How to Organize Your Tiny Closet

You don’t have to give up on your dream of a neat and tidy closet…but unless you’ve found a way to store things in an alternate universe, you may need to make some hard decisions about what goes and what stays.

In other words, it is possible to organize a tiny closet as long as you have a plan.

Start with a list

Write out a list of what you want your closet to do, then choose the tools you’ll need to make the space work for your needs.


Next, purge your tiny closet of items you no longer need. If you’re a fan, use the Marie Kondo method of decluttering if you like. However you choose to do it, what’s important here is to reduce the stuff you keep to make it easier to organize what remains.

Use every possible square inch

It goes without saying…but still, I’m sayin’ it…use up every piece of real estate you can in your closet, from top to bottom.

This is why you should start with a list of what you want your closet to hold while also purging items you no longer need or want; so you can come up with a plan for storing everything that remains. 


Use the inside of the closet door

Items such as scarves, belts or even shoes can be hung or mounted on the inside of your closet door. Shoe organizers, closet rod hangers with hooks or even hangers also work well in this location.

There are even over the door hanging baskets or trays that can hold smaller items such as craft supplies, Christmas wrapping paper, gloves, scarves, etc.

Above the closet door

If your closet has space above the door, close to the ceiling this is a good place to stack suitcases. You can even store out-of-season items inside them if needed.

Closet Guidelines

Group like things together

If you have an empty spot, don’t fill it “just because”; rearrange your items matching them by use and/or feature.

In other words, don’t mix items. Keep all shirts together, all pants, all long dresses, all shoes, etc.

Adjust shelves to fit your things

Whether you piece together your closet organization tools or buy a pre-fabricated item, make sure that you can adjust your shelves as needed. This is better than trying to make your things fit the closet organization system.

Store by frequency of use

Put less frequently used items in areas that are hardest to reach, such as the top of the closet. Hang a small footstool towards the back or side of the closet to help you reach these items when needed.



Shelves are probably the first thing you think of when it comes to organizing your tiny closet. These can be either separate shelves placed where needed or part of a pre-fabricated closet organization system.

Shelf dividers

If you’d rather not use baskets – or in addition to using baskets, shelf dividers work well at keeping things in place. Dividers will also let you stack things higher without worrying that they’ll topple over onto the floor and get scattered.

Undershelf baskets

Smart and efficient, baskets that hang below an existing shelf are a fast and easy way to add more storage without a lot of headache…or cost.


In addition to undershelf baskets, storage bins placed on top of shelving work well for holding items that you don’t need to access a lot or for hard to stack or oversized items.

Add storage under clothes

Add a small dresser below your clothes. Not only can you store clothing in the drawers, but the top can also pull double-duty as a place to set jewelry, perfume, hats, etc.

Add one or more rods

Add rods below the shelves or wherever it makes sense to expand your storage options.

Use hooks and/or hangers on the rods for clothing or accessories such as ties, bags, purses. belts or even shoes.

Use specialized hangers

Open-ended hangers, hangers that fold vertically, velvet-covered hangers…there are many different kinds of hangers that can help to maximize your storage without consuming a lot of space.


Whether hung one by one or in a row, hooks are one of the best ways to make good use of every square inch of your closet.

Not only can you put hooks on the walls and ceiling of your closet, but you can even neatly hang shoes with s-hooks that are strung across a towel rod.

Finally, if you’ve purged your things yet still lack room, consider expanding your closet to other locations such as under the bed.