Kim Craig, 26, admits that her closet, with its mateless shoes and skirtless suit jackets, was the source of her chronic tardiness. "I'm a single mom, but you'd think three people had their clothes in there," says the public relations account executive. Small handbags and silky sleeveless tops fallen from their hangers would disappear into a black hole of broken stilettos and shopping bags, never to be seen again.
2 of 4Frances Janisch
After: New Shelving and Shoe Storage
Since Kim uses her light wool and cotton sweaters year-round, she can keep them neatly folded on hanging canvas shelves―a much cheaper solution than hiring a carpenter to build custom shelves. To buy: Canvas 6-Shelf Sweater & Accessory Organizer, $18, organize-everything.com.
Kim traded in her overburdened shoe rack for plastic boxes. They're shorter and trimmer than standard shoe boxes, so they stack compactly on the shelf. And because they're clear, she can find what she needs without tripping on her own heels. To buy: Clear Shoe Drawers, $8 each, containerstore.com.
3 of 4Frances Janisch
After: Properly Placed Clothing
Limited drawer space forced Kim to hang clothes she otherwise wouldn't have―including heavy winter sweaters, which were getting stretched beyond recognition. Now she organizes and protects them in large canvas boxes. To buy: Natural Canvas Boxes, $16 to $20 each, containerstore.com.
Kim uses padded hangers for delicate sleeveless tops and plastic ones (with attachable clips for pants and skirts) for everything else. To buy: Natural Cotton Canvas Hangers, $6 for two; tubular hangers, $28 for 72; Super-Hold Clips, $1.50 for four; all, containerstore.com.
4 of 4Frances Janisch
After: Easy-to-Find Clothes and Accessories
Instead of rifling though an old oak bureau to find socks, underwear, and belts, Kim now uses clear plastic drawers. The stack of five is low enough to hang tops above, but the long and deep drawers hold even more folded clothes than the bureau did.