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A guided tour of my newly tidy wardrobe and some tips on how to organise your own

the wardrobe

This is my wardrobe. A horrible fake plastic wood thing left behind by the flat’s previous owners but fairly big – it fit both their clothes when we viewed the flat. But now it’s all mine and Dave has his own two door one. I have abused this situation of relative abundance of space and the poor thing was stuffed full of stuff in a random order. Despite cutting back a lot on my charity shopping (I never bought much in the way of new stuff in the first place), clothes seemed to be unfolding themselves and actually multiplying in there.

So drastic action was necessary. I filled two massive bin bags, and in return I have a place for everything for the first time in forever. To show off the fruits of my labour, here’s some photos, followed by some top tips in case you feel inspired!

storage boxes
First up, the boxes on top of the wardrobe. These are where all the stuff in the ‘random’ category ended up in previously. In the new shiny world order though, the boxes contain:
green – pyjamas and gym clothes
white – vintage stuff that is not regularly worn and some stuff that my mum’s stuff from the 1960s and 1970s which either doesn’t fit me and I hope to pass on to my (future) daughters or that are just too weird for regular wear.
multi-coloured – scarves and hats, my crinoline and my wigs.
see through – coats and jackets

This is the shelf in the main part of the wardrobe. From left to right: Jeans, casual trousers, work trousers.

skirts, shirts and jackets
The hangers in the main part. From left to right: Skirts in no particular order, shirts, cardies, jackets, one of those organiser thingies with my belts on.

tshirts, vests and short sleeved tops
Underneath that is a big box with short sleeved tops and sweater vests and tshirts. Next to that a small box with my vests/tank tops.

long sleeved tops
The drawer underneath contains all my long sleeved tops and light jumpers

The door on the right shows the top shelf with my fascinators and the dresses that are too dressy for day wear. The hanger has the rest of the dresses, with casual ones on the left and work ones on the right. Underneath the dresses there is a shoe box with my silk scarves.

long necklaces
Finally, on the outside of the wardrobe, my long beads. Other jewellery, underwear, shoes and bags are stored elsewhere. Maybe I’ll show you another time.

What do you think? Pretty good isn’t it? Everything in its right place!

Top tips for getting rid of stuff:
* If you haven’t worn it in years, you probably won’t. Get rid of it!
* Try things on. If it doesn’t fit you, it probably wont anytime soon.
* If it’s extremely worn it can go.
* If its nice but not you, pass it on. It’s good karma!
* If in doubt, be ruthless. The fact that you have a wardrobe full of random shit probably means that you’re the kind of person who has no problem finding things. If at any point in the future you suddenly feel the urge to wear something similar after all, you’ll probably find something similar in the charity shops, and if not there, the actual shops.
* The exception to this is good quality vintage. I tend to err on the side of caution with these kinds of items since they are impossible to replace. Hence the white box of not quite right vintage.

Top tips for organising:
* I find that by clothing type works best.
* Some people will recommend organising by colour as well, but I find that that only works when you have a lot of stuff.
* Similarly, some people will recommend having separate sections for business, casual, evening and, sometimes, holiday wear. I don’t really segment my clothes like that, the boundaries are much more fluid. The only place where I divided work and play was for the trousers and dresses, but even then, that was within the overall clothing type category.
* And really, anyone who has a separate holiday wardrobe is probably not the kind of person to organise their own wardrobe!
* In the UK climate, I don’t see much of a point in swapping things round by season, although I’ll put my winter coats away once it gets warm and replace with lighter jackets.
* drawers and boxes need to be super organised. If you don’t know what box/drawer something is in, you’ll end up rifling though everything, and messing it all up. Trust me, I know from experience!
* Flat drawers are better for folded up things, deep drawers can be used for stuff that can be jumbled up like tights. I used to keep my tshirts in the deep drawer that now holds my underwear and within two minutes all my careful folding would be destroyed.

That’s all I can think of!


Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Alli 18 January 2010, 5:22 pm

    Your wardrobe looks so lovely and organized! I bet it's much easier to find everything now. Thanks for the good tips – especially like the one about deep drawers destroying folding. It's so true, and yet I'd never thought to switch it up…

  • katrina 18 January 2010, 6:21 pm

    right on! your closet size is similar to mine. i agree with your organization tips — i used most of them in a recent wardrobe purge. i purged half of my clothes and shoes prior to the new year. being ruthless was the technique for me.

    i love all the textures and patterns in your clothes.

  • FB @ FabulouslyBroke.com 18 January 2010, 6:26 pm

    That looks wonderful

    I am definitely the type who loves to hang everything, so folding and boxes won't work for me… but it looks great!

    Especially since I am on a year-long shopping ban right now

  • Teenysparkles 18 January 2010, 6:46 pm

    Great post! Love all the patterns and colour…!

  • Alyssa 18 January 2010, 7:15 pm

    That octopus jewelry hanger is really, really neat. Where did you get it from? I have a little jewelry hanger I made myself, but I'm looking for a better way to handle my necklaces.

    Thanks for sharing this post!

  • Oranges And Apples 18 January 2010, 9:58 pm

    FB – if I had enough space i would hang everything too!

    Alyssa – it was a gift from my mum, so my guess is that it's from a knick knack shop in Germany.

  • Style Eyes Fashion Blog 18 January 2010, 10:01 pm

    Thanks for these tips. I so need to get organised. I have been considering a way to organise my necklaces for a while now. Yours looks so great, I will now get on with it.

  • Clockwatcher 19 January 2010, 12:11 am

    congrats–your wardrobe looks great and thanks for the tips. my closet is so full, i've had to get those multi-tiered hangers for pants and skirts.

  • Eyeliah 19 January 2010, 4:37 am

    thanks for the peek!

  • C 19 January 2010, 11:28 pm

    "* If in doubt, be ruthless. The fact that you have a wardrobe full of random shit probably means that you're the kind of person who has no problem finding things. If at any point in the future you suddenly feel the urge to wear something similar after all, you'll probably find something similar in the charity shops, and if not there, the actual shops."

    So true! I plan to implement that tip asap. Thanks for sharing.

  • Don 20 January 2010, 3:53 am

    My address is…OK, I will do my own wardrobe. Thanks for the tips!

  • Rebecca 20 January 2010, 4:07 pm

    Looks like you did a wonderful job of organizing! I need to take your advice on getting rid of stuff: I have a tendency to cling if I'm unsure! 🙂

  • Carla | Green and Chic 23 January 2010, 12:17 am

    Wow, you did a great job! I really need to do something similar to organize my clothes. I don't have a lot of clothing, but my closet is about 24" wide – not large enough to even hang my coats and jackets.

  • Cafe Fashionista 29 January 2010, 4:25 am

    You should totally be a professional closet organizer – this post is fabulous! I agree…if you haven't worn it in years, toss it! I have held on to far many pieces of clothing for years and years, only to finally come to the conclusion that I didn't need to keep it for eternity if I wasn't going to wear it!! 🙂

  • SF Indie Fashion 2 February 2010, 6:39 am

    Such useful tips! Great job organizing your closet!

  • two birds 11 February 2011, 4:50 pm

    ok, i NEED that octopus jewelry holder. love it!

  • MrsBossa 11 February 2011, 6:07 pm

    Impressive!! I love that you have a shelf for fascinators.

    My wardrobe is organised by item: shirts, cardigans, skirts, trousers…etc, then by colour. It's something I got teased about when I started university – that and my Jethro Tull LP collection.