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How to Declutter Your Bedroom Closet or Wardrobe

Updated on March 28, 2014

Many people think that in order to organize your closet you have to totally empty it, sort, trash, donate and then put the remaining items back. Most of us don’t have a complete day to do that. If you wait until you have many hours to work on your closet, chances are you won’t start. Break your closet into smaller parts and work on one part at a time.

Just because you have a large closet, doesn’t mean you have to fill it. Don’t wait until your closet is so stuffed full you can’t put anything else in.

Firstly, don’t start on your closet if your bedroom is a mess. Tidy your bedroom first and then tidy your closet. While you are tidying your closet you will need to utilize some of the space in your bedroom and you can’t do that is your bedroom is a mess. So, make sure your bedroom is reasonably under control before you tackle your closet.

What does the ideal closet look like? Everything should be something you want or need and it should be easy to access. If you are changing any shelving, don’t put doors or drawers inside your closet. You should be able to walk into your closet and see everything at a glance, and not have to open lots of little doors when looking for something.

Start with 3 boxes labeled put away, give away, throw away. Or use 3 paper grocery bags. When the throw away bag is full it can go straight into the garbage can. The give away bag can be taken straight to your local thrift store, or left on the curb on the next pick up day. If you have a lot to put away, give away and throw away then paper grocery bags may not be big enough and you will need boxes.

Have a small box labeled miscellaneous. While you are tidying your closet, feel free to put things in this box. Later when your closet is neat and tidy, you may want to go through this box and give some items homes.

Look at your closet. Divide it into 3, 4 or 5 sections. Attack one section at a time. Try to do one section a day on consecutive days. That way you will be more inspired than if you leave weeks between sorting sections of your closet. One section may be a shelf, or a group of shelves. Another section may be all the hanging clothes, another may be the floor.

Don’t keep what you don’t use. The things you know you don’t use should be the first things to get rid of.

Don’t keep clothes that are way too small that fit you when you were a teenager and will never fit you ever again. Keep clothes that are one size too big and one size too small, but don’t keep 2 or more sizes smaller than your current size. If you really do slim down to 2 sizes less than your current size, you will really enjoy buying new clothes and not having to wear what you wore many years ago.

If you haven’t worn something for over a year, chances are you won’t wear it in the next year either and you need to get rid of it. If you think you will wear it, wear it today. Then you will remember how it doesn’t quite fit and the reason why you’ve not worn it for so long.

If you have one long rod in your closet that you hang your clothes from, consider getting some closet organizers. Shoe organizers are particularly useful for organizing things other than shoes. There are many closet organizers available today, browse online to see what may suit your needs. Get rid of lots of stuff before buying any storage solutions. With less stuff in your closet it will be easy to see what you need to buy.

If you have a long shelf and your piles of stuff fall into each other, consider buying some shelf dividers. This is an especially useful way to store sweaters, as you don’t want to put sweaters on hangers.

Try and keep the floor clear. A closet feels so much better if the floor is clear.

Is your closet light enough? If it’s a walk in closet and it’s too dark you will never be motivated to declutter. 

Don’t use your closet for storage of non clothes items such as Christmas decorations. Put them in the garage or attic.

If you always replace your clothes at one end of the closet, then ask yourself how long the clothes at the other end of the closet have been sitting there not being used.

When you buy something new, get rid of something old. If you buy three items of clothing, get rid of 3 or more similar items.

Declutter regularly, try and remove something from your house every day.


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    • oceansnsunsets profile image

      Paula 2 years ago from The Midwest, USA

      These are some great tips, thanks for sharing. You touch on a lot of the reasons that I think I hold on to things for too long. Clothes and shoes can be expensive, kind of like an investment. For whatever reason, we talk ourselves into saving something that might fit in the future, but it isn't really practical. I appreciated the great reminders!

    • lucille12 profile image

      lucille12 2 years ago

      If you have a cluttered or messy closet that needs to be straightened up, a closet organizer system may provide a practical and easy solution.