Closet Design

4 Reasons to Organize your Clothes by Category

I have heard my people mumble to themselves as they try to decide which way to organize their closet. So which way is the best way? By color? By season? In capsules? Having watched my people struggle through them all, my vote is by category. Here are my top 4 reasons why: 

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1.    When you have your clothing separated by category you will get more use out of each item. For example, if you hang a suit together, you will grab it and wear it as a set all the time, forgetting that the top and bottom can be worn with other items to create a completely new outfit!

2.    When you are not searching for a top squished and hiding between two bottoms, you will be able to see ALL of the mix and match possibilities in your wardrobe more easily. In this way you know exactly where to look when you want to find a particular piece....take a shirt to the pant section (or vice versa) and decide what you feel like wearing. 

3.    You don't have to worry about what works for which season! Who cares! I know when I am cold in the summer....I want my sweaters close by. I wear tanks in the winter as a layering piece. When organized by category you know exactly where items are at all times.

4.    It will save you money! You will always know exactly how much of each category you have. No more buying a piece that you already have buried in your closet somewhere while thinking "I am sure I have one of these already!"   

 Now keep in mind that this is just my opinion based on all the closets and struggles I have seen but there is value and merit to other ways of organizing.

Let me know what your favorite is!



Sweaters: To Hang or Not to Hang

Sweaters: To hang or not to hang?

I think this question is the easiest one to answer.

Sweater should be folded. Period.

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Why you may ask?  I can’t tell you how many times I have watched a sweater be put on a hanger and the weight of the material stretches the sweater until it’s deformed!

Another thing I have seen happen is that people use a thin hanger and when they go to wear the piece it has little bump in the shoulder which is very hard to get rid of.

Solution. Fold your sweater and knits to keep them in the best shape.

Has this ever happened to you?


The Man Closet

I must admit that I am not an expert in the “man closet” because most of my people have been women or couples sharing a closet. When a man and woman share a closet, it’s cliché, but true, that the woman usually gets her way and the closet turns out to be on the more feminine side.  I do know that the man closets I have seen have a distinct and consistent look to them.

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. You can feel the masculine vibe and here’s how I think you accomplish it:

1-      Dark rich colors:  Where as a woman may choose a softer color or even white, you will often find dark, heavy wood in a man’s closet.

2-      Absence of detail:  Rather than a decorative panel, mirror or glass on a drawer front, a man’s closet will often have clean, straight lines.

3-      Less Decoration:  You will find less memorabilia, collectibles and extraneous items in a man’s closet where a “girly closet” may have photos, flowers and decorative items.

4-      Symmetrical lines: Since men have fewer differing lengths or clothes (usually only 2 or 3), when you look at their closet it seems more symmetrical and organized then a woman’s which can have 3 lengths of dresses, 2 of skirts and even varying pant lengths.

Now of course, this is all in my own experience based on what I have seen. Men, just like women, have differing tastes and styles and therefore will have a closet to match.

Whatever that is, it’s perfect.

Starting Fresh

It’s that time again! What are you ready to take on this year?

This year I decided that I am going to try to write a closet “guide” book of sorts. I learned in a marketing class that the easiest and quickest way to do that is to use blogs as your chapters! So that is my plan and you shall be my first readers!

To make it a little more interesting, I have created a character named Mirranda to tell stories about what she sees people struggling with in their closets all the time and maybe even divulge a few fun secrets from over her many years of observation.

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I am sure some of these tips will sound familiar to you…..but we all need reminders now and then to keep us on track!

I look forward to this new adventure and will appreciate any feedback you have!

Let’s get started.  

Chapter 1 Starting Fresh:

You know what I notice? And I’ll bet this applies to you too: people have closets FULL of clothes and they wear the same things all the time. Those poor unworn pieces of clothing get very lonely and insecure. It makes me very sad to see them go unnoticed so I want to share an exercise to bring more attention to them! Will you take the time to play?       

  • STEP 1:  Make sure all of hangers the hangers in your closet are facing in the same direction, Then, make sure all the piles of clothing that you have (whether in drawers or on shelves) and neatly folded.

  • STEP 2: Once you wear a piece of clothing, turn the hanger backwards or put the folded piece back at the bottom of the pile.

  • STEP 3:  Commit to only wearing new things until you have turned all your hangers or rotated all your piles.

Now, I know what will happen along the way.......you will get to a piece and not "feel like" wearing it, or it doesn't "feel right" etc. Take note of those pieces and if it happens more than once...it's time to let it go!

Who's with me on this? It's a pretty easy exercise to play and you can weed through your wardrobe at the same time. 

 Remember: Someone else will probably love to wear whatever you choose to give away!  

 

The Corner Rules

Many of my clients ask me "How do you use the corners in a closet". Well, in my experience there is only one EFFECTIVE way to use corners but there are many options out there. 

Take a look: 

#1 - The Angled Corner Unit: With that small an opening....how will you ever know what is back there..never mind how you get to it! Once you hang clothes on the rods they will cover the opening even further and will make that access even more difficult!  

#2- Curved or Corner Shelves: Are not terrible when there is no hanging beside them but again, you will have items stuck far back in a corner which will probably never get used.

#3- Curved Rods: You can see for yourself in this photo that they are not a great use of space. Items can not hang the full range of the rod.

#4- The Lazy Susan: This works, sure...but again if you have anything hanging next to it, it will rub and hinder the spin of the shelves. Clothing folded in rectangles do not fit easily on a round shelf. This is a decent solution for shoes or purses.  

#5- Rods in 2 Directions: This is the most common use of corners and it does not work at all. It is physically impossible to hang the length of both rods. The shoulders of the clothing just smashes into each other.

#6- The Spiral Rod: Oh Yeah, this one is cool for sure but it takes up a ton of space. You can actually get more pieces of clothing on a regular rod then on this gadget. 

So what is my corner of choice? The Access Space:

The Access Space makes use of one wall completely and then leaves room for the clothes on the opposite wall to hang properly. When the correct amount of space is allowed, not only can you see the clothing in the corner, but you can easily reach it as well. 

I'm not saying the other ideas are wrong, just that in my 20 plus years o experience, this seems to work the best.

Do you have your favorite? Please share your thoughts!  

The 3 A's for a Great Closet Makeover

Normally we follow steps 1-2-3 or A-B-C but in my experience you need to follow the 3 A's for a great closet makeover!

ACCESSIBLE CLOTHING: This may seem obvious but if your don't really stop to think about what clothing you are storing where, you may end up having to close the closet door to get your favorite shirt while the gown you wear on occasion is always at hand's reach! Make sure the clothing you wear the most often are the ones that are the easiest to get to everyday!

ADDITION OF SPACE:  Organizing anything is great but when it comes to organizing a closet, gaining more space should be at the top of the To Do List! There is not much point to simply moving stuff around when the possibility of adding extra hanging rods is just a hardware store away. Think about creating double rods, adding shelving and getting more stuff in that same old space!  

ADJUSTABLE PARTS: If you are going to invest your hard earned money into a closet makeover....Make it count! Whether you hire a closet design expert or you do it yourself, make sure you get an adjustable system. Your shelves and rods should be able to move with your changing needs. Styles change, taste changes  lifestyles change and your closet should be able to change with you!

 

An organized closet helps start your day off right! Less frustration, less time wasted, less searching for items and more time for YOU in the morning!

Do You LOVE What you do?

I LOVE what I do for a living....I mean I REALLY LOVE IT! I know not everyone can say that about their job! I feel blessed. I found something I love to do and I am good at it. Who could ask for more.

My career path didn't start off this way...that is for sure! I actually studied fashion merchandising and went to work in the fashion industry when I was finished with school. BIG MISTAKE! The work environment was awful. I mean, people would scream at each other at the top of their lungs. These were not life and death situations worth cursing other people out! I was miserable!

Now you may ask, how did I go from that.......to career happiness???? LUCK! I was in the right place at the right time and Closet Design fell into my lap. My designer friend was working on the new showroom for California Closets and they needed someone to work there. Sure! Why not I said! And the rest is history.  

It is simple. I am organized. I am a people person. I am creative and I like to make other people happy! I was a perfect fit. And the best part........I WAS TAUGHT EVERYTHING I needed to know to succeed.  After many years there, it was me who was teaching the new designers and I realized that I love doing that too!!  

 

I was able to help new designers hone their skills, develop their instincts and create incredible designs. All that they learned help make their clients happy Every Day! When you design a closet that someone uses and loves every day....you simplify their lives, reduce their stress and save them money! How many other jobs can accomplish that for people? 

 

THAT is what got me to where I am today. The love of teaching and wanting to share my knowledge. I have done it for many years by educating my clients as I design for them and now I am taking it one step further and offering a FREE online Facebook event to teach YOU the basics of closet design.

 

If you don't LOVE what you do! Think about making a change or learning a new skill!  The closet design industry is growing and you can hop on board! EASILY! If you are even the slightest bit curious, come hang out with me for a few hours on June 26th (1pm-4pmEST) and see what it's all about! Just click the link below to join the event! I look forward to seeing you there!  https://www.facebook.com/events/481869085336600/

 

If you are even more curious and excited......I also offer on line classes to teach you how to be a PROFESSIONAL closet designer. Check out the video below! 

I am so excited and grateful to share my knowledge with you! Please feel free to contact me with any questions or comments!

 

4 Steps & 2 Secrets To Custom Designing Your Own Closet

Do you ever look at the beautifully designed closets in all the magazines...and drool just a little? Does your mind go to....... how do they do that or I wish it was affordable? Or quite simply to I WANT ONE?

Well, let me tell you a secret.  All the fluff, cool lighting and fancy gadgets are not what makes  a well designed custom closet.  It makes a pretty closet and a beautiful space but......that doesn't mean it is actually a functional one.  I have seen gorgeous closets, where the rods were placed too low and there was clothing dragging on the floor or some shelves were cut at a cool angle but empty, because nothing could fit on them properly . I have often been unimpressed!   

So what does warrant the title "A well designed custom closet"? Not fancy materials, not pretty pictures and not big name brand companies.  YOU can create your own custom designed plan and build it however YOU want to.  These four steps will tell you how: 

 

  1. TAKE DETAILED MEASUREMENTS:  This first step seems simple enough but it is the most crucial. Imagine designing and ordering your dream closet and having taken a measurement incorrectly.....the pieces won't fit and you will have wasted your money. Take an accurate measurement of the wall(s) that you will be building on. Look for obstructions such as light switches, plugs, vents etc and note where they fall on the walls. Once you have everything measured, draw the space on a piece of graph paper using 1/2" scale (1/2" = 1'). 
  2. ASSESS AND ANALYZE YOUR WARDROBE: Yes, this is meant to be as detailed as it sounds! You need to count how many pieces you have, measure how long they hang, as well as how wide and how high items are when they are stored folded.You want to make sure that you do not leave your clothes dragging on the floor or create shelves that will only fit 1 1/2 pairs of shoes instead of 2! Make notes of how much long vs short items you own, how many piles and how many pairs of shoes. Create paper "sections" (for example 3 feet long hanging, 8 piles of sweaters takes 2 feet of space) to match the same scale as your graph paper. 
  3. MAKE SURE IT WILL ALL FIT: Remember that mess takes up less space than organization.  If you want to move all of your shoes off the floor, they will take space away from something else! Using your scaled floor plan, and the cut "sections" lay out the space that will be used for each category you noted.  Remember that you can double hang short items or add extra shelves above a rod. If you find that you are quickly running out of space then you will have to come up with compromises or give something up!
  4. PROPER PLACEMENT: Once you know what you will be keeping in your new space, make sure that you place the sections where they make the most sense. Go back to the obstructions you measured.  Will you be covering a plug? Will your drawers open? Will you have easy access to the clothing you wear the most? Once you are comfortable with where everything is.......you have YOUR very own custom made closet!

The only thing left to do is order your creation and have someone install it for you!  Easy peasy right?  

 

Are you thinking "Is she crazy? That's a lot of work! OR I can't do all that"! I know, it can seem overwhelming........well.....I have another secret for you: There are other options!

 

First, I have created a service which will take the 4 steps out of your hands and put them into mine! All you have to do is fill out some forms, shop and arrange installation. Does that take some of the stress away?

Second, I have created and on line course that will teach you these steps in detail! Imagine, being able to not only create your own custom closet.......but perhaps start a new side business of your own!

 

I have been doing closet design for so long and I am delighted to help pass the skills onto others!  Feel free to contact me with any questions and I would love to hear your thoughts and feedback in the comments! 

4 Ways To Bring Out The "Girly" In Your Closet

I am in No Way a "girly girl".  I am not into make up, jewelry or high heeled shoes but I do love my clothes.  I am such a  true believer that your closet should be a showcase for your clothes, that I created my whole career around it!  Your beautiful clothes should have a beautiful space to live!    

Of course, beauty is in the eye of the beholder. Some people love clean simple lines. Others love bolder statements of style but none of that matters as long as the person loves their space.  I have seen it all.  I have had clients with library ladders in their closets, pull-out sleeper sofas, a bar, television and work out equipment......but my favorite spaces have always been the ones I would call "girly".  Pretty, sweet, warm, cozy, all of those adjectives can apply. I have only day dreamed of having a closet big enough to "girlify" but have thought a lot about what elements I would include.  Here they are. The 4 ways to bring out the "girly" in your closet:

COLOUR:  Colour can add so much character to a space.  Add color in the units you use, a chair or pouffe or in art on any spare wall space. Choose colours that you love, That make you feel warm and fuzzy and that make you happy.  Matching is optional as far as I am concerned! The more fun you have with it the better! 

LIGHTING: Lighting can mean a beautiful ceiling fixture, a crazy table lamp or a multitude of candles.  You can create an ambiance that reflects your mood just by playing with the lighting. If you have a plain lampshade...though a scarf over it and add even more colour to the space!

FLOWERS:  Real or fake, flowers just add warmth to a room. If you can invest in real flowers you will have the added bonus of a wonderful scent! Flowers make people happy (especially girls/women). 

BLING: Now Bling can take you anywhere.......from crystals, to statuettes, to jewelry on the wall, antique dolls, vintage bags....the imagination can go wild. Experiement with bling to bring out the dreamiest part of yourself and create a space that is joyful.

PLAY...PLEASE PLAY with your spaces.  Organizing can be fun!  Enjoy!