How to Create a Functioning Wardrobe

Opening a clothes closet can be intimidating. Our closets are filled with possibilities, but finding the right outfit can be difficult due to disorganization and clutter. Our team of organizers and wardrobe stylists with Lily Winston assess the problems and implement a plan to edit your wardrobe, eliminate the clutter, and arrange your closet in a way that makes it accessible and inviting. The result will be a welcoming closet that allows you to more readily dress, without all of the usual stress, by easily mixing and matching what is clearly laid out before you. “So,” you may ask, “how do I get started?”

The first step is to contact Lily Winston; then one of our consultants will come to your home and inspect your closet to see what needs to be done. It’s important that you don’t clean or straighten up your closet beforehand. We need to see it as is, regardless of the mess. It will help us better pinpoint strengths and weaknesses, so we can formulate a plan to take advantage of the former and eliminate the latter. After we have fully analyzed your wardrobe, and assessed your organization we will schedule a follow-up or begin right away getting rid of the clutter.

First, we will clear out your entire closet. Why? It’s important to start with a clean, clear space. Anything that is not wardrobe related should not be in there and must be removed. Kids’ toys, books and other random items all have their place, but your clothes closet isn’t it. We then will proceed to examine your clothes and separate them into piles, such as “Keep,” “Donate,” or “Consign.” Consignment stores usually take one season back except for vintage pieces, which are always in demand. Donating items is another great way to reduce clutter. Not only does it help someone in need, you also benefit with a tax deduction. Finally, once your pieces have been narrowed down to the ones you are keeping, we will line up everything into categories as if we are replacing them into your closet. Then begins the process of organizing.

Creating a clear, visual field is our ultimate goal. In order to create this, we need to make certain that everything has a place inside your closet. Our favorite go-to store for supplies and containers is The Container Store (http://www.containerstore.com/welcome.htm). They have so many options to choose from to help you get organized. Two items we always suggest are clear containers and velvet hangers. Clear containers are great for putting shoes as well as storing scarves, belts, lingerie and any other small items needing containment. If you choose a container for your footwear that isn’t clear, take a picture of the shoes and tape it on the outside of the box as a reminder of what is inside. As for the velvet hangers, they allow you to fit more into a confined space.

Aligning your wardrobe is a great way to stay organized and it helps you find items much more readily. If you are fortunate enough to have a seasonal closet and can separate summer and winter pieces, that’s great. Do so. But in any event we suggest you group your clothes by color, size and style. A great way to separate your clothes by color is to visit a local paint or art store and purchase a color wheel. The color wheel will greatly assist you in putting pieces in a consistent color order. When organizing clothes by size and style, start with tops and arrange them by sleeveless, short sleeve and long sleeve. Next, move on to skirts, pants, shorts, capris and long trousers. If you have two tiers in your closet, it’s helpful to have tops on the upper and bottoms on the lower. We also recommend placing colored ribbons or rubber bands on hangers of coordinating pieces or creating weekly outfits and hanging them together. Another way to to piece items together is to photograph the items in your wardrobe and place them on a bulletin board to display what works. This helps to quickly coordinate outfits on busy mornings.

And now a few final tips. Hang belts and necklaces on tie racks and hooks inside your closet. Make sure you avoid leaving jewelry, especially broaches, on clothing because they can easily tear the garment. You could also misplace the piece of jewelry. Lastly, avoid the urge to put items on the floor of your closet because that’s how clutter begins. Remember, our goal is to create a well-organized wardrobe so you can easily coordinate outfits without stress. After all, getting dressed in the morning should be a joy, never a chore.

If you would like to know about our organizing and wardrobe services feel free to contact us.