Today’s mission is about organizing kids’ closets. It’s Day 9 of our series, and it’s a doozy!
If you’re just starting, here’s the overview for our 30-day series on how to get an organized and clean home. There, you’ll find links to previous days’ missions so you can catch up.
Every day’s mission has four parts to it:
Organize What’s Left
Clean the Space
Keep on Track
How to Organize Kids’ Closets
NOTE: We are going to deal with kids’ dressers, toys, and bedrooms in the next few days. For now, we are focusing on clothing and shoes that belong in the closet.
Get Them to Help
You’ve heard the saying, “Give a man a fish, you feed him for a day. Teach a man to fish, and you feed him for a lifetime.” The same is true when it comes to organizing kids closets or anything else in their rooms.
By working with your child, they’ll learn how to sort through the clutter, where things belong, and what it should look like when they’re done.
They may also learn a few choice words that you’d rather they hadn’t heard, so if you decide to spend your day organizing kids closets by yourself, don’t feel bad.
You can always take a photo and hang it in the closet door to give them a visual example of what you mean next week when you tell them to straighten their closets.
Gather Your Supplies
- Trash bags
- Boxes for items you’ll donate
Removing clutter from kids’ closets means taking everything out and sorting it. Don’t convince yourself that you don’t need to empty the closet. You’ll make organizing kids’ closets harder on yourself, and it may take longer, too.
So, as you pull things out of the closet, do the following:
- Throw away obvious trash.
- Toss damaged and worn-out clothing.
- Set aside out-of-season clothes that are likely to fit next year. A zippered storage container under the bed will keep them accessible, clean, and dust-free.
- Put clothes that are too small into a box for donation. If you plan on having more kids and want to hang onto hand-me-downs, get them out of your child’s closet for the time being.
- Box up clothes that fit but which your kids refuse to wear and donate them — some other child will wear them.
- Repeat these steps with any shoes.
Organize What’s Left
Keep in mind that children outgrow things in the blink of an eye. If your kids’ closet is still bulging with clothes, chances are you need to get rid of more!
Fancy Systems Confuse Kids
Organizing kids’ closets
Ideas to Organize Kids’ Closets
To make it easier for kids to keep their own closets organized, try these ideas:
- Kid-sized non-slip hangers keep clothes from sliding to the floor.
- Position longer clothes (dresses, skirts, jackets, etc.) toward the sides of the closet, so they don’t block the view of other clothing.
- Hang similar items together. Have a section for pants, for example, and another for shirts (long-sleeved separated from short-sleeved).
- A lower closet rod makes it easier for kids to reach clothes. If you don’t have DIY skills, get one that hangs from the upper rod.
- Use a row of coat hooks inside the closet door or on the back wall for frequently-grabbed stuff like backpacks, rain jackets, etc.
- Put “dress clothes” where they’re less accessible. Ditto for out-of-season things you need to store in their closet.
- A clear over-the-door shoe organizer keeps footwear off of the floor and also serves as a great place for smaller objects.
- A daily outfit organizer cuts down morning decision-making and stops kids from tearing apart their closets in search of something to wear.
Clean the Closet Before Refilling It
Cleaning a closet is easy once you’ve pulled everything out of it.
- Dust everything, top to bottom, including shelves, doors, and baseboards.
- Use a microfiber cloth and cleaning spray to clean the doors inside and out, doorknobs, and baseboards.
- Remove any permanent marker or crayon stains with the microfiber cloth and rubbing alcohol.
- Use the glass cleaner on the light fixture.
- Vacuum the floor or sweep and mop it then let it dry.
Keep the Rest Clean
Keeping clutter and messes out of the areas we’ve already ROCKed takes 10-20 more minutes at most. It’s not about re-cleaning; it’s about tidying things, so they stay looking good.
With a trash bag in one hand and another container for clutter, buzz through the areas we’ve already ROCKed and reset them. Throw away any trash you find, and gather up things that family members left out of place.
- Entryway – Sweep or shake the mat outside.
- Coat closet – Everything hanging up?
- Dining table – Wipe the surface.
- Kitchen – Put things in cupboards. Wipe countertops. Sweep up spills.
- Family room and living room– Clear the tabletops and wipe them. Straighten pillows and blankets.
- Guest bathroom – Check supplies. Use a cleaning wipe on the vanity, faucets, and sink. Use another on the toilet seat and rim. Change towels.
Don’t forget, if your kids are leaving their stuff out of place, have them do chores that kids can do to earn their things back. Or dock their allowance. Or both. You’re not their maid!