Yes, this is a lot of work and yes this does take up time. But in the end I promise everything will be more organized and what you put back in will only be things you love.
Make a keep pile, make a store pile (if you keep clothes in a separate place for other seasons), a trash pile, and a giveaway pile.
-organize by type of clothing-
Personally I find it much easier to organize my clothing by type of clothing. I put tank tops together, v-necks together, button ups together, etc. Usually I am looking for a specific style not a specific color so this is why this system works best for me. Plus if you love patterns like I do most of your pieces will have multiple colors and that might make it difficult to sort by color.
-fold what can be folded-
I keep sweatshirts folded on a shelf in my closet because they take up a lot of space when they are hung up. I also fold t-shirts and put them in a drawer. Since I do have a rainbow of colors of tees, I sort those by color.
-buy felt hangers-
I am sure you have all seen them, but many stores sell felt hangers that are thin, don't take up much space, and you can hang the hangers off of other hangers to create even more room. Plus since they are felt your clothes do not slide off as easily. I have yet to purchase these, but I am planning on purchasing at least some before I go off to college!
-if it doesn't fit, it can leave-
Unless you absolutely love something, if it doesn't fit right or make you feel confident it is time to get rid of it. Same goes with worn out pieces. If it has a hole, it belongs in the trash.
-what to do with old clothes-
When it comes to getting rid of clothes, I throw away stuff that is really worn out or damaged. I then try to sell higher end clothes at a local resale shop. Then I donate the rest to Goodwill. There is also an animal rescue group nearby that collects old t-shirts for the cats, so I donate my t-shirts specifically to them. I recommend looking around and researching good options of places to sell/donate clothes near you!
What tips do you have for cleaning out your closet? Share in the comments below!