How to
Organize a Closet for Two

Imagine your perfect morning routine: everything you need is exactly in its place. Instead of rushing around looking for things and scrambling out the door, you’re already dressed and enjoying a cup of coffee. Sure, it takes work to get this organized, but with the right mindset and a little planning, you can transform even the most chaotic shared closet into an organized, efficient space that will set the tone for the rest of your day. Just follow our closet organization ideas below.

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A Whole-house Perspective

Sometimes we get lost in the clutter because we don’t take time to actually consider our storage options from a whole-house perspective. While it may seem like an obvious place to store all of your clothing and accessories, remember that your needs will change as the seasons do and so should your closet.

In order for this space to work for both parties, you’ll need to sit down and talk about how you’d like your ideal closet to function and what’s keeping you from achieving that vision currently. Is there just too much stuff? Is there a better place in the home for some items to live? Is there enough light for you to even see what’s in there?

Let It Go

Take a note from Japanese organization and decluttering expert Marie Kondo and do your best to only hold onto the items that bring you joy. Just remember: your goal isn’t to get rid of as much stuff as possible; it’s to make sure that the items you hold onto add joy to your life. So if it’s not adding joy or if you’re only holding onto it out of a sense of duty to the giver, take a moment to thank the item for its service and then let it go. And then relish the euphoria that follows a great decluttering session.

Start by clearing absolutely everything out of your closet. Go through all of your items and sort them into three piles: keep, donate/sell and toss. This part of the process may take time, so stay organized as you go by keeping each pile neatly contained in separate hampers or baskets.

Design Your Space

Before you put anything back in the closet, take a picture of your empty space to reference later. Take some measurements and create a basic floorplan so you know exactly what the raw storage potential of your space is. Do you need more light? Are these closet shelves just not cutting it? Is there unused space you didn’t ever notice before? 

With a clear palette to work with, sketch out an organization design that will address your storage needs. Do you prefer folding your clothes to hanging them up? Do your accessories and jewelry have a safe, tidy place to be stored?

If you’re feeling a little lost, don’t sweat it. Our Pottery Barn style experts are happy to help. They’ll even come over to your house, take measurements, create a floorplan and help you design a closet system that works – totally free. For a small fee, they’ll even hang the shelves for you.

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Get Your Hands Dirty

With everything cleaned out, take this opportunity to make improvements to your closet space. Go all out and install cedar lining to keep your clothes protected or install extra LED strip lights so you can see every square inch of your space. 

If your closet partner tends to spread out over time, try delineating the space with a set of fun, fresh curtains, so you’ll know exactly when they’ve used up their half of the space. 

Plus, never underestimate the power a fresh coat of white paint can have on a room. Just be sure to choose a paint in a semi-gloss or satin finish. Flat paints are gorgeous, but they scuff easily and are harder to clean.

Ready, Set, Go

Once you have everything you need, it’s time to start getting organized. Take the guess work out of getting ready by creating labels for any baskets you may be using or by placing easy to ready tags directly on your hardware.

Everything In its Place

With all the organization systems in place and labels secure, take everything from the Save pile and start putting it away. Do this together with your partner so that you both know not only where you own stuff goes, but where to store each other’s belongings. Trust us, it makes laundry time that much easier.

Enjoy It

Now that your shared closet is up and running, take a moment to appreciate all the hard work you and your partner put into it. Enjoy the feeling of having a completely organized space. Take a picture of it. Write down how such an organized closet makes you feel. This will help you remember why it’s worthwhile to keep it in good working order down the road when things get hectic. 

And if you ever find yourself slipping back into old habits, remember that no one is perfect. You can carve out some time to get back to that fresh starting point and you’ll always have the opportunity to reorganize your space as your needs change.