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"Camp Organization" starring the bedroom closet, Day 2

"Today I want you to tackle your bedroom closet."  Any parent that has uttered these words knows the moans and groans it is sure to elicit.  And, chances are good that you might have battles organizing your own bedroom closet, but when it comes to the kids' closet, things can be overwhelming.  

Queen of Organization Amy Morris makes the process of cleaning up (while benefiting others), a double blessing.  Here's Part II of her five part series called "Camp Organization,"  Amy's boot camp for at home kids that need to clean their bedrooms! 

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Day 2: The Closet

Next to the desk, the closet is the next biggest organizing task to tackle.  For some, there is a good reason - the closet is behind a closed door!  Where to start?  Looking at the closet and figuring out where to begin can surely be so daunting that you might consider keeping the door shut and skipping it altogether.  DON'T!!!! 

Cleaning out and organizing closets will not only benefit you, but will benefit others as well.  Donating gently used items in good condition to a local charity is a win-win for everyone.  You will have provided a basic necessity to someone in need and at the same time can get a donation receipt that can be used for your annual tax filing.  Taking expensive and high quality pieces to a consignment shop will provide monetary benefits, and paring down in general will help your child see what items need to purchase for the upcoming school year. 

To begin, get a few laundry baskets, milk crates, big bins or large shopping bags and label as follows:

  • Charity/Donation
  • Consignment
  • Hand-Me-Down
  • Garbage (throw away items that are completely not reusable and in no condition to be donated, and don't forget to recycle where applicable)

Go through the entire closet leaving only the items you intend to keep in the closet.  We will discuss putting them away in an organized fashion later in the process.

The removed pieces should be placed in the appropriate bins.  Once sorting is complete, move the bins out of the bedroom so that there is more space in which to organize the clothing to remain.

Organizing your closet will depend largely on the lifestyle factors and personal preferences of your child.  Consider the weekly needs and routine for the child.  Do they need school uniform, athletic uniforms, work clothes, etc.?  The items used most should be easily accessible, for example; if the school has a dress code, these clothing items should be placed where they are easily reachable, while weekend attire and fancy dress items should be placed more remotely. If school and weekend clothes are interchangeable, a good way to organize is by type of shirt and shirt sleeve length (for example, polo shirts long sleeve, polo shirts short sleeves, tank tops, short sleeve non-polo and long sleeve non-polo) and bottoms in a similar fashion (dress shorts, athletic shorts, jeans and pants).  Jeans and pants for children may be easier to fold than hang.

Use baskets, boxes, plastic bins, belt hooks, coat hooks, accessory organizers and shoe organizers to keep the closet space tidy.  Baskets are a great place to store scarves, small purses, baseball caps, and athletic items.  Be decorative; label a small square/circle of heavy paper with the basket contents, punch a hole and using ribbon, tie it to the basket. 

My daughter takes forever each morning, so to further simplify her closet, in hopes to have her ready and out the door sooner, I further separate her tops by category and by color.  It keeps the mess down as she's deciding what to wear.

For out-of-season items, store in plastic containers or plastic vacuum bags and place on higher shelves in the closet. If there is not enough space in the closet, storing them under-the-bed is another option. 

Stay connected, Camp Organization Day 3 tomorrow!