Design Recipes: How to glam up your closet

By Cathy Hobbs
Tribune News Service
A blend of options for both short- and long-hanging clothing allows for greater versatility in this closet.

Closets come in all shapes and sizes, but regardless of the size you are going to want to maximize space and organization. Closets should be considered in the planning of a home, similar to a room. The best place to start is with a floor plan and a clear understanding of how you want the closet to be used. Here are some tips on how to get the most out of your closets.

1. Consider using a professional closet company. These companies have experts in maximizing every inch of usable space. Be sure to arrive with measurements in hand.

2. Include flexible built-ins. While built-ins help create a seamless look, if you use a system that can be moved from home to home or adjusted based on your needs such as a modular configuration, this will allow you to use your closet investment long term.

Custom built-ins help maximize the space in this walk-in closet.

3. Try white. White will be a neutral selection that won’t clash with other finishes in the home.

4. Look for solid construction. Closets in some instances undergo wear and tear, so you will want to make sure your selections will stand the test of time.

5. Create opportunities for both long- and short-hanging clothing. This will be especially important if your closet is shared with a partner.

6. Use thin, space-saving hangers. Wooden hangers are often bulky and take up a lot of space.

7. Consider baskets and bins. These are great for organizing closets and making everything look neat and seamless.

8. Color coordinate your closet. Often it is helpful to have a system in which dark clothing is separate from lighter fabrics.

9. Have a shoe organization plan. So often shoes organization is an afterthought that impacts the utilization and appearance of a closet.

10. Look for opportunities for hidden storage such as drawers and cabinets.

Cathy Hobbs, based in New York City, is  a nationally known interior design and home staging expert with offices in New York City, Boston and Washington, D.C. Contact her at or visit her website at .