Wardrobe Organization Ideas

Exhausted from a traveling weekend (though a wonderful one with family), I’m sharing some very valuable information again from my wardrobe-expert friend, Nancy Nix Rice.  Be sure to go check out her Blog at: http://nancynixrice.com/style-tips/

When I clicked on the Week 2 of this Style Tips series, I had to giggle, as my cousin had proudly explained and  showed me how she organizes her clothing in her new Independent living studio apartment.  “Alphabetical by Color” as she said and added “I circulate through the colors – in order, a new one each day.”  Brilliant I think – makes the ‘deciding’ EZ, I guess!  She allowed me to snap a photo so here it is.

alphabetical by color wardrobe

My TWO Closets

When I moved into my ‘new’ Jackson, TN home, I ended up tickled to death about my dressing area/bathroom with TWO closets – mirrored doors.  I thought alot about it, and eventually organized the two as I state below.  So far it works and even when I do the seasonal change, I think I’ll stay with this plan.  Within each, I have separated garments:  pants, tops, jackets, dresses (only dresses in Closet 2)

     *1st closet: “Going out, wanna look nice, but casual’

     *2nd closet: “Grungy ‘not for public’ around the house clothes at the left/dressy – dancing clothes at the right

101 Style Shortcuts Nancy Nix-Rice Wardrobe

By hanging clothes according to type and color, you’ll always find what you’re looking for.

CLOTHING ORGANIZATION & CARE

color organize your closet Hang It All You usually don’t wear what you don’t see, so get your clothes out of drawers and stacks and hang all of them in plain sight. 14) Follow The Rainbow Organize your clothing by garment type – pants together, blouses together, etc. – with each category in color sequence. Start with neutrals first, then rainbow order … red, orange, yellow, green, blue, purple. It looks lovely, plus you can find any item in its assigned place in seconds.

Haute Hangers Get rid of the wire hangers from the dry cleaners and invest in nicer ones to support the shape of your lovely clothes. I like the swivel-hook plastic ones for tops and dresses and the clip style for pants and skirts. But even plastic tubular hangers are better than wire, and you can find them for as little as 8 cents each.

Make Room Avoid over-filling your closet and you’ll also avoid unwanted wrinkles and creases. If you’re short on space, even after your clean-out, try a two-tier system. Organizing stores sell extra rods you can attach to the original one – no tools required – which allows you to hang a row of blouses and jackets below your skirts and pants.

hot to fold a sweater

 Sweater Smarts Even sweaters can hang if you’re careful. A hanger with a foam edge or foam cover will grip the shoulder area of a knit top and hold the garment without distortion. Use this method for lightweight and short-sleeved sweaters. Heavier or stretchier sweaters can also be hung this way:

To become a sweater origami artist:

1) Fold the sweater in half through the center front/center back and place it flat.

2) Place the hanger over the sweater with the hook at the underarm point.

3) Fold the body down over the hanger, and then fold the sleeve down over the body.

 The Steam Scene When you take off a garment (assuming it doesn’t require laundering) hang it in the bathroom before returning it to the closet. It will have a chance to air out, and steam from the shower will coax out wrinkles. Londa comments:  Europeans are famous for NOT washing their clothing all the time like we Americans do.  I blogged about this kind of recently.  We OVERWASH!  Let clothing air out before hanging back in the closet. 

 Dry Clean on a Dime Dry cleaning can add hundreds of dollars to your wardrobe costs. Cut way down on trips to the pros by using a home dry cleaning kit like Dryel (sold at grocery, drug and discount stores). Place soiled or wrinkled garments into the large plastic bag with a special moistened cleaner sheet. Tumble in the dryer for the specified time, remove promptly and hang. This gets rid of surface soil, wrinkles, perfume and even smoke odors.

 Pants Position Suspend pants by their hem edge from a clip hanger. The weight of the heavier waistband portion will pull downward on the garment, removing sit-down wrinkles more quickly. (Londa:  OMG – I never thought of that – BRILLIANT!) Speed the process even more by attaching a second hanger to the waistband edge for extra weight.

Wrinkle Prevention Clothes will wrinkle less when you sit correctly. If you sit down while wearing a slim skirt, the fabric will pull into tiny folds across your lap. Simply fold that excess fullness into one deep pleat across your tummy and – magic – far fewer wrinkles.

 Prevention for Pants Minimize pant wrinkles with a similar technique. Sit down, then slide slightly back into the chair. Rather than pulling the fabric tight in the inseam area, a bit of loose fabric will appear. Smooth that excess into a deep pleat as described above, and you’ll be able to stand up – even hours later – virtually wrinkle-free.

Accessories need organized storage and gentle care, too.

 Button Up Stop buttons from popping off with some easy preventative action. Fray Check, sold in fabric stores, is a clear liquid sealant. Apply a drop to the threads holding your buttons on and they are far less likely to work loose. A thin line of Fray Check along each buttonhole will stop annoying raveling there too.

Makeup Messes Lipstick on your collar – or any makeup on your clothes – can be a permanent stain in the making. I’ve had great success using my face wash to remove it. After all, the cleanser was formulated to remove makeup, right?

 Rapid Repair Get acquainted with Stitch Witchery – a fusible bonding agent sold by the yard in fabric stores. Cut a sheet of it into ¼” strips for a variety of uses. This is perfect if you find that your hem is coming loose. Just tuck a strip of Stitch Witchery between the fabric layers and iron over the area to fuse it together. Stitch Witchery is also great for tacking down floppy facings. Londa says:  Just don’t put it right at the edge of the facing and iron.  Doing that will embed the edge of the facing on the outside – UGHHH.  Place it back from the edge of the facing and do NOT press over the edge of the facing. 

Get the Hang of It When changing out your closet at the start of a new season, hook each hanger on the rod backwards (back-to-front instead of the usual front-to-back). At the end of the season any garment still hanging backwards hasn’t been worn even once, so it deserves special scrutiny before packing it away.  Londa says:  love this one – and need to do it myself.  

 Tie One On Keep your collection of scarves out in the open by hanging a length of oversized smooth plastic chain from your closet ceiling or doorway. Slide a scarf through every other link and you’ll be able to find the one you want instantly.

 Earring Organizer Egg cartons can transform a shallow drawer into customized earring storage – for free! Just cut away the carton top and add earrings – one pair per cubbyhole. Ice cube trays can work in a similar fashion.

 Shoe Savvy The reinforcing tips on high heels are notorious for wearing down quickly, which will cause damage to the leather part of the shoe if you aren’t careful. Get a head start by taking each new pair directly to the repair shop and having more durable replacement tips applied. You can also get a crescent-shaped reinforcement for under the toe to prevent early wear in that area too. For about $10 total you can at least double the life of that favorite pair of shoes.

 Scuff Stopper Conceal scuffs on leather shoes, belts and handbags with a permanent felt marker. Art stores carry a huge range of colors to match any shoe in your wardrobe.

YOUR TURN:

Comment with your favorite Closet Organization and Care Tips below.

My favorite wardrobe/clothing care products are at my website.  Check them out HERE.

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