If you have a movie-star shoe collection, but lack a movie star mansion, find out how to organize shoes in a small closet.
“Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world.”
Who would disagree with Marilyn Monroe?
Of course, Marilyn never actually had to figure out how to organize shoes in a small closet – she undoubtedly enjoyed plenty of room in spacious walk-in closets to store her collection. And many of us share her worthy goal of always having the right shoes on hand for world-conquering – but not many of us have Marilyn’s money, so we have to be ingenious in finding space for the ultimate shoe collection.
Smaller dwellings like vacation homes, dorm rooms, and apartments usually have minuscule closets, with dimensions hovering near the current architectural minimum 24”-28” depth, and nowhere near the standard 48” of length per person. Alas, even if you have more than those minimum dimensions, they’re designed strictly for clothing, and you still have to store accessories and figure out how to organize shoes in a small closet!
For that matter, if you live in a vintage home, you may not have many closets at all.
Fear not. The gods of storage are with you, no matter how tiny your closet may be.
No need to be a big spender!
Consider some of the easiest solutions to your problem: Using things you may already have lying around the house or
easily obtainable to organize your footwear. For example, old wooden pallets, which are easy to get for free from many businesses, have openings between the slats that fit shoes perfectly, suspending them gently by the toes when the pallet is attached to a wall.
Inexpensive tension rods are another genius shoe storage idea: Arrange them parallel to each other to hold flats at the bottom of your teensy closet, and stagger them at an angle to hold heels.
Short of floor space in that closet? There are plenty of ways to get your footwear up and out of the way. The ever-popular over-the-door hanging shoe rack is the easiest place to start, but you could also install curtain rods in that closet and use curtain clips to hang each pair; or, if you’re handy, you can install shelves along the side
walls of the closet. Pro tip: Turn one shoe of each pair heel out, and you’ll be able to fit more shoes on each shelf!
You can also use wire cutters and pliers to turn wire hangers into shoe hangers. Just cut the bottom part of the hanger in two, and turn up each end into a curvy hook shape. Then you can clip shoes, or hang sandals on these “fancy” new hangers!
And here’s an easy hack using a genuinely inexpensive item: Gather free wine boxes from your local liquor store. The cardboard dividers that keep bottles from clanking up against each other will keep your shoes in good order. You can then stack these boxes on the floor of your closet.
Coming out of the closet
In fact, if you’re really stuck in figuring out how to organize shoes in a small closet, maybe the best option is not to store them in the closet at all: Slide that box under your bed! And if you want something a little classier, there are plenty of cute, practical under-the-bed storage boxes out there.
Another hack for under-bed storage: Pick up a large picture frame at your local crafts store, or even more cheaply, at a thrift store, and use that as an under-bed sliding drawer.
Another out-of-closet idea is to utilize a tall shoe rack that fits perfectly into those niches often found in rooms where the closet in an adjacent room protrudes. Then all you have to do is find a gorgeous curtain to cover this space, and voilà! Who needs a walk-in closet?
And here’s an idea: Pick up one of those storage ottomans and use a staple gun to attach fabric shoe pockets around the inside. You’ll be storing shoes right in front of your favorite bedroom reading chair, and no one needs to know!
Another out-of-closet trick is to hang over-the-door shoe hangers over room dividers – something many of who live in small apartments often have already.
In the end, when it comes to knowing how to organize shoes in a small closet, your imagination and ingenuity are your best weapons. You can make your own storage, or buy ready-made shoe-specific storage.
Of course, you can always go with something discreet, like the Sunbeam 5 Tier Fabric Shoe Organizer with a roll down cover.
It’s not just shoes that need their own space in some of those older homes; the portable Sunbeam Gray Fabric Storage Closet with Shelving is an ideal solution for your wardrobe.
For that matter, you can never have too much shelving. These Urban Shelving options will help keep clutter at bay and organization at a maximum.