It’s a new year - is closet cleansing among your resolutions? If it is, we have an easy-to-follow process to help you keep at least one New Year vow, as you get at least one closet organized.
What You Need
Keep the following tools handy in order to complete a closet cleansing in one hour:
- Vacuum (for carpeted closets) or mop for flooring
- Dust rags and clean cloths
- Cleaning solution (we recommend using a vinegar solution)
- Trash bags
- Stepping stool for reaching shelves
Keep it Simple
The key to keeping any resolution is to keep it simple. When it comes to closet cleansing, don't try to tackle every closet in your house -- just pick one. I decided to focus on my older son’s closet and see if I could cleanse it in under one hour. His bedroom closet had become a dumping ground for outgrown clothes, jackets, Halloween costumes, childhood art and school projects, and more. As I discovered, closet cleansing is really more like learning a simple dance…
The Closet Cleansing Two-Step
Step one is all about "no"
First, remove every last thing from the closet. In this step you will be doing a once-through review of each item you've removed to ask yourself, do I really need this? Whenever the answer is No, put those things in the designated “No piles.” (Remember you only have an hour. If you might get distracted by trips down memory lane, enlist someone who can help keep you on task!) Note that "No piles" is plural. That's because you'll need to create multiple no piles. Mine included items to donate, throw out, or give to friends or family. I also had a pile for items that should be kept in other rooms or closets. (I had a lot of "How did this end up in here" moments.) Be sure to designate a place in the room for anything that is not a "No." Once you have completed the no's, immediately place them in trash bags. You may want to mark the bags for donations, toss, and so on. Take the bags out of the room. You should have a half an hour left for step two.
Step two is about everything else
Because you removed everything from the closet, the first thing to do is clean the space. Time to grab the dust rags, cleaning solution, and vacuum or mop. Give the closet a quick, thorough cleaning. Don't forget to dust and wipe any high shelves. Now it's time to return items you're keeping to their rightful places in the closet. Hang clothes first as often you discover a few no's you missed. The same goes for shoes, which should be added back next. Place them neatly on the floor, then place anything else that should be kept on the floor. I had plenty of room for school bags, a small luggage case, and some off-season sports gear. Finally, if the closet has shelving, this is where the miscellaneous items should go. Oftentimes, you will discover you need to purchase storage containers to neatly organize these items you want to keep. That's it. Time to reward yourself with a snack and then meet me at the next messy closet in your home!