Closet Organization: Your Complete Guide


Have a small closet or just don’t know how to store all your stuff? You’ll find a solution here. If you have ever struggled with closet organization, this guide is going to be your lifeline!

Closets are some of the most disorganized places in the home. Is this the case for you too? If so, this closet organization post is for you. This is a complete and thorough guide that will help you organize every single closet in your home, from start to finish.

This is the ultimate guide to closet organization. If you have a small apartment closet or a large walk in and just don't know how to store all your stuff, find all your ideas and tips here. #clutterkeeper

Wondering where to begin? Get our FREE guide, The 30-Minute Organizing Secret, and discover easy ways to overcome the chaos of clutter – even with kids at home!

Closet Organization Guide

Are your closets out of control? This is the answer! As you set your cleaning goals, write them down and track your progress in the Take Action Printables Binder. It even has cleaning checklists that you can use to remind yourself what you need to do each month.

This guide will walk you through every single step in the process of organizing your closets. All of them. And it will also show you how to keep them organized too. 

This is what you will find in this guide:

  1. Types of Closets
    1. Bedroom
    2. Linen
    3. Coat
    4. Hall
    5. Junk
  2. Closet Organization Step-by-Step Guide
    1. Take Everything Out
    2. Sort Them Into Piles
    3. Put Them Away Or Give Them Away
  3. Closet Organization Tips
    1. Store Oldest Things in the Back or Bottom
    2. Use Storage Bags
    3. Label Everything
    4. Redo Your Systems
  4. How to Keep Your Closet Organized
    1. Don’t Set and Forget
    2. Maintain the Closet
    3. Purge Seasonally
  5. Hanging Closet Organizer Ideas
    1. Best Closet Organizer
  6. How To Organize a Small Closet
    1. Use A Smart System
    2. Consider Adding Drawers
    3. Choose the Right Hangers

Yes, it’s very common to just stuff the things you don’t want to deal with into a closet. But that one time that you need something, you will have to dig through all that stuff in your closet.  It’s just not worth it!  

Having an organized closet will help you get rid of junk you don’t need and save you time when you need to find something. Plus, you will just feel better, knowing that your closets are neat and organized! 

We recently shared some of our favorite clothes hangers with NBC News – and if you loved that article, you’ll really enjoy this complete guide to organizing your entire closet.

How to Organize Any Closet

Types of Closets

Before you begin organizing your closets, you have to decide the purpose of the closet. Make sure you aren’t storing anything in the closet that doesn’t belong there, unless you just don’t have room anywhere else. 

There are 5 main types of closets. Let’s go through them and understand what they are for and what should be stored inside. 

Bedroom Closet

Your bedroom closet should be where you keep your clothes and anything personal that you want to store. The items in your bedroom closet should belong to you and/or your spouse. 

If you discover that you are storing things for your family members or items that belong around the home, try to find another place for them. 

Linen Closet

The linen closet should store all the sheets, blankets, and towels for your home. You can also store cleaning supplies and extra toiletries here too. 

Sometimes the linen closet becomes a “catch all” for the entire house. You might find school supplies next to winter gloves and scarves, piled on top of extra shampoo. 

Try to keep this regulated to things you will use. If you only use it once a year (or less), store it someplace else, like a storage unit or in the basement/garage/etc. 

Coat Closet

Coat closets can usually be found near an outside door. Since they are so close to the living room, you might find anything from coats to gloves, to outdoor lights being stored in here. 

If at all possible, try to keep the items in your coat closet relevant to the current season, and to the room, it is nearby. So don’t keep winter stuff there in the summer. And try to refrain from storing your kids’ stuff here. 

Hall Closet

Hall closets aren’t as common as some of the other closets in the list. Hall closets are perfect for storing cleaning supplies and other items you might need for your current floor. 

Sometimes, hall closets become the place people store everything that they don’t want to deal with or can’t find a place for. If this is the case for you, try to find more places for your stuff. 

Keep your hall closet clear of extra junk or from becoming a mishmash. If you ever need to find something, create a place where you can see everything all at once. 

Junk Closet

Junk closets are the most common type of closet. Almost everyone has one! These are the places you put stuff when you don’t know where else to put it. 

Thankfully, it is possible to organize even the junkiest closets. That is what this guide is going to help you do. You can have a closet that stores everything from sheets to light bulbs, and keep it organized. 

The Ultimate Guide to Step-by-Step Closet Organizing

Closet Organization Step-By-Step Guide

Follow this step-by-step guide for closet organization for every single closet. You might want to tackle each closet on their own days if you have really disorganized ones.

1. Take Everything Out

First, take everything out of the closet and lay it all out. You’ll be able to see everything you have and make an assessment easier. 

Take this chance to throw away as much as you can. If it is expired or damaged, throw it away. 

Then, wipe down all the shelves so you have a really clean place to put everything back. 

2. Sort Them Into Piles

Next, sort everything into piles. Start out removing anything you don’t want to keep. Then begin putting the like things together. 

This is where you will see what kind of bins and baskets you need. Make a list of any organization supplies you need to buy and buy them immediately. 

3. Put Them Away Or Give Them Away

Now that you know how much you have and they are pretty much organized, put them away. 

If you notice that you have more stuff than you have room, just give away some of it or try to combine things into one tub. (Be careful that you aren’t just stuffing things into tubs. You want things to stay as organized as possible). 

4 Tips You Must Read Before Organizing a Closet

Closet Organization Tips

Now that you know how to organize your closet, here are some really valuable tips that will help you be even more successful. 

Store the Oldest in Back or Bottom

Keep the things you don’t need very often in the back of the closet or bottom of the pile of bins. 

The goal is to keep the things you use frequently within arm’s reach. When you have an organized closet, you are saving yourself time from sorting through your stuff to find what you’re looking for. 

Use Storage Bags, Baskets and Tubs

Keep all the things you are storing from falling on top of each other by keeping them in separate baskets, bins, or storage bags. Fabric storage bags especially are a great dust-free way to store clothes, blankets, and other items that are out of season. Plus you can fold and store the bags away whenever you’re not using them.

If you are short on space, you can find a way to keep the category broader. Just make sure it all makes sense. 

So you can store “extra toiletries” in a basket. But don’t just put “Bathroom stuff” all in one basket (that would be keeping the curling iron next to the soap scum remover). 

This is the ultimate guide to closet organization. If you have a small closet or just don't know how to store all your stuff, find a solution here.

Label Everything

If you label the bin or storage bag, you will make it more likely that you’ll remember where things go. And you will keep it organized too. 

There are a lot of cute and easy labels out there. You can either print your own, or you can use a label maker

Redo Your Closet Systems/Shelves

Are your closet shelves just not working? Take this chance to redo it with a new system. There are so many closet systems. You can DIY and make your own, or you can buy a kit. 

It’s amazing how much more organized you’ll become when your closet is working with you instead of against you. 

Organize Your Closets Once and for All

How to Keep Your Closet Organized

Now that you got your closet all organized, here are some tips for keeping it that way. You don’t want to have to go through all of this again.

1. Don’t Set & Forget

First, remember not to just set stuff in the closet and forget it. After you have a completely organized closet, don’t settle for throwing loose items back in it and forgetting about them.

When you put something in the closet, put it where it goes. If it doesn’t have a place to belong, create a new bin or relabel something. 

2. Maintain The Closet

Second, you need to maintain your closet. Organization takes maintenance, so put in a little time to go through your closet and ensure everything is where it belongs.

Continually evaluate your system and update as you need. Don’t put anything off, because that is how it goes back to the way it was. 

3. Purge Seasonally

Finally, remember to purge your closets seasonally. Before the new season, get rid of anything you didn’t use (that you thought you would). This will give you so much more room than you ever thought.

Hanging Closet Organizer Ideas

One of the best ways to maximize your space is to utilize hanging closet organizers. Here are some fresh ideas for your inspiration. 

Best Closet Organizer

The best closet organizer will have pockets that can be used for a variety of things. It will also have the ability for you to label each pocket so you can find what you need. 

Here are some tips for getting the most use out of your hanging closet organizer. 

1. Don’t Overstuff the Pockets

One of the goals of organizing your closets is to make them look pristine and tidy. If you overstuff the pockets of your hanging organizer, you are keeping the chaotic look instead of conquering it. 

If the pockets are too full, maybe the hanging organizer isn’t the best solution for these things. Or maybe you need to consider letting go of some of it. 

2. Keep Organizers Separated

Only use one organizer per item category. In other words, don’t put socks in the hanging organizer next to the blow dryer. 

Instead, use one organizer for beauty products, one for clothing accessories, another hanging organizer for gift wrapping supplies and so on. 

When you use the hanging organizers correctly, you will be amazed at how much more room you discover your closet has. 

This is the ultimate guide to closet organization. If you have a small apartment closet or a large walk in and just don't know how to store all your stuff, find all your ideas and tips here.

How to Organize a Small Closet

Yes, we all dream about having large walk-in closets for everything we own – especially our clothes. But if this isn’t a reality for you, you aren’t alone. 

Here are a few tips for how to organize a small closet. 

1. Use A Smart System

It’s amazing how much of a difference a closet system can make in your organization. If your current closet system isn’t working, switch it out. 

There are a huge variety of systems out there for small closets. Make a list of what you need to store and find a system that meets those needs. 

Abby Lawson has a stunning before and after of the small closet she shares with her husband. Even though there are 2 people using it, it is a super organized space. The best system utilizes the entire space.

2. Consider Adding Drawers

If your closet doesn’t have drawers, consider adding a system with drawers. 

Drawers are amazing at creating organization and giving you room to place things that don’t fit nicely on a shelf. 

Just a Girl has a fantastic before and after that shows how much more space she gained by adding some built-in drawers to her small closet.

3. Choose the Right Hangers

Did you know that the right hangers can actually make a difference with how much space you have?

Kandice from Just The Woods discovered that there are a variety of hangers – including extra thin ones and ones that can hold multiple pairs of pants.

And you can even buy hangers that all match making the closet look even more beautiful! Check out why this professional organizer loves slim hangers.

Beautiful Organized Closet Inspiration

Closet Organization Inspiration

Need some visual inspiration? Here are a few pictures from Instagram that will make you want to redo your closets today. 

What an amazing kid’s closet! The colors and baskets all work together to create a beautiful display.

The closet above is so relatable and achievable. It is a very common closet size and shows that with a bit of organization, you can have the closet of your dreams.

The before and after here is just incredible. It shows how simple a linen closet transformation can be.

There you have it! This is everything you ever needed to know about closet organization! Don’t forget to pin this post so you can come back to it later when you are organizing your closets. 

Struggling to get motivated? Sign up to get our FREE guide, The 30-Minute Organizing Secret, and discover easy ways to overcome the chaos of clutter – even with kids at home!

More Home Organization Ideas

We have organization guides to help you conquer every room in your home. Here are some more organization guides to help you achieve your organization goals. 

  • Kitchen Organization Guide – Find all the answers to all your questions and easy kitchen organization solutions. Struggling with a cluttered kitchen? Start here. 
  • Living Room Organization Guide – Whether you live in your living room or just use it for entertaining guests, this guide will help you create a super organized space. 
  • Bedroom Organization – This guide has quick tips and solutions to common bedroom organization problems. 

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