Closet Case: How to Organize Your Closet

Another fall tradition (it actually is repeated in spring) is the great closet clean.  As the weather changes and I move from flip-flops to boots, it becomes necessary to update and reorganize my closet.  That means a complete overhaul.  As in everything comes out, is sorted and then returned to a new home.  Lukus is wildly lucky, because his side gets cleaned and organized so that it doesn’t detract from mine.

closet case


Are you feeling disillusioned and jealous?  Do you too want an extraordinary closet?  Then do not fear  Check out my before and after photos and I’ll share the steps on how to organize your closet.



  1. Take everything out of your closet:  Literally everything.  A clean slate is the best way to get a real picture of your options.  I like to lay all my clothing out on my bed and to organize it by item (a skirt stack, a blouse stack, etc.).
  2. Try things on:  I went stack-by-stack and tried every article on that I hadn’t worn in the last few weeks.  Anything that was questionable was donated. Also, clothing items that need alterations were set aside.  Use this time to identify what items you need to complete your wardrobe.
  3. Determine seasonality:  You probably won’t be wearing a white cotton sundress for the next few months.  Separate that and any other pieces not appropriate for the fall/ winter.  These can be stored either in the back or in another closet, under a bed or something similar.
  4. Get the right hangers:  Use matching hangers.  Once you return clothing to the closet matching hangers allow for a more uniform look.  Additionally, this helps to conserve space.
  5. Establish a closet order:  Know where shirts, pants, skirts, etc. will hang in the closet.  Start returning the clothes.  I like to hang them by item and within each item by color.



  1. alexis, i just did this and got rid of so much clothing, it feels so good–i think that people living in small nyc apartments need to do this every other month!

    I would also add that doing this with a friend, like having a friend (whose taste and judgment you trust) come over and help you detach yourself from the items you no longer need is a super great idea too. I had a friend come over and she definitely helped put some items that were in my maybe keep pile into the definitely get rid of pile.

    cleaning your closet is so cathartic. your closet looks great. Keep up the good work and keep the organizational tips coming!!!


  2. Sacha-
    That’s probably good advice! I am pretty good at letting things go that I do not use, but I have also been doing this for several years!

  3. ahhh… organization… my favorite!

  4. The Velvet Hammer says:

    Well Ms. North on Harper, I think this is one of your best articles. Very good advice here. I do what you describe twice each year: once in April and then in October. I time this process with Daylight Savings Time switching over. In April, I pull down all of the winter clothes and shoes and stock them away in the basement. I do exactly as you say: I take everything out, I try everything on, and I believe in the right hangers for the right items. Then, I reestablish closet order. I do black shirts and white shirts on shelves by color, but my other items I sort by seasonality, that is, a stack of long sleeve shirts in one cubby, and a stack of short sleeved shirts in another. Then, I do this all over again in October, when I remove the flip flops and summer clothes and go wintery again. Ideally, I do one of these with a friend. We call is “Closet Cleanup” and we take turns about whose house we go to.

  5. VH— I love it!! You are absolutely after my own heart on this…. I helped Yvonne go through her closet last year- so we’ve got to get her on board!

  6. Your ‘before’ looks like my closet on a good day!

  7. I love your wardrobe, I wish mine was that big.. but you raise some great points about decluttering, you should do it a few times year to make sure things don’t get lost lol.


  1. […] Out Your Pantry: The process is similar to the closet clean I discussed a few month back (Closet Case).  You start by taking everything out of the closet.  Next, check the date on everything.  […]

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