Make sure to avoid mistake #1.

By Katie Holdefehr
August 08, 2019
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If we're being honest, organizing a closet of any size (yes, even a spacious walk-in) can be difficult, but figuring out how to organize a small closet presents an even greater challenge. When you're dealing with a too-tiny closet, there is a special set of guidelines you'll want to follow. For starters, you won't be able to simply rearrange what you already own, but conducting a closet purge will likely be an important first step. From there, invest in the right organizers (and don't try to cram in too many) to maximize the available space. Follow the dos and don'ts of small closet organizing below, and your cramped closet will suddenly feel a little bit bigger. 

RELATED: This $14 Closet Organizer Rescued My Morning Routine

Do: Start With a Closet Purge 

If your closet is currently too small to fit everything, simply re-organizing it all isn't going to solve the problem. You're going to have to conduct a closet purge, following these seven steps. Don't worry, you won't have to KonMari your entire home, just focus on one closet to start. Want to feel accomplished in the next 20 minutes? Begin by getting rid of these 11 things right now, which you definitely won't miss. 

Do: Maximize Vertical Space

In a cramped closet, vertical space is your friend. To take advantage of it, invest in clever organizers that hang down from the closet bar, such as this six-compartment sweater organizer ($20, containerstore.com) that I swear by for transforming my own closet. 

Don't: Use the Wrong Hangers  

In a too-tiny closet, every inch of space matters, so make sure bulky hangers aren't taking up more space than they should. These hangers ($30 for 50, bedbathandbeyond.com) are not only slim, but also non-slip. 

Don't: Buy Too Many Organizers 

While organizers that maximize vertical space and the back of the closet door are smart additions to a small closet, avoid the temptation to over-shop. A large shoe rack or storage boxes can quickly fill up all of the available space. The key: measure your closet carefully before you shop, so you don't end up buying organizers that won't fit. 

Don't: Forget to Store Things Outside the Closet, Too 

Even once you KonMari your clothing stash, you likely won't be able to fit every single clothing item you own into one closet. So remember to separate out off-season clothing, store them in protective organizers, and hide them under the bed or in the attic. As a general rule, only keep clothing you're likely to wear within the next three months in the closet. 

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