Over the past six months, guest editor and organizational expert Lili Pettit has shared insight and tips on what it takes to kickstart and maintain a clean and easy-to-navigate wardrobe (and we thank her dearly). So, in case you missed a post or two, we're revisiting Pettit's top organizational advice all in once place.
Scroll down to read Pettit's insight and stay tuned to find out who we're featuring as our next guest (organizational) editor at the end of March.
Joy Mangano Huggable Hangers will work magic in your closet. They’re sleek and dark so they show off your clothes without distracting the eye, and they’re slim and stackable so they double your hanging capabilities. Plus, nothing ever falls off of them! When a client asks for their wardrobe to look like a chic boutique, this is the product I turn to first. Make sure you don’t go with a knock-off though, in my experience those break very easily!
Scroll down for five ways to create your own pin-worthy wardrobe.
The storage available to you is the foundation of your closet. A lot of the closets we see on Pinterest have beautiful, custom built-ins. If you’re lucky, maybe your place came with these! If not, you can order them from places like California Closets or use one of the many amazing DIY project ideas from Pinterest to create your own version. I’ve seen steel wardrobe racks used to make a beautiful headboard-and-closet combo; I’ve seen repurposing and painting of thrift store cabinets—the ideas are truly endless! The important part is to make sure you find the space, structure, and shelving necessary to store everything you have. If you can get creative and make it your own, that’s even better!
Once you’ve figured out your storage situation, start organizing by grouping like items together. If you can see all of your shoes in one place and bags in another, it’ll be a lot easier to decide where they should live permanently in your closet to make the most of the space. This is also the perfect time to address the quality of your items! Edit down what you have, and get rid of anything old, holey, or that you can’t see yourself using anymore. At the same time, make sure you’re taking care of any valuable items you will be keeping. For example, make sure your boots and purses have shapers and dust covers to protect them from the wear and tear of closet life. Only the best and most useful things belong!
After you have a general idea of how much you have and what is most important to your daily life, place those things in easy-to-see and easy-to-reach areas. Things like dress-up costumes that are out of the ordinary should go in the back or on a higher shelf. Think logically; make sure the things you use every day are the easiest to get to. And keep in mind that visibility is incredibly important. If you can, put your shoes on open racks, hang jewelry on a prominent stand or from decorative hooks, and display your bags. If you can see it, you’ll use it!
It’s time to start on the fun part—making it beautiful! Color-coding makes it super simple to find what you need, is aesthetically pleasing, and really contributes to that chic Pinterest feel. Clutter Healers coordinate using the light-dark spectrum. We start with black/dark colors on the left, move through the rainbow colors in reverse ROYGBIV order, and finish with beige, tan, and white on the right. Do this for every section, and you’ll be amazed how transformed your closet will feel!
Now that you have things placed and color-coded, take another look at the space. The closets popular on Pinterest are created with high-end boutiques in mind. To go from a simply organized closet to Pinterest post–worthy, it’s all in the artistic details. Whether you pick a fun paint color for the inside of your closet, hang a painting that you love, or add homey touches like strand lights or lamps, keep adding finishing touches to build a space that feels quintessentially you!
The #1 closet organizational mistake you can make is attempting to clear your cluttered space without editing your current clothing and accessory arsenal. You will never, ever come close to achieving a closet that resembles one of your beloved liked Instagram images without paring down your possessions first. Ever heard of the 80-20 rule? In the world of organizing, it's a common standard that people wear 20% of their clothing 80% of the time. The other 80% of our clothing sits in our closets collecting dust and taking up valuable real estate. Yet most people will stockpile a wardrobe without getting rid of unused or damaged clothing.
Start decluttering by weeding out the items that have been hanging around because of hypothetical thoughts such as I might still wear that or the all-too-common it was a gift so I have to keep it. Ultimately, our minds will convince us of many, many reasons to hold onto belongings by drawing connections to an overall value that they create within our life. It can be an emotional process to let go of items that we associate with positive memories and experiences, but it’s important to remind ourselves that the items themselves are nothing but material. In reality, the excess of items makes for a messy environment. Of course you can tidy up the space by colorizing, categorizing, and making neat folds. What you will find is that this is just a temporary fix and will not result in better organization, because a crowded space is a cluttered space.
After you have completed the letting-go process, and have allotted your clothes some room to breathe, your hard work should result in a much more manageable space. You will be able to see all of your options in one fell swoop, making your getting-ready process that much quicker and easier. With any luck, your closet will not only be easy on your eyes but worthy of a new Pinterest board and Instagram shout-out.
Which piece of Pettit's advice is your favorite? Share with us in the comments below!
Opening Image: Stadshem