Taking your closet from cluttered to functional and fabulous is easier than you may think. With the right tools, a small budget, and some elbow grease (or professional help), you can complete a pretty great closet makeover in just a weekend. In this case, New York City native Christine wanted to update her closet from a standard storage area into a glamorous space complete with a vanity, new shelves, a fresh coat of paint, and some stylish lighting. Christine was using her closet as a dumping ground for all of her clothing and accessories, so he hired Denis, a handyman at TaskRabbit, to help make her closet dreams come true. Here’s what they did.
If you have an extra-small closet, have you ever thought of moving your clothing outside of your closet? Use the closet space to store out-of-season clothing and move your most-worn pieces outside of your closet in a more accessible area.
01 of 07
Added Drawer Storage
Now you have a better understanding of exactly how much storage space you need.
To design a more functional closet, first, you need to decide how you plan to use the space. Because Christine has a separate closet for hanging clothes, she wanted to be able to use this closet as a combo vanity and storage area to store clothing, shoes, and accessories, as well as fit a vanity table and house her makeup and perfume collection.
To accommodate some of these needs, she decided she needed more drawer storage. She also installed a custom vanity with drawers and shelving that fit her closet, with a few storage boxes at the top to hold seasonal and little-worn items.
How much hanging, drawer, and shelving storage space does a closet need? A good trick is to measure your clothing like this:
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- Hang all of your clothing together (not including sweaters or other items you prefer to keep folded) and measure the width and height of the clothes in their entirety.
- Fold and stack all of your other clothing items, like jeans and sweaters. Measure the height and width. How many stacks do you have?
- Take your accessories and measure the height and width of your collections.
02 of 07
Denis installed some classic “old Hollywood” lights to the inside of the closet, as part of Christine's new DIY vanity. He wired the lighting to an outlet tucked behind the closet door to hide the wires.
Installing lighting seems so obvious, you’ll wonder why you never thought of it before. Here are some more obvious-yet-awesome ways to upgrade the look of your closet:
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- Use shelf dividers. These shelf-dividers can help keep your stacks of folded clothing like jeans and sweaters more organized and less likely to tumble over.
- Install a mirror. If you’re working with a small space, consider installing a full-length mirror on the inside of a closet door.
- Remove the door. This is a great trick if you’re in a rental with a small closet. By removing the door, you can more easily reach the sides of a closet and use the inside walls for more storage. Just be sure you keep that door handy for when you move out!
- Install a double hang. A double hang is a great way to use the vertical storage space in a closet without being too bulky.
- Think outside of your closet. Have you ever thought of moving your clothing outside of your closet? Use the closet space to store out of season clothing and move your most-worn pieces outside of your closet in a more accessible area.
03 of 07
Created a Custom Vanity
In her old closet, Christine stored her undergarments and accessories in baskets, but Denis pulled together this custom vanity with shelving and drawers so she'd have a place to tuck them away. The vanity also serves as a place for Christine to put on makeup.
Other functional ways to upgrade your closet include:
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- Using shelf dividers. These can help keep your stacks of folded clothing such as jeans and sweaters more organized and less likely to tumble over.
- Installing a mirror. If you’re working with a small space, consider installing a full-length mirror on the inside of a closet door.
- Removing the door. This is a great trick if you’re in a rental with a small closet. By removing the door, you can more easily reach the sides of a closet and use the inside walls for more storage. Just be sure you keep that door handy for when you move out!
- Installing a double hang. A double hang is a great way to use the vertical storage space in a closet without being too bulky.
04 of 07
Christine stores her most-used accessories around her vanity and keeps jewelry, shoes, makeup, and perfume close at hand to make dressing in the morning fast and more enjoyable. She is dedicated to displaying her accessories as the works of art that they are, like her Louboutins angled over a mirror to reflect their famous red soles.Continue to 5 of 7 below.
05 of 07
Updated the Look
Aside from storage solutions, you can further upgrade your closet by updating the look. Christine chose to glam up the look of her closet and outfit it with new accessories. To complement her white furniture, she added gold accents, and Denis, her Tasker, painted the inside of her closet a pale pink. The brass pulls they used from CB2 were a great choice.Continue to 6 of 7 below.
06 of 07
Added Hanging Storage
Next, Denis mounted a rack to store Christine's accessories, including sunglasses and scarves. The hanging rack is a wire basket from Ikea turned upside down. It's the perfect size and shape to hold Christine's extensive collection of designer sunglasses.Continue to 7 of 7 below.
07 of 07
The Finished Product
Denis added a fresh coat of paint to the old closet doors and door stoppers on the closet frame to keep them from swinging in on the vanity setup. As you can see, from a few simple tweaks and some help from TaskRabbit, Christine was able to take her closet from so-so to glam and chic.