I’ve done some more tweaking to my daughter’s closet and wanted to share my progress. I believe the last time I posted it looked like this:
You can see the before images and process HERE. Basically I had torn out a long and practically unusable shelf from across the entire closet and then installed these lower shelves in the side insets to make it easier for my daughter to reach the things she needs. On the left hand side of the closet I installed two hanging bars as well. I then painted it all and put up some vinyl polka dots.
Anyway, my whole goal for this closet was to make it so that my daughter (8 years old) could keep everything organized ON HER OWN. I wanted her to be able to reach all the essentials, put away her own laundry, have room to grow and, as a bonus, have it all look cute!
Here are some tips on making your child’s closet work FOR THEM:
1) Get all of the important/daily/routine things they need down at their level. If a kid has to climb on a chair to put something away it will most likely just end up on the floor. For me this meant installing some new shelving. For you, it might just mean rearranging some things. Keep out-of-season things up high and things they need on a regular basis (underwear, socks, pants, etc) down in the prime real estate.
2) Containerize. Getting things into distinct containers rather than having piles on a shelf is key. If a child can’t fold their laundry perfectly (heck, even I can’t do that) then piles aren’t going to work. A decently folded pile of shirts in a bin, however, works like a charm!
3) LABEL EVERYTHING. My daughter can read. This makes this step very easy for me. However, if your child can’t read you can still label! Use pictures/clip art/stickers of shirts, socks, etc rather than writing out the words. Labeling is key. Your child needs to know where the underwear goes! If she has to guess everytime then she might just stop guessing and put it on the floor where it’s easy.
I got these bins from Ikea. They are made to go in their Trofast system but work great on their own! They are sturdy and the perfect size for my project. My daughter and I initially organized her clothes and things into them and then let it be for a month or so. We labeled the bins with post-it notes so we could tinker with the system if needed. My daughter did most of the organizing to begin with and put things where SHE wanted them to be.
4) Let your child help you organize. Not everyone’s brains work the same way when it comes to this stuff. What makes sense to one might not make sense to another. I let my daughter decide that tank tops and underwear should go together rather than tank tops in with the short sleeved shirts. This made sense to her. The more it makes sense the more naturally she will be able to put things back where they go. We have made a few adjustments as we realized she didn’t need her scarves and belts front & center, for example, and now we have everything in place just how she likes it.
We then took off the post-its and added some more permanent (and better looking!) labels to the bins! I cut these with my Silhouette and then applied them to the correct bins. This might have been my favorite step.
A few of the bins at the top are still empty which I LOVE because that means we have some room to grow. I also added some little 1.5 inch grey polka dots between the big 4″ turquoise ones… what do you think… too much? It just seemed like there was a LOT of turquoise going on in there all of a sudden.
I hope you find these tips helpful! What I can tell you is that now my daughter LOVES to put her laundry away. There is a clear and easily accessible place to put her stuff & that makes all the difference.