Year One: Life After the I Do's

Closet Clutter-Busters

Sharing a bedroom closet with your guy—and his precious sports-jersey collection—can get awfully aggravating. Here, deets on keeping things neat so you don't overheat.

Start fresh. "Pull everything out, then ditch what you don't need," says Hoarders professional organizer Geralin Thomas. (Season four of the A&E show is airing now.) "Paint the interior a clean, bright color, such as white or yellow—it'll make getting dressed easier if you can clearly see what's in there."

Take a side. If space is tight, use color-coded hangers (say, black for him and cream for you). Group similar pieces (skirts, pants) on your respective sides, arranging them by hue, which "looks neat, and allows you to see if you're buying too much of one item or one color," says Thomas.

Double the rods, double the room. "Place one rod forty inches above the floor, and another one forty inches above that," Thomas says. (Adjust these heights as needed.) Try metal rods, which won't warp like wooden ones. And get superthin flocked hangers, which use one-third less space.

Hook up. Hang a hook over the door for robes; if there's room, install a valet hook on a wall or inside the closet for the next day's outfit.

Switch seasonally. Instead of putting off-season clothes back in the closet, stash them (launder first!) in a spare room or under the bed in natural-cotton garment bags. The cotton allows ventilation, Thomas says, so clothes won't mildew.

Keep random stuff outta there. What do scuba gear, wedding china, and Christmas ornaments all have in common? You guessed it: They don't belong in your bedroom closet. "Since it's an off-limits place for visitors—or should be!—couples tend to make it a dumping ground," says Thomas. "But that closet is valuable real estate. If you fill it with belongings you rarely use, you're wasting space."

10 things to toss

Ditch, donate, and sell: Andrea Linnett, Ebay's Fashion Creative Director, tells us WTC (what to chuck)

1. Any item you've owned for more than a year that still has the tags on it.

2. Duplicates. Men tend to have five navy blazers; women have five LBDs. Keep the one that's in the best shape.

3. Broken sports equipment.

4. Halloween costumes.

5. Footwear. For you, heels that are impossible to walk in; for him, any shoe he's had since college (i.e., the ones with holes in the soles).

6. Dorky interview suits.

7. Luggage. Combine sets and lose the extras.

8. Jeans. Three pairs each, max. (Really!)

9. Any item that fits only an unrealistically thinner you.

10. White shirts that have turned gray or yellow. Even bleach has its limits.

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