6 Spring Closet Cleaning Secrets From Professional Organizers

Interviews by Chandni Jhunjhunwala

1. Divide and Conquer

"I've worked hands-on with so many clients and they all tell me the same thing -- they tend to pull everything out of their closets and then they run out of time and they push it all back in, which makes it worse than it was to begin with. So my suggestion to them is to divide and conquer. On a Saturday morning do your shoes, at other times do your slacks. People have told me that breaking it up into small projects has changed their life."
-- Mary Pankiewicz, professional organizer and author of Clutter-Free & Organized

2. Tidy Up Your Top Shelf
"Those who stack sweaters and T-shirts on shelves in their closets know it can become a jumbled mess, since stacks often fall over. For those clients I recommend the Slide N Stax Clothing Organizer. It is amazing because it is a plastic clear piece with sides and a bottom that fits on the top shelf and you can just bring that one piece down when you need something, instead of tipping over your stacked items."
-- Beth Levin, professional organizer, Closet Queen

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3. Group, Group, Group
"I would always recommend grouping 'like with like.' It enables people to find items quickly. All tank tops together, all capri pants together in one area. Some people like to group items by sleeve length -- and there are a few in the spring and summer seasons. I've even seen people use color-coded hangers but I don't recommend it -- too time consuming!"
-- Stacey Agin Murray, professional organizer, Organized Artistry

Tatiana Gladskikh / iStockphotoTatiana Gladskikh / iStockphoto

4. Bag-and-Tie Overload?
"Purses on shelves tend to get messy. For those who have wall space in their closets, a great solution would be to purchase belt racks (available at the Container Store) and hang them vertically instead of horizontally. That way, the bottoms of the purses don't bunch up in the same place. This also works great for ties!"
-- Beth Levin

5. Short on Space?
"Look around your home for things that are going unused, that might be empty -- like file drawers -- and store things away in there. I have had a lot of clients that collect old suitcases and use them for storage -- those don't take up much room."
-- Ann Bingley Gallops, professional organizer, The Organized Life

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6. Hanger Trick
"Some of my clients love this tip: When you get out your spring clothes, put the hangers in backward on the rod but then when you wear a piece of clothing, hang it up facing the front. At the end of the season you'll know what you've never worn."
-- Mary Pankiewicz, professional organizer and author of Clutter-Free & Organized

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