by Beth Eliot
Has this happened to you before…..? You open your closet door and think “how in the world am I going to fit anything else in here?” Everything is just crammed together to the degree that you actually can’t find things because they are so squished together and trapped behind each other on the hangers. This was certainly my past experience. I wrote a few months ago about combining spaces with my husband and in that article I mentioned that I got a new closet out of the deal. This was a very welcome addition to our home, because prior to this I had a dresser and closet in our guest bedroom filled to the gills (and by gills I mean it was actually overflowing onto the guest bed when not occupied by guests).
When my husband converted an in-home workshop to a walk-in closet off my bathroom we put a good amount of thought into how to maximize the storage and create a user friendly walk in closet, yet stay on a tight budget. One of the things my husband came up with, that I thought was quite creative, was to take a shelving unit he had used in his shop and turn it into a shoe rack. He added an extra shelf in between each of the existing shelves to create additional shoe storage, as the space in between was ample. As you can see in the photo, there is nothing fancy here, but it totally works. Doubling the existing shelf space provides much more shoe storage than other systems I have seen. My shoes are easy to see therefore easier to figure out what to choose for the outfit, which is a very important life decision indeed! Now truth be told, this does not suffice for the entire shoe collection and I know I am not alone in my love (and hoarding) of shoes! I do also have a hanging shoe rack along with an under the bed storage bin for the, oh so rarely worn closed toe shoes and a few pair of pumps from my old corporate days that I still can’t quite seem to part with.
Another idea I had during the closet project was to install some sort of hanging jewelry storage system. I had seen jewelry cabinets, but when searching online I could not quite find what I was looking for. I wanted something that would hang on the wall and would allow me to store my jewelry in a manner that I could see it all together when I was getting ready and choosing the accessories for the day, yes another one of those important life decisions. I decided to do a search on Etsy and was thrilled with the options from a multitude of artists that clearly understood my vision. I chose an artist named TheKnottyShelf as I was able to customize the organizer a bit by choosing my own colors and adding an extra shelf in the middle.
The one pictured is magenta with a dark bronze decorative metal backing. I love that the backing will hold all of my earrings and the shelves are large enough for any additional jewelry you don't want to hang from any of the many hooks. There are 21 smaller hooks and 12 medium hooks along the sides.
Rings, necklaces and pendants all hang perfectly from any of the medium or small hooks. The artist included S-hooks so I could also hang pendants on the metal back. I have become a bit of an Etsy fan. I myself have no artistic talent but I have found that if I have a vision, often times someone else with the talent to create has had a similar idea.
Now to the boring, practical and not so creative…… hangers. I decided during this project it was time to get rid of the mish mash hanger system I had in place. The plus side of the mish mash hanger system is that you have the opportunity to try all sorts of hangers. Puffy cushioned hangers might be nice from the standpoint of not leaving crease marks on the shoulders, but I find them totally impractical. They take up way too much space and most things slide off the hanger too easily. For a while I was trying to convert to all white plastic hangers, but I have now moved to a different position. I love the thin no slip velvet hangers. O.k., maybe using the word love is a little strong when it comes to a hanger (but is totally appropriate for shoes), but I do really like these guys. I have found that they are much more space efficient with how slim they are and I “like” that clothing doesn’t slip off.
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