How to Save Space in Your Closet by Carefully Choosing Whether to Hang or Fold Clothes

Typically closets tend to become cluttered before any other space in the home. Why are they so tricky to keep organized? In my experience, it all depends on the technique you choose to organize it—specifically, the benefits of hanging vs. folding and when each is most appropriate.

1. Helpful Tips to Determine Which Clothes to Hang

Should we hang shirts? Pants? Long dresses and coats only? I've learned a lot over the years as a clothing consultant and someone who lives in an old house with small closets. I believe blouses, pants, blazers, dresses, and jeans should be hung on a hanger. Skirts too, but with clips to hang vertically and not folded over the hanger. Thin or lightweight sweaters do well on felted hangers; otherwise, oversized bulky sweaters do well folded and placed on a shelf or in a drawer.

2. Functional Tips that Influence Which Clothes to Fold

I lean towards hanging items that are easily wrinkled. Folding oversized bulky sweaters works well as they tend to not wrinkle like their counterparts, such as lightweight cardigans and pullovers. You can save lots of closet space by folding items such as workout gear and extra jeans. Most of us have too many items of each type of clothing. I suggest, and this does save lots of space, to store away the extras or, better yet, donate what you're not wearing. Most of what is in our closet are likely not getting worn. Consider this before you start hanging and folding; this will free up space either way.

3. Priceless Tips from Your Designer

We are all different; we have different wardrobes and closet spaces. There are many ways to find storage solutions to maximize the space AND lead to long-term maintenance. Usually, the first step is cleaning out, donating, and dealing with the extra we don't need. I suggest reserving an afternoon, grabbing a friend who will be honest with you and help you determine what stays and goes. This takes time; it all can't be done in a few short minutes. But once it's done, closet space has been freed up, and you're organized, you'll feel much better about it. Less stuff makes it easier to maintain too. So anytime you buy a new piece, donate another.

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