You don't have to live in an old house or a small apartment to suffer from
closet deficit disorder -- although it does raise your risk. If you never seem
to have enough closet space, you may recognize symptoms such as these: avoiding
your closet; approaching your closet cautiously, grabbing what you need, and
quickly slamming the door to avoid the jungle within; or finding shoes jumbled
on the floor, clothes that have fallen off hangers, and belts and hats twisted
together in forsaken piles.
A cluttered, overstuffed closet can even be a safety hazard -- as anyone
who's opened the door and been bonked on the head by a falling box knows too
well. The answer, of course, is more closet space -- but how can you create it
without knocking down walls or moving to a new home? Here are some easy steps
to closet deficit relief:
By Jamie Diamond
With A New Husband And Twin Babies On The Way, Marcia Cross Of Desperate
Housewives Has Finally Found Happiness At 44. How She Did It.
She doesn't cook, and she isn't well organized She laughs easily and likes
hanging out in cargo pants. No one would describe her as high-strung. In fact,
Marcia Cross is pretty much the antithesis of Bree Van De Kamp, the fierce,
tightly wound perfectionist she plays so convincingly on Desperate
Housewives . While Bree finds solace...
Before you get started, take a good look at your closet. What is the
configuration? Could you be using the space, no matter how limited, more
Donna Smallin, who has written eight books on organizing and simplifying
life, says many people waste the space at the top of their closets, where they
can easily add another shelf or two. She advises those pressed for space to "go
vertical," pointing out that even if your new shelves are hard to reach, they
can be used to store items you don't use often, like dress shoes or clothes
that are out of season. (For help planning your dream closet, see the online
The next step is to go through your closet and ruthlessly purge the items
you don't use.
Smallin adheres to the maxim that if you haven't worn an item of clothing
for a year, give it away. "Identify the clothes you love, and get rid of
everything else," she says. "If you haven't worn something for a year, there's
something wrong -- it's not your style, or it doesn't fit right -- and there is
no point in holding onto it."