Mad Men Monday: The Closet -Ally or Adversary?

mad_men_cd_cover_325x325Since we are all NOT Female stars in a wonderful TV Show like Mad Men, it would be rare to say we all have amazing dressing rooms and closets as well as fab wardrobes to chose from. We are all not lucky enough to have walk in closest and rooms where we can do fittings and change in.

Some may have these finer things in life, but I have found the common woman general has a closest she herself could barely fit in, much less all the wonderful clothes she desires to own and wear.

There are ways however to not only give yourself a fabulous dressing room but also to utilize the closest space and spaces you already have.

For instance, do you perhaps have a room in your home that is currently being unused? Perhaps it was formerly a children’s room or a den? What about in the basement? Do you have wide open spaces down there that is just waiting to be gobbled up by you? Perhaps you have a master bedroom and yet only a one you or you really only need a small bedroom to sleep in and could flip that mast bedroom around to be your own personal space?

The most important thing you can do is have a room where you can see all or as much of your items as possible. Now perhaps you will only be able to have a room to put your clothes in and will have the change nearby or somewhere else.  Do the best you can with what you have. But I bet you would be surprised when looking around that you DO have the space to make a more wonderful space for yourself.

Then there is the under used and under utilized items. What is in your closest that you haven’t worn in a year? More than a year? What about coats? Are coats taking up those spaces? The general rule of thumb for when to remove an item from your wardrobe is if you haven’t worn it in a year, you most likely are not going to. There are the exceptions however to formal gowns etc…but this is where we start separating.

If you haven’t worn it and are not going to get rid of it. If it is a formal, collect all the formals and cover them with a wardrobe cover and hang them somewhere safe or cover them with a garbage bag and tie off the bottom. Attach a label to the hang so you know what they are.

If coats are invading your space, the remove all coats and put them in a coat closet or somewhere out of the way. I put even my formal coats with my other coats in the front hall closet, along with scarfs, hats and gloves for easier access when going out.

Once you have the items you are going to keep, you can start assessing the space. Make it an extension of you. Lighting(no fluorescent) (I prefer Daylight lamps) , colors on the walls( I prefer Pink on one wall) , pictures you desire (Anime images and things I have drawn make me feel pretty), a good full length mirror (one can be cheap for under $10 at Walmart) and perhaps a Vanity if you have the space for you to do your makeup(I found one at an Auction event but they can even be found at thrift stores or you can make a vanity from an old desk or computer stands work great to keep your makeup underneath on the keyboard tray).

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Put your shoes on a door hanging rack, or get a small shoes holder to put underneath your clothes. You can also have them in a foyer, or along the hallway. Look for spaces that might work for these.

If you have a small closet and just won’t be able to create a Dressing Room space here are some tips from the Mad Men Fashion Files book and a few hints from me:

  • Archive by season. (Clean things out and put in bins or boxes. I prefer plastic bins to keep my clothes fressh and I make a list of what is in them and then tape it to the top of the bin. Then I put them i the basement to rotate when the next season comes out)
  • Whose Bed are your Items under (Sorry that was a joke from Shania Twain song…) ( At Target and Walmart etc they have bins that slide under your bed. Put shoes, belts, scarves and other misc items underneath it all.You can also store all those seasonal items if you have no where else to put them
  • Hang it Up ( I use bulletin boards, tacks and nails to create a line up of my hair bandanas, scarfs, and belts. They are out in the open and it also uses the wall space. I mean why have a picture when You can have all your favorite items all around you. This also works for hanging up purses on the wall and many other items)
  • Become a Label Crazed person. Buy label maker or use Masking Tape and box, bin and label the heck out of things. Get Ikea drawer boxes or something similar at Target or Walmart or Shopko and put things away and label label label. Then it is out of the way and organized as well

The women of Mad Men are lucky. They not only have a fabulous Fashion and Costume Designer who helps them pick out everything to wear, but they each have their own fabulous space to dress and shoes and do their makeup in. Some may have these same types of places in their homes, but as  I said before the average woman does not.

Be creative.

Think outside of the box…this one being the box of your room.

When I was a teen and had no space, I learned how to put things under neath, hang things on walls and I tuned my bunk bed upside down and made it into a Wooden Futon/Daybed. I went to fabric stores and begged for remnants (the days when you didn’t have to pay for them)

A few years ago I live in a fabulous studio where there was a Murphy Bed. I love how it went up and got out of the way. Even Caroline on Two Broke Girls figured out a way to make a Murphy Bed and create more space for her and Max ( Yes I love that show)

Shop around thrift stores to find desk or things that will help you make a vanity or dresser or a space to put things away. Remember YOU can do nearly anything with something else. Refurbish it. Re Paint it, add different knobs. Transform a desk to a Vanity. Transform a TV cupboard into an Armoire. Unleash your creative side. Hang things up, put things out or label the heck out of them.

Make your closet your friend. Once you have the perfect space or cleaned out closet you can then put the items and things you DO need and WILL wear back in them. I organize by color, some organize by item (Dresses, skirts etc) That reminds me, I did add a pants bar in my tiny closet and gave myself another space for just my skirts. It completely transformed my closet. I also took off my door and hung a curtain for awhile but then I just took that down too.

Here are a few other images of my spaces and how I used them (Click on image to enlarge view and notes)

Here is an image of my full studio. I use my studio for dressing room, work space, create space and so much more…Perhaps you could use an area in your house for a dressing room and closest but make it the space you love to be in no matter what you do with it.

Clean SensaFashion Studio

Until next time,

XoXo~Trisha Trixie

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