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How to (Finally!) Clear the Clutter from Your Closet

Written by Kimberly Calder

For many, the hardest part of decluttering the closet is actually getting started. Best-selling author and “one-minute” cleaning and organizing expert, Donna Smallin Kuper, offers the following tips for conquering closet organization this summer season, making room for the items you do love and will wear in the coming months! 

1. Schedule closet clean-out time. It can take anywhere from 4 to 6 hours to unclutter and organize a typical bedroom closet– but you don’t have to do it all at once! Plan to spend 15 minutes a day. Set a timer on your phone and work quickly.

2. Play dress up. Working in one-foot sections of your clothes rod, try on each item. Ask yourself, “Is it comfortable? Does it make me look and feel good? When will I wear it next?” Rehang if it’s a keeper. If not, it’s probably just taking up space. Designate “donate” and “sell” bins (see tip #7).

3. Aim for a closet that is no more than 75% full. It’s much easier to find what you’re looking for when hangers can move freely along the rod. Consider replacing mismatched hangers with a new set. Look for hangers with swivel heads and “arms” that “hug” clothing to prevent items from slipping off.

4. Say goodbye to wrinkles. Is the reason you haven’t worn that cute top because it’s too wrinkled to wear? Instead of adding it to your already overflowing pile of ironing, simply steam out those wrinkles in a jiff with the Reliable Pronto 100CH portable fabric steamer or new Maven 100IS lightweight steam ironing station!



5. Maximize vertical space. If you need more hanging space for shorter items, install a shorter second rod that hangs from the first. You can also add 2-3 tension rods at the same height about one foot above the top shelf of your closet to create an instant shelf that will support bins for storing lesser-used items (especially helpful if you have a small apartment and lack storage space!

6. Hang like items together. It’s easier to find what you want if you hang together similar items such as jackets, pants, skirts, dresses, blouses, and so on. If you have a big closet and/or a lot of clothes, organize by color within each category.

7. Turn clutter into cash! Get cash for new spring clothes by taking what you no longer love or wear to a consignment store – or sell them outright at LikeTwice.com or ThredUP.com. Clothing should be like new, still in style (or classic style), clean, and wrinkle-free (the fabric steamer to the rescue!)

8. Maintain a clutter-free closet. Keep a bin in your closet where you can toss items you decide you no longer want. Periodically, donate or sell the contents.

About Donna Smallin Kuper, the “One-Minute” Organizer and Cleaner

Donna Smallin Kuper is a “one-minute” cleaning and organizing expert, Certified House Cleaning Technician and best-selling author of 14 books, including her latest, Clear the Clutter, Find Happiness (Storey, December 2014).


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