Closet Chaos

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Picture yourself in the morning, getting ready for the day.

Are you scrambling around in the closet, looking under three layers of shoes for the ones you planned to wear? Are your skirts mixed with your blouses and jackets, forming a solid wall of fabric that you have to sift through again and again to put together an outfit?

How is your day going so far?

If you are like most people, at least two mornings every week you promise yourself that you are going to reorganize your closet. This week – definitely! And then you take a long look at the mess and put it off until next week – for sure!

This time, with my help, you are really going to get it done. What better time to purge and organize than the start of a new year?

Step 1. Sort and categorized each item

Group jackets together, dresses together, pants, skirts, shirts, sweaters, etc.

Step 2. Arrange each classification by color, from light to dark. For example, begin with your white blouses. Then arrange your beige, yellow, brown, red, green, blue and end with your black blouses. Expect surprises. Who knew you had 20 white blouses?

This system may seem a bit obsessive-compulsive at first, but it works. The advantage is that every item is visible and accessible. You should be able to walk into your closet blindfolded and put your hands on your white blouses. You should be able to walk into a clothing store, close your eyes and visualize your current inventory of clothes in your closet.

I also insist that any decent closet should be equipped with matching hangers. I like the standard clear plastic ones with metal hooks that swivel. There are also the plastic tubular ones available at most discount stores.

Whichever ones you choose, make sure to remain consistent with the style and color you choose. Hangers of different color, heights and styles will make it difficult for you to compare the lengths and the cuts of the jackets and dresses arranged before you. It is also to hang every garment facing the same direction. Remember, visibility is the name of the game.

As time goes by and you feel more confident in your ability to organize your closet, you may develop your own system. The point is that we are working together to make dressing both a pleasant and easy part of your day. Opening a closet door to a snake pit and rooting around trying to find the skirt you need for the jacket you have selected, or giving up on a blouse you know must be in the chaos somewhere, adds unnecessary stress to your already-busy morning.

Opening a closet door should be like arriving at a really good party, where everyone you see is someone you really like.