child's closet with hanging clothes in assorted colors and patterns

How to Organize Kid Closets Like a Pro

As parents, we know that maintaining an organized household can be a Herculean task, especially when it comes to managing our little one’s belongings.

The battleground of clutter often centers around their closet, where toys, clothes, and knick-knacks tend to accumulate with astonishing speed.

In this post, we’ll take you step-by-step through the art of organizing a child’s closet, transforming it from chaos to a haven of order.

A well-organized closet not only makes mornings smoother and bedtime routines more peaceful, but it also empowers your child with a sense of responsibility and independence.

By involving them in the process, you’re instilling valuable life skills while creating a space that nurtures creativity and imagination.

So here’s how to whip those kid closets into shape and keep them organized for longer than a minute.

Clear Out Your Stuff

First, clear out any items that are not actually for your child from the closet space and find another space for them in your home.

This includes things like your mementos, your off season clothing or anything else that isn’t your child’s or directly for your child.

Keeping them in your child’s closet leaves less usable space and only contributes to the space becoming messy and cluttered.


Next, one only your child’s items remain, the number one thing to take into consideration to organize a closet, especially a child’s closet is to give it some structure.

And by structure, I mean something more than a hanging rod.

The truth is that a single hanging rod isn’t enough structure to keep things neat and tidy.

And this is even more true especially if your children can’t reach the rod!

Without more than a rod for hangers, clothes will end up on the floor of the closet or strewn around their room.

So here’s what to do instead:

If the closet is big enough divide it into two- one side for hanging clothes and one side for shelving, adjustable if possible.

But also make sure the closet can support changes to the structure you’re putting in, because kids are continuously growing!

That’s why having the ability to adjust the shelf height is so important.

Having this feature in a closet system means that you’ll be able to flex the space as your child grows and their needs evolve.

Both you and your child will need to store different things in the closet throughout the year, and having shelves gives instant storage space for toys, athletic equipment and the like.

Organizing Changes to Anticipate

The biggest change you’ll have to accommodate some time down the road is clothing, and by necessity, hanger size.

Kids won’t stay the same tiny size forever, so make sure the closet can accommodate adult sized hangers too.

Especially in some older homes, not all closets have rods installed at the right place so that a full sized hanger can fit.

So before the closet is filled, go ahead and try out a full-size hanger in the space and double check you’ll be set going forward.

Take the time to make any necessary adjustments now, rather than putting it off later because it’ll just end up as one more thing on a growing to do list.

Most kids transition to adult sized hangers when they hit size 10 or 12, so anticipate this change before it happens and invest in a set of appropriately sized hangers to keep everything looking nice and neat.


Next, with the structure all set, winnow down the items that’ll live in the space.

Get rid of clothes that are worn out or no longer fit on the regular.

The easiest way to do this is to have what I like to call a Fashion Show.

I usually do this 2-3 times a year with my kids, usually timed with the change in season for Spring, Fall and Winter.

The Fashion Show works like this: they try on clothes to see if they still fit, thus an informal fashion show.

I check each piece of clothing for over all condition issues like:

  • Stains
  • Rips
  • Tears
  • Shape (stretched out necks are a no go)
  • Size
  • See-throughness (like leggings that are too small in the potty area)

Anything that’s too thigh, short or close to being outgrown goes in the give away pile.

Favorite items that they can’t bear to part with go into their memory box, which is stored in the attic.

We look through their wardrobe and also put anything else that’s the same brand and size, saving a lot of wasted time and effort, avoiding the need to try everything on.

Clothes that still fit get returned to the closet or dresser.

This makes it fast to go through their entire wardrobe since not all the clothes need to be tried on at once.

Your teenager may be less willing like mine is occasionally, but try to get them to comply enough just enough to get an idea of what’s too small.

If you’re keeping outgrown clothing for a younger child, organize the hand me downs and pack them away for when you need them in the future.

If possible, store them in a space outside of your child’s room to keep the space clutter free.


As you begin to return items to the closet, put like with like and establish “zones.”

Line up all shirts together from Summer to Winter or put all seasons of like clothing together.

Choose whatever options works best for your child and you.


Once everything’s back in the closet, finish off your organizing project with labels.

Labels make it clear where everything belongs, adding a layer of protection that items will go back in the same place.

A set of labels with pictures and words is the perfect solution for pre-readers!

Over to you!

Organizing your child’s closet is a transformative journey that goes beyond just tidying up a physical space.

It’s about creating an environment that fosters a sense of ownership and pride in their belongings.

By involving your child in the process, you’re teaching them valuable lessons in responsibility and organization that will serve them well.

With a well-organized closet, you’re not only streamlining daily routines but also providing modeling good life skills they’ll use for years to come.

Here’s to a clutter-free, stress-free haven for your little one!

Scroll to top