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Organizing

Professional Organizer Mica Santayana Canto Shares a Step-by-Step Guide on Straightening Up Your Closet

Zoning can help!

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Photography: (L) @tidilyeverafter | Instagram (R) Alexandra Gorn | Unsplash

We’ve featured many ways of how you can organize your closet, but the reality is that it’s all about what works for you. It can be the KonMari method, or you can try Swedish death cleaning, but for something simpler, we asked professional organizer Mica Santayana Canto during our recent Real Living Goes Live! session on Facebook for a practical step-by-step guide on how to go about this chore without feeling too overwhelmed.

“I realize that now is not the best time to declutter because people aren’t able to work, and we’ll be holding on to our stuff,” she said, noting that the ongoing COVID-19 community quarantine has been hard on many. “So to me, going through your house now is about appreciating and breathing new life into your home and learning how you can work with what you have already.”

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1. Take stock of what you have and what can actually fit in your closet.

“Let’s say you want to take a look at your closet. Before this lockdown, people were probably decluttering and donating items, but maybe for some of us that are holding on to our stuff, you can really remove everything so that your faced with the physical aspect of your closet... The finite space of it, and see what you’re dealing with.”

2. Clean and classify.

“As you’re removing everything, this is the best time you can clean it down, you can wipe everything down, and then go through each item. And as you’re going through each item, you can check what needs to be repaired and what can be repurposed.

“You can keep like-items together, so this is something we do regardless of what area of the house we’re dealing with—whether you’re in the kitchen or the playroom, or your garage or bed room. We do this because, number one, if you’re in a crunch and you’re trying to look for something, you know exactly where everything is. Everything is grouped together.

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“Number two, when all of this is over and you find yourself in the mall, shopping, and you think ‘Maybe I need another pair of pants.’ In your mind you have a visual representation of just how many pairs of pants you have. And you say, ‘Oh, I think I’m good,” or you can say “I don’t have space for it anymore.’

“These are really guides for you more than just putting things into pretty boxes and labelling them.”

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3. Decide which pieces you use often and which ones you don’t.

“After you have kept them in different piles—so your underwear will go in one pile, and your work clothes in another—and so on, you want to create zones. You want to most frequently used items in prime real estate: everything at eye level or within reach. Everything you use seasonally or not so often—they can be your winter clothes—you can put it up on top.

“Another thing we do with our clients is that if they don’t have enough storage and they have access to vacuum bags, you can compress the items and store them up on top.”

4. Decide which items of clothing should be folded or hung.

“Once you’ve assigned zones, you want to decide whether a piece of clothing is best folded or hung. Typically, anything can be folded except for items that are a little bit more delicate and you can arrange them in rainbow order. That’s basically by color, so when you come to the space you know exactly what you’re looking for and where to find it.”

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5. If you can, try everything on.

“Lastly, we have all the time now, so I would take it up a notch and try everything on. If something doesn’t make you feel good now, then maybe you can donate it to someone who can breathe new life into it and set is aside.”

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For more tips from Mica, watch the full video below, and for more information on her organizing services, follow her on Instagram @tidilyeverafter.


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