27 September 2012

Quick Closet Cleaning Tips

I had the great fortune to have a very effective closet cleaning earlier this week. Was it fun, no not necessarily. It was super hot that day. But the results were fantastic. So I thought I'd share a few things I did this time that made it quick and easy.

1. Start with the most disorganized area. For me it was the shelves. I pulled everything down and put it in several piles: workout wear, sleepwear, thrift store donation and garbage. The garbage pile was mostly ratty tee shirts & torn yoga pants that needed to go. Then I put these things aside.

2. Re-organized things that would go back inside. Closets get messiest when we don't put things back in their place or start adding more things into the closet. I combine three small boxes of toiletries and medicines into two by straightening them up and throwing out anything outdated.

In this part of the closet I also had stored lanterns, candle holders and things I have bought for the wedding. These things stored neatly in their own bags as they were purchased. I also found two surprises in there that I'll tell you about later. By reorganizing everything, I got back a lot of space and combine all the wedding things all down into one small shelf and three large bags. This made a huge difference!

3. Sort through all clothes and shoes. I pulled out everything that doesn't fit or that I haven't worn since the last time I cleaned out my closet. I made three piles here.

  • Items that need repair or could be repurposed. This included a white shirt & jacket that could use a night soaking in OxyClean. I also have two jackets that are still in great condition but the color is damaged. I'm thinking about dying them a darker color. There is a pair of shoes that need repair, and a couple of other items that need a quick fix.
  • Items that I would still love to wear after losing a few pounds. Do I really need to say anything more, no I don't think so. I'm not living in a fantasy land, I'm working on that now.
  • Thrift store donations. Things that absolutely aren't me anymore, that haven't been worn for a year or more. They all went into a bag to deliver to the thrift store. One quick warning: if you clean your closet in the summer be careful not to give away things you'll actually want in winter. Consider the opposite in the winter. It's easy to give away things when they are out of season and seem impractical. Imagine yourself freezing or super hot and ask yourself again if you will want that item.
4. Put it all back in a hopefully updated and smarter way. I changed the way I put everything back and it all fits so much better. I found a way to fit small items into small nooks that are easily accessible and visible, maximizing even more space.

There is actually very little that I took out of the closet when it was all said and done - a couple of shopping bags of stuff. But rearranging and better organizing things created a whole new look and feel. With all the space saving I achieved, it's amazing that I now have about a quarter of my closet in open space. Love it!

Next I started to tackle the rest of my room: sorting, tossing and rearranging. I was on such a roll that it was really hard for me to stop. I'm excited to get my home back to the simple, calm place it was meant to be. Can't wait!

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