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Decorating

Closet Organizers

Whether you're looking for bedroom closet organizers or an organizer for the food pantry, use these tips to make sure you get the best closet system for you.

Choosing a Closet Organizer
1. Before you buy any type of closet storage system, assess your needs. What exactly will be going in to your closet? If you haven't done so already, then purge your closet.

2. It's also helpful to actually remove the contents from your closet and group items together. This way you can actually see what you have and assess your storage needs. Do you have a lot of sweaters that would require extra closet shelves? A lot of power tools that need large storage containers?

3. Once you know what you want, check out different custom closet company websites. Many companies allow you to do closet design online, which lets you play around and see what would work best in your space before you buy. Take advantage of these tools as much as you can before you settle on an organizer.

4. If you're not entirely sure that what you get now will be just as useful in the future, then consider getting a flexible closet system which adjusts to your changing needs.

5. If you're looking at closet designs for your garage or work room, make sure you include some storage that is durable and able to support large, heavy items.

6. Aim to include more closet shelving than drawers. Shelves allow you to see what you actually have with just a glance, while drawers allow things to get forgotten. Alternatively, using ventilated wire baskets allows you to have a type of drawer that will also let you easily see what's inside.

7. A shelf depth of 16" is ideal in order to avoid items from getting lost.

8. If your custom closets are going in the bedroom, then do include a few drawers for those items you don't want to have on display (like your underwear).

9. To help make the most of your space in a small clothes closet, install two hanger rods, one above the other at least 36" apart, on one side of your closet. You get double the hanging space for your shirts, jackets, skirts and folded pants. On the other side, install a standard hanging rod for your longer items, like dresses and evening coats.

10. Stick to a light colored system, like white or birch finish, which will help to show off your items better (thereby making clothes easier for you to find).

Everything Has Its Place
Now that you've installed your closet organizer, use these tips to keep it looking great!

1. Keep the items you need at the front and the items you use less often, like seasonal items, at the back or in the basement.

2. Use dividers in your drawers so items don't get jumbled up together. Using containers is another easy way to sort your items.

3. Use pegs, racks and belt and tie hangers to store your ties, belts, scarves, purses, hats, etc.

4. Need more storage than just what your closet will allow? Take advantage of wasted space, like the area under your stairs, by putting in some wire basket systems. Since they come in all sorts of different sizes with baskets of different depths, it's easy to find one (or more) that will tuck away nicely into your space.

Even if you can't afford to invest in a full closet storage system, it's worth it to invest in a few key storage accessories. A few baskets and a new belt rack can make all the difference in your closet.