Tips for Planning Your Closets
by Barbara Jennings, CRS/CSS
Who doesn't dream of having perfectly planned closets - you know the kind where everything is in its perfect place? Organizing closets is kind of an art lost on many
people but it need not be as overwhelming as you think. If you're lucky enough to be building your own space or remodeling, you have the perfect opportunity to
plan ahead for your needs and get exactly what is right for you.
I remember the days when we only gave closets minimal thought. It was enough to have a single shelf and a pole that was high enough to hang long dresses without
them touching the floor. That was the way it was and no one gave closets a second thought. But now closet design has become quite sophisticated. Our closets are larger
and so they hold more stuff. Having more stuff then requires us to organize the stuff lest we drown in it.
Consequently we are all demanding that our closets serve us more efficiently. Space is at a premium. And some closets have to serve double duty or we're just not
happy campers. Thankfully we now have multiple options.
Do It Yourself Closet Design
If considering a diy approach, bear in mind the cost of the products, hauling them home and the time and effort needed to install them. Since your time is valuable,
you may find that the costs you save really wind up to be too little. When I bought my desk, my partner and I decided to bring it home in a box and put it together
ourselves. We could have paid $50 to have a professional do it, but we thought we knew better. It took the two of all day to put that confounded thing together and
we were certainly tired and irritable by the end of the day.
Some things you just need to leave with the professionals and have peace of mind and get on to doing other things you are more suited to do.
Choosing a Professional
Before you select a closet company:
- Make sure the company is licensed and insured
- Inquire about their warranties and get them in writing
- Some warranties only last one year; others last a lifetime
- See if the company usees their own personnel to install or hires sub-contractors
- Find out how long it will take for delivery and installation
- Note that special order items may take longer and may cause delays
You can significantly increase your storage space by effectively planning the design of your closets. On the average, a 6x8 foot walk-in closet will yield about
20 linear feet of hanging space. But you can double the hanging space to 40 linear feet and even add shelves and drawers in order to get the most from the space.
- Take everything out of the closet
- Evaluate what should be discarded, placed elsewhere or kept
- Get rid of clothes that do not fit
- Get rid of clothes that are out of style
- Sports gear and other non clothing items don't belong
- Toss out unused hangers
- Measure the length of your hanging clothes (shirts, skirts, dresses, coats)
- Hang short items on double rods
- Count your sweaters and shoes
- Place sweaters and shoes and purses on shelves or in cubby holes
- Use hooks to hang work clothes, pajamas and night gowns
- Put folded items on shelves where they can be easily seen
Now go enjoy a good movie.
Barbara Jennings, is a leading home staging and interior redesign trainer. Author of 9 books on decorating, she is one of America's leading experts on
how to start, manage and grow a home staging or interior redesign business.
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