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Get Your Dorm Closet Organized

Updated on August 28, 2015

Small spaces, such as dorm room closets, require extra thought and creativity in order to make them functional. To get the most out of a dorm closet, it should be organized so that the available space is used efficiently. This requires some initial planning, but investing time in the beginning will ensure that you have a closet that is convenient, accessible, and personalized to suit your specific needs.

Ideally, dorm closet organization begins before arriving on campus. Packing only useful and essential items is the key to maintaining a streamlined closet. Clothes that aren’t worn on a regular basis are only going to take up valuable real estate. Similarly, out-of-season items should be kept out of the closet. They can be stored away in luggage or in storage boxes until they’re needed.


Knowing what kinds of items will go in the closet helps narrow down your mini self storage and organizing supply needs. Careful planning is critical. This means taking inventory of your wardrobe and assessing how much space should be designated for hanging garments, how much is needed for folded items and for accessories such as shoes, purses, jewelry, and scarves. Ultimately, this will determine the proportion of hanging space versus shelf space that will go into the layout of your organized closet.

Once this has been determined, maximizing the space can begin. There are a number of budget self storage solutions available. If a lot of shelf space is needed, hanging space can be reduced by investing in some vertical or tiered hangers. If money is tight, repurposing soda can tabs that hold two hangers through the holes is a budget-friendly idea. S-hooks or chains are other low-cost options that work well.


If extra hanging space is required, it can be just as easy to create. Tension rods can be placed either below the existing rod or on the side walls of a closet. Another solution is to use ribbon or yarn to hang a dowel rod at a suitable distance from the existing rod, effectively doubling the hanging space available.

Keeping all your accessories together will ensure that they remain neat and organized. Shoes, for example, can be kept in a shoe organizer. There are plenty of options available, from shelf racks to cubbies, but if the closet floor is needed for storing boxes or baskets, one that hangs over the door or can slide under the bed might be preferable.

Hooks placed on a closet wall or door can serve a number of functions, from holding an outfit for the next day to serving as scarf, purse and belt storage. Baskets or clear storage boxes can also be used to store accessories.

When it comes to shelf space, higher-end alternatives can be installed with a little bit of work. A less expensive option is to purchase sturdy, stackable shelves that can be modified to suit changing needs. Hanging shelves are also a good option, but can be less sturdy.

A small space won’t cramp your style if it’s organized to meet your needs. With a little forethought and some creativity, your dorm closet can be a comfortable place to house all your favorite things.


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