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Living Glamorously in a Small Space

Over the last few weeks I undertook the very daunting project of cleaning out and utterly reorganizing my closet. As you can see, my closet is tiny and it has a very odd shape; the hanging rack and shelves on the right are set up turned inward to follow the shape of the wall, sort of like half of a triangle. It actually allows for a bit more space, but at my first glance I wondered how I'd ever fit the extent of my clothes and accessories. After a few months of haphazard living I decided to take it head-on. I turned to Real Simple for their excellent tips on closet organization, my mom for her ingenious storage ideas and a little bit of my own creativity. The above picture is the result! I took "Before" shots but they turned out awfully blurry – not to mention that it was, as I said, a haphazard mess – so I thought I'd save you all the unpleasantness and cut to the chase.

The first thing I did was go through my clothes with a realistic eye, determining what I don't really wear and setting it aside to donate to Goodwill. I also pulled out everything from the off-seasons: all my sweaters, blazers and the like. I kept a few pieces for layering in the chilly summer nights (which I doubt the existence of, but hey, it's good to be prepared) and stored them in the less accessible areas of the closet. Here’s a closer look at the details...

Organizing your clothes by color automatically creates an orderly, clean feeling that works wonderfully in the overall aesthetic, especially if you’re dealing with a small space.

The less-is-more approach works well on closet shelves, both for you and the aesthetic. I folded a few basic tops and bulky sweaters, which also gave me more room on my hanging racks.

Peppering your shelves with accessories looks cute and helps you utilize every nook and cranny.

A decorative box will keep all of your little bits in one neat place.

For jewelry storage, my organizer from Target is a favorite.
I also added a few tap-on lights for extra help in the unusually dark closet.

Shelves hidden under hanging clothes don’t have to be wasted space. I added smaller pieces and this low box to the side (originally a Victoria's Secret fragrance gift box, now holding costume jewelry too big for the hanging organizer.)

Storing shoes that didn't come in boxes (thanks for that, TJ Maxx) is a chore, but a good shoe rack makes it easier.

Now here's a before shot: this would be my scarf collection. I have an embarrassing number that I've collected over the years and no idea how to store them. Enter my mom and her ingeniousness...

A shoe rack on the back of my door! Brilliant, right? And yet again I employed the organize-by-color credo.

Handbags, another collection, came from all over my house to congregate on my bedroom floor and jeer at my helpless state as I floundered to find homes for them. In the end I once again reevaluated, donated a few, sent keepsakes to the basement and the rest went into two of these totes (we call them "tuckers" in my house; I had no idea that wasn't the real name for them until I was about sixteen). And those little ditties went under the bed.

More jewelry organization; I've acquired several jewelry holders over time and decided to keep my favorite pieces out as decoration on them.

This is something I've been doing for a long time, hanging my sunglasses on the wall. You couldn't find an easier DIY organizer: one pushpin, one hanger, your sunnies. There you go. (And again, just keep the ones you use the most displayed if you have too many.)

Fashion magazines can make for great décor, too; an empty shelf under my bedside table was the perfect place for these.

So there you have my attempts at reorganization and simplicity in my little space. You can find more tips at RealSimple.com. I loved going through their list of inspirational closets and their closet organizing checklist. Have you been spring cleaning lately? If you have any organization tips for overwhelmed closets feel free to share them!

- Casee Marie


Closet Fashionista said...

Oh wow, its soooo nice and organized!! I have a small closet too...so sad XD I want a HUGE one

Jenmarie said...

Wow, the awkward angle must've been quite a challenge but I love what you did with it! Everything looks beautiful and so well organized.

I like how you organized your clothing and accessories by color. I have mine by style (layering shirts, sleevless, sleeves, dresses, etc.). I might try that sometime and see how I like it although I still think I'll need to keep some things together like my collection of cardigans.

The idea of placing your scarves in a shoe holder is brilliant! I think it looks so cute!

I REALLY need to get some sort of shoe rack too because mine are in all different spots. It's kind of crazy.

I always want to put the clothes from last season that I won't really be wearing anymore in storage bins but I just never do. Hmm, maybe I will now that I've seen your post. I just need to make room in my closet or under my bed to keep them. Our apartment is great but there isn't a whole lot of storage space so there are extra things in my closet and under my bed that don't really relate to fashion at all. LOL!

Great post Casee!

Meredith said...

great! thanks for all the tips. especially love the idea of using accessories for added presentation.

Heidi said...

Love your closet! Great tips too :)

BlueVanilla said...

Great organization skills! Looks great!

Hot Pink Day
Shop Blue Vanilla

Fashion Tales.... said...

I love organising, & like how you're using your space & being resourceful as well. Good tips! I tend to use many clothes year round depending on locale, but heavy winter items I store away. xxoo


OH MY GOSH, this is an AMAZING post! Seriously, best post I've read all week. I've become obsessed with looking at bloggers' home tours and ways of organization and decoration. I adore what you did here! I'm definitely going to use some of these ideas -- the sunglasses hanger and the scarf holder are genius! I have at least 30 scarves and I have them hidden in a box right now -- I wish I could put them somewhere visible! Thank you SO MUCH for these tips!!!

Anonymous said...


I have a ridiculous amount of sunglasses for working in eye-wear for a while...and I'm LOOOOOOVING your storage solution. And the scarves situation!!! OMG! How did I not think of that!

Perfect timing as it's time to put away the boots! Thanks Casee Marie for sharing your tips! I'm stealing them promptly!

mary louise said...

gotta love being organized! fantastic job.


Tasha said...

I found this post very useful! I am always in need of organizational tops! Especially for clothes and accessories and such! It looks like you did a fabulous job of putting everything together neatly! I love the sunglasses idea!

Kara said...

Great spring cleaning/organization post! I've actually never saw sunglasses hanging up like that and my mind is blown... genius! I might have to try that even though I only have 3 pairs lol!

xx Kara

the Citizen Rosebud said...

I am so stealing the sunglass hangar. GREAT ideas!

Anonymous said...

Tell me about it! I share a closet with the BF, plus in the guest closet. Sometimes you just have to work with what you got. It looks as though you have been able to make it work.
Clever idea! I never thought of Hanging my sunnies on a hanger! I shall try it. :)


mckenzietruman said...

ONE day, maybe, I can be as organized as you. Everything looks great! :)


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