There's been a big buzz recently regarding organization and home purging due to Marie Kondo's popular method of tidying. The main takeaway from her lesson is to keep the items that bring you joy and get rid of those that don't. A similar concept called the capsule wardrobe promotes a small, efficient closet that offers all the essential pieces that a person could need. As a college student, moving to your college town with ease and living with a reduced closet space can be a challenge. By taking a few notes from these two organizational methods, we could all have dream dorm closets without sacrificing our style.

1. Start early.

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Allow yourself a few weeks before the term starts in order to create an efficient packing list! By starting early, you'll have time to evaluate the items you truly need to bring to school and donate what you want to get rid of. You'll also cut back on stress by knowing ahead of time what you'll be bringing and how you'll be organizing it.

2. Remove everything from your closet at home and sort! 

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The KonMari Method and many other organizational approaches stress the same thing: empty everything from your closet. Don't even let that one sock in the corner stay untouched! This way you won't let yourself keep items you don't want or need. After laying out all your closet items, sort them into four categories: love it, hate it, seasonal and unsure. The clothes you love will be the first of your pickings to bring along with you. Seasonal clothes are important, but you should only bring them from home if you'll be needing them during your term. If you have any items you're unsure of, you have a few weeks to decide. If you end up wearing and loving it, keep it! If not, it's time for those clothes to go. Make sure to drop off the clothes you definitely don't want at a donation center so someone else can utilize them!

3. Try the 10-day capsule challenge.

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Here's another reason you'll want to allow time before the semester for your closet journey; the capsule wardrobe challenge! A capsule wardrobe is comprised of a small number of timeless, multi-use pieces of clothing. For the 10 day challenge, choose 10 clothing items (not including pajamas, workout gear, or accessories) from your "love it" pile. You'll only be allowed these items to wear, but it is surprising how versatile a few key pieces can be. Through this process, you can determine what items you need to add back into your wardrobe to round out your outfit-making process. 

4. Download a closet app.

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If you've narrowed down the essential, but stylin' items you need, it's time to bring in the tech. There are a few options for closet apps that you can use to log in all the clothes you'll be taking with you just by taking pictures of each piece. This way, you can keep track of what you have in your closet and construct outfits without even having to lay them out. 

5. Get cohesive closet accessories.

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One way to make a closet more appealing is by purchasing organizing items that are cohesive. For instance, having matching hangers instead of a mismatch of dry cleaning hangers will make the space seem less chaotic. Similarly, if you plan on purchasing drawer organizers or shoe organizers, keeping them the same style and color will create a unified closet.

6. Become a folding pro!

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Learning to fold clothes properly is a must, especially in a small space. There are many "right" ways to fold, but I believe the nuances of folding are based on personal preference. I like to use a department store folding device in order to achieve a uniform shape for all my clothing items, but the KonMari method offers another folding style that provides roughly the same result as a folder. The key is to fold items so that you can stand them up in a drawer and be able to view everything you have. 

7. Follow the 80/20 Rule.

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While this rule sounds simple, it can be a challenge. The 80/20 rule suggests that 80 percent of your closet can be filled, while 20 percent should be left empty for incoming pieces. At school, you never know what you might end up needing storage for after you moved in. If you don't plan ahead, you might be left with no space for new items! 

Whether you're a freshman or a senior, there's always room to improve with your organizational habits. A clean closet can change your whole morning routine just be alleviating some of the clutter-induced stress you have in your school life. Besides, who needs to stress out about their closet when there's homework to do?

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