Nobody ever has enough storage. No matter what size your closet is, you can make the most of it if you plan carefully. Closet systems such as the coated wire shelves sold at home centers provide a wonderful solution for any situation. They are designed so you can create a closet to accommodate your specific needs. Another way to add closet space is to hang a second rod below the original one. You’ll be able to hang twice the number of shirts, pants and jackets painting and decorating.
Aside from installing shelves in the closet, there are inexpensive storage solutions for just about anything you want to put away. Several specialty mail-order catalogs and stores are devoted to making your life incredibly organized.
Bookcases offer storage space for certain items that fit neatly onto narrow shelves. For example, use plastic sweater boxes, hat boxes or baskets to hold underwear, scarves and socks on shelves.
Place a divider screen across a dead corner of the room to conceal a clothes tree, a large wicker hamper, plastic milk crates for holding shoes or sweats, or an ugly dresser. Attach hooks to the back of the screen for hanging clothes. Building in shelves around a window might be the perfect way to create an interesting display area, as well as adding architectural interest to the room. A window seat with a lift-up top is another building project that can be good-looking and practical. If building even a small project isn’t in the plan, consider a trunk. If it has a flat top, like a toy box, for example, it can also be used as a bench at the end of the bed or under a window. A fabric-covered foam cushion and a loose pillow would make this item ideal for sitting and storing.
Cover an inexpensive, round composition board table (they come in various sizes) with a quilt, full length table cover or a blanket, topped with a lovely linen square. Use this as a night table on one side of the bed; the concealed area under the table is perfect for unsightly storage. The top will hold much more than an ordinary-size end table and it will look quite elegant.
Office supply catalogs and art stores can be great sources for storage units that might not be obvious for use in a bedroom. For example, a little taboret unit on rollers called a “Boby” is used in art studios. The drawers swing out and there are shelves and all sorts of storage space packed neatly into the 18- x 18-inch unit. It’s extremely versatile and compact. Hobbyists have discovered it for sewing equipment and other tools, but it can be used in the bedroom or stored inside a closet.
Looking Up and Down
There’s always room at the top. Run a deep shelf across one entire wall of the room, as high as you can comfortably reach. Line the shelf with laundry baskets or other good-looking large containers for storage. They should all be identical in order not to look messy or cluttered. Add a shelf above the door for holding books or collectibles.
Don’t forget the area under the bed. Keeping in mind the height of the frame, find cardboard storage boxes to hold out-of-season clothes. Custom bed frames and even high-end box springs made by Slumberland come equipped with a deep drawer. Consider purchasing such a bed if space and storage are limited.
The things you use the least—out-of-season clothes, extra blankets, old tax records, and memorabilia you want to save but not necessarily display—should be the least accessible. If they are put away in boxes under the bed or on a top shelf of the closet, be sure to label the outside, as most people tend to forget what is out of sight. Plastic storage containers can eliminate a lot of guesswork if you want to know at a glance what you’re storing.
It’s easy to build a wall of storage with identical-size cubes. These units are sold separately so you can create your own custom storage system to fit anywhere. A tall, narrow tower of shelves, for example, can stand alone or become the basis for an entire wall of storage. You will also find cubes that hold adjustable shelves and vertical dividers. Whether you need storage space to hold your media equipment or clothes, a modular shelving unit makes sense and can be quite attractive. An entire wall unit filled with books would be practical as well as good-looking.
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