How To Organize A Small Closet With Lots Of Clothes (5 Simple Steps)

Turn your messy, disorganized, cluttered closet into an orderly clothes haven. Learn how to organize a small closet with lots of clothes in just 5 simple steps.

It happens to the best of us: a disorganized clothes closet. You get busy, and the closet becomes a catchall for all the other items – besides clothes. Meanwhile, you’re too tired to put clothes back into any kind of order after they’re cleaned.

With cooler weather just around the corner for most of us, this is a perfect time to get your closet in order. For next to nothing, learn how to organize a small closet with lots of clothes.

Pinterest image for 5 tips for organizing a small closet with a lot of clothes.


How To Organize A Small Closet With Lots Of Clothes

I’ll show you how with just 5 simple steps – we’ll transform your closet from chaotic to clutter-free. Prepare to be amazed, and let’s dive right in!

Step #1 – Get The Right Mindset

First, you need to adopt the correct mindset before heading into closet organization.

Take some time to prepare yourself for purging items from your closet that don’t belong there or items you haven’t worn in quite a while. I like to keep 3 words in the back of my mind when I go through my closet once or twice each year: Keep, sell, or donate.

As you organize clothes in a small closet, ultimately, the “keep” section is what will remain there. Removing the items you designate as “sell” and “donate” will produce a less cluttered closet.

Step #2 – Empty Your Closet

If you have the space, I have found it easiest to start with a blank slate when organizing.

Take everything out of your closet. Leave the clothes on their hangers and make piles neatly on your bed or floor.

If space is an issue, just empty a small section to start. You’ll end up working through the closet section by section.

creating piles of clothes

Step #3 – Switch Out Seasonal Items

One super simple way to organize a small closet with lots of clothes is to divide your clothing by season. Then you can simply change out seasonal items throughout the year as they’re needed. If you live where the temperatures fluctuate enough to have a varied wardrobe, this one hack can quickly declutter that space!

TIP: The best way to store those off-season clothing items is to use vacuum-sealable bags. They take up less than half the space of traditional bags and can easily slide under the bed or on a shelf in the closet once they’re compressed. For the next season, just swap out the clothes from the vacuum-sealed bags and compress again.

As for the current-season items, I like to organize my clothes by type of material and style. For example, I group by:

  • Long Pants
  • Thicker Sweaters
  • Dressier Tops
  • T-Shirts
  • And so on…

Organizing my clothes in this fashion makes choosing what to wear a breeze. I can easily create an outfit like a sweater with long pants by grabbing items from each section.

hanging clothes in the closet


Step #4 – Filter Your Clothing

Ok, now that you have a system to use, it’s time to go through your clothing piles and hang those clothes back up! This is where the rubber meets the road when deciding how to organize a small closet with lots of clothes.

Remember the “sell” and “donate” categories I mentioned earlier? As you filter through the clothes you’ve placed in piles on the floor, decide if the item is something you wear repeatedly or haven’t worn in a year or more. The items that you haven’t worn in over a year probably won’t be worn again. So, they need to go into one of two piles – the pile for items to sell or the one for clothes to donate.

It may sometimes feel hard to get rid of items you paid for but look at it this way: What’s the purpose of keeping an item if you never use it? At this point, you might be saying, “I haven’t used it in a while, but I might use it again someday.” To that, I say, “No, no, you won’t.”

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Pinterest image with tips on how to organize a clothes in a small closet .

If you have wall space, installing hooks works great for hanging things like belts, hats, scarves, and purses.

3-drawer plastic bin in a closet

Try this: Ask yourself if you would still buy this article of clothing if you went shopping today. If the honest answer is no, there’s no reason to continue letting it take up precious closet space!

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