OH, the closets! Grah. Harumph. Bah Humbug!
Talk about the elephant in the room. I’d like to campaign for nekkid kidlets till age five or something. Laundry! Children! Dirt! And the I-can’t-hang-up-what-I-decided-not-to-wear-after-the-fifteenth-outfit-switch disease.
It’s been a problem. My husband and I share a closet, and we’ve got a happy medium going. It gets a bit off track from time to time, but a quick five minutes will put it back to rights. The kids’ closets? Not so much. Enter Tsh’s elephant-eating e-book. Lots of bite size projects (one for each week of the year) to help you simplify your life and your home. You can do them in order, or you can jump around; whatever works for you.
The first one that really captured my imagination and inspired me to make a change was Project 35: Declutter Your Wardrobe. Tsh is writing about the adult wardrobe (and taking care of yourself)…but something clicked in my brain regarding my kids.
Just as we adults have our ‘must-have’ items for work and play, so do our kids. It looks a bit different- they need church-going clothes; school clothes (if you aren’t homeschooling); play clothes; and get-really-muddy clothes. My lightbulb moment was that they don’t need tons of each type. By narrowing it down, the sheer size of storage would be reduced. It’s even more necessary for the boys as all four of them share one closet that’s about five ft wide by three feet deep. The nice side effect of this big bite of a project? Seriously reduced laundry loads. Can I get a hallelujah?
What I came up with: Maybe one real nice church outfit, and another more casual one, and maybe two of each type of the others- two pairs of shoes- possibly three- church, around and about, and hard play. With my boys, the shoes are: one nice pair of tennis shoes (typically leather-ish or brushed nubuck) which they wear to church and nice events- a pair of slip-ons (skaters or Crocs), and a pair of Teva sandals (the hard wearing ones with the protected toes).
Once I had it narrowed down, I went to work on the boys closet.
Here’s the disaster area- It looked like this all day every day.
And here it is, finished. (The tubs for the kids underwear are missing here, but they go on the top of the black shelf, which I found cheapo at Target- same for the white ‘drawers’ that hold pajamas.)
On the top shelf, there is only one clear tub- and it is a filing system for the sizes in between the two sets of boys- 5,6,7. The older boys are currently in 8-10 sizes, while the younger boys are in 3T- 5Ts. I marked what was in there, organized by size. Pants on bottom, shirts on top. You can see what’s available, but it’s contained.
The girl’s closet came together quickly- and it didn’t need near as much straightening out. I added a clothing organizer from target to store the undies tubs and pajamas. The trunk at the bottom holds shoes. E is to the left, L to the right- and as you can see after I went through their closet, I realized that some thrifting/purchasing needed to be done for E. I should also mention that as typical girls, they had a few more…shoes…but that’s understandable, right?