One of the biggest challenges I personally face as a busy momma with 2 crazy boys in the house, is keeping a tidy closet. Not just my closet, but my kids and husbands as well. There is nothing I hate more than going to look for an outfit and either not being able to find it OR not being able to decide what to wear because things are just a mess and I'm too busy to sort through mess to look good. Sometimes that means putting on the same outfit I wore the day before just to get the act of getting dressed over and done with. If this is you, read my post on how to make it simpler for yourself and your family – declutter your closet.
Having Trouble Finding Clothes Even Though Your Closet Is Overflowing With Clothing?
Our mornings are super hectic. I have to get 2 kids out of the house by 7:30am. The LAST thing I need on my plate is having a messy closet where I can't find any of my clothes. In fact, I used to be so disorganized as a mother that I folded all the kid's clothes and my husband and I lived out of laundry baskets...for years. Can you believe that?! It was THE WORST.
I couldn't find a matching sock, and the pants I wanted to find were never the ones I ended up wearing because I couldn't find them. So frustrating. My shirts and sweaters were always wrinkled and honestly, I feel like I looked like a giant mess whenever I left my home.
I am so happy to have found a solution to my clothing problems and I want to share them with you.
The solution is to organize that closet - AANNNDDD keep up with the laundry.
This process includes removing all the clothing that shouldn't be in your closet and keeping only the items that "spark joy" - as Marie Kondo would say.
How amazing would it feel if you opened your closet doors and felt joy and happiness looking at your organized space? You can find your outfits with ease and get creative with your style because you might just have a few extra minutes to do so.
How To Declutter The Closet
Decluttering the closet was one of my first steps of getting my entire home organized. My goal was to create more space for things that brought me joy and get rid of the extra stuff that was in the way. Why spend extra time tidying and cleaning clothes that I don't enjoy? Seemed like a waste of time to me.
I like to organize my home in the afternoons. My kids have some "down time" where I let them watch some television and play their video games. I love this time because I find time for doing things that make me happy. It doesn't work out in my favor every day, but most days I can get stuff accomplished.
I really enjoyed working on my own space that was manageable enough to complete in one afternoon.
I could choose the clothing that I wanted to keep or donate without any judgment or need to explain to anyone why I made the choice I did. This was like a practice round before I went ahead and decluttered the kids and husbands closets later on.
My husband was not really on board with my decluttering and I'm pretty sure he thought I was just being a housewife who needed something to do to fulfill my time at home. I didn't really want to push him into my decluttering journey because I knew he would resist, but I also knew that when he saw that I was following through and enjoying my decluttering journey he ended up joining in and helping me with the rest of the house. He even tackled the basement over the course of a week! That was a big disaster I was going to leave until the spring, and now I don't have to deal with it at all. WIN.
Find JOY In Your Closet
You deserve to get dressed each day in clothes that give you confidence and joy.
I know that I always feel better when I look put together and organized. My day usually goes a lot more smoothly when I have a good start to my personal morning. I find I am a less grumpy mommy when trying to get the kids out of the house and I'm even less forgetful because I have fewer decisions to make in the morning.
It all starts with the closet.
Getting Started With The Decluttering Process
Step 1 - Get Into The Decluttering Mindset
I like to make sure that my mind is prepared for the project that I am about to embark on. This means I look at the scope of the project and get prepared for the hour or 2 that it will take me to tackle. Taking a big look at the mess also gives me a lot of motivation to get my shit under control.
Make sure the kids are distracted by activities that won't require much of your guidance so you can have full-on peace and quiet. I know what you're thinking, "dream on! My kids are hell raisers and I won't be able to get that quiet time to work on my closet." That's ok! If they come and get into your space while you declutter, you can explain to them what you are up to and maybe get them to help out.
Don't stress out if you can't finish the project you started in one go either. It's definitely best to complete your decluttering so you don't have a big mess in the middle of your room while you tidy, but also you need to be mommy first and foremost.
If you have occupied the kids and gotten into the mindset of decluttering, turn on some music and have a little fun.
We have an Echo Dot that plays my favorite tunes for me and I love that I can use voice command to switch songs and adjust the volume without stopping what I am doing.
Step 2 - Piling All Items Onto Bed
This may seem counter-intuitive, you want to tidy up, but first, throw all your stuff onto a big messy pile on your bed.
But hear me out, piling everything in one big mountain makes you aware of all the items that own and helps you clearly see the scope of work that is in front of you.
When you are removing all the clothing from your closet, you may come across items that do not belong in a closet. If it is not an item of clothing, or just plain doesn't belong on your body then you should rehome it, recycle it, or donate it. You can also sell items that are in good condition for a little bit of extra cash. Remember that closets are for clothing and not miscellaneous junk. Everything that does not belong needs to find a new home.
Step 3 - Clean Your Closet
Wipe down your closet thoroughly. This may mean vacuuming the floors, cleaning dusty surfaces and wiping down other grime and dirt you may have in there. Make sure all internal drawers and shelves are nice and clean. You can line all of your drawers with a nice contact paper before you put your clothes back in as well.
Step 4 - Sort Through Your Clothing
Look at all those clothes on your bed. It may look intimidating but don't worry, you can do this!
Take each item of clothing one at a time and hold it. Does this item make you happy? When was the last time you wore it? Is it a pretty versatile item that can go with a lot of other items in your wardrobe?
Go ahead and try it on if you aren't sure the item fits you. Your body probably has gone through a lot of changes since you last purchased this item and you may not fit it properly anymore. -Thanks pregnancy!-
Is the item still in good condition? Perhaps it is worn out, misshapen or stained. These are good indications that your garment should be thrown out, or recycled if possible.
Create three piles while you are sorting:
If you are not sure about the item, put it aside and come back to it later.
Step 5 - Deal With The Clothing Piles
You just spent a good amount of time creating 3 piles. Now it is time to deal with those piles.
Throw the garbage pile into the trash bin outside so it's not in your way.
Put a box of donation items into your car so you can donate it next time you go out.
If you leave these items near your closet you may never deal with them and they will end up back in with your regular clothing and you'll have a giant mess to deal with once again.
If you feel you have good quality items that you want to sell online, then create a box for those items and try to sell them as quickly as possible. I know sometimes I fall into a trap when selling items. If my items don't sell fast enough, I just end up putting them back where I found them...thus wasting all that time and effort I took to declutter in the first place.
I have a rule now if I'm selling something online and it doesn't leave the home in a week, it goes to donation.
This way I keep the clutter I wanted out, out.
Step 6 - Put Your Clothes Back Into The Closet
If you've made it this far, congratulations! You've taken a big step into decluttering your closet.
First of all, hang up all your clothing that requires hanging. I would suggest investing in some good quality hangers to create a clean cohesive look and avoid damaging your clothing.
If you have smaller items that require separation, use boxes, or drawer dividers to separate these items.
If you can, hang up as much as possible so that more of your wardrobe is visible. If you can’t immediately see it when you’re in a rush in the morning then you are most likely to forget it’s there.
Step 7 - Store Away Clothing That You Arent Wearing But Keeping
Sometimes you have clothing that you want to keep but can't wear at the moment such as maternity wear or winter clothing when it's summertime.
I suggest grabbing a nice looking storage box like this and store all of these "wear for later" items there. You can put this box under your bed, in the closet, you just organized (you have extra space now I bet!).
Step 8 - Adjustments
Now you know what's in your closet, it's time to create some adjustments. Think about your daily schedule and make sure you have enough clothing and outfit combinations that match your daily needs.
If you have a lot of work clothing but you are currently on maternity leave, then you probably won't be wearing any blazers or silk tops when you spend your day keeping a tiny human alive. In this case, put your most comfortable clothing up front and center so you can access the clothing that you NEED in a quick and efficient manner. Goodness knows you need to find a clean shirt a few times a day with a baby in the house.
Go through everything that’s hanging up and see if you can identify some common themes. Are you attracted to certain styles, brands or colors? This will help you if you need to go shopping so you know what to focus on to make shopping easier.
Step 9 - Maintenance
Keep up with a clean closet by keeping up with the laundry and putting it away as soon as possible. Laundry is probably one of the most hated tasks in the home, but it is truly the best one to keep up with because clothing can create a lot of chaos.
When you are looking for an outfit, you shouldn't have a need to throw thing onto the floor when searching because ideally, you should be able to find everything and anything super quick and easy now that you are decluttered. This will keep the mess down in your closet on its own.
The only thing you have to do is making sure you put your clothing away properly when doing your laundry.
Decluttering doesn't have to be a burden and it is't about putting your family to work and making everyone miserable. Instead, it brings in focus to what brings you happiness in life and helps you get rid of the items that you simply don't need.
The point of this post is to provide guidance on your journey and help you declutter your closet. This simple process can help you gain clarity in your daily life and help you gain confidence in your daily routines.
The most important part of this process is to keep in mind that now you have more space in your closet, it is not time to go shopping and fill your closet back up. We don't want that clutter to come back and make you do this process all over again!
I would recommend going through your closet at the start of every new season, just to update your items and declutter seasonal stuff.
Time To Enjoy Your Closet
I'm hoping this article inspired you to declutter your closet. I hope you love your clothing and your clean closet and are looking forward to choosing your daily outfits.
As mom's a lot of our time is spent looking after little people and husbands and we often forget to look after ourselves. Do this for YOU.
I did this with my closet and continued on with the rest of the house as time permitted and boy am I glad I did. I have MORE time now to play with my kids and I'm actually on top of my laundry. This alone saves my sanity.
More helpful information
If organizing and decluttering is interesting to you check out some of my other top posts for the rest of your home.
Let me know how you get on and share this article with your friends so they can try it too!