There’s only one thing more satisfying than organizing your closet:
Doing it on the cheap.
Sure, I love those closet glamour shots as much as anyone. I’m a sucker for solid cherry shoe shelves and rows of matching canvas bins identified by adorable hang tags. I just don’t want to spend my money on them.
Besides, those photos of tricked-out closets invariably show unrealistic wardrobes. Are we really supposed to believe that someone who shells out thousands for a custom closet with velvet-lined jewelry drawers and a chaise longue can afford just seven shirts, three dresses and five pairs of shoes?
For those of us with a larger wardrobe and a smaller bankroll, I’ve gathered some ideas for getting a closet in shape without a lot of expense. Set aside an afternoon or a few chunks of time, and your closet will be clutter-free in no time.
Let’s start by editing.
Yeah, I know, you don’t want to hear it, but it’s true. The most important first step toward an organized closet is editing what you own.
Make peace with the realization that those pants are never coming back into style, you’re never going to fix the rip in that jacket lining, and that linen blouse is going to stay a rumpled mess, because you’re never going to develop a sudden love of ironing. It doesn’t matter how much you paid for those things. Give them away, throw them away or sell them.
Professional organizer Kandy Walker Sartori goes so far as to recommend getting rid of 80 percent of your clothing. Most of us wear 20 percent of our clothing 80 percent of the time, she said, so getting rid of the excess will free closet space without putting a serious crimp in your wardrobe choices.
In particular, clothes that are too big or small need to go, she said.
Now that you’ve culled out the excess, here are some nifty ideas for storing what’s left: