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32 Closet Organizing Tricks That'll Actually Work

Even if you can't bring yourself to toss stuff to spark joy or whatever.

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1. First, if you know you're going to toss some stuff, solicit a *critical* friend (who's got your back!) for opinions on what's worth keeping in your closet.

BBC

Forget that scene in the Sex and the City movie with Carrie prancing around in her unrealistic-for-a-writer-in-NYC closet and find yourself a Patsy, à la Absolutely Fabulous, for some REAL advice. Also give that friend pizza, champagne, or some payment for helping you overhaul your closet. (I'm not bitter at all about my non–Carrie Bradshaw closet sitch.)

2. And while you're organizing, unearth the stuff you forgot about and put it back into your rotation by logging it in Finery. You can even create looks with them for a major comeback!

instagram.com

"Oh, this old thing?" This virtual closet organizer helps you get organized and plan new outfits...for free! Whether your closet is packed with Saint Laurent or Old Navy (or both!), find out more here.

3. Starting from scratch? Buy a closet organizing system for some bones to build upon for your specific needs.

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Yes, everything would look lovely displayed Coveteur-style 24/7. (If you don't know what I mean, do yourself a favor and click on over for some drool-worthy closets here and say bye to the next two hours.) But that isn't always useful for figuring out which shirt will look best with those dress pants you pull out once a year for a conference. A closet system like this'll make a world of a difference with that normal-person problem. (Though in my opinion, your shoes and best accessories should be displayed front and center like art!)

Promising review: "This is great. I tripled my storage capacity on the back wall of my closet. I also cut down the old 8' section of shelving and integrated it into this shelving system with some extra brackets from a local hardware store. No part of this unit touches the floor like the cheaper version of this unit does. It is very sturdy. I had studs on 16" centers so this unit was perfect. I didn't have to drill new holes in the hanging bracket and most of the verticals caught studs, as well. I wish I had bought this sooner." —Edward F.

Get it from Amazon for $85.99+ (available in 4'-6' and 5'-8').

4. Mount motion sensor lights in there to see all your organizing prowess, because that creepy bare bulb is not pulling its weight for differentiating between your two denim jackets.

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These stick on with 3M adhesive pads and take AAA batteries.

Promising review: "I put one in my closet, which has very little light. I love that it turns on when it senses motion and then turns off automatically again. I wound up gluing a flat metal washer to the wall to which the magnet on this light sticks. That way, if I need some detailed lighting, I just grab the light off the wall, take a look at what I need, and then stick it back to the wall again. It's a lot more convenient than trying to find where I put the flashlight." —Debbie

Get a three-pack from Amazon for $10.99.

5. Ditch your sliding closet doors for some curtains so you can access everything with ease.

Get them from Urban Outfitters for $129 a panel.

6. No matter your space or wardrobe size, sort by color AND type of garment so your blue dresses are together and your black jackets are together bc you most likely know which type of garment you want and then which color.

FINERY

But seriously, sorting your stuff in this way will make everything so much easier to find (even if you don't invest in any of the *cool* organizing products in this post).

7. If you can, switch out your clothes when the seasons change so it's easier to find the stuff suited for current weather conditions.

HBO

Yes, it's ancient advice, but it helps! Also, apparently we should all be wearing faux-sheepskin rugs as outerwear now like Jon Snow. (C'mon, it is a good look.)

8. Fill that dead space below your tops with a closet doubler that does exactly what its name says.

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Promising review: "It doubled the amount of space in my daughter's closet, and because I can choose how high or low to hang it, I could bring it up high enough to allow space for boxes on the floor. I'm getting two more for my own closet! It's sturdy enough to hold heavy jeans or winter jackets or anything else you want. I thought for this price it would be flimsy, but it isn't at all." —Kelli S.

Get it from Amazon for $17.90+.

9. And use any empty space above regular reaching height with a pull-down closet rod for all of your out-of-season or less-used stuff.

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Promising review: "I love these pull-down rods. I'm using them in a walk-in closet with standard 8' ceilings. I installed the rods so they go nearly all the way up to the ceiling, and they are about chin-high when I pull them down (I'm about 5'5" tall). I'm still left with plenty of room below the rods to install a hanging bar for my pants to hang full-length without touching the floor." —Dog Lover

Get it from Amazon for $68+ (available in three sizes).

10. Say goodbye to an avalanche of folded sweaters or jeans thanks to ThreadStax. (We know your pain. Every other closet-organizing story says to stack them, but you can't keep them tidy!)

threadstax.com

This magnetized system — a personal fave of celeb stylist Melissa Garcia — lets you get an item from the middle of the pile without disrupting your folded clothes. And you can even store multiple pieces on each divider so you have a whole look planned out ahead of time!

Get a 14-divider bundle from ThreadStax for $75.

11. And get the *perfect* fold with an OG clothing folding tool if you're aiming for the utmost perfection.

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Promising review: "I kept a huge stack of T-shirts awaiting its arrival. It folded in five minutes what would have taken me half an hour. The clean lines are far better than what I could have done by hand. Extremely satisfied with the purchase." —Chem Gal

Get it from Amazon for $12.99.

12. Do what you must to hang up the things you need to hang up, like doubling up regular old hangers with a soda tab when you need more space ASAP.

13. Make stuff stay put — lest a shirt fall off the hook and you don't find it until six months from now — with huggable hangers.

15. Create some room between your pieces with these hanger spacers if you can spare the room. (Jealous.)

thegrommet.com

Promising review: "It's so nice to not have my clothes jammed in my closet. I love that I can pull something out to wear and it's not wrinkled. I ordered mored more and have them in two closets." —Patricia

Get a 10-pack from The Grommet for $19.95.

16. Need some detailed division? Label these blank dividers to make tracking down that one shirt way quicker.

containerstore.com

Promising review: "They are easily visible in your closet, even if it's large and packed. I like that it includes a very wide assortment of labels, and both in English and Spanish. Very convenient." —elviragb

Get a 12-pack from The Container Store for $9.99.

17. Install a valet rod to hold on to your next day's ensemble 'til you get an IRL butler to manage that shit.

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Promising review: "This valet makes it so easy to hang up outfits to choose your outfit for the day, hang out what you would like to pack, to put away laundry, and even to steam your clothes. When I have a larger closet I will definitely buy another one because, for me, one is not enough." —Brittfree

Get it from Amazon for $15.63.

Or if screwing something into your closet is a no-go (hi, renters!), opt for a 5-pound-capacity Command hook for $6.18.

18. If you want to plan out a week's worth of outfits or just want a place to hang up your outerwear or fancy gowns, keep a clothing rack (with a lower shelf for extra storage) close.

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A clothing rack helps SO. MUCH.

Promising review: "This is just what I needed to get my wardrobe in order. It's like I have a second closet now for my clothing. It's no-frills, meaning it's not a piece of furniture but if you buy black velvet hangers, it looks pretty cool. Right now I have all my summer shirts, leggings, skirts, jackets, blazers, tank tops and dresses all in a row, which makes it so easy to pick out an outfit. I was surprised at how many things go together when you have this full view." —susan a warnock

Get it from Amazon for $44.99.

19. Just like your clothes, group your shoes by type and color so you can track down your fringe ankle booties in a snap.

abeautifulmess.com

Read some ~super helpful~ closet organizing tips on A Beautiful Mess here.

Get a similar shoe rack from Amazon for $29.89.

20. Store your shoes on open shelves with a lil' vertical space? *Safely* shelve them in less room with these stacking shoe organizers that put your best foot(wear option) forward.

amazon.com

Promising review: "These shoe holders are fantastic. I'm using them for heels, casual shoes, and sneakers. For people with smaller feet (I'm a 7) it doesn't 'double' your space, but you can get three pairs where you had two. For people with larger feet, you really will double the space." —silversong203

Get a six-pack from Amazon for $24.44.

21. Or use tension rods to turn an empty niche into the ultimate shoe lover's storage solution. 👀

Finery

See this shoe storage in action in an unreal NYC closet on Coveteur here.

Get a pair of 11"-18" tension rods from Amazon for $8.99.

22. Hang up knee-high boots with a specially designed boot rack bc those puppies take up a lot of room on shelves and floors — even if you do stuff them with old pool noodles to help keep their shape.

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Promising review: "Sometimes I'd waste time digging for the matching pair I was hoping to wear. I've been wanting to buy the Boot Butler, but was hesitant because of the price. After some time and frustration (especially with boot season approaching), I bought the Boot Butler for myself in October, as an early Christmas gift. WHY DID I WAIT SO LONG?! I loved it so much, I bought a second set a couple months later and am now contemplating buying another. I love that my boots aren't in a pile anymore; that they are easy to find and see, and I don't have to shuffle huge plastic boot boxes around, (an option I tried before and was not happy with)." —ZAR

Get it from Amazon for $69.99.

23. Make use of a door with an OG shoe organizer bc damn if it isn't effective for things like flats and scarves.

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Promising review: "Used to organize my scarves. The pockets are big enough for two or more cotton/silk scarves. Perfect for what I needed." —June

Get it from Amazon for $8.87.

24. Get your investments (aka your bags) up and off the floor. If you're fortunate enough to have the shelf space, keep them upright with clear dividers.

Christopher Patey for MyDomaine / Via mydomaine.com

Look closely enough and you'll spy the ~super sneaky~ clear dividers. Prepare to slobber over the rest of actor Jaime King's closet tour on MyDomaine here.

Get a pair of dividers from Amazon for $29.97.

25. Maintain your bags' shape by stuffing them with bubble wrap when they're in storage.

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Garcia also recommends stuffing them with off-season accessories (like tights or gloves) to be even more space-savvy.

Get them from Amazon: Circus by Sam Edelman bag for $27.13 (three colors) and 12"x30' roll of bubble wrap for $7.99+.

26. And if you don't have shelf space, you can store them on a purse hanger.

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Promising review: "These really solve the problem of storing purses and totes for me. Well-made and elegantly simple. They are very sturdy and each hold several handbags — I was able to double up on some of the hooks (this would depend on the style of your purses). No more bunching or creases in the leather or fabrication. I have the white wire closet shelving in my bedroom closet and I hooked the handbag holder at the end of the unit where I have a tiny bit of empty space. The configuration really takes advantage of otherwise useless nooks and crannies in a closet. I couldn't be more pleased." —Joyful56

Get it from Amazon for $8.49.

27. Stash like-minded accessories in clear storage boxes so you can zero in on the perfect braided belt to cinch that maxi.

Get them from Urban Outfitters for $12+ each (available in three sizes).

28. And if you have drawers, find some detailed organizers to keep everything in there nice and tidy.

Get it from The Container Store for $29.99.

29. String your belts onto a belt/scarf ring that takes up a criminally small amount of space.

amazon.com, amazon.com

Promising review: "This is a very efficient way of storing your belts if space is an issue. I own two and keep about 20 belts on each one with no problem. These rings are very strong and I have not had any problems with them bending under the weight of the belts. The way the ring opens and closes makes it fairly easy to flip belts around the ring until you find the one you want." —TxTechsan

Get it from Amazon for $3.59.

30. Finally see the accessories you have with this simple jewelry organizer that fits on your clothing rod or hooks onto other surfaces.

amazon.com

Promising review: "One side is a lot of little divided clear pockets to put bracelets, rings, earrings, etc., in and with the pockets not being too deep and with them being clear then you can see what is in each one and retrieve it very easily. The other side is a lot of little Velcro loops that you can hang necklaces and bracelets from. The top is made so that you can just slip it over a regular clothes hanger and hang it from a hook of some type. I will be hanging mine from one of the coat hooks that I have hanging over the back of the door, or possibly having my husband put me up another hook somewhere:). I am very pleased with this jewelry organizer and am excited to finally get my jewelry in some order!" —ALong

Get it from Amazon for $7.99.

31. Don't forget to style it with accents like washi tape on shelf edges! The *nicer* your closet looks, the more you'll feel inspired to wear all the cool shit you already own.

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Check out our suggestions for a prettier closet here.

Get a three-pack of metallic washi tape from Amazon for $6.99.

32. And MAINTAIN your organization. One dress you decided not to wear this morning starts a pile of wrinkled clothes if you don't put it back on that hanger.

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