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Organize your closet in 15 minutes

If you’ve been putting off organizing your closet because you’re worried it will take hours, put your fears aside. You can do a quick closet organization in 15 minutes or less that will make you feel lighter, cleaner and more prepared to face the week.

Woman going through closet

1The clean sweep

Set a timer for five minutes and start going through all your clothes, shoes and accessories. For every piece, ask yourself three questions:

  1. Have I worn it in the last year?
  2. Does it fit?
  3. Do I like it?

If you don’t answer “yes” to all three of these questions, remove it from your closet and place it into either a giveaway or storage pile. Don’t dawdle through this process — it should be a quick and simple assessment, and you should be able to go through every item in your closet in five minutes or less.

2Separate & coordinate.

Now that your closet is cleared of unnecessary items, go through the rest of your clothing. Group like items with like items. Place dresses with dresses, sweaters with sweaters, jeans with jeans, and so forth. Once you’ve separated all of your clothes, place them in your closet in a coordinated fashion. Coordinate them by color and by frequency of use. For instance, if you regularly wear your blouses and blazers for work, hang them front-and-center in your closet, then coordinate them by color. This will make it easy for you to find exactly what you need in the morning.

Do the same with your shoes and accessories. Even if you don’t have storage containers or closet organizers, you can use empty hangers to organize and hang scarves, belts, handbags and necklaces. Line your shoes up by purpose (work shoes, athletic shoes, weekend shoes, etc.), putting the shoes you wear most often closest to the closet door. All in all, the separation and coordination step should take roughly five minutes.

3Plan for the future.

Once your closet is functionally organized, spend the last five minutes planning how to improve the space. Spend a minute writing down your closet’s measurements on a notecard. Note how much vertical space you have available . Are there unused or poorly used walls, doors or floors? Write down the areas of organization with which you’re not completely satisfied. For instance, do you wish you had a better way to organize your shoes or handbags? Do you feel like you’re lacking an effective way to store seasonal items?

Once you’ve mapped out your wants, place the notecard in your purse, and buy clear storage boxes, an over-the-door shoe hanging system or lightweight portable drawer systems the next time you’re out shopping. With your notes to guide you, you can choose the exact items you will need to improve your closet’s layout and organizational capacity.

More on Closet organization

Learn how to use your hangers to help cut down on closet clutter.

More organization tips

Types of closet organizers
Out with the old!
Closet envy: The most incredible closet ideas

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