Blend Personality and Functionality to Create a Custom Closet

If you’ve ever rolled your eyes and moaned upon opening your closet door, then you need to view it with fresh eyes. Stepping into some of my clients’ walk-in closets, it is easy to see why they don’t love them. They are often either stark or dark, and just don’t reflect the personality of the individual I am working with.

Sure, a closet is about function, but since you are in there every day, it should also be about fun. From my experience as a professional organizer, I know that if you make your closet match your personality, you are more likely to want to be in there, and to enjoy getting dressed and staying organized.

From whimsical to elegant, it is easy to bring style into your closet space. Here’s how to begin the transformation:


Unless your entire home’s interior is white, there is no reason your closet should be stark. Just like in your rooms, paint is a quick and cost-effective way to really make a dramatic change in décor.  You can paint the entire closet, or perhaps just an accent wall.

A wall that doesn’t contain garments is a good option for an accent color. Choose a shade that is a nice contrast to your closet fixtures and flooring.


This animal print carpeting is a great example of bringing some personality into your closet. It is lively and fun.  Since your closet is a small space, compared to the rest of your house, you can afford to go bold with flooring. Since you’ll be barefoot in this room, plush carpet is a great choice. Likewise, if your home already has beautiful hardwoods, consider adding an area rug. If your closet is long, rather than square, a runner might do the trick.



Seating is another way to blend personality with functionality.  A chair, stool or bench makes getting dressed in the closet much easier—no more carrying your shoes out to the bedroom when getting ready.

A dressing table is also a terrific idea for your closet re-do. You can add a free-standing small table or design one into a built-in custom closet. Add a mirror and it’s the perfect spot for sitting down to apply make-up or trying on jewelry and scarves.


Walls Decals & Wall Decor 

There’s always room for peel and stick wall décor in your closet. While much of the walls will hold racks of garments or shelves, every closet has a wall or corner that allows you to bring in something you love.  A fun way to make a big impact is with stick-on wall decals. This hot trend lets you bring in eye-popping design quickly, and if you want to switch up down the road, it removes without damaging your wall.



Let your interests guide your closet art just as you would in your home. Pull in photos of places you’ve been and people you love. Add travel posters, motivational sayings or even use wall space to stay organized by applying wipe-off or chalkboard paint so that you can leave lists and notes.

Mirrors, a closet necessity, don’t have to be boring either. Paint the frame a vibrant color or go gilded for a glitz and glam look.


Don’t forget to look up when thinking about a fun redesign of your closet. Whether classic or creative, a light fixture is another way to add character to your closet. A beaded chandelier brings in sophistication, or you could choose a fixture with colorful or printed fabric for the shades.  If your closet is dark, both recessed lighting and wall sconces are options for more light.


As an organizer, I’ve found people often try to make their closet look like a store’s monotonous racks and shelves. Then, they don’t like it at all but aren’t sure why. Your closet is part of your home, so make it pretty. Use some of your space in the closet to showcase things you love. It might be vases of flowers or pieces of art, or it might be collections of accessories. Showcase your hats or add small hooks to hang your beautiful necklaces. An array of scarves on display is beautiful on its own.


Organizational expert Lea Schneider writes on closet and other home organization planning and décor for The Home Depot. Lea resides in Nashville, Tennessee, where she's recently been renovating a 1950s ranch house. To review a wealth of closet organization ideas and services available through The Home Depot, you can visit Home Depot's closet service page here.  

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