothes by color. This might be helpful on days when you are going for a certain look and just need that missing piece that matches your incomplete ensemble.
You can even go as far as making sure all of your hangers are the same color to add even more fluidity to your closet.
Step 5: Find a Home for Accessories
Finally, it is time to put accessories in their own place as well. Hats can be hung from pegs on the backs of doors or on walls, to save on closet space. Belts, ties, and scarves can also be hung vertically.
Bags come in handy during the summer as you go to picnics, beach parties, or weekend getaways. But they also take up a lot of room. Try storing smaller bags within larger bags to save on space.
Buy shoe organizers to make sure the floor of your closet stays free from clutter. There are organizers that hang over doors, can be hooked onto the clothing rod, or even add shelves above the floor. Keep baskets for inexpensive, rubber sandals you wear often.
These tips can be tweaked to fit your personal organization style and reused for other seasons. Come fall, you will be ready to tackle your closet once again, as you have become an organization master!