My hall closet is always a mess! It’s full of coats and shoes and just about everything else. What can I do?

Jean, Encinitas


The word for the day today is optimize! The average 4×3 foot small hall closet can multi-purpose effortlessly with a little planning. Add shelves and drawers on one side of this closet. Install a rod on the other side for your warm coats.

You can also include a hanging shoe rack or shelves to organize your shoes on the floor below the coats. Consider adding a floor safe or fireproof box on the floor under the hanging clothes if there is still enough room.

If your stereo isn’t already stowed behind closed doors, consider creating a space for it and your CD collection. It’s very easy to run wires through the walls out to your speakers. Use this project to move your speakers off the floor if they aren’t already hanging. Moving your stereo up and out of the way is a great way to add space to your living area.

Build shelves for your CD’s beside the stereo space and add a few drawers below. Shelves running above the stereo can hold photo albums. The drawers below can be used for a multitude of purposes. My personal favorite is to store gifts. Imagine being able to have all of your pre-bought gifts, wrapping paper and cards all in one space!

Most importantly PURGE! If your not using it get rid if it. If you’re not using or wearing it but you want to hold on to it for some sentimental reason get rid of it.

The feeling of exhilaration from ridding yourself of this clutter will far outweigh any emotional attachment.

A small closet that I’ve designed for a client has all of these features. It houses the stereo system, CD collection, photo albums, winter coats, important documents and gifts all-in-one and functions beautifully!

Kathi is a professional organizer, image consultant and event planner based in San Diego California.

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San Diego Professional Organizer