If you enjoy shopping, you might wonder how well a custom closet can accommodate a growing wardrobe. But adjustable features and smart planning provide a long-term solution.
What if you make the investment in a custom closet only to find that you’ve outgrown your space? It’s something that my clients ask about occasionally, and I understand why. The American Apparel & Footwear Association estimates that we add 68 new garments per year to our wardrobes. If that’s truly the case, it makes sense that three years down the road, you could be faced with the dilemma of how to make 204 additional items fit into a custom closet that was designed without them in mind.
And if you’re one of my clients who live in the Dupont Circle area of D.C., space is a particularly precious commodity. With a $563 median price per square foot, you probably can’t just get a bigger closet. Fortunately, if you’re interested in a custom design, there are ways to plan ahead to prevent yourself from outgrowing your space.
Closet Designers Love Over Planning
An effective closet design is truly all about planning, so the first thing to keep in mind is that your closet designer is your best asset. We’ve worked on hundreds of homes in the D.C. area, and we’ve seen it all. We won’t laugh off your concerns, and we’ll take it as a challenge to create a layout that solves your particular storage issues.
To Thine Own Self Be True
When Shakespeare wrote these famous words, he might not have been thinking about your custom closet, but the advice still holds. As a part of our design process, your designer will take an inventory of your clothing. For this to be as effective as possible, though, it helps if you also do your part.
Make sure all of your clothes are clean. When you schedule your consultation, make sure all of your laundry is done and all outfits have been picked up from the cleaners. It’s not essential, but it does make it a little easier for your designer to assess 100 percent of your wardrobe.
Don’t be ashamed. Like I mentioned, our designers have seen it all. They won’t judge you if you have 15 black t-shirts that all look identical. They just want to make sure they can take them into account when planning.
Out of sight? Not out of mind. In the absence of a custom closet, it’s common for people to get into the habit of storing things like off-season clothes or extra shoes in other areas of the home. Don’t forget about these guys when taking inventory. Adjustable shelves, shoe shelving, and pull-out accessories storage are just a few tricks we have for making everything fit in a small space, but we can’t make fit what we don’t know about.
Our goal is to not only give you a beautiful closet but one that is functional. Your honesty is crucial to making this happen.
Channel Your Inner Shopaholic
Once you know how much clothing you currently have, take a step back and think about what your shopping habits will look like over the next few years. It’s obviously tough to forecast exactly how much you’ll add, but don’t be bashful. Be realistic.
I’d suggest thinking about your shopping in terms of the number of pieces you’re likely to add rather than how much money you’ll spend. Everyone has different spending habits, and $5,000 in a year could go toward five additional pieces of clothing or 50. Having a rough idea of volume can help you allocate shelves and hanging rods appropriately.
It might also be a good idea to take a separate inventory of pieces you think are missing from your current wardrobe. Maybe you’re in need of another nice business suit or have your eye on a couple of designer handbags. This lets us work with you to install, say, extra purse hooks or additional hanging rods.
If you’re proactive and upfront with your closet designer, these tips will help make sure that your custom closet accommodates a changing wardrobe and that you don’t find yourself running out of space. Get in touch for a free design consultation to get the process started.
Lead Image Credit: Flickr User EPoma (CC BY 2.0).