How to organize an under-the-stairs closet

Written by l. scott pishko
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Periodically, it is a good thing to go through your belongings and organise it all to keep life sane. Utilising space to store items can be tricky and will require sacrifice and dedication. Collecting trinkets, memorabilia and the sort can be fun--until you are overwhelmed with what you once held dear and that you now call junk. Cleaning out your closets can be a refreshing step toward control, and at the same time you can be charitable by giving your discarded items to a good cause.

Skill level:

Things you need

  • Shelving
  • Racks
  • Bookshelf
  • Baskets
  • Vacuum
  • Cleaning supplies

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  1. 1

    Conduct a thorough cleaning of the space, which means taking everything out of it including any dressers, bookshelves, hangers, clothes and boxes. The space should be empty when you are finished so you can start organising the space once again. Vacuum the space after you have emptied all of the contents. This gives you a clean slate from which to work.

  2. 2

    Implement a plan on what you will keep and what you will throw out. Anything you are throwing out can go to Goodwill Industries or be donated to a church in your area. A good rule of thumb can be if you haven't worn it in a few months, you probably will not be wearing it in the next few months, so get rid of it.

  3. 3

    Organizational items such as racks or dividers can be placed back into the space, but make sure you are using them wisely. Don't place a bulky bookshelf in a limited space to hold 10 books. Purchase wire racks that you assemble into 12 cubes. You can build only five or six if needed, and use the rest elsewhere in the house.

  4. 4

    Place items together that belong in the same group. If you have books and notepads, for example, you can put them together in an area. If you have gloves and scarves, put them together for the winter. Items that you use less frequently can be stashed away in the back of the space, and items you use frequently can be stored close to the door for easy access.

  5. 5

    If you still have trouble fitting things into the space, you can always add more to the giveaway box. If you have trouble remembering the last time you used an item, give it away.

Tips and warnings

  • When sorting through items, focus on the intent of what you are doing, and give at least half of what you had in that space to the "donate" box.
  • Have fun cleaning the space. Memories of where you were in life can be a good chance to look back into your past.

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