How many times have you looked at your closet and thought “I don’t have a thing to wear” or “I’m wearing the same outfits all the time”? Then, implementing some of these clever clothes storage ideas could help.

You’ll be able to shop your own closet and create dozens of new outfits from what you already own.

The irony is that we usually have a lot of clothes, but we’re just not wearing them. I read that on average we only wear about 20% of what we have!

The other day I was looking for something to wear to a casual dinner at a friend’s house and realized that I was bored with my usual outfits but I didn’t have time to scramble and try on something different.  

This got me thinking about how I organize my closet, what clothes are in my line of sight and what clothes I miss. I have always considered myself to be organized, but obviously something is missing if I’m only wearing 20% of my clothes.

So, my goal became to find more effective clothes storage ideas to re-arrange my closet to create more outfits.

Why it’s important to re-organize your closet

First of all, does it really matter if your closet is organized so long as all of your clothes and shoes are in there? Well, I’d argue it does for the following reasons:

You’ll save money

Have you ever bought a new t-shirt or pair of black pants, for example, only to get home and then find you have very similar items already in your closet? By re-arranging your wardrobe, you’ll be able to see exactly what you have so you won’t buy duplicates.

You’ll rediscover old favorites

Have you lost track of what’s in your wardrobe? By re-organizing, you will probably find some clothing lurking at the back or the bottom of your closet that you had completely forgotten about. By re-incorporating them into everyday use, you can create new outfits.

You’ll wear more of your wardrobe more of the time

By putting some clothes storage ideas into place, you can see exactly what you have, so you will wear much more than 20% of what you own.

You’ll create a wider variety of outfits

Everyone knows someone who seems to have a different outfit on every time you see them. I bet if you peeked into their closet, you would see that it is super organized.

Your clothes will last much longer

By storing everything correctly, you’ll find that your clothes retain their shape and last much longer, meaning you’ll be able to wear them for many more years to come. For instance, you’ll want a nice wide, supportive hanger for your blazers to ensure they retain their shape at the shoulders.

J.Crew linen blend blazer | 40PLUSSTYLE.COM

J.Crew linen blend blazer

Before you start

Before looking at how you should organize your closet, it’s important to make sure that you want to keep everything that is in your wardrobe.

If you can bear the temporary chaos, pull everything out of your closet and ensure that you love, and will wear everything in there. Don’t keep anything that doesn’t fit.

By paring down what you own, you will find your closet reorganization is much more efficient and you are likely to be able to do much more with less.

Now onto how to organize your closet

So, now that you’re (hopefully) convinced about the merits of re-arranging your closet, exactly how should you do so?

There’s no one right answer. Everyone has their own preferred way to organize. Take a look at the ideas below and think about what will work best for you and your lifestyle.

You may already use one of these methods of organization. If so, I’d love to hear about how you organize your own closet. You can let me know in the comments at the bottom of the article.

Clothes storage ideas - re-arranging your closet | 40plusstyle.com

Organize your clothes by season

This is a particularly useful tip if you are working with a smaller closet space. Separate your clothing by season and only have in your closet what is suited to the season you are currently in.

So, depending on where you live, you may have a spring, summer, fall and winter capsule (there are more tips here on how to create the ultimate capsule wardrobe). Or you may have a warm weather and a cold weather wardrobe.

Keep what you are wearing this season in your closet and find somewhere to store the rest of your clothes. For example, could you utilize space under your bed for the clothes you don’t need right now, or put them out of reach at the top of your wardrobe?

Organize by clothing type

If you struggle to easily see what you own and put together outfits day-to-day, then organizing by item type could be the best way for you.

Separate your blouses, pants, skirts, dresses and jackets. That way, you can easily pick your separates to create stylish outfits.

To get really organized, you could even use wardrobe dividers to make sure everything stays where it should be in its own section.

Closet Doodles clothing dividers | 40plusstyle.com

Closet Doodles clothing dividers

Organize by activity

Everyone has different “hats” that they wear and you’ll have different clothes for these different roles in your life. Hang all your work clothes together, then all your casual items, then your dressier clothes.

Organize by frequency

Even with the most beautifully organized closet in the world, you will still have clothes you wear more often than others. Think about organizing your closet by often you wear them. Make sure your favorite pieces are always accessible.

Organize by color

Color coding your closet can not only make it look more aesthetically appealing, but can help you to pick out your outfits, particularly if you are a very visual person.

Organize by outfit

You could put your outfits together so they are just ready to pull out the closet as one ready-to-go outfit to save time each morning.

Another idea to do this if you don’t want to organize your closet by outfit is to take out the entire outfit you will wear the next day and place it outside your wardrobe on a mannequin the night before so it is all ready to go.

PDM WORLDWIDE mannequin | 40plusstyle.com

PDM WORLDWIDE mannequin

Cool storage ideas

Now that you’ve figured out whether you’re going to sort your closet by type, color or season, exactly how are you going to organize it?

Where are you going to put everything? Below are some of the best tips and tools for keeping your closet perfectly tidy – and ensuring that everything you own is visible and easy to access.

1. Fold bulky items

You may have a huge closet with room to hang up every single item you own. However, if you do need to conserve some space, fold your bulkier items such as your sweaters and jeans. If you don’t have enough shelving, you could always opt for hanging shelves.

Clothes storage ideas - Simple Houseware 5 shelves hanging closet organizer | 40plusstyle.com

Simple Houseware 5 shelves hanging closet organizer

2. Matching hangers

Nothing makes your closet look instantly messier than a motley collection of plastic hangers that you’ve picked up along the years from stores or dry cleaners.

Instead, invest in matching hangers which will ensure your clothes hang in a uniform way and that they retain their correct shape.

Clothes storage ideas - ZOBER wooden hangers | 40plusstyle.com

ZOBER wooden hangers

3. Use drawer dividers for your underwear

Rather than just throw all of your underwear into your drawers, use drawer dividers to organize your underwear, bras and socks. You’ll find your bras retain their shape better and you won’t spend ages searching for matching socks.

You can also use this type of organizer to roll your t-shirts and store them so they don’t crease before you wear them.

Clothes storage ideas - Simple Houseware closet underwear organizer | 40plusstyle.com

Simple Houseware closet underwear organizer

4. Hang your scarves

A scarf can instantly add some pizzazz to your outfits (see how to wear scarves). To make sure you can find yours easily, don’t fold your scarves, hang them!

Clothes storage ideas - iDesign axis metal loop scarf hanger | 40plusstyle.com

iDesign axis metal loop scarf hanger

5. The same goes for your belts

Rather than using drawer space, you can also hang your belts so you can quickly add them to your outfits (see how to get the most out of your belts).

Clothes storage ideas - EASYVIEW belt hanger | 40plusstyle.com

EASYVIEW belt hanger

6. Use connector hooks

If you really don’t have much closet space at all, you could use connector hooks so you can hang similar items, or outfits which go together on the same hanger.

Geilihome connector hooks | 40plusstyle.com

Geilihome connector hooks

7. Store your shoes efficiently

Shoes can quickly take up a lot of closet space. Here are our ideas on how to store shoes.

How I decided to organize my own closet

All good methods, but maybe it was time to think out of the box when looking at clothes storage ideas, or out of the closet as it were.

I have always arranged my closet by activity and color. I have lots of smart casual clothes and only a few special occasion and business clothes.

But why can’t I wear those for other purposes?  And why am I keeping good clothes for only special occasions? And what about clothes that I had designated for summer wear only when some of those tees and tank tops can be worn under cardigans or jackets in cooler weather.

I decided that I would re-arrange everything in my closet by outfit combinations.

I removed everything from my closet and selected 1 item I wanted to create an outfit around. I chose a velvet blazer that I wear with crepe pants for an evening out. But that jacket can also be worn in the daytime.  

I hung everything together that I could possibly wear with that jacket and ended up with a pencil skirt, plaid pants, indigo jeans, black jeans, crepe pants, 4 blouses and 2 tops for a minimum of 10 outfit combinations.  I then added a duster length cardigan which could be worn with everything in that grouping, giving me another 10 outfits!

Then I added scarves and necklaces. By the time I finished, most of my closet was organized this way and it felt brand new. It also exposed which pieces aren’t versatile or are stand-alones.

How to find lots of new outfit in your closet | 40plusstyle.com

Here are some more closet organization ideas to try:

  • Change the order in which you hang your clothes. Take what’s in the back of the closet and move it to the front. Forgotten clothes will now be visible.
  • If you have a walk-in closet that has shelves and hanging bars, switch it up so that everything is now hanging or folded in a different place.
  • If you arrange by activity now, change that and arrange by season or color.
  • Stop arranging by type. Arrange by outfit combinations – which is what I did.

No matter which technique you choose, all of these ideas will give you a fresh look at what’s in your closet. Give it a try, you will be surprised at how many new outfit combinations you can create.

How do you like to arrange your closet? What are the best clothes storage ideas you’ve discovered? Let me know in a comment below.

Continue reading:

  1. The Ultimate Guide To Creating A Capsule Wardrobe That Works For You
  2. Outfit Ideas: How To Get Inspiration For Your Next Outfit When You’re Bored With Everything In Your Closet
  3. How To Store Shoes – Lots Of Ideas To Get Organised!


Author bio: Yvonne Grzebien’s passion for fashion started at a young age through modelling and then progressed to working in the fashion and cosmetics business for many years. She also has training as a Colours Consultant. Yvonne lives in Canada and when the weather permits you will find her on the golf course.

Like this post on clothes storage ideas? Share it on Pinterest!

Clothes storage ideas: How to find lots of new outfit ideas through re-arranging your closet | 40plusstyle.com

Want to get more articles from 40+style in your inbox, subscribe here.

You can also connect with 40+style on Facebook, Instagram or Pinterest.

Support 40+style by using the links in our articles to shop. As an associate for Amazon and many other brands, we receive a small commission (at no cost to you) on qualifying purchases which enables us to keep creating amazing free content for you. Thanks!