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The Ultimate Guide to Decluttering and Cleaning Your Closets

March 3, 2024
The Ultimate Guide to Decluttering and Cleaning Your Closets

Why Declutter and Organize Your Closets?

Having cluttered, disorganized closets can negatively impact your life in several ways:

  • Wasted time – It takes longer to get ready in the morning when you’re digging through piles of clothes and shoes trying to find what you need. This can make you late for work or other events.

  • Stress and anxiety – Messy closets create a feeling of being overwhelmed. You likely have clothes you haven’t worn in years but feel guilty about getting rid of.

  • Wasted money – When you can’t see what you already own, you’re more likely to buy new things you don’t need. This leads to overspending.

  • Lack of space – Clutter takes up valuable real estate in your closets and bedroom. Organizing frees up room to store the items you actually use.

So in short, decluttering your closets helps you save time, reduce stress, avoid unnecessary purchases, and reclaim space in your home. The benefits are well worth the effort!

How to Tackle Decluttering Your Closets

Decluttering your closets can seem like a daunting task. Here is a step-by-step process to make it more manageable:

1. Make a Plan

  • Set aside time – Decluttering takes time so schedule a few hours or a full weekend day to focus just on this project.

  • Start small – Don’t try to do your entire home at once. Focus on one closet at a time.

  • Have supplies ready – Get trash bags, storage bins, hangers, and labeling supplies. Anything you need to organize and store items.

2. Remove Everything from the Closet

  • This gives you a clean slate to work with and helps break the habit of shoving things in haphazardly.

  • Make categorized piles as you remove items – keep, donate, trash, etc.

3. Declutter Item by Item

  • Be ruthless and honest about what you actually wear and need. Ask yourself:

  • Have I worn this in the past year? If not, let it go.

  • Does this still fit? If not, add it to the donate pile.

  • Do I have multiple versions of the same item? Keep 1-2 favorites and donate the rest.

  • Avoid keeping items for emotional reasons. Photo memories then donate.

4. Deep Clean the Empty Closet

  • Vacuum the floor and wipe down the walls/shelving with a multi-surface cleaner.

  • Use closet deodorizer sprays or baking soda boxes to freshen the space.

  • Look for closet organizing systems if you need more shelves, rods, or drawers.

5. Categorize and Return Items

  • Group like items – shirts together, pants together, etc.

  • Use organizers like dividers, shelves, or bins to separate categories.

  • Install extra rods/shelves for max space.

  • Only return what fits your lifestyle and makes you feel happy when you wear it.

Best Practices for Keeping Closets Clutter-Free

Once you’ve decluttered, you’ll want to make sure your closets stay that way. Here are some top tips:

  • Store out of season clothes – Use bins and shelving to put off-season items into storage elsewhere. This leaves room for daily-use items.

  • Purge regularly – Make decluttering a habit. Re-evaluate your space every season and get rid of items you haven’t worn.

  • Use the “one in, one out” rule – Whenever you buy a new clothing item, get rid of something. This prevents buildup.

  • Fold vertically – Fold clothes lengthwise instead of stacked. This lets you see all your options easily.

  • Hang frequently worn items – Reserve drawer space for intimates, pajamas etc. Hang up daily wear for fast access.

The key is continually being choosy about what stays in your closets. A little maintenance goes a long way towards keeping chaos at bay!

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I declutter sentimental items?

  • Take photos of sentimental clothes you are ready to part with for memories without keeping physical items.

  • Keep special occasion outfits for children, like christening gowns or first dance recital costume.

  • For other items, consider cutting a small swatch to keep before donating.

What do I do if I have more clothes than closet space?

  • First declutter ruthlessly to pare down your wardrobe to only your absolute favorites.

  • Utilize space efficiently with closet organizers to double hanging space.

  • Store off-season or rarely worn items under the bed or in other storage areas.

  • For overflow, consider getting a clothing rack or armoire for additional storage.

How often should I declutter my closet?

  • Do a major decluttering and reorganization twice a year – when changing over your wardrobe for the new season.

  • Quick purge stray items you haven’t worn every 1-2 months.

  • When buying new items, immediately declutter to make space.

The frequency depends on how quickly clutter accumulates based on your shopping and storage habits.

What should I do with items I’m ready to part with?

  • Donate gently used items to churches, shelters, or thrift stores. This keeps them out of landfills.

  • Sell via online resale sites and consignment shops. You can earn extra cash for new wardrobe additions.

  • Swap with friends and family. This lets you refresh your closet for free.

  • Trash anything stained, torn, or otherwise unwearable.

Key Takeaways

  • Decluttering your closet helps you reclaim time, reduce stress, avoid overspending, and maximize space.

  • Take everything out and declutter item-by-item ruthlessly. Donate, sell or trash what you don’t wear.

  • Deep clean the empty closet before putting back only items you love that fit your lifestyle.

  • Use in-closet storage and organization systems to categorize items and maximize space.

  • Maintain with regular quick purges, the “one in, one out” rule, and stale of season swaps.

With a little upfront effort, you can transform your closets from chaotic to calm. Just follow the decluttering strategies and maintenance tips outlined above. Enjoy the peace of mind that comes with organization!

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