Walk-in closet organization can seem like a nightmare. From overflowing clothes and laundry to items shoved away for the season… your walk-in closet quickly becomes a complicated dance to avoid injury. This guide provides a list of walk-in closet organization ideas to make that closet walkable again.
Once you organize your walk-in closet, tackle the hallway closet next with our “Ultimate Hallway Closet Organization Ideas Guide“. If you are looking for more security during an emergency, the walk-in closet may also be a great place for your emergency water supply.
Walk-In Closet Organization Challenges
You have the walk-in closet that you’ve always wanted. But for some reason, it’s just not working out how you had hoped. No matter how good your intentions are, you open the closet door to find that your belongings are still a big mess. If you’re still struggling to find your work outfit in the morning or your favorite pair of jeans, you may face one of these common problems.
A disorganized closet houses heaps of clothes. If you have trouble organizing yourself when you get home at the end of the day, those piles may get bigger and bigger. It’s a common problem with larger closets that are easily remedied with some plotting.
This goes for drawers, too. Sometimes we get into the mindset of “out of sight, out of mind.” That tends to backfire when you open that dresser drawer to look for the scarf your grandmother gave you for your birthday and can’t seem to find it anywhere amid the clutter of old bras, belts, purses, scarves, knitted hats, and leggings adorned with holes. Many people use the closet dresser or chest as a catch-all for everything they don’t know what to do with.
Full to Exploding
When your closet is stuffed with absolutely everything, it’s no wonder there’s no real room to get in there and really organize! The closet tends to be the space for hiding, dumping, and stashing . . . and then forgetting.
Keeping absolutely everything forever—and keeping it all in your closet—is probably the biggest cause for a messy space. That pack-rat mentality leads to hanger rods that can’t possibly hold one more hanger… and doors that will bust their hinges if you try to shut them.
Steppin’ All Over Shoes
Chances are your closet may lack proper shoe storage. Your shoes wind up being kicked off somewhere mid-bedroom and hurled into the depths of your closet. They end up everywhere, from in the opening doorway to somewhere on the back of the top shelf, never to be seen again.
With no place to put your shoes, they’re all over the closet floor, tripping you and causing a massive headache when you hunt for a matching pair. No one needs to tell you about your troubles—you face them daily. So, what do you do to remedy the situation?
You can implement plenty of home organization ideas to turn that hole in the wall full of clutter into something that works to keep your clothes organized and neat.
Walk-In Closet Organization Ideas
Home organization may not be your forte, but by following a few of these suggestions, you’ll be storing in style.
Use All Space
Make use of every little nook and cranny in the closet. Organizers, baskets, bins, and boxes are great to hold items that don’t really fit anywhere else. By keeping these items neatly stashed in sealable (and hopefully labeled) containers, you’ll know right where everything is and can reach it immediately.
If space on the hanging rod is really at a premium, you may still be scratching your head trying to figure out how to make everything fit. Adding a soda can tab to a hanger is a neat trick to keeping outfits together. It turns into a double-doozy so you can keep that suit jacket together with the bottoms.
You can also sneak this white bamboo lidded 6-pc box set (see image below) in some corner of your closet.
This may seem like a no-brainer, but the first step toward organizing your walk-in closet is to pull everything out.
Go through it all and get rid of items that don’t serve you or that you haven’t touched in a year. If you haven’t used it this year, you probably aren’t going to. Create piles for things you will keep, items that will be thrown away, and those that can be donated. Pare down to what you actually need and use.
Not every item you keep will need to remain on display year-round. There’s nothing wrong with boxing up your summer tank tops, shorts, and flip-flops and storing them in the attic for the winter season.
That leaves more room for your bulky sweaters and thermals. Rotating seasonal wear is a great way to keep you on your toes, making sure you tidy up at least once each couple of months.
Shoes Off the Floor
Having a clear floor can really open things up and let the space breathe so you won’t try to avoid it like the plague. When your walk-in closet floor is free of clutter, the room feels bigger. There are many different types of shoe racks and shoe storage, including simple storage cubes you can purchase through Ikea or Target.
One of the best solutions is angled shelves with shoe fences. They allow you to easily visualize all of your shoes without worrying about them sliding off onto the floor. Organize them by color so you’ll know where to head to make your choice. The result is a boutique-style display that is elegant.
That’s all well and good for your pumps, killer heels and tennies, but it won’t always work so well for your tall boots. Small clip hangers can keep the boots upright, preventing creases from forming.
Make It Home
It may seem counter-intuitive to decorate your closet, but the more you make it an organic living space, the more likely you are to keep it neat and clean. You don’t have to break the bank with luxurious wallpaper. A fresh, bright coat of paint will do the trick.
Including a mirror inside the closet serves a two-fold purpose. It can bring more light into the room, allowing for better visibility. It can also make your life easier. With a mirror in your closet, you do no need to run out into the hallway every time you want to check your outfit or see how a piece of jewelry works with an ensemble.
Hooks aren’t just for your bathrobe. A few well-placed hooks can be home to your hat and handbag collection, displaying them within easy-to-grab reach. No more opening the door and tossing them inside.
Organizing jewelry is often a source of frustration for people. Classic solutions include devoting a dresser drawer with internal organizers to separate your pieces. You can also think outside the box. Arrange a series of hooks inside your closet showcasing your statement pieces. That makes your selection easy the next time you’re getting ready to head out for your partner’s work party.
Movin’ On Up
Start looking at your closet from a new angle: up. Traditional closet spaces have a hanging bar and a single shelf above it, feeling rather flat. But there’s a world of space available above that top shelve. You have a few options to make the best of that space.
Move the entire clothing rod up a level. You’ll have to reach a little bit higher to get at your favorite dress, but you’ll open up plenty of space to add a dresser beneath, lending room to items that fare better in drawers. Don’t need a dresser? How about that shoe rack you’ve had your eyes on?
Add another shelf above the original one and utilize storage containers with handles (and lids). Stack items you don’t need often or store your out-of-season outfits up there.
Just remember to stay safe. Unless you’re directionally motivated, saving space for a fold-away step ladder or stool may be prudent to safely reach those top-shelf items.
Shower of Scarves
Frustrated with a floppy hanger when you try to hang your scarves? If you’re like half the other people out there, you get frustrated and wind up tossing them onto the floor. . . . that’s where they all fall when you try to remove just one from the hanger, anyway, right?
There’s no need to feed your frustration. Loop a series of shower curtain rings onto a hanger. Thread a scarf or two onto each ring. The rings will stay secure where they are, and the remaining scarves won’t be disturbed when you want to pull just one-off.
Don’t Forget the Laundry
As you’ve been carefully sorting and stashing everything that gets put away in your closet, don’t forget to think about the other end: the items you remove after you’ve worn them. A standing laundry basket is a great way to keep dirty items picked up off the floor without taking up too much space.
This one may seem like an obvious choice, but by the time you finish gutting, painting, organizing and putting the finishing touches on the inside of your walk-in closet. You may decide you’re just too tired to be bothered to affix labels to those assorted drawers, bins, boxes, and baskets you’ve so diligently worked to neaten. You may even tell yourself that you don’t need to label those bins on the top shelf. You’ll remember precisely what’s in them.
You may recall what you tossed in there a few months from now. But what happens when you’re looking for that one handbag that you only use once a year 9 months from now as you’re running late for the charity dinner? Will you remember then? Labeling your items won’t really take much time now that everything is fresh in your head, and you’ll really thank yourself later down the road
Reclaim your walk-in closet
Remember that this is a fresh opportunity to eliminate unnecessary items while you organize. Donate what you don’t use to Goodwill or another charitable organization. This will free up space for you and assist those in need. Once the walk-in is up to spec, tackle that hallway closet next!