Try these step-by-step tips on how to spring clean and create a “miracle closet” just in time for spring cleaning!
Step One: Empty and Sort
1. Pick one closet per weekend, we don’t want you to miss out on the rest of the weekend’s fun.
2. Empty everything out of the closet onto the floor. I mean everything!
3. Create four piles: “keep”, “give away”, “throw away”, and “store.”
4. For those of us that have trouble letting go of nostalgic items ask yourself: When was the last time I wore or used this? If you can’t remember, get rid of it. If you really love it and don’t use it ask yourself would a picture of the item keep that warm fuzzy ‘ah I loved that pair of go-go boots’ feeling?
5. If the item is just too difficult to part with at the moment, put it in a clear plastic box or bag with today’s date and place it in your “store” pile. If you go back to use it in the next few months then keep it; if not, it’s time to give it away and let someone less fortunate enjoy it!
6. If the item is something you use or wear only during one season a year or it is an item that you feel will come back in fashion (go-go dancing is sure to make a comeback) someday, this item can go into storage. Full Service Storage companies such as NorthStar Moving and Storage will inventory your boxes. If you pack the boxes yourself, then you’ll need to make the photo or written inventory of what exactly is in each box. The pictures will help you remember exactly what is in good old Box #1. Private Storage from NorthStar Moving allows you to call up NorthStar Moving and request whatever boxes that you want delivered to your home. It really is as simple as “Hi, can I have box numbers 7, 14 and 25 delivered and while you’re here, I’ve got three more boxes for you to pick up.” Isn’t that the ultimate in space saving? Think of your closets as prime real estate that needs to be accessed daily and your storage as the summer vacation home for your stuff.
7. Look at your “give away” and “throw away” piles and ask yourself: Could someone else use this item even if I cannot? If so, put it in a bag and donate it to a charity (be sure to get a receipt to deduct from your taxes!).If not, add it to this week’s trash or there is always e-bay, you’ll be shocked what your old pair of jeans will go for!
Step Two: Box and Label
1. Take photos of each item in your “store” pile. You will need two copies of each photo.
2. Next, box up all of your items in the “store” category. Place one photo copy on the outside of each box with today’s date and the second photo copy in a file cabinet. This way you will know what is in your storage unit. When you go to get an item out of storage you can easily find what you are looking for without unpacking everything.
3. In your “keep” pile take photos of shoes and accessories. Don’t forget to tell your shoes to “work it baby” as you snap the photo.
4. Place the shoes and accessories in clear plastic containers so you can see everything and tape their photo to the outside of their container. This little step gives you double duty: you can find it easily and better still you can put it away in the exact same spot for next time that hot date rolls around…
5. For sheets and blankets place them in clear containers and label the outside of the container with the size of the sheet and blanket. Or, if you prefer to let your linens “breathe” make labels (p-touch or by hand) and place labels on the shelves designating size of sheets, pillows etc on each shelf. Make sure that your labels can easily be removed from your closet shelving so that you can reorganize things later if the need arises.
Step Three: Put Items Back and Organize – If you can see it, you can wear and enjoy it.
1. Decide how many categories you want for your clothes. It’s up to you – tank tops together, long sleeved shirts together, and pants together and then hang them from light to dark or hang them based on occasion – dressy to casual. Ask yourself – how do I like to decide what to wear and then organize your closet accordingly. Am I a “gotta wear glitter today girl”, then all that sparkly stuff should be in one place or are you a more “baby it’s cold out there” type and then why not organize by light weight to heavy weight fabrics but remember always within any category organize by color.
2. Put your boxes of shoes by use or occasion; for example, sport vs. work, and then break down your dressy shoes by flats to heels and light to dark.
3. For your sweaters and t-shirts and other folding clothes lay them inside your drawers or on the shelf on their side. You can purchase wooden planks or plastic planks to use as dividers. This way you can see all of your clothes at once when you open the drawer. Short sleeved t-shirts together by color and the same for long sleeved shirts and sweaters.
4. Having your clothes and accessories all in view and organized by categories will help you find items quickly and you will find that you get more wear out of more of your clothes! Not just that same red sweater over and over again. You’ll hear from your friends: Is that new? Well, newly organized!
5. Last but not least, step back and take a picture of your new “miracle” closet and place it on the inside of your closet drawer so you can keep it that way! Really, do it. You won’t have to revisit organizing that closet for a long time!
About NorthStar Moving:
NorthStar Moving is an eco-luxury moving and storage company with a celebrity clientele (think Angelina Jolie and Eva Longoria). They have a list of “red carpet” services including photo perfect packing and unpacking for their clients, making the movers true organizational experts.