A judgement-free approach to Unstuffing your life

Closet Organizing 101 The Basics You Need

Closet Organizing 101

By Ruth Zeman

With summer coming to an end and school fast approaching I find myself wondering what clothes and shoes my family needs for the year. So without thinking, I went into my teen son’s bedroom to check his drawers and closet.

I barely made it out alive.

Y’all. closet

I love my son. Really. I’d die for him. I also might need to announce a day or two in advance that I’d like to check his clothes. Volunteering for a heart attack really isn’t a smart use of my time.  I can only imagine what it must be like for mother’s that let their kids have reptiles as pets.

Let’s not think on that too hard.

Inspired by the blog post, My $7 Total Closet Makeover on HomeTalk by Living Rich for Less (Susan) I realized I could share with you some basics that you can use today to makeover your closets! Think of these as foundational. Pretty much what you need to know, or ask yourself with every project you want to organize.

What is this closet for?

Clothes? Seasonal items? Pantry? Define how it’s used – stick with it.

Do I use need or use this?

Seems super basic right but we’re all guilty of saving something that we’ll use someday.  Someday didn’t come, let’s pass it along. Give it away, recycle, or yes, throw in the trash.

Have I used this in the last year?

If it’s seasonal, is this a seasonal or everyday closet? We’re once again guilty of mixing things together but it really does make life easier to have Easter and Christmas items stored separately. Also, Christmas mixed with summer bathing suits is not what we’re going for here. So this question builds on the last two. If indeed it is a seasonal item then using it once a year is fine. However, if it’s your pj’s and you haven’t worn them in two years, say goodbye.

If I give them away, will I just buy it again?

This is tricky. I’ve seen this happen because I get worried I’m going to need this item – that I never really used. So be real. You know you.  I have a tendency to buy clothes that don’t fit. Yup, dreams of another size.  I call it optimism so it sounds like I’m just validating my goals. I’m not, I’m buying clothes that are the wrong size.  You all do this right? I’m normal?

Do I hate this?

Guilt is not a reason to keep something. Yes, relationships matter and keeping peace in relationships is priceless – this is one of those times hiring an organizer virtually can really help. When we have an item with that much emotion surrounding an object we don’t see it clearly. An organizer can help you find new appropriate ways to deal with theses items.

I’m pretty sure my Aunt doesn’t read blogs so I think it’s safe to share with you that she just mails me the items that she hates but can’t quite get rid of. Gifts from her mother mostly. I once got 30 wooden spoons. She’d mentioned she liked them and since she has 7 kids her mom thought she needed plenty. Every time she’d visit she’d notice my Aunt was low.

“Where are all the spoons I sent you huh? She’d ask. My Aunt would look her mother straight in the eyes and say, “I must have broken them spanking the kids.”

She once said this while her youngest was in college. I kid you not.

I adore them both and have a funny photo of 30 wooden spoons. It’s a great memory for me but I had no qualms getting rid of those stupid spoons.

Speaking of those I love……

After arming myself with Febreze and giving my son proper notice,

we addressed his upcoming clothing needs. We used these questions and it didn’t cost us a dime to make over his closet. For the safety and privacy of all involved, there are no pictures.

Do you have a process or question you’d add? Or better yet, do you have a funny relative that has regifted you something they hate?  Do tell……

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