Saturday, February 4, 2012

closets are a girl's best friend.

No offense to Marilyn, but I am of the opinion that closets, not diamonds, are a girl's best friend. I don't know about you, but I find myself drooling over an exquisitely executed Elfa arrangement rather than a cushion cut. We ladies can spend anywhere from 2 seconds to 2 hours at a time in our closets searching for the absolute perfect outfit. We emerge from our closets either feeling like Anna Wintor or Anne of Green Gables. It helps us set the tone for our day.

In recent months, I have found myself dreading any and all interaction with my closet. I got in and out as quickly as possible, preferring to feel my way through the dungeon rather than open my eyes to actually look for what I needed. Sad? Absolutely. 

I could wish all day for a closet like these...

...but I fear Mr. Spouse might not appreciate me taking over more than half of our humble abode to create such a space. I considered allowing the experts at the Container Store to overhaul my closet with Elfa to create the storage I needed, but again, I don't think the Mr. would appreciate eating Ramen for the next 2 years. That's when I started really looking at the space in my closet and trying to brainstorm ways to spend a minimal amount while still creating ample storage.

Let's take a look at my closet's biggest problem areas. I had a three-drawer Elfa system that was working just fine, except that I was constantly untangling items that had fallen through the wires, digging through drawers to find what I needed (since 4 types of clothes were packed into one drawer), and smashing my clothes down so that the drawers would open and close properly. Yikes spikes.

I had all of my scarves and pashminas crunched onto a single hanger.

My t-shirts, workout pants, and sweaters were folded hap-hazardly on the top shelf of my closet.

As I began looking for a new storage solution, my main goal was to get everything in one place. I wanted one storage system with many drawers that could house all of my folded clothes. It was also very important to me to find something that would work when we move in the upcoming months - I wanted a long-term solution.

I know you are going to be ABSOLUTELY SHOCKED to find out where I went to find a new storage system...

I know, I know! A waltz through the showroom and 3 swedish meatballs later, I found this...

The system would hold up to 10 white, plastic drawers and would fit perfectly under a full-length hanging rod. This system solved all of my problems: enough drawer space to allow all of my folded clothes to live in one happy home, plastic drawers to prevent smaller items dropping through holes or getting tangled, and standard-issue enough to be used in our current home and in future homes!

After finding my clothes' new home, I created new labels for the plastic drawers that would fit into the unit (click on the picture to download your own copy!).

I then loaded up the drawers with their specific contents and....

All of my folded clothes have a fabulously organized home! Hooray!


When affixing the labels to each drawer, I wanted to have the ability to remove and change labels to allow for seasonal clothes to be added or removed from the drawers and other similar situations. Therefore, I applied velcro to both the label and the drawer...

...and then applied the label to each drawer. I love that I have the option to change labels whenever I want!

As for some of my winter gear, you might remember that my scarves and pashminas were crammed onto a single hanger before. But after a bit of purging and knowing that I had an almost-empty shelf, I decided that folding my scarves would be a better option - it would prevent the scarves from creasing around the hanger and allows me to see all of my options at once.

They now sit next to my sweaters further down on the shelf.

I also went through my shoes, made a donation and keep pile, rearranged my shoe racks so that all of my shoes were together on one wall, and placed the shoes I plan to keep back in their spot.

I can actually open my eyes in my newly reorganized closet! No more feeling around to avoid the madness that used to engulf the space! I can now look forward to going in there each morning to find an outfit for the day. Praise. The. Lord.


  1. I ♥ IKEA too......I could spend days in there!

  2. Is that seriously all of your clothes? Do you have a dresser/chest as well? I am so jealous if that's all your clothes. I think that would be awesome to not be so crowded. I am always reorganizing and purging but I still have more to do. I LOVE your blog. I'm finishing my teaching degree now and hope to be in the classroom for Fall 2013. Thanks for all the inspiration!!!

    1. Hi Brittany! Congratulations on starting a career in teaching! You are going to LOVE it! I'm sure you already do!

      Yes, the Ikea drawers hold all of my FOLDED clothes. The clothes you see hanging are only about a quarter of my hanging clothes, though. I am so lucky to have a spacious closet right now that allows me to just put my skirts and dresses on the side of the closet pictured. We're about to move and my closet space is not going to be so spacious! We'll see how I cope with that! As soon as we move, I'll start posting about dealing with a smaller space without losing all of your fabulous clothes!