1) Before you even start organizing, talk to your partner about both your needs and his/her needs. It's important to know what each of you need and want. Do you prefer more clothes storage? Or maybe you need to get in and out quickly? Also consider storage needs. For example we talked about hanging double bars and shelves above the bars. (small space tip - go vertical when you can!). From there, we talked about who wanted what side and what shelves. Personally, we didn't care for the shelves above the clothes since we are too short to reach and we didn't want to get out a step stool every morning. The lower shelves and floor are good for us.
2) Make time to organize your closet together. If one half of the couple divides and creates the closet space, most likely you will either re-do everything when the other person chimes in they are unhappy with the setup. Save the time and work it out together. Try using the timer idea from the this post to help you get through this process without feeling overwhelmed.
3) Allow for space for each other. Although one person may have more things then the other, don't just cram your stuff into any open space. Respect that you each have dedicated spaces. Unless you discussed this (tip 1) and everyone is comfortable, leave that space for your partner. We learned this one quickly when we found a stack of our own shirts on the bed rather then in the closet where we had placed them on "his side" in an open space. That simple non-verbal action reminded us that even though we have more stuff, we each have our own space and need to respect that.
4) Label your storage boxes accordingly. The box simple labeled "shoes" could be for you or for your partner. Something simple, like "Joe's shoes" easily does the trick.
5) Like tip 3, keep within your own space. You don't want to go hunting for your black sweater in your partner's section. By keeping in your dedicated area, you are respecting your partner's space and saving your own time when looking for something to wear.
We would love to hear from you, Apartment Therapy readers! What tips do you have for sharing a closet space with a partner? Let us know!
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