A person putting a shirt away could use a closet organizer.Closet organization is serious business. From high-end custom storage solutions to gimmicky infomercial space-saver products to professional organization consultants, Americans are eager for solutions to tame their closet clutter. Here are some tips for turning your bedroom closet into an efficient, organized space.

Purge what you don’t need

The first step of any organization effort should be to get rid of what you no longer want or need. Inventory your closet contents, and sort them into keep, sell, donate and throw out. If you can’t decide whether to keep something, ask yourself whether you value the item or the space it takes up more.

Develop a strategy

Your closet needs a logic behind its organization. One recommendation is to organize clothes into zones such as garment type, occasion or season. Another strategy is to sort items into clusters of five to eight pieces that can be combined to dress up or down a certain look. Either way, these approaches make it easier to find what you need, plan outfits and assess your wardrobe as a whole.

Organize your clothes

A combination of bars and hangers, dressers or drawers, shelves and storage bins offer ways to efficiently organize clothes. Consider moving fixtures up to accommodate more storage below if you need it. Purchase quality, matching hangers for each type of item: wide-shouldered hangers for suits and coats, notched or hooked hangers for garments with straps, open-ended hangers or clamp hangers for skirts and pants and padded hangers for delicates.

Sort out your shoes

Most closets don’t come ready made to efficiently store and organize shoes. You can solve this by adding hanging shoe organizers on doors or rods, freestanding shoe racks on the floor or built-in shoe shelves or cubbies. Hang rails mounted to doors or walls are also great for organizing shoes with heels.

Arrange your accessories

Accessories can require the most specialized organization solutions. Consider peg hangers or other purpose-made hangers or hooks for organizing ties, belts, scarves and purses. Jewelry organizers or multi-purpose trays and drawer inserts are perfect for smaller items. You can even use office or kitchen products, such as magazine holders for clutch purses or a paper towel stand for watches and bracelets.

Manage your laundry

There’s a right and wrong way to organize dirty clothes as well. Invest in the necessary number of properly sized hampers (single, double and more varieties exist) to pre-sort your dirty garments. Consider a rolling cart or something with good handles to make toting your laundry loads to the machines easier.

An organized closet is a happy closet. Taking the time to put your closet in order will save you time and space, cut down on stress and help you keep your wardrobe in top shape. Do yourself and your clothes a favor, and get started!