If you've ever wandered into the closet and couldn't find something to wear, the problem might not be your wardrobe. When your closet is disorganized, it's easy to lose clothes or have difficulty finding items that work together. Investing just a small amount of time in reordering your clothes and accessories will pay off every morning.


Tempting as it may be to organize by color, grouping like items by style and use is more efficient. While it might seem logical to hang all pants together, it's best to group the pants you wear most and move those you wear least to another part of the closet. Grouping clothing by the way it's worn, such as casual or work, also can help you get dressed faster in the morning. This technique makes putting clothes away faster, too. It's especially useful for seasonal clothing: Stashing all your big, chunky sweaters together means the one you're looking for won't get pushed back out of sight.


Closet shelves are seldom used for clothing, but if you wear jeans and T-shirts a lot, why not take advantage of shelves to stack both in plain view? This will help you find a pair of jeans faster and put them away more easily. And if items of clothing keep getting lost in your dresser drawers, turn your closet shelves into mini-drawers. Line them with baskets or clear bins so you can see everything easily. Another option is to install shallow drawers on closet shelves that pull all the way out.


To make getting dressed quick and easy, add plenty of hooks in the closet. These allow you to quickly hang up sweaty workout clothes and let the items dry out rather than moldering in a damp mess on the floor or in the laundry hamper. Hooks also can hold belts, ties, handbags and necklaces and make packing for a trip more convenient. Be sure to select hooks with a large arm to give you the most holding and storing power.


When a closet is organized and neat, you're more likely to keep it that way. Invest in a closet-organizing system and sets of the same type of hanger. Place items you rarely use in bins on high shelves. Don't be afraid to move furniture into the closet. Invest in rolling drawer units or inexpensive kit furniture to create closet storage. Label all storage boxes and use shelf dividers for items like sweaters, shirts and handbags.

-- Tribune Media Services