Closet Organization + Storage Tips for Small Spaces

Many of you guys have been requesting to see just how Nick and I organize our clothes in our apartment in New York City. At first it really was a challenge. Coming from our over-sized college apartments in North Carolina (my closet was twice the size + I didn’t have to share it with a boy) it really was a shock just how much less space we were going to have living in the city. We’ve been in our apartment for about ten months and I think we’ve finally figured out a system that works best for organizing our clothes. By no means is it perfect – or worthy of some award for being an awesomely organized small NYC apartment closet – but it works for us.

My tips for organizing your clothing in a small space

1. If possible – store your off-season clothing somewhere else. I’m fortunate that my grandparents live about a 1.5 hour drive outside the city so Nick and I keep all our opposite season clothing at their home. Doing this cuts down on the clutter in our apartment and makes managing our closet a lot easier.

2. If your closet is overcrowded look into purchasing a standing garment rack (ours is from Bed Bath & Beyond). Now this idea took some convincing when it came to Nick. He was not into the idea of having a garment rack in the middle of our living room and thought that having one would encourage me to purchase even more clothes LOL. I persuaded him into giving the idea a chance and it ended up working out great. Our closet is so much more manageable now that we’ve both been able to move our most-worn pieces out on to the garment rack. I also think it looks nice having all my colorful spring dresses out on display. And no it hasn’t encouraged me to purchase more clothes! 😛

3. Have storage with multiple uses. For a while I really struggled with how to organize my pants. They took up wayyyy too much space when I had them on hangers in the closet and there was not enough room to store them in the dresser. When we first moved in I just kept them all in pile on a bookshelf – I literally had no clue where to put them. Then one day it hit me that a storage bench (ordered mine from was the perfect idea. We had a tiny spot in front of our living room windows where we had space for a small seat. By getting a storage bench I was able to kill two birds with one stone. I added extra seating to our living area + found a way to neatly store my pants.

4. Get rid of items you don’t wear. When you live in a small space there is nothing worse than being a hoarder. Too much clothing = clutter. Every few months I like to go through my closet and get rid of the items Nick and I really aren’t wearing. Ebay, Buffalo Exchange, Plato’s Closet, Salvation Army, younger siblings – there are so many ways to pass on not worn clothing. I know it’s hard but you will thank yourself later when your closet is clean and organized.

What are some ways you stay organized in a small space? Any tips of suggestions for me?
P.S. I’m heading to Massachusetts this weekend with Nick for his sister’s high school graduation. Looks like the weather is going to be cold and rainy but it will be nice to escape the city. Hope you all have a safe holiday weekend and you get some sun!

8 Comments | in Home Decor

8 Responses to Closet Organization + Storage Tips for Small Spaces

  1. joliene wade says:

    Thanks for the tips. I live in San Francisco and my partner and I are exploding out of our 1BR. I should definitely look into a storage bench!

    Also: I didn’t realize Buffalo Exchange was a chain. We have one here on Haight St.

    Young SF Lady

  2. Alissa says:

    Yes!!! These are so helpful, thank you for posting!

  3. Joana says:

    Right now I don’t really have this problem since I moved countries two months ago and still have plenty of space in my closet, but it was great to read these tips!

    xo Joana
    Grow In Fashion

  4. Archana says:

    My biggest tip passed down from my mother, works for any closet: develop a very strong sense of personal style. You wont be tempted to buy everything thats trendy or on sale. And closet is not so full anymore. And love the pieces you own and wear them a lot. And take good care of them. She wore her silk well and often. She stayed in France for a while and learnt this from the frenchwomen she knew.


  5. Great tips! Thanks for sharing!!

    The Style Storm

    xo, Christina

  6. Diva In Me says:

    Even though I’ve always been privileged with space but even that, I’ve had issues with storage space. I guess the more space I have, the more I tend to pile more stuff in it. I tend to giveaway my stuff to those that needs it more than me and I buy big boxes to organize the smaller things.

  7. I’m moving home from college to dallas next week and all of these tips are perfect!

    xo SideSmile,

    SideSmile Style

  8. WorldTasting says:

    Great tips! I figured out that the thinner hangers help a lot for fitting clothes in a small closet. The bulky ones just seem to occupy so much unnecessary space…

    Sylvia @ WorldTasting

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