This is a guest post by Fay Wein. Fay is a communication specialist.

Naturally a hoarder since childhood, getting my home and my life organized were not a cinch for me. Although still far from perfect, I’ve managed to bring some semblance of order to my life with some useful tips gleaned over the years from home organization articles, and the like. The result is controlled chaos.

Here are some of my favorite organizing tips. They worked for me and they can work for you, as well.

I started with my closet. A cluttered closet can make your whole day start off on the wrong foot. If you gain control of your closet, like I eventually did, you’ll be able to get dressed and be ready to face the rest of the day without the stress that comes from disorder.

Thin Your Closet

An overflowing closet is a stressful closet. A simple way to see what to get rid of, is to use the hangers. I turn all the hangers so they face the same way. Each time I wear and wash an item, I turn the hanger the other way. At the end of the season, I am able to quickly spot what I never wore by glancing at the hangers. I then toss or donate these items to free up space.

Rack Your Belts

Instead of searching through a tangled mess in a drawer, I moved my belts onto a sliding storage rack. I like how I can easily pull out the rack to see my choices. I find racks to be useful for more than just belts – scarves, ties and necklaces can also easily be stored and sorted that way.

Stash Your Pants

To stash my pants without wrinkles, instead of overloading my main closet clothes bar, I placed a second bar lower than the top one. Shirts and dresses on top, pants on the bottom. I also mounted a swing-out pants rack inside my closet, placed a pair of pants over each swing-out rod, and then folded the rods back and out of the way.

Solve Your Shoe Storage

Don’t waste time looking for your shoe’s mate, get your kicks organized!

Here are a few simple DIY ideas that worked for me:

  • Hang an over-the-door plastic shower rack over the door.
  • Install low shelves on your closet wall for shoes.
  • Cut 10-inch lengths from 6-inch diameter PVC pipe or cardboard tubes to create a stackable storage system.
  • Install hooks to hang the shoes.

Put a Label on It

Although creating a system helped me get things in order, proper labeling is what really made the new system a long-term success. I labeled storage containers that held my off-season clothing so I could easily find the right box.

You can also use labels on hangers or even your closet rod to monitor the last time you dry-cleaned an item. If your closet has shelves, label each shelf so you always put things away in the correct place – this is especially helpful if you have a partner or child that puts away some items.

Getting control of your closet and clothes storage makes both mornings and laundry day less stressful. You won’t be searching for lost items or replacing items that were only temporarily misplaced.

What is your experience with keeping organized at home? Join the conversation with your comments…