Cupboards & Closets
->Choose a room
->Go to work
How do you go about having neat and orderly cupboards? You begin with one and continue cleaning out and sorting through until you have finished all of them. It will take some time, but it is one of the important ways a homemaker finally feels in control. There are certain procedures which make this particular project much nicer to contemplate, too, so let’s go to work!
Where To Begin
First, we will tackle your personal closet. It is the easiest place to make major improvements and will make considerable difference in your daily life. From there, the same principles can be applied to each and every cupboard, drawer, and closet in your home.
Collect two boxes, large bags or other convenient containers to be used in sorting items. Pick a time when you will have an hour or so free to focus and make decisions. Try to have your children otherwise occupied while you are working. Try not to be distracted by the phone, doorbell, or TV during your cleaning-out session.
Tackle your closet in three sections: floor, clothes on hangers, and upper shelves. Let’s start with your hanging clothes. The same routine will apply to your closet floor and upper shelving.
Take all the items off the hanging rod and place them on your bed (which you may want to make first so as to have a large, flat surface to work upon). Sort the items four ways, putting them back in your closet or into your containers as you go: keeps, maybes, discards, and to be stored elsewhere.
Keeps, Discards, and Maybes
Keeps are those clothes which you love, wear often, and would not do without. Put them back in your closet. Discards are those clothes which no longer fit, are out of style, are the wrong color, or you simply don’t like. Put them in the first container for sharing with charity. Maybes are more of a problem. These are the questionable clothing which might fit again, for which you might find another matching piece, or which you sometimes like to wear. These go back in the rear of your closet, covered with a large towel, so they are available but are separate from the rest. After six months, those items still under the towel are ready to be shipped off to charity. There may also be items which are useful but have been stored in the wrong place, these go in the last container.
Remember that to have fewer clothes is to be less burdened by life. Generously rid yourself of any and all clothes that you really, really don’t like. You will never miss them. Your closet will seem much larger. Dressing will become much easier and you will feel much better about yourself.
Two exceptions need to be noted. Seasonal clothing is to be sorted through the same way when these items are out and convenient. In addition, sort through maternity clothes when they are retrieved for use.
Using this same method, go through the items on your closet floor and your upper shelves. Keeps – return to the closet. Maybes – return to the closet under wraps. Discards – out they go. To be stored elsewhere – put in a container for later decisions. Strive to have more than enough room in your closet. It is not likely you will have more closet room anytime soon. So, eliminate and simplify. It feels great!
After you have successfully conquered your closet, start in your younger children’s rooms, then tackle the coat closet. Finally, work your way through your kitchen cupboards. When there is time and energy, go through the rest of the closets in your home, your drawers, and maybe even help your older children or spouse sort through his/her personal closet. Every closet or cupboard that is cleaned out becomes another, more functional “tool” in your home.
Find more helpful ideas in the “House of Order” Handbook, Chapter 3, “Clothes Closets and Cupboards”.
Photo used with permission of Jan Sagemueller, sxc.hu.