Ultimate Guide to Closet Organization

Organizing your closet may seem like a daunting task, but it doesn’t have to be.

It is a fantastic accomplishment that will have you feeling great about your closet space, especially if it was cluttered and unmanageable.

That’s why we’ve created the ultimate guide to closet organization to inform readers about the process, what you need to get started, decluttering, and more.

The Process

Taking a look at your disorganized closet can be frustrating and seem like an impossible mission.

Luckily, that isn’t the case, and there is a process to begin organizing your closet for an easy transition, such as:

  1. Supplies: Gather supplies to dispose of unwanted clothing, such as a toss basket
  2. Assessing your needs: Think about which clothing and other items you need or don’t need, which clothing you wear the most and least often
  3. Clean-Up: Begin cleaning your closet from the floor, shelves, and anything else
  4. Declutter: Recycle, donate or sell the items you do not need
  5. Explore storage solutions: There are various closet organizers and storage options for better access and make the closet more visually appealing
  6. Re-organize: Begin storing your clothes back into the closet by grouping them
  7. Maintenance: Keep your wardrobe from becoming cluttered by following tips to maintain an organized closet

Benefits of Organizing Your Closet

If you’re still dreading organizing your closet, it’s essential to know the several benefits for extra motivation, such as:

  • Save time: Rummaging through your closet wastes time, creating a frustrating experience
  • Know what you have: We all lose track of our clothes and either end up purchasing the same item that was hiding or consider it lost when it was in the closet all along
  • Easy access: Find the clothes you need right away, such as having work clothes in the front, and casual clothes in the back
  • Relief: A cluttered, disorganized closet can be an eyesore, but a clean and organized closet may bring a positive, zen feeling, and a sense of accomplishment

What You Need

First, dedicate time to begin the process of organizing your closet. This process will take several hours or days, depending on the time you have. Begin in the morning to have the rest of the day, and not in the afternoon.

You will need the right tools for an easy transition, such as:

  • Measuring tape: You may need additional shelves or organizers, and correct measurements are essential for easy installation
  • Mirror: As you’re assessing if you want specific clothing or accessories, consider using a mirror for a second look at how you feel about those items
  • Basket: When you begin to clean and declutter your closet, you will find small items. Toss them in a little basket and evaluate whether to keep them or not
  • Trash bag: Items that have no use and cannot be donated should go into a disposable bag
  • Donation Bag: Unwanted clothes go into a donation box, bag, or bin  

Clean Your Closet

Remove everything from your closet to get a better sense of what you have, what you don’t need, and find out what you have.

Remove everything from the hangers, shelves, and corners until the space is clear.

Some people like to clear one area at a time, but this approach prolongs the process, leading to procrastination and never organizing the closet the right way.

After you’ve removed everything from the closet, begin evaluating the clothes by placing wanted items on the bed or floor, organize and replace.

When the space is empty, begin dusting shelves, walls, rods, or anything that has been collecting dust. After, wipe them with an all-purpose cleaner. Consider vacuuming, mopping, or sweeping the floor.


The longest part of closet organization is decluttering, but it is also the most productive.

During this process, the hardest part is keeping clothes you haven’t worn in a while, believing you may “need it one day.” Take this opportunity to assess what clothes you need, use the most, or don’t need anymore.

Think of your closet as valuable real estate, and only the most essential items should occupy the space.

Divide the clothes into different piles:

  • Donate: Clothing items you have no more use for, yet are in excellent condition, can be useful for someone else.
  • Trash: Some items may have gone out of style, look drab, or stained, and the best option may be to throw them in the trash
  • Sell or Consign: If an item is in excellent condition, but you’re not too fond of it anymore, you may sell it online or to a consignment store, or even a yard sale
  • Keepers: The clothes you want should be in a separate pile, as it’s the most important
  • Miscellaneous: Anything that may not fit in any category should be set aside for further evaluation

Assess if you want to keep an article of clothing or accessory by asking yourself the following questions:

  1. Does it feel comfortable?
  2. Does it look good on me?
  3. Is it in good condition?
  4. How often do I wear this?
  5. Have I worn this in the last year?

Closet Storage Options

If your closet mostly had stockpiles of clothes or items in areas stuffed in the corner, more than likely, you need another storage option.

Several options exist, such as:

  • Boxes or baskets: A simple box or basket to place items, such as accessories, can be an option instead of an empty shelf, which prevents them from getting lost in the shuffle. Labeling the baskets or boxes makes it easier to find items right away.
  • Closet kit: If your closet looks too plain, but has tons of space, consider a closet kit where you decide how much shelving and hanging space you need. The shelves and Containers: Storage containers may look too stationary, but they can be useful for those who want extra space for occasional or seasonal items. Consider color-coding them for better allocation.
  • Drawer or Dresser: Having a small dresser inside the closet may be beneficial to separate small items

Before you consider getting additional storage space, use a tape measure to determine if your closet can fit a drawer, closet kit, or other options.

Closet Organizers

Closet organizers have been growing in popularity, as they provide better aesthetics and functionality to anyone’s wardrobe.

To take your wardrobe organization to the next level, consider purchasing one or more of the following closet organizers.

Shelf Dividers

To utilize every inch of your shelves, consider shelf dividers that hold piles of clothes, surrounding the item and providing a more clean look.

Over the Door

If you feel your space is not enough, consider organizers that hang over the door. Various fabrics and racks make the most of your door, where it can hold belts, shoes, or anything else you choose.

Hanging Organizers

One of the best ways to make use of your closet’s vertical space is to invest in a hanging organizer. They’re affordable, highly functional, easy to install, and take up minimal room.

Drawer Dividers

Creating small areas within drawers are useful for separating items such as belts and underwear. Various designs are available, including compartments that mesh with your drawer design. Spring-loaded plastic or wood inserts expand and fit into the drawer for easy storage.

Shoe Rack

Having your shoes laid out all over the floor can appear messy or become obstacles when entering your closet. Shoe racks take your shoes off the floor and provide better organization and access. Have the shoe rack near a wall, or purchase a hanging shoe rack that fits the closet door.

How to Organize Your Clothing

Now that you’ve cleaned your closet, decluttered, and explored additional storage options, the next step is organizing your clothes that are suitable for your lifestyle.

The best way to organize clothes is by grouping them into several categories.

By the Season

A disorganized closet has different seasonal clothes mixed, such as Christmas ugly sweaters next to summer vacation shorts.

Separate each piece by the season and store or hang them away from your most-used space. For instance, the closet’s front should be for work, and seasonal items should be at the far left or right.

Consider using storage bins or baskets for seasonal clothes that are only worn three months out of the year, such as heavy winter jackets.

Halloween costumes or clothing used once or twice a year should be stored away in a container until the time comes to wear it again every year, with a label on the box.


Depending on where you live, the colors matter. For example, pastel or bright colors are best in warmer climates as they absorb less heat.

Separating your clothes by colors is also beneficial, as it helps to mix and match quicker, saving time.

A simple way is to separate light and dark colors.

A more intricate way is to use the ROYGBIV system, using the colors of the rainbow. White and black can be on the opposite ends.

Striped, polka dot, or other patterned clothing can be separate or with the color they most resemble.

Overall, you can get creative, as color-coding your closet brings it to life.


Think about the purpose of your clothes, is it for work, fine dining, casual wear?

For the front of the closet, have your most essential clothes be the most accessible, and group them by their function.

Work clothes to the front, begin a row with casual wear right next to it, and special occasions more into the corner but in a safe area.

The key is to have your attention more focused on the clothes that matter to you the most.



It’s possible to organize your closet by clothing type.

For instance, have all the tank tops, vests, sleeveless, skirts, pants, or dresses in separate areas or rows.

You can also separate them by material, such as satin, silk, cotton, or wool.

Use your imagination and create a closet system with this most practical method and makes sense to you when using this strategy.

Favorites or Frequent Wear

We all have our favorite clothing. Having an area with our most trusted garments makes for easy accessibility.

This is also an excellent exercise to reveal which items you wear the most, giving you a better idea of which clothing you should prioritize.

If you realize you don’t wear your favorite items as much as you thought, you can re-organize and add extra space.

How to Organize Your Shoes

Organizing shoes can be tricky, as all shoes are not the same, such as boots and sneakers, where boots must be upright, while sneakers are low maintenance.

Some tips for organizing your shoes include:

  1. Evaluate which shoes you wear the most and less often
  2. Consider buying hangers, a shoe rack, or clear shoe bins for your shoes instead of the floor
  3. If you have a vast collection, consider a separate storage option like an adjustable bookshelf and have it near your closet
  4. Organize shoes by categories, such as style, color, or frequency

How to Organize Your Accessories

Accessories can be challenging when organizing them in your closet because they tend to be small or have no proper storage space.

Think about where you would like to put your purses, belts, jewelry, scarfs, and consider the following options:

  • Hang on the door, shelf, or rack
  • Shelves
  • Storage container; basket
  • Drawer; dresser

Most people put accessories in boxes or drawers, but hanging them can make it tidier, with fewer chances of being tangled, such as long necklaces, belts, or ties.

How to Maintain Your Newly Organized Closet

It’s crucial to maintain your newly organized closet to avoid the process of cleaning and declutter, as it’s a challenging task.

A great way to maintain your closet is to complete a quick makeover every month. If you see misplaced clothing or items, put them in their respective places. Do a quick wipe down or dust to keep the closet clean, including shelves that accumulate dust the most.

Be mindful every week of where you put your clothes and create a routine for consistency.

Create a schedule and consider sprucing it up every three months or six months.

Additional Closet Organization Tips

Becoming more detailed with your closet organization can lead to great results.

Some additional tips for organizing your closet include:

  • Use valet hooks: Adding valet hooks to your closet can be a game-changer, as you can grab and go your regular clothing. They’re also versatile, as they can be useful for belts, bags, and other accessories.
  • Stepping stool: If your closet is high enough, but you’re not sure you want to use the top-shelf, consider getting a stepping stool to get the most out of your wardrobe.
  •  Get a 2nd opinion: Ask an expert, friend, or family member what they think of your closet, and get some insights from another point of view
  • DIY closet organizers: Many DIY crafts instruct you on creating your custom hangers and boxes to personalize your closet space.

Don’t Let Clothing Pile Up

Some people tend to have the infamous chair with a pile of clothes, as it’s an easy way to access what you need, but it’s also very disorganized.

Over time, this creates inconsistencies within your closet space, which is how items get lost.

Instead, have specialty hangers, bins, or baskets to place these clothes near or inside the closet.

Aesthetically Pleasing

Keep it visual with your closet.

As you scan your closet area, if you cannot see where your clothes, shoes, accessories are, it may not be tidy enough.

You may also spruce up your closet space as well, with wallpaper, decorative boxes, or shelf liners.

Different types of hangers are more appealing, such as high-quality, wooden hangers.

Hanging your accessories, belts, and ties in the closet will be better visually and easier to access.

Make Use of Laundry Day

Laundry day is an excellent opportunity to re-organize your closet and evaluate if you need an item or not.

You can also rotate your clothes in your closet by planning for next week and putting your newly cleaned clothes in a separate area to use for the current week.

If you lack space, as your clothes are in the dryer, you can make room and declutter, which is also a great way to maintain an organized closet.

Final Thoughts

This ultimate guide to closet organization is the first step to creating the best wardrobe you’ve always wanted.

The hardest part is starting the process because of the supplies needed to clean and declutter. However, while most dread the process, it’s rewarding to begin because of the benefits that follow.

Organizing your closet is also an excellent opportunity to see which items you use the most and which you don’t, further adding space for new clothes or re-allocating the space.

The closet organization doesn’t have to be boring, as there are several different storage options and organizers to boost your closet’s visual appearance.