Org This: Tackling the Coat Closet

Published Friday, February 22, 2013 7:23 PM

We're mid-way through winter so odds are good your coat closet is a mess of bulky items and mismatched gloves. What's that you say? You can't find your hat? We feel your pain (and your possible frostbite.) Read on for tips for whipping your closet back into shape for the rest of the wintery season.

Out with the Unused: Closets turn into catchalls quicker than snowflakes melt on a tongue. Identify unused and unneeded items by emptying your closet-yup, we're starting with a blank slate-and put back only those items that truly belong.

Saying Goodbye: Gather unworn clothes and paraphernalia into groups: one to donate, one to pass along to friends and another to trash. Be sure to keep receipts for any items donated to charity.

Parting is Such Sweet Sorrow:  Having trouble saying good-bye? Ask yourself three questions: Does it fit? Do I wear/use it? Do I love it? If the answer to any of these questions is no, the item needs to go. Consider working with a trusted friend and their unbiased eye to evaluate your belongings.

Color Code: Once your closet is edited to include only clothes and gear that are seasonally appropriate, it's time to color code items by family member.  Assign each member a color that corresponds to hooks, bins and whatever other tools you use. Color coding helps assign items a designated home and makes it easy for even the youngest family member to neatly stow away their belongings.

Tame Odds & Ends: Don't let scarves and other cold weather accessories overrun your closest. Maximize the space on the inside of a closet door to hang small, frequently used items. Use clothes pins to clamp gloves and mitten together so one doesn't go missing.

Neat & Tidy: Once your closet is shipshape, maintain order by arranging all hangers in the same direction and by storing items requiring folding, draped over hangers rather than in sloppy piles. Keep a small trash can to corral dry-cleaning bags and wire hangers. You may also wish to invest in a plastic or metal shoe tray to capture wet boots near your entrance.



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