5 Storage Tips for Homeowners with Cramped Closets

Here are five storage tips for homeowners with cramped closets. These steps will help maximize your closet space.

[adrotate banner=”30″]When looking for a new home, storage and closet space is often of the most important things on the homeowner’s mind. Therefore, if your home suffers from a dearth of closet space, this can quickly become a source of annoyance as time passes. However, there’s no need to make the most of your situation, and do something about your lack of room. For homeowners with cramped closets, the following tips can help you achieve effective storage and maximize your closet space:

  1. Add More Space. If you’ve completely exhausted your clothes racks and drawers with items, then one possible option is to create more storage space on your own. For example, organizers and hanging baskets are valuable options to make use of any unused vertical openings. In addition, storage bins are a great way to pack items away, as well as make use of unused floor space. Another storage tip is to keep clothes stacked in small piles in drawers, instead of hanging them on racks. Doing so will fill up more vertical space, allowing you to use them for heavier coats and articles of clothing.
  2. Install Shelving. Do you have empty walls that are simply serving as dead space? If so, then you may want to make use of the space by installing shelving.  Shelving are great for items that cannot be easily hung on racks, such as shoes or towels, and can get them out of your way. When assessing the layout of your closet, determine the height and width to see whether you can add multiple shelves. Make sure that you leave enough space between shelves, lest you end up with inadequate shelving.[adrotate banner=”29″]
  3. Practice Organization. One reason why your closet may feel cramped is due to the lack of method to the madness – instead of orderly placing items away, perhaps you have a tendency to just pile everything into the closet. However, disorganized messes are more likely to take up more precious space, leaving you with little to work with. Therefore, try to instill organization when storing clothes and other items away. For example, place similar objects together according to size and color, so you can find items quicker and easier.
  4. Remove Unwanted Items. If you tend to collect items or have a bit of a packrat mentality, then you may want to spend some time going through your closet. These items may be taking up valuable space, making it more difficult to utilize your closet to its full potential. Look for clothes or accessories that you haven’t worn in several months or years, and put them in a separate pile. You can either place these items in more permanent storage, or donate them to a charity organization.
  5. Explore Beyond the Closet. If your closet space is simply not enough for you, then you may have to look for storage alternatives. Luckily, there are a variety of ways in which you can store your items throughout your home. Look for whether you have any unused cabinets or drawers that are waiting to be used. You can also invest in furniture that also doubles as storage space, such as coffee tables or beds with pull-away drawers. Don’t feel as though you’re limited to simply your closet, not when your home provides endless potential for storage.

[note color=”#F8f8f8″]Christine Cooney is a writer at TheHouseDesigners.com, writing articles on DIY and home plans online on The House Designers blog. She loves learning about architecture, home décor and design.[/note]

Small Office Ideas

Small office ideas abound! With so many creative ideas and products to make life easier..

[adrotate banner=”30″]Small office ideas abound! With so many creative ideas and products to make life easier, there’s really no reason not to carve your own small office out of a spot in your home.

Most of you know my husband and I build houses in the gorgeous Texas Hill Country.. Well, we actually lost selling a spec house once because it didn’t have a designated office space.  The people ended up buying the same size house (in the same neighborhood) but it had a tiny office nook.

What made us crazy was that there were plenty of places in the house to carve a small office space from.. just as you see in the pictures here.  We simply have to use our imaginations.. yep!

Small Office Ideas

This room is smartly efficient on many levels.  First you have the storage piece that goes almost to the ceiling.  Streamlined with lots of storage!  Then the bed has the drawers underneath. And then we get to the lovely small office space complete with extra shelving above.

The only thing I would change would be to have a wall-mounted light rather than a desk light to maximize the desk surface space.

Small Office Idea
Create an office nook. Photo: ApartmentTherapy

If you prefer to hide away the office when not in use, you can install (inexpensive) curtains to do the job.  Look how even the desk chair tucks neatly inside.

Small Office Ideas
Inexpensive garage shelving creates an entire small office area.  Add rolling file drawers, a waste basket, and seating stool, and you have yourself the complete small office.


Some of my favorite small office picks from Amazon.. especially the desk with hutch. With so much technology between small computers and tablets and going pretty much paperless, that’s about all I find myself needing anymore.

Small Office Ideas
Office Nook Photo ChezLarrson

If you have room for 12-15″ shelves, then you have an office nook.. because that’s how big this office is that you see. You’ve got 12″ shelves at the top and a slightly larger shelf in the center where you see the computer.

[note color=”#DDFF99″]Like this article? You never have to miss a thing when our Weekly Magazine is delivered to your email just in time for Sunday morning coffee.[/note]

Creative Storage Ideas for Small Spaces

We have to get creative for storage in small spaces when living in a small home. Unique storage ideas along with bold pictures to

Creative Ideas for Storage in Small Spaces… Space, you either have it or you don’t. Whether it’s a room or an entire home that doesn’t have much storage, there are always things you can do. Sometimes you need to think outside the box to get things done, and storage solutions are no exception.

Small office shelves
Photo Credit: inspiracionline.blogspot.com

Take Advantage of Wall Space

If you are short on closets and attic space, your walls are your next go-to. If your home office is starting to look more like a paper mill than an office, think about hanging a few shelves. Buy some fun looking paper boxes, and you got yourself a great looking office that is organize.

Storage Ideas Under Your Bed

Besides collecting dust bunnies, what else are you storing under your bed? The space is there for the taking. No matter the size of your home, if there is a bed, you have room to store things. There are plenty of ways to do this, find storage bins that roll easily under the bed, decorative baskets or even built in to your bed frame, there are plenty of ways to take advantage.

Turn a Bookcase into a ‘Secret’ Closet

If you are really tight on space, think about turning a bookshelf into a new closet. How would you do that? Buy a window treatment or decorative sheet, and hang over the shelf. Voila, you have yourself “hidden” storage, and an accent of color in your room.

Burgundy Bonded Leather Chair and Storage Ottoman

Multi-purpose Furniture

If you don’t have much wall space, the next best bet is to get your furniture playing double roles. Bunk beds are perfect for double duty.

There are plenty of chic ottomans to chose from that also double as a storage unit. What about your coffee table? There are also great choices when it comes to extra storage under the table.

You can find lots of fantastic storage ideas at Overstock!

Storage Ideas – Decorative Storage Bins

Long gone are the days of ugly, bulky plastic storage bins. There are now many options, and most allow you to store things out “in the open.” Whether you want to stack decorative baskets under your coffee table, or stack cloth bins in your laundry room, storage bins have gotten a major upgrade.

Small Kitchen sink organization
Photo Credit: bhg.com

Tackle Underneath the Kitchen Sink

The more organized you are, the more space you inherit. How many cleaning supplies and dish soap products do you have under your sink?  You could invest in a two-tier wire rollout rack as seen in the picture here.  This will free up your kitchen sink for more space, and hopefully make it easier to find things.

In the end the choice comes down to creativity. A bookshelf might not just be for books, the wall can double as a handy place to store things and your bed is there for more than just sleep.

[note color=”#F8F8f8″]Guest Post by Miguel Salcido (TheHouseDesigners.com), an avid blogger, father of 2, and recent proud homeowner. He loves studying architecture, small house plans, home design and plans to one day buy a custom house plan to build his dream home.[/note]

Five Easy Tips to Expand Your Small Space

Easy tips for your small space. Super simple ways to expand the use of your small spaces while making them feel bigger, too!

Your small space does not have to feel cramped or be inefficient. Remember, living in a small house is not about doing without. Here we’ll show you super simple ways to expand the use of your small spaces while making them feel bigger, too!

1) Declutter

First and foremost, you gotta get rid of all the extra stuff. This one tip alone can make you think your room is twice the size. If you need an objective ‘eye’ have a friend come in to help you sweep some of it away. Be ruthless because all that clutter serves no good purpose and it’s filling up your space making it less functional… and pleasing.. and comfortable!

Of course, along with decluttering, comes organizing. If you need a quick tip guide to declutter, you’ll receive one once you sign up for our Sunday morning Magazine. Look to the right sidebar for signup. Can’t get motivated? There’s help at >> Kick the Excuses and Get Organized

2) Multipurpose your Rooms

We touch on this at 5 Mistakes not to make with your House Plan.  It’s Tip #2.

Gone are the days that we use our homes like we’re ‘supposed’ to. Formal dining room? Who says that space has to be used as a dining room? Or you can use it as a formal dining room but multi purpose it as a library also. Guest room double duties as an office or music room. Screened in back porch can be unique sleeping porch for occasional over night guests. The list is really endless.

Bunkbed with desk underneath
Photo Courtesy of Bunkbeds.net

3) Multipurpose your Furniture

Ahhh.. This is one of my favorite small space tip because we can find all kinds of multipurpose furniture in the marketplace. What are we talking about?

Bunkbeds come to mind. But not just any bunk beds; we’re talking about the ones that have double beds underneath, or desks, or futons. Extremely efficient.

Tables that have shelves underneath. Or even something as basic as having a drawer in the side table instead of just the table.

Chests used as coffee tables so you can store items in the chest. Headboards with built in bookcases.  Breakfast table that doubles as a game table.

4) Get Rid of Unnecessary Furniture

Is your room over stuffed with furniture that you aren’t using? When we’re talking about living in a small house, even one unused piece of furniture can be one too many. Really think about how you are using your space (or how you want to use your space.) If you have extra furniture that does not serve a purpose, get rid of it!

Take bedroom bureaus as an example. How much do you dig around in the drawers? Get rid of the big, hunky dresser and put those clothes in your closet. Whatever was on top of the bureau can go A. to charity, B. on top of bed table, C. bathroom vanity.

Can you imagine how much bigger your bedroom will feel? ..and I’m sure if you think about it, there are other furniture pieces you can live without.

5) Mirrors

Decorative mirrors as seen in this gorgeous small space, expands the visual of the room while adding a fun decorative touch.

HGTV Mirror - Decor by Erinn Valencich
Mirror Photo: HGTV - Decor by Erinn Valencich

Mirrors are an easy, inexpensive way to instantly add visual space to any room. Lean a large mirror against a wall and it will not only increase how big the room feels but you also have a place for a full length check before you head out the door.

Hang a mirror on adjacent wall from a window and it feels like you have two windows! I actually do this trick any time I have the opportunity because I love the feeling of expanding outdoor views.

In a tiny bathroom, extend a mirror across the entire wall for big visual pop like you see in our small black and white bath.

Please share these tips with your friends at Twitter and Facebook. We always appreciate the ‘share’ love! Dee 🙂

Cool Water Features for Small Spaces

A simple way to add pizazz to small spaces is with a water feature. Most of the water fountains can be used for indoors or outdoors..

A simple way to add pizazz to small spaces is with a water feature.  Most of the water fountains in this article can be used for indoors or outdoors.  I once saw a wall fountain in the foyer of a model home.  It was gorgeous but I noticed when I installed an outdoor fountain at our Tuscan home, the water sometimes splashed on the floor.  So that is something to consider.

These fountains can be found here >> Garden Fountains

Wall Fountain
Corinthian Wall Fountain at our Tuscan Home

Sometimes I like to add flowers to the fountain.. I can pretend I’m in Italy! Usually you’ll just want to leave the flowers in for a day or two so as not to muddy up the water.

Water Feature with Flowers
Water Feature with Flowers

My favorite place to buy water features is at Garden-Fountains because they have a huge selection at reasonable prices. The fountain in the above pictures is called ‘Corinthian Wall Fountain’ ($149.00) which was perfect for the old world charm of our Tuscan home. I think the Corinthian would also look good in a small house bungalow or craftsman style.

Apparently the Corinthian is one of their best sellers which I didn’t know when I purchased mine.. but I can certainly see why it is!

Water Features for your small space:

Water features are defined as anything water related in your garden or home decor.  That can include garden fountains, small pools and ponds, waterfalls, and cascading water.   Today it’s easy to find a water fountain that fits your style, whether it be classic, modern, beachy.. there are lots of unique water features available.

Archimede Lite Wall Fountain
Archimede Lite Wall Fountain

The Archimede Lite Wall Fountain from Garden Fountains is a modern twist.  Here you see it in a silver lead look but it also comes in a blackish iron look for a more rustic setting.

The water trickles from a little spout on the classic backplate into a relatively deep well basin.

Clean simple lines on this fountain and the single water spout make for a soothing water experience.

Along with the variety of different styles of water fountains, they each come with their own unique sound.  Do you like the distinct sound of a solo spout or would you prefer the sound of multiple water streams?

When you shop at Garden Fountains, they usually have YouTube videos so you can hear the different water sounds of the fountain you’re considering.

Now the table fountain below has a distinct Grecian flair.  The Cara Classica Fountain as it’s called, brings just the right touch of Old World elegance to your garden or patio.

Water Fountain - Cara Classica at garden-fountains
Water Fountain - Cara Classica at garden-fountains

So you can see with this table water feature above.. you don’t have to have a lot of room to pack drama into your decor.  I’d much rather have a small home with one of these cool water features, than a large, plain house.

When you downsize to a smaller house, you’re more likely to have additional funds to add extra perks such as these.

Flower Angel Wall Fountain at Garden Fountains
Flower Angel at Garden-Fountains

<< Now this one to the left here, is a delightful fountain with intricate flowers and even an angel.

It has an antique limestone finish and the water flows out of the bowl that the angel is holding and cascades down onto the ledge..

Then look how the water flows out of seven smaller spouts into a larger basin right below that, creating a soothing, beautiful water element. So you get two water falls, one in the basin the angel holds and then the seven spouts.

I might have bought this one if it had been available when I made my purchase. Well, I guess there’s always next time!

I really like the angel and the row of seven water spouts.

Water Fountain Installation

There are two different ways to install your water fountain for your small space.

1) Most fountains are made where you simply have water recirculating within the fountain. No plumbing is needed and you just plug into any standard 3-prong electrical outlet.

The beauty of this method is that it’s easy to install. The only negative is that you have to watch and make sure to refill the basin with water when it gets low.

2) The second method is where you hook up to a water line in your house. This is obviously more difficult to install but you never have to worry about the water level and possibly buring out your pump. And in a hot Texas summer, that can matter.
[note color=”#FFFFE0″] All the water fountains featured in this article, can be found at Garden Fountains. We bought our fountain there because they had a huge selection and great prices.

Also in the spirit of full disclosure, if you make a purchase through our links, then SmallHouseLife.com makes a small commission. [/note]