Finding enough storage space in your wardrobe is a common problem faced by many apartment dwellers.
Living in a small condominium flat with limited space? Starting your morning with a mad rush to get dressed in time to beat the peak hour crowd?
We totally feel you! And we've got professional organiser Nathalie Ricaud, to share some tips to overcome these organisation woes.
Q: Do you have any organisation tips for couples sharing a wardrobe (with very limited space) in particular?
Start by purging and keeping only what you wear and love. That applies to both parties.
Divide your wardrobe space. Not only will it be easier to find what you want but it’ll also avoid arguments, especially if you have different tidiness standards. Agree which shelves, drawers and hanging space you’ll each be using. If you have only one hanging area, assign your clothes to one side and your spouse’s to the other one. Use a “divider” to make both sides distinct.
Also remember to take into account the amount of clothes each of you own, your height, your preference as to whether to fold or hang, etc.
Create space. If the height of your wardrobe can accommodate it, fit an extra rod vertically to create extra hanging space. Men don’t have long clothes to hang, so the bottom rod can be used for his pants, the top rod for his shirts.
Make use of space outside your wardrobe too. Store clothes, bags and shoes less frequently used inside transparent boxes with lids underneath your bed; use over the door hangers for bags or pocket organisers.
Q: I struggle with picking my outfit each morning, even if I'm organised, and make a mess out of my wardrobe. It's a hassle to repack everything back nicely. Any tips?
Plan your outfits the night before. Check your schedule for the following day and decide what type of clothes you should be wearing. Then, lay out your options on the bed (if possible don’t remove the hangers or unfold the clothes) and decide on your outfit for the next day.
Hang your selected outfit on the doorknob of your wardrobe or lay it neatly on a chair and put the clothes you won’t be using back in your closet. By doing this exercise the night before, you won’t be in a rush and end up pulling clothes out of your wardrobe and making a mess out of them.
If you have little time in the evenings, plan the weekend before for each day of the week ahead. Create your 5 outfits, hang each outfit on one hanger and put them in the sequence you’ll be using them during the week on one side of your wardrobe.
If you're still struggling to pick your outfit, maybe it’s because you have too many choices or not the right clothes for your lifestyle. Consider streamlining your wardrobe and keeping only the clothes that you really love, that fit you, that make you feel good and that you can pair with other items. Not only it’ll be easier to make decisions but you’ll also feel empowered and in control.
Q: Purging clothes is such a waste. Certain unused pieces might be back on trend in the future, or I might grow to like them again. How would you strike a balance between thinking this way and maintaining an organised wardrobe?
They MIGHT be back on trend in the future, but they MIGHT NOT… You MIGHT like them again, or you MIGHT NOT…
In the meantime, these clothes DO take space in your wardrobe while you could give more room to the clothes that you wear now. And if you can’t see all the clothes you own, it’s easy to forget about them and to go and buy more of the same type. Also bear in mind that clothes in Singapore climate tend to deteriorate fast.
So my advice is to have a wardrobe that’s made of clothes that you use NOW. If there are lesser-used items that you decide to keep, put them into a box and place the box on the highest shelf in your wardrobe or underneath your bed so that these items don’t take space in your “active” wardrobe.
Once a year, go through the box and re-examine its contents. The size of the box can also help you set a limit to how much you can keep. If the box is full and you want to add something onto it, then you’ll have to let go of something else.
Article by Nathalie Ricaud, originally appeared in The Finder. Nathalie Ricaud is a Professional Organiser and the founder of Get Organised & Beyond, a Singapore-based company that helps individuals and families de-clutter and get organised so that they can regain control over their space, their time and most importantly their sanity.
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