Thrifty Chic DIY: Project Dream Closet

Remember when Mr. Big proposed to Carrie Bradshaw and instead of an engagement ring, she told him, “Just get me a really big closet”? My favorite movie moment, second to when she actually gets to see the closet that Mr. Big had built in their new apartment.

Of course, not all of us can afford a Fifth Avenue penthouse with a closet from Vogue. But sometimes we can get close enough. Yes, dear readers. Finally, finally, I have the closet of my dreams. More or less.

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I know, it looks a little dreary. Blame the photographer (me), not the closet!

I moved to Albany about two months ago, and I took the above photo when I first moved in. A closet big enough to fit my full size bed, and two layers of shelves all around. I actually want to meet the architectural genius that made the decision to give me a tiny bathroom in favor of a ginormous closet, just so I could give them a hug. (And I’m so not a hugger.)

I knew right away I wanted to make the most of this space and…well, organize the crap out of my belongings. Here’s how I did it on the cheap. (Well, cheap-ish.)

First, instead of buying a dresser, I decided to put my furniture/moving budget towards cheaper storage solutions that I could tuck away in my closet so my bedroom would be less cluttered.

One item that I already had – and have had since my college days – is a three drawer plastic organizer that I bought at Walmart for $17.88. They’re not as large as a standard dresser, but they can fit quite a bit. Another item I also already had was an over-the-door shoe organizer. I’ve had it for years and it has traveled with me from one apartment to the next. You can find a good, inexpensive one on amazon.com for $6.38. They’re meant for shoes, of course, but you can use them for anything, really (I use mine for scarves/hijabs and hang it over my closet door from the inside).

A few items I ended up purchasing for this specific closet:

Whitmor storage cube from Amazon.com for $22.47. I love these cubes. I have another set of six in my office area, but I bought the set of four for the closet. They’re easy to assemble/disassemble, and there is some flexibility with the dimensions. I kept it 2 x 2 for my closet, and wanted to use the top as a sort of counter space for my accessories.

And now for some cheap thrills: items that can all be found at Dollar Tree!

I picked up a few collapsible bins to go into the cubes to keep them organized and tidy, a couple of baskets to go below my hanging clothes, and a bunch of shoe boxes for stacking up my shoes and making the most of my shelf space. Lastly, I picked up a couple of expanding wall racks for hanging my jewelry.

One thing I wish I had done was buy all of my hangers in one color (white) to keep things looking cleaner, but I can live with it. (And I make up for it by organizing all of my clothes by color!)

 

Including the cost of items that I already had, this whole project would be a little over $70, which is still less than the cost of a decent piece of storage furniture like a chest or dresser, and it is so much more functional.

I am loving the end result, and find that dressing each morning, putting things away, and keeping my closet clean is just so much easier since everything I wear has a home in my closet.

Do you have a system for your closet, or have your own way of keeping things organized? I’d love to hear about it – I still have the rest of my apartment to tame. 🙂

 

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