I love peeking into other people's closets, so when I was putting away laundry yesterday I decided to take a few pics of my own. It's definitely tidiest right after I do laundry, but it stays fairly neat the rest of the time.

I'm lucky enough to have two closets: the first is a hanging rod that I've added another rod to and the second is full of shelves. That one takes up the wall space that would otherwise be devoted to a dresser, so I've used a combination of shoe boxes and thrifted baskets to make 'drawers'. I actually really love shelves vs the dresser because it's much easier to see my sweaters & trousers this way!

The very top shelf has crafty stuff, so not relevant.
The next one down is where the clothes start. I fold all of my knitwear so it doesn't stretch out on hangers and have it sorted into non-wool cardigans, wool cardigans, and jumpers/pullovers (mainly wool). The trousers also get folded, because they don't seem to mind and it frees up space in the hanging closet. They're in two piles: jeans style cuts (the colourful one) and non-jeans style cut & shorts. Next shelf has my summer hats, a basket of belts, and the box and other basket hold non clothing stuff. The next shelf hold pjs, undies, layering tees and camis (which are a little too tightly stuffed in their box; I probably need to do a ruthless cull at the end of this f/w when I've seen what gets worn), socks, tights, and winter hats/gloves/etc. Final shelf is mainly bedding but the two boxes hold my scarves: the small one has the silk scarves, the large one the 'pashmina' style ones. I sort all my clothes by shade from light to dark, so that's what the boxes and piles reflect! Finally my shoes are on the floor.

My regular closet has dresses to the left (you can barely see them, the disadvantage of these doors is the pockets of space at either end), blouses across the top from light to dark (I don't sort by sleeve length), and the bottom rack is split between skirts and jackets (the topper variety that you'd wear indoors vs the outwear ones, which are in a hall closet). Everything's sorted light to dark again, although now that's cooled off I'm tempted to switch the blouses from dark to light so my s/s ones aren't so prominent! On the shelf up top are my bags and jewelery. The only non-clothes thing is this closet is my travel backpack, which tucks nicely into the right corner. I keep all of my clothes in my closets year round; I love the idea of seasonal switching but I don't have much storage space other than the closets so it's just simpler for me to leave everything be. I do usually rearrange the piles/boxes/hangers so that the more relevant clothes are in the center and easiest to access. I haven't done so yet because we're still very much in transitional weather.

As you can see, I'm pretty much at my limit in most of my clothing categories: when I start shopping again in a couple of months it'll have to be a strict one in/one out policy, because there's no more space! That will certainly make me even pickier. The dress section is the only one with plenty of breathing room and I'd like to keep it that way. Also, I clearly have way more tops than bottoms in my wardrobe: that's where I like my variety.

I keep a valet hook on each closet: the one with the hanger is for whatever coat/jacket I'm wearing that day & the one on the other closet is for airing my clothes overnight before I decide if they need washing. When I change into pjs, whatever I was wearing gets turned inside out and hung/draped over the hook. In the morning whatever's on the hook gets inspected and either thrown in the hamper or put back in the closet. I know washing habits vary widely: my general philosophy is to wash undies every wearing, but everything else only gets washed if it's smelly or I spilled something on it. I want my clothes to last as long as possible so I figure the less wear and tear in the wash the better. I do wash everything, even wool and silk, at home in a front loading washer with a hand wash setting rather than dry clean, both for budget issues and environmental concerns. I've never had any problems, but then if I did accidentally ruin something, at least I'd only be out $3-$4, which probably makes me more adventurous. I air dry almost everything too.

It's funny, I feel like I know my closet contents fairly well, but looking at these photos showed me a couple of surprises. First, all of my jackets are neutrals (except a burgundy one, which you can barely see)!!! Lovely neutrals true, and at least they're different shapes, but I definitely don't need any more neutral jackets. hehe I struggle with incorporating jackets as toppers vs cardigans and I always assumed it was because of fit issues, but now I wonder if part of the issue isn't about the greater colour range my cardigan collection gives me. Secondly, I have enough shoes! Until about 18 months ago I really struggled with shoes, so I've gotten in the habit of thinking of myself as needing shoes, but now I have quite a well rounded collection. They are all neutral, so I suppose there'd be space for a colourful addition or two down the line, but other than that I'm set. This thrills me, since I don't expect to be able to devote much money to shoes in the future, so it's reassuring to know I won't literally need to get more than maybe one replacement pair a year. It's interesting that I see different things in looking at the photos than in looking at the closets themselves!

If anyone else wants to share closet pics or organisation systems, I'd love to see them. I've got most of my approach down, but I'm still trying to figure out belts & scarves! The basket and boxes are fairly new, so I'm hoping they'll work better than some of my past approaches.

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