This website uses affiliate links, which means I may earn a small commission from your purchase - at no cost to you. Please read my disclosure for more details.

Closet Overhaul: Life Without a Dresser

It seems that folks like to see into closets, cupboards and drawers.  Do these secret peaks make you happy too?  I’m pretty proud of our closet because:

  1. We installed it after we ripped out the awkward, sticky, broken mess that used to live there.

  2. We keep it pretty neat.

  3. It houses almost all of our clothes – we have no dresser!

See?  No dresser – just a teeny tiny armoire for scarves, etc.

One teeny tiny armoire for scarves, etc.
But it desperately needs new knobs.

Aside from outerwear, shoes and purses, all of our clothing is stored in a pretty average-sized closet (although, having grown up in a wee little 1950s home, this closet is frickin’ huge to me.  I have this issue with bathrooms too, remember?)  We make a dresser-less existence work by making the most of the space, thanks to a simple, inexpensive, modular closet organization system purchased from the home improvement store. 

Here are our tips for living dresser-free:

  1. Take inventory of your clothing and sketch out a closet plan that works for you.

  2. Install a combination of shelves, drawers and rods to suit your storage needs & maximize use of space. 

  3. Make use of the height of your closet with bins on upper shelves.

  4. Opt for a built-in laundry hamper (the wire bin) that saves spaces because it fits perfectly.

  5. Consider storage bins for below – we use our floral bin for clothes that are neither freshly laundered nor laundry bound. 

  6. Buy a set of hangers that will hang neatly together, using less space. 

  7. Tidy seasonally – refolding and sorting ALL of your clothes makes shopping for new items less enticing.  Trust me.

  8. Consign, donate or give away items that don’t fit or won’t work for you.  A streamlined wardrobe is key and makes getting dressed so much easier!

  9. Don’t worry about “rules” regarding what gets folded and what gets hung up.  Go with what works for you.

  10. Same goes for grouping stuff – my yoga pants are front & centre (not shoved in the back) because I use them so often (for sitting around, not actually doing yoga).

Built in laundry hamper and bins meet our needs.

Same size hangers maximize hanging space.

A mix of shelves and drawers to meet our storage needs.

Bins for added convenience.

What did this space look like before, you ask?  Well, I forgot to take a photo of this closet before but here’s one from the other bedroom  (now the Silhouette Wall in the office).  All closet fittings in the townhouse were identical:

A sorta “Before”

Crappy closet fittings, no more.

Before I got it all neat & tidy.



  1. Shannon
    October 6, 2011 / 4:31 pm

    WOW! Love it!We have a large closet AND GIANT DRESSER! I have to admit, most of the clothing in my closet I don't wear anymore. Suits, skirts, and blouses have no place in my life as a stay-at-home mommy.

  2. Tanya @ Dans le Townhouse
    October 6, 2011 / 5:03 pm

    Shannon,Trimming our clothes down (and keeping those numbers down) is a challenge. I definitely do more laundry. But everything in my closet is wearable and I try to buy things that work with everything else. It was hard parting with things, though, even if I hadn't worn them for five years (scary, isn't it?).

    October 6, 2011 / 5:23 pm

    Wow I am so impressed and although I know jealousy is not a good trait, I have to admit to being a tad envious 🙂

  4. Tanya @ Dans le Townhouse
    October 6, 2011 / 6:53 pm

    I wouldn't be jealous – I am sure you have a much more elegant wardrobe than me, truly worthy of whatever storage you deem appropriate.

  5. The Polka Dot Closet
    October 6, 2011 / 8:47 pm

    OK, I have no idea how you do it! That is amazing! I am one person with a walk in closet, dresser and armoire! I bet it cuts down on clothes shopping. I am so honored and thrilled you stopped by!Carol

  6. Stylelinx
    October 6, 2011 / 10:45 pm

    I neeeed this in my own closet! Nice job.

  7. My Beautiful Life
    October 7, 2011 / 5:02 am

    We are dresser free as well, but alas my closet looks nowhere near as tidy as yours. This really was a good reminder. Loved tip 7. So true!

  8. Tanya @ Dans le Townhouse
    October 7, 2011 / 5:46 pm

    Yay! Someone else dresser-free. I was beginning to think that we are very odd ducks. My closet is tidy because we JUST tidied it (seasonally!). Give it time . . . I will post another photo in January. Might not look the same. Lol.

  9. Vintage Hunter
    October 8, 2011 / 4:28 am

    I used to think I was pretty organized but you've got me beat by a mile! I'm definitely a dresser person. If for no other reason than I need extra surfaces to put junk on top of!

  10. Tanya @ Dans le Townhouse
    October 8, 2011 / 3:52 pm

    You know, I do fondly look at dressers sometimes and plan little dresser-scapes. It does limit our display space. But then, also my dusting! Lol. Happy to limit that 🙂

  11. Sharon @ Ms Magpie Designs
    October 12, 2011 / 2:27 am

    Your closet looks fantastic! It always feels good to pare down a bit. Great job!

Dans le Lakehouse is a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program. If you click on a link that leads to Amazon, I may earn a commission on qualifying purchases - at no cost to you. Thank you for your support!