Is there a mountain of shoes in your closet? Do you wear a hard hat every time you take something off that upper shelf in your closet? Time to organize, my friend, and who better to tell us how to do it is organizing expert Donna Smallin Kuper, author of Clear the Clutter, Find Happiness. Today she shares some of her favorite organizational tools for keeping bathroom, bedroom and linen closets orderly and neat.
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Bins, Boxes and Baskets
Bins are one of the quickest ways to achieve order, says Kuper. Just remember to use the same style bin/box/basket for an organized, pulled-together look, group like things in each container and label the container clearly.
1. Collapsible Brushed Cotton Linen Closet Storage Collection, $22, Great Useful Stuff (GUS)
These are especially great for towels and linens.
2. BATTING boxes (Set of 3), $17, IKEA
These works well with make-up, hair styling tools and bath products.
3. SKUBBARE basket, $8, IKEA
The attractive basket by IKEA has a fold-down top that you can adjust to fit the contents and is even machine washable.
4. Bahama San Kive Storage Bins, $10-$17, The Container Store
These linen-look woven plastic boxes come in three sizes for a uniform look throughout a closet.
Dirty Clothes Basket or Hamper
The right container can make doing laundry so much easier.
1. United Solutions Hands Free Laundry Tote, $17, Amazon
Kuper uses the United laundry basket with adjustable shoulder strap as a hamper in a closet. “It makes it easy to carry laundry down stairs or to the laundromat," she says.
2. Industrial Mesh Hamper, $49, The Container Store
3. Heavy-Duty 3-Bin Laundry Sorter, $59, The Container Store
It measures 43” wide and 31” high and the easy-rolling large wheels mean no more carrying heavy laundry baskets.
Hair Styling Tools Container
1. Styling Station Pro, $20, The Container Store
It holds brushes, space-hogging dryers, and curling/flat irons (even when they’re still warm) in one easy to carry holder. Try storing it inside the bathroom closet and keep counter tops sleek and clean.
Hangers and Hanger Add-Ons
There’s more than one way to use a hanger. Check out these finds:
1. Wonder Magic Clothes Hanger (Set of 4), $10, Walmart
This hanger triples closet storage space by allowing you to hang up to five articles of clothing wrinkle-free on a single hanger.
2. 5-in-1 Magic Closet Hanger, $12, Walmart
Save up to 70% of space in your closet with a sturdy hanging unit. The five metal anti-slip bars make it ideal for hanging pants.
3. 5-Tier Swinging Arm Pant Rack, $10, Target
This hanger can hang five pairs of pants in the space of one hanger.
4. Huggable Hangers (40 pack), $30, Target
5. STAJLIG Multi-function Hanger, $3, IKEA
With a unique wavy design, these hangers can accommodate eight articles of clothing like scarves, belts and ties.
6. ENUDDEN Hang-able Clip (Set of 2), $3, IKEA
These clips are strong enough to hold your boots, which frees up space underneath.
Turn hanging space into storage space with these ingenious inventions.
1. Better Homes and Gardens Hanging Four-Shelf Organizer, $14, Walmart
You gotta love this organizer! With four shelves to store clothing and a clothing bar for extra hanging space, it serves double-duty.
2. InterDesign’s 2-Drawer Organizer, $16, Walmart
This features 2 pull-out drawers that fit underneath existing wire shelving. Plus, it's large enough for shirts and pants or multiples of socks or underwear.
3. Hanging 4-shelf Closet Organizer $25, GUS
A strong, durable product that attaches to the rod using a Velcro strapping system. It also comes with a unique snapping system to allow attaching of multiple shelving units together.
4. Hanging Closet Bin with Chalkboard Label, $15, GUS
A Kuper pick, these closet bins attach to a door, rod or hanger to expand storage.
5. PLURING Hanging Storage, $4, IKEA
This is ideal for lightweight items and includes a middle storage area in addition to the storage pockets on the sides.
6. Wrap iT Buddy Hanging Gift Wrap Organizer, $60, Wrap iT
Another Kuper fave, this holds all wrapping materials from bows to tape to gift wrap.
7. Gunmetal 36-Pair Overdoor Shoe Rack, $40, The Container Store
8. Umbra’s C-link Accessory storage, $10, Container Store
This closet hanger has five C-shaped hooks for holding accessories like scarves and belts.
9. 48-Piece Nursery Storage Set, $30, Walmart
This hanging storage for baby or toddler items is a fast, easy way to organize baby’s clothing.
For a quick and easy place to hang your hat, and more, try a hook.
1. TJUSIG Hanger, $10, IKEA
The solid wood, 6-hook hanger mounts on a wall and provides practical space for clothes, bags and shoes.
2. SÄLLSKAP Wall Rack, $10, IKEA
3. Command Brushed Nickel Designer Hooks (Set of 3), $10, Amazon
These Command hooks are attractive, sturdy, easy to apply and do not damage walls. They are also available at most discount and home goods stores, too.
Keeping rings, necklaces and earrings all in one place actually saves closet space.
Trying hack a parts cabinet into the best jewelry organizer ever. We recommend:
1. Akro-Mils Plastic 64-Drawer Parts Cabinet, $30, Global Industrial
Each drawer is sizable and you can double the number of items in each drawer by using cross dividers, sold in packs of 16 for $4.
2. Household Essentials Ultra jewelry Organizer, $14, Walmart
This 80-pocket hanging jewelry organizer keeps items in full view.
3. Jewelry Cubby in Diamond Damask, $20, Clever Container
Closet clutter is reduced when all your make-up’s in one place.
1. Beauty Organizers, Small: $15, Large: $17, Limited Commodities
Use these beauty organizers to keep make-up handy but out of sight when not in use.
2. Caboodles Rockstar 4-Tray Train Case, $24, Target
This 9 ½” case keeps make-up handy and lets you store it away when you’re done.
Meds don’t have to occupy so much closet space. Organize it the Kuper way.
Depending on how many bottles of medicine you have, follow Kuper’s advice and place like items together in stacking bins, plastic boxes or drawers, labeling accordingly — cold meds, skin ointments, bandages, upset stomach, prescription meds, etc.
We recommend trying:
1. Iris Modular Stacking Bin, $2, Fleet Farm
2. Sterilite Small Clip Box, $3, Dollar General
3. Sterilite 3-Drawer Medium Organizer, $9, Target
Or trying hacking a SpiceStack into a medicine holder.
4. YouCopia SpiceStack 30-Bottle Spice Organizer, $40, Amazon
Try these great space saving ideas.
Create an instant shelf with Kuper’s tension-rod hack. Utilize wasted space above the top shelf in your closet by turning it into another storage shelf.
Try out this:
1. Spring Tension Pewter Curtain Rod, $10-$15, Bed, Bath & Beyond
Use three of these tension rods and position the first rod an inch or so from the back of the closet wall and about a foot above the current shelf. Place the second rod 6” in front of the first and the third rod 6” in front of second. On the tension-rod shelf you just created, place baskets, bins or boxes of lightweight items such as gloves, scarves or seasonal decorations. Keep in mind that the larger the rod, the more weight it will hold.
2. BILLY Shelf, $70, IKEA
Hack IKEA’s Billy shelf for a custom-closet look. Use ready-made shelving in bedroom closets for instant storage with designer appeal.
3. Honey-Can-Do 9-Piece Vacuum Bag Combo Set, $22, Bed, Bath & Beyond
Vacuum-sealed items take up less space in the closet and this set is perfect to get you started.
Clear closet shelves by making the most of this wasted space.
1. SALT Over-the-Door Deluxe Household Pantry Organizer, $40, Bed, Bath and Beyond
This six-shelf over-the-door pantry organizer also works great on a full-size bathroom closet door.
2. Lynk Over-the-Door Accessory Organizer, $17, Target
This organizer has nine hooks to hold scarves, belts, hats, jewelry and more.
Use dividers to increase storage space on shelves, give closets an organized appearance, and keep folded items in a neat stack.
1. Clear Shelf Divider, $10, The Container Store
This clear shelf divider come with a valet knob for hanger and keeps folded items in a neat stack on the shelf while providing a convenient knob for hanging tomorrow’s outfit.
2. Tall Solid Shelf Dividers, $10, The Container Store
This tall shelf divider slides onto solid shelf and keeps larger items organized.
3. Lynk Vela Shelf Dividers, $24, Target
These are made of durable, non-woven polymer fabric and epoxy coated steel and simply slide over any solid shelf locking rigid and securely in place.
These shelf additions make it easy to keep organized. These are viable options when you're looking to double your space.
1. YouCopia StoreMore Height Adjustable Kitchen Cabinet Shelf Organizer, $16, Amazon
2. Expandable Closet Shelf, $16, The Container Store
3. YouCopia Crazy Susan 16” Turntable, $20, Target
This is great for hard to reach places. Divided into four pie-shaped shelves that slide out and rotate side-to-side for easy access to items at center of the tray.
4. Copco 10” Three-Step Organizer , $6, Bed, Bath and Beyond
5. Under Shelf Wire Mesh Basket, $14, Home Depot
This can create more storage in any closet and is available in lightweight chrome-finish metal.
Here are several ways to tame the shoe clutter.
1. 8-Pair Shoe Organizer, $40, The Container Store
2. Whitmor Over-The-Door Shoe Rack, $28, Amazon
Each bar can be flipped up to create more space for the row below, accommodating all sizes of shoes, even tall heels, high top tennis shoes or boots.
3. Better Homes and Gardens Over-the-Door Shoe Holder, $19, Walmart
This organizer neatly stores 12 pairs of shoes in large, see-through vinyl compartments.
4. Room Essentials 15-Cube Show Rack, $35, Target
Make the most of this cramped space with the following items.
1. Seville Mini Basket Shelf Organizer, $25, Target
If you have an under-the-sink cabinet, make the most of the limited space with a narrow, two-tiered shelf that fits perfectly between the pipes and the side of the cabinet.
2. 2-Tier Mesh Double Sliding Cabinet Baskets, $20, Bed, Bath and Beyond
Great for microfiber cloths, pumice sticks, air freshener and extra bottles of hand soap.
3. Rough and Rugged Caddy, $7, Home Depot
Kuper likes to keep cleaning supplies in a cleaning caddy like this so everything’s in one place when it’s time to clean.
4. BULLIG Box, $17, IKEA
Storing toilet paper under the sink is a good idea, but keep rolls dry by containing them in a bin or basket like this one from IKEA.