my closet has always been an afterthought, which is crazy because i utilize it every single day. but it’s easy to neglect when i can just slide the doors shut and pretend it isn’t a mess. when target asked if i wanted to work on a closet organization project i eagerly accepted because i needed it, badly. the first (and best) decision i made was bringing elizabeth, a professional organizer, on to provide her expertise and services. she had so many tips and tricks that i never would have thought of, and that she’ll share with you below…

the shoe area may have been the most disastrous part of my whole closet. i had no system for organizing them so i’d just pile them in there and pray i’d be able to find the right pair when i needed them. here was elizabeth’s solution to the problem: “Anytime you have an open shelf with a lot of space above it, look for a way to maximize this area so that you can store multiple levels of things like shoes or accessories. In Bri’s closet, we picked up 4 shelving units to store her shoes by type and color. Maximizing vertical space is the best way to keep everything in view.”


one of the first steps in my personal process was giving my closet a good clean out. there was a lot of stuff in there that i hadn’t worn in years but that was saving for one reason or another. de-cluttering freed up some space (and my mind!). we all have those outfits that we say to ourselves “i’ll fit into those skinny jeans again someday. or that dress will fit once i go back to the gym.” she reminded me that keeping a bunch of clothes that don’t fit you in your closet only makes you feel bad about yourself, not good. reward yourself once you drop a few pounds…don’t torture yourself!

i love beth’s tips for organizing the top space of a closet…

“When first assessing Bri’s closet, I noticed that the top shelves on both sides were lacking any bins or tools to keep the space organized. Purses were mixed in with sweaters and there were no clear boundaries to keep like with like. Anytime you have a flat surface like a shelf or a drawer, the best way to keep those areas organized is to create boundaries by using containers. For Bri’s space, we utilized shelf dividers (which act as vertical containers, and can be purchased in target stores) to keep all the sweaters in check. As the seasons change, and this space is needed for things like bathing suits, summer hats, and totes, these sweaters would get stored in a further away spot (like a guest bedroom closet or a slim bin under the bed).”

“I also noticed that Bri was using the tall dresser to store skirts. I knew that if we got rid of the dresser, we could gain some space and hang the skirts which would open the closet up and make her belongings more accessible. In order to maximize vertical space, we put to use a closet rod extender which works perfectly for hanging her cute skirts. Closet rod extenders instantly create another rod in the closet which allows you to store blouses, skirts and shorter length garments. This closet rod can be expanded width-wise and height-wise allowing you to customize your closet. Again, because it’s winter right now, the coats are super easy to get to and access. Once summer rolls around, these coats can get moved to a less-often used closet or stored more towards the sides of the closet (which would make room for summer layers). we also added a step stool to access the top shelve and two new basket (wire and moroccan wedding basket).

Instead of having a tall drawer unit which blocks harder to reach spots on the side of the closet, we opted for a 2-drawer unit to store other categories of clothes (shorts and undergarments). Next, we organized her dresses by color as well as her blouses (I often organize clothing going from dark to light) and if you want to be hyper organized, you can organize within the color coordination by type (i.e.; All black dresses together going from long sleeve to short sleeve to sleeveless). you also might want to consider moving out any clothes that you don’t wear that often (we’ve already mentioned seasonal clothes but another category that might be relocated would be formal dresses and shoes).

and lastly, we tightened up the closet by making all the hangers uniform and picked up extra hanger clips—making hanging skirts a breeze.” – elizabeth

ta-da! it’s amazing what a difference a little organization and space utilization can make. thanks to elizabeth for making my morning routine so much less stressful! i can’t believe this is really my closet now. i feel so adult. haha!

organization by: Elizabeth Penn founder of Bneato Bar
after photos by:  sheila gim

(this story is sponsored by target, thank you for supporting the sponsors that allow us to create original content for you.)


Add your own

    That’s what I need to do, except it may be a bit more difficult for me because my closet is about 1/4 of the size of yours :/
    Thanks for the inspiration!

    Anne says:

    The link for the shelf dividers doesn’t work. Where can I get them??

    Brittney G. says:

    Perfectly timed post! I went to grab my favorite sweater from the mass of sweaters/leggings/tshirts on my closet shelf and was covered in an avalanche of clothes! I know what I’m doing this weekend! Thanks, Bri and Elizabeth!

    Catherine says:

    I love this! The dividers for sweaters are brilliant. Thanks for sharing 🙂

    Jessica says:

    Now you need to keep it like that x


    Giulia says:

    I recently organized my closet too, I feel SO good!
    Also, great tips Elizabeth. They will come super useful in the future.

    Allison says:

    I love an organized closet! When my husband and I moved into our condo I bought clear plastic shoe boxes to organize all of my shoes. I also colour code my closet because rainbows are always a good idea.

    Laura Dunn says:

    Such a great idea! I have been needed to do this same thing since we moved into our house 2 years ago. It’s amazing how long you will just ignore a closet and how much better you feel once it is finally well organized!

    Amber says:

    Love this! My closet is in the “money” part of my house according to Feng Shui I think it’s about time I put some of your tips to use!

    Samm says:

    I’ll definitely be utilizing these tips! I plan on re-doing my room and am in desperate need of closet organization guidelines!

    Annie says:

    As a fellow professional organizer, I approve!! Such a beautiful result!

    Sarah says:

    Wow, this is AMAZING. That is a truly gift to be able to organize like that!

    The ‘after’ picture looks amazing! I love the shoe storage you’ve incorporated.

    maggie says:

    Ahhh it is SO beautiful! I don’t have a ton of closet space and am trying to economize what space I do have. This is inspiring.


    Anna says:

    The closet looks fantastic!

    Such a great idea!
    How inspirational this post is!
    Love from http://www.trangscorner.com

    Helen says:

    I’ve been trying to organize my closet, and these tips were exactly what I needed. I love the idea of using a hanging closet rod to maximize my space. Organizing my clothes according to color could also make getting dressed in the morning a whole lot easier. Thanks for sharing these tips!


    Chelsea says:

    Looks amazing! Thanks for the amazing tips.

    Janel Afjari says:

    Love it! Spent last week doing the same thing to my closet, new slim non-slip hangers and all! Looks great and your closet is HUGE!!

    Nicely done! And what a fun closet full of pretty things. 🙂


    Paro says:

    I’m moving out soon, this was incredibly helpful!

    Kristine says:

    I need to do this and just keep putting it off. Looks great!

    Ashley says:

    that looks great! i definitely need something along those lines. my closet is the size of an infant…and such a disaster.

    good luck keeping it clean 🙂

    Beth says:

    Love how it turned out Bri! Thank you so much for including me in this rad before and after:) xoxo

    azuree says:

    Organizing makes me feel alive (dorky but so true!) and this post was amazing to see. I have ZERO CLOSETS in our apartment, so you can imagine that the struggle is real! Sidetone: if anyone else is looking for wire hampers like the West Elm one pictured in this post, Target actually has one for $25! I searched hi and low for one I liked that was under $50 and accidentally pumped into an awesome one at Target!

    Taylor says:

    That’s an improvement! You need some Elfa closet organization in there though!! We can help if you would like us to!?

    Kalyn says:

    Your answer lifts the ineeillgtnce of the debate.

    This is brilliant! I have the same messy problems in my closet, so these tips all work for me *_*

    Bailey says:

    I love seeing closet before and afters haha, call me cray. I need some of those shelf divider things, but I have the wrong kind of shelving in my closet for them. I need to find dividers that work with my type of shelf!

    Cassie says:

    Hey Bri,

    Would you share where the original dresser is from? (the tall one)

    Thanks! 🙂

    Erika says:

    Looks SOOOOO good. I’m in the process of moving and look forward to messing with my wardrobe a bit and organizing all my shtuff. Your closet is like, totally artsy.

    XO, from Utah:
    erika wynn

    Alice Akawie says:

    Can you say where you got that great looking stool?

    designlovefest says:

    hi alice! it’s from target!

    Victoria B. says:

    Love. Thanks for the inspiration–hopefully I can make a change to my closet in 2015!

    ombia says:

    I would be afraid to pile my shoes like that – in the before pic. They could get a scratch from another shoe etc.

    Kaley says:

    Would love to know about the little step stool – its gorgeous!

    Bekka says:

    ok – I’m from LA, Bri where did you drop off the clothes you didn’t want anymore? #scavenger <– right here.

    Elisa says:

    That’s awesome. I am totally going to use some of these strategies in my own closet!

    Maayle says:

    Fabulous this dressing!!!!! I dream to have the same!
    French blogger

    Erica says:

    You have such a lovely storage! Everything has its place!

    meg says:

    looks so great! i organized my closet this weekend, and it feels amazing!!


    Emily says:

    Oh my God. Can I please adopt Elizabeth?
    looks so good!!!!

    Tyler says:

    I love love love that white and orange sweater with the Aztec design!

    Anisha says:

    Woah the difference between the two closets is massive! And now I have some inspiration on how to clean out my messy closet with no absolute structure!

    This is great. Love it! looks amazing… so much better!!


    This. Is. Amazing. I have a similar storage space to you so could totally pull off what you have done. Weekend project for sure!

    Lexi says:

    Oh wow. I need this for my life

    Nice makeover! I need to do this with my closet! It is really messy and I don’t even now what I have there anymore! Thanks for the post! Greets, Storage Farringdon Ltd.

    eunicedlawson says:

    Looks great. You showed us how organization and space utilization can make a great difference. I have got a custom built closet for my bedroom in toronto ( http://www.gtaclosets.com/living-room-bedroom/walk-in-closets/ ) as a part of home remodeling. Now I want to light up the closet space and I am spending a lot of time searching for the right one what I exactly need. Can anyone suggest me a better option with the method of perfect lightning? Thank you in advance.

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