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How To Organize a Shared Closet

his hers shared closetThe “His” and “Her” sections of a closet ( or His/His or Hers/Hers) come up frequently in a design consultation. Honestly, it's often a 2/3 Her and 1/3 His division.

But once you get past that, what about getting a handle on all the items you're hoping to store in this shared walk in closet?

Here are some ideas for creating harmonious space (and maybe even a better love connection).

If you're a husband and wife ensemble, you need to go through your “ensembles” together.

neatly organized shared closetsYour colorful fashion doesn't always allow enough space or access for his fundamental function. So, try on the clothing in question and get that second opinion. And be open. If your spouse hates the sorority/fraternity party shirt that looks like it  came from the movie Flash Dance, you should toss it. Same goes for his version of that.

Here's the upside of going down that path. It facilitates communication between the two of you. You can be honest with each other and avoid future arguments as you're ready to walk out the door. It also might shed some new insights on what your partner thinks is “hot”. How cool could that be (or hot?)?

As for specifics, focus on one person at a time. Allow a certain number of veto votes for those items you just love so much you can't dream of parting with them.

shared closet storage ideasAlso, put some “storage structure” into the closet. If you have a column of shelves for shoes and it allows a total of 24 pair until it's maxed out, then you now have a set number of shoes that are allowed in the wardrobe. If you buy a new pair, an old one needs to go.

Also, if you have double hang rods, consider having the top rod be “his” and the bottom rod be “hers”. The taller the person, the easier it is for them to reach the upper rod.

And be respectful. Don't just throw things on the floor that your partner has to step over when they enter the space. Either install some hooks somewhere or make it a point to either put things back on the hanger, folded back on a shelf or tossed into the laundry bin. The floor is no longer a choice!

By incorporating these strategies and putting in a few hours of time, you'll not only save yourself a ton of time over the long haul, but you'll likely improve your relationship. Sounds like a win/win!

Cut the Clutter

spring color blockingWe're all ready for spring to be sprung, and yet odds are good we've forgotten some of the New Year's resolutions that we made with such good intention. 

So, here are some ideas to help you “spring” back in to action and make some traction on the resolutions you made to “be more organized”, because, hey, it's time to recharge your organization resolutions and allow them to bloom in time for spring.

It's Inventory Time

Yes, it's inventory time. That means you need to stop yourself (right there inside your closet) before you go out to buy the latest spring trend. You need to get rid of some items that are no longer “on trend”.

Be honest.

Look at the pieces you've worn a lot because they were so hip and stylish, but are now looking worn or just don't feel current. Take two or three items, put them in a bag or box that's stashed in the back of your closet and leave them there. We'll add to it over time until it's full and ready to be moved from your closet to your trunk to your local Salvation Army or Goodwill or consignment shop.

Now Start Cutting Clutter in Other Parts of Your Home

linen storage bin

Start this process with a tape measure instead of a shopping trip.

People have a tendency to make a run to places like The Container Store or Target and buy some visually appealing containers and bring them home with hopes of solving their clutter issues.

It will work much more effectively if you measure the kinds of things you need to store before you go to the store. Doing this makes things more efficient and doesn't leave you with cute, half-empty containers in your closets that aren't quite the right fit for your stuff.

And if you're really looking to increase that zen-like feeling, keep your baskets and containers in the same or similar colors. Mixing colors and finishes together leads to a more cluttered look.  It's fine if you want to spice up your maple colored closet with a dark top and handles, but then make sure any accessories you add are harmonious in color and feel so it all flows seamlessly (just like you do in your life!).

Doors Aren't Just For Opening and Closing

Doors can be terrific spots for adding organization. In small spaces, you need to utilize vertical space as well as horizontal space – so - don't forget the doors. Using them to increase storage capacity is also an easy way to stay de-cluttered because the things you use frequently can be stored within easy reach.


spring 2013 colors

And as a last step, consider a little closet CPR. This term pops up every now and then in different organizing articles, and it's a good way to remember what you should do – Categorize, Purge and Rearrange.

When you're getting ready to change out your wardrobe from winter to spring, take a careful look at each item and categorize it. Is it a fabulous piece that you love wearing? If not, it gets purged (so place it in that bag or box that is in the corner of your closet). Next, take the items you still love and rearrange things. Look at things with new eyes. Consider pairing things together that you haven't worn that way before. Different color top under your favorite blazer instead of the white one you always wear. Or trendier shoes mixed with that traditional suit to spice things up just in in time to add spring into your step for the new season.

And if you need help with a new closet design after you've done all this work, give us a call. We'd be delighted to come out and give you some additional ideas on ways to maximize your storage with a newly designed closet system.


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