You’re dressing for a night out, looking good in your classic, slim-fit, black pants and Italian-made Terracina dress shirt. You take your favorite jacket off its hanger and realize the bottom is covered in carpet fuzz and dog hair.
Oh yeah. It was hanging on the bottom closet rod, dragging on the ground like a Neanderthal’s knuckles. Like all your clothes do when you hang them there. But you know you can’t hang that jacket on the top rod where it snags on the hangers below.
What’s a tall man to do in a world of closets designed for the “average” man?
There is a way to calm this frustration. And while it may take a bit of time and money, it will be well worth it the next time you’re getting ready for a pivotal job interview or boys night out.
5 Ways to Make Your Closet Work for You
- Invest in adjustable closet fixtures.
If you really want to optimize your closet, you must replace permanent fixtures with an adjustable, customizable closet system. Even if you weren’t taller than the “standard” guy, investing in a flexible system puts the power of closet organization in your hands.
You can choose from many products – from hardware stores, The Container Store, or specialty closet shops – all at varying price points. Stores will often provide consultation on closet design best practices as well. (But don’t fall for the “standard” measurements. You know those don’t work for you.)
- Break out of the “double-hung” box.
With adjustable closet fixtures, the closet is your oyster. You can install hanging rods over or under shelves or drawers. You can hang your pants folded in half, use clamp hangers to hang them from the waistband or cuffs, or fold them on shelves. The only thing between you and the perfect closet is your imagination.
If you’re stuck with non-adjustable double-hung rods, however, don’t fret. Consider removing the bottom rod and putting low shelves or a chest in that hanging space. You don’t have to use the bottom rod just because it’s there.
- Measure your clothes.
You can't follow the standard closet estimates the “average” man can. Find out how long your shirts and jackets are. Measure your pants as they hang both folded in half and by the waist or cuffs. Measure your shoes or accessories if you plan to shelve them. With adjustable systems, you can move things around based on trial and error, but having actual measurements will save you time lost to poor assumptions.
- Plan your closet from the top-down.
When you install your adjustable closet system, think top-down. Place the clothes and accessories you use most often above your waist. Install shelves or drawers for less-used items nearer the floor. Leave plenty of room under hanging space to allow for vacuuming.
- Learn from your closet.
Learn what works and what doesn’t as you use your closet. With an adjustable system, you can move rods and shelves around easily based on that experience. There’s nothing keeping you from making that puppy work for the way you live.
The Bottom Line
All men are not created equal. Their closets shouldn’t be either. You are far from “average,” so let’s make sure your closet reflects that.