There is no one best way to organize a closet because it depends very much on the space available and individual preferences. But I’ve seen some common strategies emerge from my work with my clients. Most of my clients tend to keep their outerwear in a coat closet near the front door, while they keep lighter jackets like blazers, vests and leather motos with the rest of their clothing. Here are the most popular ways they organize their tops, bottoms, dresses and toppers.
With this option you store items from each category together with their wardrobe siblings. Your blouses in one place, your jeans, dresses, knit tops, knitwear and skirts in another, and your jackets in another. This way you can quickly target specific items when you are creating an outfit.
It’s lovely walking into a closet where the items are grouped by colour because it’s a visual feast. This option works well for a colourful closet, making it easy to head directly to a particular colour spectrum. Of course, you can also colour code your items inside their wardrobe categories.
Some of my clients split their closet space into four sections: career wear, casual wear, formal attire, and workout wear. They find it much easier to dress day to day when their work clothes are in a place that isn’t cluttered by items that they can’t wear to work. Dressing on the weekends or for casual evenings out is easier too.
A few of my clients organize their wardrobes into mix-and-match capsules. They hang ten to twenty items together that they know can create a range of outfits. This method tends to work best when you have a smaller wardrobe, a larger closet, and are very disciplined about maintaining your wardrobe capsules, adding only a few items at a time.
This is the least common way of organizing your closet, but it suits a few of my clients down to the ground. They have small wardrobes and wear the same outfits repeatedly. They might hang two or three tops with the same jeans or pants, or just one top with a skirt. They tend to have a similar quantity of tops, bottoms and lightweight toppers, which makes the strategy work quite well. These clients do not want to think about how to create an outfit at all, nor are they interested in mixing and matching their items to create new looks. Once we’ve sorted out the outfit combinations — that’s it until the next time we shop for complete outfits.
You can implement a few of these closet organization strategies at once to create a system that works best for you. You’re after a system that reminds you of what you have (remember: out of sight, out of mind), and that allows you to create outfits effectively and efficiently. You also want to implement a system that you can maintain as items channel through the laundry.
I share a small walk-in wardrobe with hubby Greg. I take up the lion’s share of the hanging space, while Greg takes up the lion’s share of the folded space. I keep EVERYTHING together apart from wardrobe basics that are stored in a separate chest of drawers, and coats that are in the coat closet. I hang and fold items per wardrobe category, and colour code them as far as possible.
How do you organize your closet, and does your system work for you?