Are walk-in closets overrated?

Walk-in closets are wide open spaces with shelves, extra hanging rods for clothes and lots of drawers. They can be customized to your specific needs.  For the most part walk-in closets are a must have in any new development and condo. People seek out the closet and they can even be a deal-breaker when purchasing a new home. Having a walk-in closet in your home makes you feel great. It feels luxurious. Its a sign of social status and means you have “it” together. Yes! You made it baby!

If you enjoy spending a LOT of time in your closet and use it as a luxurious fashionista’s dressing room it will function for you just great. You will benefit for having it in your home. But for most people I meet and work with, I find walk-in closets overrated.

I have come to learn from my experience as a professional organizer helping many individuals to de-clutter and organize their closet, that this kind of space doesn’t necessarily mean they gain extra square footage. I’ve discovered that in many homes, one can actually lose sight of how to use the master closet properly. The open space in the middle of the closet is mostly unused.  In fact, if not used correctly, it can even be detrimental to your closet organization. People will use this middle space to dump everything and create an avalanche of clothes or shoes. They find themselves buried under their piles and become so overwhelmed that they need help straightening it all out.

Don’t get me wrong, I do like the fact that these closets are open and spacious and created with the lifestyle of the modern man and women in mind. Having a walk-in closet is an obvious solution to can keep your clothes in order and tucked away from sight. Its a place to access what you need and the place to dress for success. However, it takes effort, will power and discipline to keep that open space free and clear of clutter. What should you do if you have such a room?

Walkin closets

  • First, make sure you are keeping only those clothes you love and use often
  • Keep clothes that fit and donate clothes that don’t fit properly.
  • Limit the kind of clothes you are holding on to for special occasions, like the tuxedo or evening gown for a formal event.
  • Use the best hangers to make clothes look uniform and tidy.
  • Designate a spot for the hamper and don’t let it overflow.
  • Do your laundry. fold, hang up and put clothes back in their place.
  • Remind yourself just because you see an open space it doesn’t mean you have to fill it up with more.
  • Stick to the boundaries of this room. If you need more space then consider adding a piece of storage to accommodate everything else
  • Hire a professional organizer to help you.

In the end, ask yourself. “How much do you need to own to make you happy?” Realize you have chosen to live in a home with this kind of closet. Its a closet filled with clothes, keepsakes and other wanted items. How cool is that? Yes, that’s cool!  Why not be thankful for that. Then ask yourself how much do you own that makes you feel overwhelmed?

An organizer’s take on the Movie “Up” by Pixlar

I don’t usually recommend a movie as part of a tip for organizing but somehow Pixar’s animation “Up” has a quality of emotion that really speaks to people who are attached to their “things”.  I suggest you watch this movie.  This is our tip for today.

When trying to clear out clutter, for one reason or another it is difficult if not impossible to do it on one’s own, let alone without any motivation. We put meaning and importance on the things we own based on a memory.  We have keepsakes to remind us of the people and experiences we cherish for better or worse. With out giving the whole story away, in the movie “Up” there was a sweetness in Carl and Ellie’s relationship and who they are as a couple was easily identified with their home. They had a purpose and a plan. Among other themes, this story is about moving forward and finding a new purpose in life, just when you think you don’t have one anymore. The part to notice in this film is at the end. “Carl Fredrickson” finds that letting go of the things that dragged him back was easier because he made a choice to pursue a new goal and adventure. I simply love this movie.

http://youtu.be/YOOIK0baLvM