Monthly Archives: October 2009

Closet Challenges

There are two basic closet challenges that most people struggle with. One is space, the other is organization. For inspiration on how to deal with small closets and keeping them organized, we turned to the culture of people who have joined the tiny house movement. These folks have chosen to live in tiny houses, some as small as our closets, and somehow they make it work. I told myself, if someone can comfortably and willingly live inside of my closet, then surely I can come up with a way to make it hold what I need it to hold. After all, I’m not trying to live in there, only to keep some things orderly in there!

So, first we look at what makes people happy about living in a small space? Most people living in tiny homes or efficiency apartments like the fact that they are forced to cut down on possessions and simplify their lives. So, the first step to making a small closet work should be to do the same. We are a consumerist society and we accumulate a lot more stuff than our ancestors ever dreamed of. People get a real attachment to articles of clothing, which makes them difficult to get rid of. Tell yourself that you are only allowed to own what you have room for. You’ll either have to down-size, or get more creative with your use of space.

Getting creative is a must. Making a place for everything is so important, but can be a challenge for most. To do this, you’ll need to categorize things. Make a list if it helps you. Keep in mind that there will be some items that don’t fit into a category. Create holding areas for things that don’t have a category. Over time, you will see new categories emerging and you can deal with creating a space for them as necessary.

When everything has a place, the next challenge becomes keeping it organized. You’ll have to come up with a system that works for you. If you can, hang clothing as soon as it comes out of the dryer. You can put a bar in your laundry area specifically for this purpose. If you can’t get things immediately into the space where it goes, reserve an area for things that need to be put away. You may want to put a folding table right outside of the closet, or a space for a laundry basket on the floor may be sufficient. When you do get the time, put it only where it goes.

Encourage yourself to keep it organized by getting some space saving products. There are a lot of types of clothes hangers out there. Choose the clothes hanger that inspires you to keep it organized. Some people like the beauty of wood hangers while others love how much space they can make by using cascading hangers, skirt hangers, shirt hangers, and dress hangers. Spend five minutes every day making sure that things are being put where they are supposed to be. This small time investment can make all the difference in keeping things clutter free and organized.

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for clothes hangers. Get all of the closet and clothes hanger accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.

How to Get Organized for Life

Getting organized can be very difficult for most people. Appointments, grocery lists, dance classes, work, school, gym, visits, parties and of course cleaning the house, can all get piled up until you just don’t know how you are going to handle it all. Making a few adjustments in your attitude and your daily habits can have you staying organized for life.
1) First, you have to declutter. Choose an area and work on it until it is completely done. This could be something small, like a kitchen counter, or something more substantial, like a closet. There is no skipping this step. You will never get organized if you don’t get rid of the junk. If you tend to save things, you need to set limits for yourself. Don’t keep things longer than a set length of time. If you don’t use it within that time, say six months to a year, then get rid of it.

2) Inevitably, you will want to keep your child’s precious art, or the ticket stubs from your anniversary date. There will be things that come into the house that are special to you. Prepare for that eventuality by designating a “year box” for yourself. Keep it under the bed, in the garage, in a closet, or where ever it can go. Label the box with the year that it is, and keep your mementos there. Force yourself to be choosy and don’t keep things that won’t fit in the box.

3) Have a place for everything that comes into the house. Do your keys have a place? Does your laptop have a special storage space? Do you have an inbox for mail? Simply having a designated spot for mail can cut down on a lot of clutter. When the mail comes in, stand by the trash or shredder and go through it. Take bills out of their envelopes and throw the envelope away. Put bills that need to be paid in your inbox. Throw away everything that you don’t need and go through the inbox monthly to clear out old or outdated information.

4) Force yourself to follow small rules. You can’t expect to change completely overnight, but you can sort of brainwash yourself into behaving. When you are about to put something down, say aloud what you are doing. “I am putting the mail on the kitchen counter.” By implementing this little strategy, you will be conscious of the fact that you are making your home disorganized. When you put something where it goes, say aloud, “I am putting the mail in the inbox. Good for me!” These silly little positive reinforcements will have your brain trained to do the right thing in no time.

5) Laundry is a huge problem for even organized people. Time yourself when you fold laundry. If you fold it right out of the dryer, it usually takes between five and ten minutes. If you are a competitive person, keep a dry erase board by the dryer. Compete for folding/hanging time with your spouse, kids or just with yourself. Get that positive reinforcement by using wood hangers. Wooden hangers keep clothes spaced nicely and the organized look is a subtle reward for your brain. You will trick yourself into wanting to hang up clothes!

Controlling your small everyday habits will save you so much time that you won’t believe that you didn’t do it before. Make it fun or silly and you will have your habits under control for life.

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for wooden hangers. Get all of the wood hangers and closet accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.

Closet Expansions

Being organized frees up lots of time for you to focus on more important things in your life. The problem is that many of us just can’t find the space to get to that point. We need room for all of our belongings. Before you resort to adding on to the house, consider expanding your closet.

Closet wardrobes are actually cabinetry, shelves and racks that can be installed outside of the actual closet. All you need is a blank wall. There are a lot of pre-fabricated closet systems and closet accessories on the market. They can be furniture, like an armoire, but are often installed directly to the wall.

First you need to visualize your design. You can start in a corner and build your way out from there. You can have shelves and cabinets extending out from each side of a window. You can have a solid wall of organization if you’d like, there really is no limit.

Wardrobe closet systems vary from the simplest designs to elaborate conceptions. You can spend a little money or upwards of $100,000. Some people are even turning spare bedrooms into extravagant closets. Islands with drawers and granite countertops are not unheard of. Spiral hanging racks, retractable valet bars, and even sinks, refrigerators, and espresso machines can be a part of your closet system. Some people view their closets as a place to relax while they get ready for special events or just their normal work day.

The secret to designing the perfect wardrobe closet is to make it versatile. Your needs will change over time, so your closet system should be able to change with you. Adjustable shelves are nice to have. You should have plenty of clothes hangers to accommodate changing seasons and new additions to your wardrobe.

The clothes hanger itself can be an important part of your design. This is especially true since your hanging bars will be visible from outside of the closet. There are different hangers to choose from that will help your wardrobe look perfectly straight, while keeping them from wrinkling or getting crammed together. Get special shirt hangers, skirt hangers, pants hangers and dress hangers. Coat hangers are made to keep the shoulder shape of coats and suits.

You can even create the illusion of a more expensive closet system by adding a few details. For example, using wood hangers instead of wire or plastic hangers make a closet instantly look high end. Plus, wooden hangers can be purchased to compliment or match the wardrobe closet system itself.

By expanding your closet out into the room, you will find that it is easier to keep organized. Closet systems can add a luxurious feel to your bedroom and help you make time for all of those more important things in life.

About the Author: Charlie Hafter is on the staff of Closet Hanger Factory, a leading online resource for clothes hangers. Get all of the closet and clothes hanger accessories you could need at, which is recognized worldwide for their excellent quality hangers.