how to organize a master closet

Photo: The Complete Book of Home Organization

It's important to utilize the overlooked areas in your home that can be reimagined as storage. Add hooks, shoe bags, or racks to the backs of doors, install high shelves for items you use infrequently, and use decorative bins or clear containers to store items neatly and provide easy access to their contents. Think creatively about neglected spaces in your home.
– Toni Hammersley, author of The Complete Book of Home Organization
closet organzing hack

Photo: Courtesy of 320 Sycamore

2. Raise the Bar for Tension Rods

Even though your closet is called a "reach-in," the name doesn't quite fit, since the only way to retrieve clothing from its dark corners is with a stretch, a yank and a pull. If you're frustrated with the dead space on the sides, try blogger Melissa Smith of 320 Sycamore's ingenious solution. Remove the long rod and shelf that go straight across the closet side-to-side and replace it with one that is the width of the doorframe. In one corner of the closet, install two closet rods, one lower and one higher (basically, perpendicular to the new, shorter left-to-right rod). The top bar should hang approximately 75 to 80 inches from the floor; the bottom bar, ideal for shorter items such as shirts and skirts, approximately 36 to 40 inches. Tension rods make this a snap (if you're storing lighter-weight items). For more detailed information, see Melissa's tutorial here.
Pamela Masin
ear drops

Photo: Kwangmoozaa/istock

Arrange your clothes so that they rise to the right. Take a moment to draw one arrow rising toward the right and then another descending to the right. You can do this on paper or just trace them in the air. Did you notice that when you draw an arrow rising to the right it makes you feel lighter? Lines that slope up to the right make people feel comfortable. By using this principle when you organize your closet, you can make the contents look far more exciting.

To do so, hang heavy items on the left side of the closet and light items on the right. Heavy items include those with length, those made from heavier material and those that are dark in color. As you move toward the right side of the closet, the length of the clothing grows shorter, the material thinner and the color lighter. By category, coats would be on the far left, followed by dresses, jackets, pants, skirts and blouses.
—Marie Kondo, author of The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up
ear candles

Photo: Tara Charlton from

4. Upcycle Your Way to Double the Space

Before you recycle that Diet Coke can, pull the tab off to use as a quick way to double the hanging space available on one hanger. As shown in this tutorial from Idea Bottle, simply slide the tab down the hook of a hanger to its base, and then slip another hanger hook through the lower hole of the tab. Voila! Now you can store more clothing on a single closet rod. (This also is a great way to pair outfits together.)
Pamela Masin
closet organizing trick

Photo: alexandradabija/istock

5. Track What You Wear—and Don't Wear

Turn all the clothes hanging in your closet so that the hangers face back-to-front. For the next six months, if you wear an item of clothing, return it to the closet with the hanger facing the correct way. If you try it on but decide not to wear it, make sure you put it back with the hanger turned backward—no cheating. Be prepared for a shock; you are going to find you own lots of clothes you have no use for. You should seriously consider getting rid of anything you don't wear regularly.
— Peter Walsh
closet scarf organization

Photo: Laura Wittmann of

6. Corral Your Favorite Accessories

Wondering what to do with the surplus shower-curtain rings lurking in your linen closet? Laura Wittmann, author of Clutter Rehab, and blogger behind I'm an Organizing Junkie, clips shower-curtain rings to a hanger and then loops scarves through them, which saves space and keeps everything wrinkle-free. (The same trick works for hats and belts.)
Pamela Masin
how to organize a t shirt drawer

Photo: Jonny Valiant

T-shirt drawers! They're labeled according to shirt style; the tops themselves are rolled rather than folded so the shirts' designs are clearly visible.
closet organizing

Photo: #OWNShow

8. Organize Your Shoes in a Snap

First, remove them all from your closet (yes, all!). Then follow these seriously easy steps to help maximize the space—and keep all your footwear visible, too.
shoe rails

Photo: Home Made Simple

9. ...Or DIY Your Heels Storage

Instead of storing special occasion shoes in out-of-sight boxes, create these space-saving shoe rails that show off your finest footwear—and will help you from forgetting about what you already own. Follow these quick and easy steps to creating the display.

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