DIY Closet Organizers on the Cheap

Published by Deanna Yates on

DIY Closet Organizers: Cheap and Easy

Looking to organize your closet, but not wanting to use expensive closet organizers. No problem! You can easily make your own like we did. Check out our custom closets - complete with easy DIY instructions.

Update: Wow! I cannot believe how many of you have said you loved these DIY closet organizers. We loved them too so I guess I shouldn’t be too surprised though. 

Since we created these we had to say goodbye to that rental home in Boulder as life took us on some crazy adventures to Europe, back to the States, and back to Europe again. Looking at this closet, I cannot believe how much stuff we owned. Traveling has made us declutter and minimize so much more and I created a FREE 7-day decluttering challenge. I know you’ll LOVE it, if you want to explore living a simplified, fulfilling life.  

Back to the original post:

So a few weeks ago in my week 22 baby bump progress post, I alluded to our walk-in DIY closet organizers that we built and installed for my birthday. Well, installation took a little bit longer than expected because I could not help with a lot of the steps like sanding, but within the week they were in and our closet was organized. I cannot tell you how happy they make this nesting mama!

But, don’t just take my word for it. Check out the awesome before and after picture below. AWESOME, right?!?!

Looking to organize your closet, but not wanting to use expensive closet organizers. No problem! You can easily make your own like we did. Check out our custom closets - complete with easy DIY instructions.

That one’s pin-worthy right? If you agree, I would love for you to share the Pinterest love!

So here’s how we took our closet from the mess above to that fabulous after photo.

Step 1: Clear everything out!

Here are all of our folded clothes on our bed. What a mess!

How to Organize Your Closet

Step 2: Prep the closet.

Here’s the closet before we started.


We had to remove the metal bar and support bracket that were there before. Then we removed the door, dusted the shelves, vacuumed and made sure it was completely cleared out.

Prepping Your Closet for DIY Organizers

Step 3: Measure and cut all of the pieces

We actually did this before removing everything, but it would work here too. The measurements for this project will need to be customized for your space, but just for reference we used 1″ x 12″ boards for the upright pieces and shelves. Then we used 1″ x 2″ pieces cut to 11.5″ for the supports. The shelves on the bottom are 6″ high and the middle shelves are 12.5″ apart.

Step 4: Install the new organizers.

During this step we attached the shelf supports to the upright boards. We also glued the side support boards to the wall and used anchors to secure them to the drywall since we could not find the studs.

Installing DIY Closet Organizers

How to Install and Make DIY Closet Organizers
Step 5: Organize your clothes. 

This might be the most important step. You need to take a serious look at all of the clothes in your closet and decide what should stay and what has seen better days. Once you decide what you want to put back it’s time to sort your items. Hanging items are arranged by color and all hung in the same direction.
Folded items were first categorized (short sleeved shirts, long sleeved shirts, sweaters, pants and jeans, work out clothes, etc.) and then also arranged by color.
The same principles were applied to my husband’s side of the closet.
We’re adding a slight twist to his side though. Since he’s a lefty he really wants to hang his shirts facing the other direction. This will help us know which shirts need to be donated after 6 months to a year because when he re-hangs his shirts, they will face the other direction. So, if after that time his shirt is still facing the door, it’s time to go!
We also hung a mirror and hooks for bags and purses to the back wall of the closet. I love being able to utilize that space!

The two shelves on the bottom are for shoes. They are 6 inches tall, which I found to be plenty of room for our shoes. This was the height of our standard hanging organizers we had before.
Finally, bulkier items like sweaters are put on the top shelf with an additional separator to help keep the stacks manageable. I also put my dressy shoes that I hardly wear anymore in cloth shoe boxes and stacked them on this shelf.
It makes me so happy to have this project done and I love going into my closet now! If only I could just be as in love with my wardrobe, but that’s a work in progress.

What do you think? Have you completed an organizing project like this? Or does your closet still need some help? I’d love to hear in the comments below. Also, any tips for keeping it looking this good?

Don’t forget to pin this for reference later!

Looking to organize your closet, but not wanting to use expensive closet organizers. No problem! You can easily make your own like we did. Check out our custom closets - complete with easy DIY instructions.
Categories: DIY ideasMinimalism


Christine · December 23, 2014 at 5:48 pm

Hello! Came here via Pinterest. I have 4 closets to build out, so this was helpful. I hadn’t thought of a center support board on a 42″ wide closet. Brilliant, since it’s a blank canvas for me. I’m pinning you because you were so kind as to give your dimensions. I always doubt myself. 🙂
Thank you for sharing.

Susan · October 24, 2013 at 12:05 pm


KG · April 30, 2013 at 3:21 pm

That is a fantastic idea. I should do something like this for my closet.
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Betsy @ Romance on a Dime · March 26, 2013 at 10:24 am

Your new closet looks great!! I love having things organized, don’t you? Thanks for linking up at Romance on a dime!! Hope to see you again!

Michelle · March 23, 2013 at 8:27 pm

That looks great! Very inspiring! I’m going to have to go through my own closet very soon!

D@TheShadyPorch · March 21, 2013 at 5:53 am

I need to complete an organizing project like this! Isn’t it amazing how organization makes you feel good…it does me! Great job! Thank you for sharing at the Rock ‘N Share! Blessings, D

katie goldsworthy · March 21, 2013 at 5:52 am

Fabulous! There’s nothing like a newly organized closet! Thanks for sharing it at Monday Funday!

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