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Cleaning out your closet is something we all need to do, just like cleaning out gutters. For some people, it can be fairly easy to throw away old pairs of pants and get rid of worn out shoes; for others, however, it can be traumatic to say goodbye to your old party dresses and admit that your favorite pair of jeans from high school do not have a home in your closet anymore. Regardless of what group you fit into, it is important that you do clean out your closet at least once a year (or once a season) to make room for new items and avoid the dreaded clutter.

Closet Clean up Tips

Your closet is one of the most commonly cluttered areas in the home. Not only do people stack piles and piles of clothes and shoes in their closets but often the closet is also the place they keep items that don’t have a home anywhere else - old boxes, toys, gifts they don’t like, photo albums, books, paperwork they promise to deal with ‘later’ and things around the house that take up unnecessary space.

Set a time to clean out of your closet and dedicate this time to doing this chore. A weekend, an evening at home or an afternoon where your kids are gone will all work. Prepare to clean out your closet with a few garbage bags (different colored ones work well) as well as a few storage containers in different sizes. You may also want to invest in a storage system for your closet, such as a tie rack, a shoe holder or portable shelves. This depends on your closet and well as your budget.

You will need to make three or four separate piles when cleaning out your closet: items to keep; items to donate; items to throw away; and items to store away (such as winter clothes during the summer). Anything that you do not wear anymore or that is too old to reuse can be thrown out. Anything that you do not wear but could be given to someone in need should be donated to a salvation army, women’s center or other association. Anything that you still wear can be put back into your closet (neatly).

Closet Organization

Your clothes and shoes are often the easy part. It is when you get to the lost items that organizational skills really come in handy. For blankets, sheets, pillows, etc, consider using a storage box to hold all of these items or invest in a treasure chest for the foot of the bed. For bags, purses and shoes you can also use a storage container left on the floor for easy retrieval. For old books, photo albums and other items you keep in your closet, look for a large storage container. And for those items that didn’t have a home anywhere else in your house, it might be time to say goodbye to these items by either adding them to the ‘throw away’ pile or ‘donation bin’.

Cleaning out your closet helps you sort out what you own and what you need. It can be much more relaxing getting ready in the morning when you open a clean and organized closet. The good thing about cleaning out your closet is that you get to make room for a couple (not ten!) new items. Perhaps you will find that all of your pants are slightly too tight or that your favorite sweater has a hole too big to fix. After you have de-cluttered your closet, all that is left to do is…well, shop!

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