Closet Envy. We’ve all had it. You see those glamorous photos of spacious closets with the perfectly aligned purses and you temporarily drift off to dream land, thinking, “if only I were rich and famous…”
The truth is, you can have a beautiful and functional closet organizer regardless of any space and budget limitations you may have. All the fancy stuff – elaborate lighting, expensive hardware, full glass doors – look great in photos, but are not what makes the closet. A well-designed closet should allow you to easily view and access your wardrobe. Closets can also be visually stunning, but how much you spend on extras is up to you. The real beauty is in the design.
A properly designed closet maximizes storage by reorganizing the available space more efficiently. There are a few rules of thumb professional closet designers use that can help you remake your closet. Whether you design and install the closet yourself or work with a professional custom closet company, you can have an envy-worthy closet by following these guidelines.
Closets are divided into sections that include hanging areas, shelf towers and hutches. How many of each section you need depends on your wardrobe and how you like to store particular items. For example, do you prefer to fold jeans or hang them? If you hang them, do you fold them over a pant hanger or do a long-hang from a clip hanger? You can fit two stacks of jeans on a 24-inch wide shelf. If you fold jeans over a pant hanger or use a pants rack, you will need 30-inches of vertical space or fewer. This will allow you to double or even triple hang pants in one section. However, if you long hang jeans you may need up to 60-inches of vertical hanging space. Therefore, the first step in designing a well-functioning closet is to take an inventory of your wardrobe and determine your ideal manner of storage for each item type (e.g., how many pairs of shoes do you have, how much hanging space do you need, do you hang or fold your t-shirts, etc.).
The placement of the sections in your closet is based partly on your habits and partly on the configuration of the space. If you are left handed, you probably hang your clothes facing to the right. If so, you will want your hanging sections on the left side of the wall and the shelf tower on the right. You will also need to determine if there are electrical outlets, sprinklers, vents, or other built-in items that should not be covered with cabinetry and align your sections accordingly. Closet doors create another obstacle. For example, if you are designing a reach-in closet with a sliding door, avoid adding shelves, drawers or hampers directly in the center as you will not be able to easily access your belongings.
Once you have the basic sections laid out, the fun begins. There are virtually endless options to enhance both the visual and functional appeal of your closet. Closet accessories such as slide-out pants racks, leather baskets, drawer dividers, and valet rods keep you organized and come in a plethora of styles and finishes. If you don’t like seeing your clothes, hide them behind cabinet doors or add drawers for folded items. Doors and drawers rang in style, color and price. From a solid wood, five-piece front to a modern flat panel with a textured melamine finish, you can find a look that works for you. For a truly enviable look, consider under-shelf lighting behind doors with glass inserts or add an island with a granite counter to a large walk-in closet. And don’t forget the fun chandelier!
Organizational units aren’t just about keeping your clothes wrinkle-free and easy to find; they help you enjoy a life with less stress. Isn’t it about time you invested in yourself? Locate a designer near you to discover a cure for your closet envy.