No Wire Hangers! Why Wooden Hangers Hold the Key to Closet Organization

Photo of wooden hangers on exposed closet

I am a messy person. For a few years I’ve been trying to find ways to intercept messes before they take root, and one thing that has really helped is having an exposed closet. When I dress, I need to see all of my options before me. In the past, my closet led to piles on the floor and the disappearance of my bed beneath clothing, but once I built an exposed closet it was much easier for me to manage the would-be mess because suddenly I didn’t have to pull everything out in order to see it.

Exposed closet

Goodwill helped helped me to curate this newly exposed closet space into something inspiring instead of unruly. With nice wooden hangers to organize my clothing, some labeled for each day of the week for when I have the foresight to plan, the first thing I see in the morning – my closet – feels tidy and fancy, and gets me off to a great start.

Close up of hangers with day of the week labels

When I first began collecting thrifted wooden hangers, I wondered why people stopped using them in the first place, but then it struck me: a lot of fabrics slip right off without the notches or grippers that come on plastic hangers. I still preferred wood to plastic, so I came up with a couple of ideas to help my clothes stay on.

Hanger and stick pin tutorial

For sleeveless tops and dresses, I added one sewing pin on each side of the hanger to prevent straps from slipping. To do this simply measure where you want your pins to stick out, and draw a tiny dot. Then, use a thumbtack to poke a hole in the wood in that spot (It’s easier to push a tack in as a pin may bend or break under pressure). My pins were pretty long, so I decided to trim them a bit so they wouldn’t stand as high. To do this I stuck each pin only slightly into a pincushion (otherwise the tiny end may go flying!) and used wire cutters to snip it in half. Dab the newly trimmed pin in an adhesive that works for both wood and metal, and insert it into your tack hole. Allow to dry before using!

Wooden hanger with twine around the ends

As for sleeved tops that may slide off, I added a little traction to the hangers just by wrapping then ends with some baker’s twine. Use glue or tape along the bottom edge of the hanger to hold it in place and you’re golden! Felt or wool scraps adhered with hot glue would work quite nicely, too. There is plenty more wooden hanger inspiration on our DIY Pinboard, too – check it out!

Wooden hangers

Are you planning a closet re-organization for your spring cleaning? Hop on over to Goodwill to see what they’ve got to help you along. When you support Goodwill you are directly supporting your community because part of the organization’s mission is to empower the youth in your area with the confidence and courage to make positive choices within your community.

Happy thrifting!

xx, Julia