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Re-organize your closet space
Feb 10, 2005

The “space squeeze” being what it is today emphasizes the importance of making every inch of space count, particularly when it comes to closets.

Closets should be well organized and able to hold every item that can’t ordinarily be on display. 

To get started on re-organizing your space, you need to decide whether to build shelving yourself or purchase multiple shelves and clothing rods from your local building supply outlet. All manner of closet accessories are now available in the marketplace, and they are attractive and reasonably priced.

If you are remodeling a closet that happens to be on an outside wall that allows cold to enter your home, now is the time to add insulation. The easiest method is to glue one-inch or two-inch foam board directly to the outside wall with panel adhesive. Once this is done, finish the closet with drywall or panel.

 You are now ready to install the rods.  You can make the most of your bedroom closet by installing two rods at different levels.

For folded items and accessories, build a narrow box-style case of three-quarter-inch plywood from floor-to-ceiling. Install shelves only, or a combination of shelves or drawers, depending on your ability in the newly-

created space. The shelves in most closets can be up to 22 inches deep. But, if your closet door doesn’t extend up to the ceiling, shelves at higher levels may have to be shallower for you to reach them.

Some people prefer walk-in closets. They may be roomy and feel luxurious, but walk-in closets waste a lot of space. A closet you can reach into is more useful because all the space is at your fingertips as soon as you open the door.

If you’ve had a nasty experience with mildew in your closets, then make sure your new closet space has plenty of ventilation. In this case, wire shelving and louvred closet doors permit more air movement.

Once you are finished adding more space to your closet for storage, you will no doubt need to reorganize your wardrobe and accessories. If you have an overcrowded closet, schedule a few hours to think about it and then work on the reorganization. If you try to rearrange everything all at once, you will end up with disorganization that can set you back or put you off the job.  

To keep mess to a minimum, have some boxes on hand to categorize items that shouldn’t go back into the closet. Label them Charity, Trash, or Belongs to Another Location. If you can’t bear the thought of throwing something out, put it into a box and set the box aside until you decide what you want to do with it.

Here are some key questions to ask yourself:

• Have I used this item in the past?  If the answer is no, you may want to discard the item.

• Does it have sentimental or monetary value?  If the answer is yes, then keep the item.

• Will it come in handy some day?  A yes answer probably means that you will never use the item again.

In the end, what it comes down to is having a place for everything and everything in its place.