How to Organize and Design Closets of All Sizes

How to Organize Your Closet
30 Start slideshow
http://www.itsnotheritsme.com/2015/03/apartment-tour-part-6-closet.html: It's Not Her It's Me

Whether in a studio apartment or a two-story house, closet space is something we all probably feel we could use more of. Clothing, shoes, and accessories can pile up fast, leading to a lot of clutter in what’s usually not a lot of space.

Even if you did luck out with a walk-in and plenty of shelving, it’s still on you to keep things organized—which isn’t always an easy task. For tips on how to create a system that works—and won’t fall to the wayside by next week—we’ve enlisted entrepreneur Michael Jones of By Michael Todd, who once had a closet-editing service in 2017 to help New Yorkers get the most out of their wardrobes.

MORE: Simple Steps to Declutter Your Closet

First things first, he says, “Accept your space for what it is and adjust accordingly, because you’re not alone. Think of the limited space as an opportunity to continuously polish your style and edit your closet to make sure that what’s in it are actually pieces you love.”

To do so, he recommends dividing what you own into three categories: “Heroes,” the foundation of your wardrobe, “Empty Hangers,” or essential styling pieces, and a “Pass-it-On Pile” of clothing and accessories that you don’t wear or no longer suit your lifestyle.

“Style is such an emotional and personal part of our lives—after all, you choose virtually everything that goes in your closet and on your body,” says Jones. “So anything that makes you feel anything other than the best version of yourself should be tossed in your Pass-It-On Pile, regardless of the story you tell yourself to justify keeping it.”

Taking this approach should feel slightly less militant than going full Kondo, while giving you a great opportunity to find better homes for pieces gathering dust in your home, such as an organization (try Dress for SuccessBig Brother Big Sister Foundation, or a local charity in your neighborhood) or even a friend, family member, or colleague.

MORE: How to Feng Shui Small Spaces: 7 Tips That Transformed My Tiny Apartment

Once you’ve pared down your closet to only what you want to keep, it’s time to organize: Jones suggests merchandising by category (tops, shorts, skirts, dresses, pants, jackets/outerwear), then length (short to long), then color (light to dark). As for accessories, he says, “It’s true what they say: out of sight, out of mind. So my advice is to set up a ‘styling station’ (either on your dresser or small table) to keep your jewelry and other essentials visible.”

Working with a New York City apartment, Jones sets up a rolling rack in his living room to keep his favorite pieces easily accessible, and stores shoes for the week underneath. Handbags, meanwhile, can be hung on hanger clips, which help free up shelf space and maintain the shape of the bag.

“Lastly,” he says, “remember that how you shop directly affects the makeup of your closet. Consider your space, not just if the piece is on sale or on-trend, before you buy it. Because closet maintenance isn’t a once-a-season event; it’s a constant work-in-progress.”

MORE: The Millennial Decor Trends Taking Over Pinterest Right Now

Below, see 30 examples of how to organize your closet, whether you’re working with a spacious walk-in or a single garment rack.

A version of this article was originally published in June 2014.

0 Thoughts?
1 of 30
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Shoes via Stylizimo

Photo: Stylizimo

STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use Shelves for More Storage via Avenue Lifestyle
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize Purses & Shoes by Color via Brooklyn Blonde
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Separate Tops & Bottoms via Camille Styles
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Have a Donation Bag via Camille Styles
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Matching Hangers via Emily Henderson
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | A Shoe Rack for Your Purses via Absolutely Fabulous
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Hats via New Darlings

Photo: New Darlings

STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | An All-White Closet via Pink Peonies

Photo: Pink Peonies

STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Add an Ottoman via Pink Peonies

Photo: Pink Peonies

Photo: @tidytova/Instagram
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize by Color via Pink Peonies

Photo: Pink Peonies

STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Jewelry on Wall via Style Me Grasie
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Glass Casing via Style Me Grasie
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use a Clothes Rack via Style Me Pretty
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Hats via Style Me Pretty
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize Heels by Color via Suburban Faux Pas
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use Wallpaper in Your Shelves via Suburban Faux Pas
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize by Color via The Darling Detail
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Unique Jewelry Holder via The Design Files
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Dresser & Shelves via The Everygirl
STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Closet Shelves via Brooklyn Blonde
Photo: @tidytova/Instagram

Next slideshow starts in 10s

Watch Selena Gomez's Decade-Long Beauty Evolution

Watch Selena Gomez's
Decade-Long Beauty Evolution
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Open Storage via A Beautiful Mess
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Shoes via Stylizimo
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use Shelves for More Storage via Avenue Lifestyle
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Add an Ikea Shelving Unit via Bisous Natasha
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Label Bins via A Beautiful Mess
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use an Industrial Clothing Rail via Bisous Natasha
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize Purses & Shoes by Color via Brooklyn Blonde
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Separate Tops & Bottoms via Camille Styles
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Have a Donation Bag via Camille Styles
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Matching Hangers via Emily Henderson
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up on Cabinet Doors via Absolutely Fabulous
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | A Shoe Rack for Your Purses via Absolutely Fabulous
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Add a Rug That Pops via It's Not Her It's Me
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Hats via New Darlings
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | An All-White Closet via Pink Peonies
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Add an Ottoman via Pink Peonies
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Glasses Wall via @tidytova/Instagram
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize by Color via Pink Peonies
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Rose Gold Clothes Rack via Ropes of Henderson
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Jewelry on Wall via Style Me Grasie
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Glass Casing via Style Me Grasie
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use a Clothes Rack via Style Me Pretty
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Hang Up Your Hats via Style Me Pretty
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize Heels by Color via Suburban Faux Pas
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Use Wallpaper in Your Shelves via Suburban Faux Pas
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Organize by Color via The Darling Detail
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Unique Jewelry Holder via The Design Files
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Dresser & Shelves via The Everygirl
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Closet Shelves via Brooklyn Blonde
  • STYLECASTER | How to Organize Your Closet | Shoe Racks via @tidytova/Instagram

Promoted Stories

share