With the New Year comes fresh beginnings and a long list of promises (or "resolutions") that you made to yourself. We think it's just about time to pick a resolution that will stick– and help you in the long run. Our suggestion? Start with your closet. Often overlooked as a space, we don't realize the impact the hidden corners of our home have on us. Just consider: you see your closet at a minimum twice per day, at pinnacle moments of transition (and stress - hello, getting out the door in the morning). Having an organized closet is beneficial not only to your eyes, but also to your mind and mental health. Therefore, to help you kick start this New Year's Resolution, we've compiled our best tips and tricks to clean out and spruce up your closet– and keep it that way.
Why Maximizing Your Closet Space is Important
We all live hectic, stressful lives– that’s just the unfortunate truth. From the moment we wake up to complete a six- to a twenty-step skincare routine, to our rushed commute spent cramming in audiobooks and podcasts and news broadcasts, to a workday, happy hour, another commute, another skincare routine– not to mention exercise and meal planning. It’s a lot. This is why removing stress from one part of our lives is so important. Research has shown that cluttered homes result in stressful lives, and nothing seems quite as disorganized as a cramped closet where you can never find what you're looking for when you need it. So, here are our team’s tried and tested ways to maximize your tiny closet space for a calmer corner of your home.
Quick Tips to Maximize Your Closet Space
- Consider Your Clothes: You first should get rid of old clothes or pieces you cannot wear. This will free up a lot of space while simultaneously allowing you to easily access your favorite pieces.
- Remember the Floor: Every inch of space is important when redesigning this hidden corner of your home, and the floor is no less important. Buy some shoe racks or boxes to organize and keep things below eye level for easy access.
- Consider Your Hangers: Do the most with what you have and the outfits you love, especially with our Cove Hanger! By hanging long dresses on the short rack, you can either add in a lower rack to your closet or double up on floor storage options. You can also use the Cove Hanger to hang outfits together to save time during your daily routine.
- Hang a Mirror: Really turn your closet into a place you're excited to spend time. Plus, it’s an opportunity to check yourself out - as you should!
- Don’t Underestimate a Paint Job: Paint the walls a light color that will create an illusion of more space while relaxing you. You’d be surprised by the zen characteristics of a good pastel.
- Don’t Forget The Doors: They’re the hidden secret of extra space. When maximizing your closet space, you should leave no stone unturned, including your doors. Hang your shoes, purses, or jackets behind your door for a little extra space everywhere else.
Why Organized Spaces are Good For Mental Health
A messy space can be a downward spiral as you’re more likely to also just allow things to get messier. More clutter leads to less satisfaction, meaning your general happiness level is likely to decrease, leading to factors such as low energy and burnout. Think about if you leave one sweater out, how quickly that escalates to two and then onto a massive pile of clothes that is too daunting to put away.
Having a personal space in which you can feel relaxed is the perfect balance between organized and homey, which is key to happier zen moments. You will be more relieved, energized, and productive. Our suggested cherry on top? Add some home fragrances or scented ribbons across the hidden spaces of your home and enjoy the euphoric feeling and organization.
Start with the Cove Long Garment Hanger
The best way to make the most out of your space is by buying things that do the work for you. The Cove Long Garment Hanger is a beautiful yet functional way to hang all your favorite items without wasting unnecessary closet space. In maximizing the space, you avoid creasing and snagging all your favorite things.
- Clean it out. The first step to any maximization is minimization. Take everything off the rack and start considering what could be folded and what should be hung. Our tip? If it snags, creases, or requires constant ironing– probably better to hang it. If it’s one of your favorites and you wear it all the time, also probably better to hang it. Pants, sweaters, and gym clothes can probably take the back seat here.
- Hang all long garments. Take all your long dresses, jumpsuits, and pant-top combos, and hang them on the Cove Hanger– ensuring every garment takes up half the floor space it used to.
- Use the floor. Now that your garments only take up half the vertical space they used to, you could use that space for boxes, shoes, or a gorgeous mini armoire– you have the room now, get creative!
Wondering What To Hang?
This question is always a little trickier as it’s personal, but we’ll give you a quick guide to our favorite things to hang rather than fold and tuck away.
- Slip Dresses. Silky slip-dresses often fall victim to creases and non-crisp lines, so we prefer to hang our favorite sexy summer go-to.
- Jumpsuit. Nothing says the sexy 70s like a jumpsuit (especially a denim or linen one). While this fabric tends to be quite durable, these garments are just so complex– and long, which is why we prefer hanging this piece up and keeping it right where we can see it.
- Long Sundresses. Nothing quite says summer fun like a long breezy dress that flutters with the wind, but these tend to take up the most space in a closet, often grazing the floor and collecting dust bunnies. Use the Cove Hanger to minimize the vertical space in your closet.
- Power Suit. We know the term ‘girl boss’ is outdated, but we just can’t get over the dynamic of a woman’s power suit set, especially when those pants and blazers are gorgeous washed-pastel colors. Keep the suit crisp and pressed by hanging the pants on the secondary component and the blazer on the primary one.
More Ways to Maximize Your Small Space:
All the necessary clothes are hung, and now you’re left with a pile of shoes, gym clothes, sweaters, and other miscellaneous items that somehow found their way into your closet– so, what now? There are a few more ways you can use that leftover space to ensure that everything you own will fit just right.
- Consider what you have. While we all love our things and the deep memories they hold, some things don’t deserve to take up space in your closet anymore. This includes the jeans with one too many holes, the moth-eaten sweaters, and the dress that just doesn’t fit anymore (you bought it almost a decade ago, after all– bodies change, and that’s okay). Comb through all the leftover items, and consider donating anything you haven’t worn in a while; this really is the best way to maximize space.
- Pack Away Seasonal Clothes. It’s pretty unlikely you’ll wear that heavy-knitted sweater in the summer or that sundress in the winter. The second step to maximizing your closet space is to think efficiently about what you need to take up the room.
- Add Shelves. Now that the Cove Long Garment Hanger saved you all that space toward the bottom of your closet, you can fill in the gap. Add some shelves to line up all the clothing you shouldn’t hang and keep it fresh for future perusal– especially during busy mornings. Use this space to fold sweaters, t-shirts, gym clothes, and jeans. The easier it is to find the garments you’re looking for, the faster you’ll be able to get ready in the mornings.
- Buy a Shoe Rack. Considering you’re here reading about maximizing closet spaces, it’s unlikely you have all the space in the world for your much-loved shoe collection. The most important thing to remember with shoes is to keep them off your clothes– it’s just dirty otherwise. We suggest buying a shoe rack and piling your favorite shoes high while hiding the rest (like those special wedding-only shoes) in boxes under the bed or at the top of the closet (where you can add another shelf)
- Create Additional Shelving Space. One of our favorite hacks for closets with a rod is to buy a fabric shoe drop hanger (the one with multiple vertical shelves) and use it to fold and organize all of your clothes. Use one cube for tops, another for gym tops, another for bottoms, etc. This leaves more room at the bottom of your closet for shoes.
How to Hack the Space with a Partner?
All of these tips are good and done, but you may be wondering how to keep all this in mind if you share your closet with a partner. Like anything in a good relationship, it’s important to set boundaries– this includes having a ‘side’ to the closet just as you do with the bed and holding your partner accountable for their mess. Easier said than done, we know, but by keeping your space organized, by proxy, your partner will take notice and begin mimicking your habits. And isn’t that how all good relationships go– a gentle mirroring?
What are the Benefits of Maximizing Closet Space?
- Good mental health. Having a clean space often reflects how you feel and your stress levels.
- Streamlined Routines. Having everything right where you expect it to be can do wonders when getting ready in the morning. Take a moment to make a coffee and look out the window in a rom-com heroine way before picking out something to wear and heading out the door.
- Take care of your things. By hanging your favorite things the way you’re supposed to (i.e., not hanging on the floor collecting dust bunnies), you’ll be able to cherish them for a longer time to come. Maximizing your closet space, when done right, also means organizing and taking care of it.
What are the Drawbacks?
- Keeping an organized closet is hard. We won’t lie to you. Sometimes you come home from work or a night out (or even a boozy brunch out) and can’t even find the energy to take off your shoes, and that’s okay. As long as you don’t make a habit of disorganization, life will always find a way to snap back and work out.
How to Transition Between Seasons
It seems closet care is easier when you’re sure of the weather: hot days call for dresses and cold days for sweaters– and your closet reflects that. But Spring and Fall mean that your closet hasn’t quite figured out the deal, and you may struggle to find a place for your sweaters next to your sundresses. The key to a smooth seasonal transition is to do it slowly. Put a Summer one away for every winter garment– and vice versa. This will be better in the long run as you won’t need to purge your closet to haul in all your seasonally-appropriate things.
How to Keep it all Smelling Fresh
Nothing feels as good as opening those closet doors and seeing every duck in its row, but we’ll do you one better. Add a scented ribbon to a hanger or two in your closet, and every time you open it, you’ll be ensorcelled by the smooth, lush aroma that smells so much better than aging wool or cotton. The ribbon will also lightly perfume your clothes, so if you’re ever in a rush, you (at least ) won’t have to worry about smelling good.
Remember: The Key is to Keep it Organized.
We started this entire journey of maximizing our small closet space due to the strain of an unorganized closet on our daily lives and routines. Now that you’ve put all the hard work into organizing your garments and keeping everything crisp, clean, and dust-bunny-free, it’s essential to ensure everything stays that way. You can do this by ensuring that you take those five minutes to place your garments (the clean ones, at least) back into the closet at the end of the day. Or, if you’re anything like us, take the time in the morning to re-organize the fashion show you put on, trying to decide what to wear that day. Finally, try not to let your laundry sit out too long. Just fold it. Having a mess nearby will allow you to feel justified in making more of a mess.
- Maximize your closet space to help unravel the stress of day-to-day life.
- Use a Cove Long Garment Hanger to open up space at the bottom half of your closet and care for your garments.
- Consider adding shelves or a shoe rack to organize all your non-hung items and keep everything neat and clear.
- Be sure to keep everything organized as you go because hacks can only take you so far in a tiny space.
- Set boundaries with your partner when sharing closet space. Create his and hers (or his and his / hers and hers / etc) sections of your space to ensure that your routine doesn’t become dependent on their habits.
- Transition slowly between seasons to make the most of your closet space.
- Add a scented ribbon for an added relaxational boost to your routines.