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How to Maximize Your Closet Space

February 03, 2023
Organized closet with clothing and bins

No matter the size of your home, there’s no such thing as “too much closet space.” There is extra square footage just waiting to be transformed or maximized. Whether you’re looking to make the most of your storage space or trying to create a new use entirely, we have tips on how to best use your closet space.

Thoroughly research storage solutions

We get it – when you get bit by the organization bug, it’s tempting to jump right in and immediately get going. Before you start spending money on pretty organizers and bins, take some time to figure out what exactly you need and plan your layout.

Woman organizing clothing in a closet

Start by decluttering so you’re not planning storage around things you don’t use. Then, take inventory of what you own to know how to store it. Review how many pants, skirts, and shirts you need to hang; how many sweaters and jeans you need to fold and stack; and the number of accessories you need to keep close at hand. Finally, take measurements of your closet – then measure once more to be sure.

Closet organizers increase your usable space with creative solutions such as hanging cubbies, bags with built-in shelves, or small rolling carts. Explore what options exist and see if you can repurpose items you already own like shoe racks, bins, or decorative boxes.

Double your hanging space

Walk in closet in the Claremont model home at Addison by Brookfield Residential in Austin TX

Standard closets typically only have one hanging bar. Nothing transforms your closet as quickly or dramatically as a double hanging set up. If you’re not looking to fully redo your closet space to move up your current hanging bar, you can easily add a double hang closet rod to your existing layout. Shelving space isn’t as functional as hanging items, so if you have to choose between the two, you’re better off opting for the increased hanging space.

Make use of the upper shelf

Stacking bins on the upper shelf is a good option, but using shelf dividers is an even better one. They form little cubbies so clothes and accessories are not only easy to see, but easy to access as well. They’ll create separate stacks of folded clothing so they won’t topple over and make a big mess.

If you need more storage than clothing space, use your upper shelf for seasonal items or things you wouldn’t want stored in the attic or basement. Since they won’t be getting everyday use, use smaller lightweight bins with lids to keep the dust out.

Organized walk in closet with different clothes and accessories

Remember the floor space

Just like the upper area of your closet, the floor is often underutilized too. Group your short-hanging pieces at one end of the closet and your longer-hanging clothes at the other and that will open up lots of floor space below. Depending how much clothing is long- and short-hanging, you can fit a little dresser, a stacking shoe rack, or low shoe cubbies.

Use the door

Over-the-door organizers are for more than just shoes. There are plenty of options for accessories like jewelry, scarves, hats, or purses. You can also mount a corkboard with hooks to the back of the door to hang your jewelry for more visibility.

Swap in slim hangers

Woman's hands sorting through hanging clothing

Hangers can be used for more than just clothing. They’re great for blankets, handbags, scarves, and ties too. Invest in designs that are less bulky – every little bit that a hanger is smaller than what you had previously, will quickly add up to a lot more saved closet space.

If you’re looking for something a bit more stylish than a wire hanger, space-saving velvet hangers have been an organizational go-to for years, or The Container Store has recently launched brand new slim wooden hangers. The uniformity alone instantly elevates the look of your closet.

Remove the doors

Technically speaking, there isn’t a reason that bedroom closets have to have doors. There isn’t a building code that dictates they are necessary. If you’re looking to repurpose your closet space, removing the doors is a great start in making it more accessible.

If you have a closet door that swings, the movement can interfere with or limit your furniture arrangements. If you have sliding doors on a track, removing them increases the accessible square footage in the room and creates opportunities for new uses.

If you don’t need your closet for storage or clothes, there are plenty of fun, unique ways to use the space:

1. Create desk space

Desk space in a closet

If you need a home office or quiet homework hub but don’t have a spare room to dedicate for it, utilizing closet space could be a great solution. You can tuck a desk back into it and use existing shelving for storage. You can also swap your closet for a craft space, sewing station, or wrapping spot. It’s a great place to stow away projects that are still a work in progress and keep the clutter away from daily life.

2. Compact bar

Bar set up in a repurposed closet space

Many homeowners have a coat closet full of stuff that doesn’t get regular usage. If it’s located close to your kitchen or entertaining area, do some decluttering and repurpose the space as a compact bar or bar cart nook. Play around with bold wallpaper and eccentric colors to really make a statement. It’s a smaller space so you can have fun without the fear of it being too overwhelming.

3. Small nursery

Crib and small nursery set up in a closet space

Since a newborn has to spend the first few months in the parent’s bedroom, give baby their own space by tucking the crib into the closet. It’ll feel like a separate nursery space, and you can customize it even further with removable wallpaper and fun décor.

4. Laundry room

Laundry room set up in a closet space

If your laundry setup exists outside the home like in the garage, repurposing a closet into a laundry space may be the perfect solution. You’ll need experienced trades for the plumbing and electrical work, but the added convenience to your every day life is priceless.

5. Entryway nook

Entry closet repurposed to a drop zone

Another use for your hall coat closet is to repurpose it into a drop zone or entryway nook. If the location makes sense for your floor plan, adding more usable space to the front area of your home may be a better solution. Add a chic bench to sit on and remove shoes, put in hanging hooks for backpacks and everyday coats, and incorporate playful design accents to make it pop.

Large walk in closet organized with male clothing

With the right organizing products, a few decorating tricks, and a little patience, you might find your awkward closet space is actually just right.

Have fun with your own design and be sure to follow the Brookfield Residential blog for more design advice, homebuying insights, mortgage tips, and more. Explore where we build and connect with our sales team when you’re ready to learn more. We’ll be expecting you!