Extra space storage solutions
Organizing extra space storage takes creative thinking
Finding extra space storage can be a challenge, especially if your closets are shared by spouses or multiple children. Applying the following extra space and small closet organization tips may help you make the most of what space you have.
Get rid of stuff you're not using. A good rule is if you haven't worn or used an item in the previous year, you don't need it. You may encounter a handful of exceptions, but not many. Donate, sell, trash, or give away the clothing and belongings you don't need. The less stuff you have, the easier small closet organization will be because the less extra space storage you will need.
Use Organizational Aids
Ever seen those organizational aids in the stores? They may cost more than you want to pay, but sometimes they can provide a lasting solution to your organizing woes, as long as you actually use them. The particular aids you need will depend on the items concerned in your small closet organization project.
For clothing, you might check out clothes racks and shelving; for toys and small items, you might select a variety of bins or baskets; and for large accessories, such as hats and shoes, you might need to install several shelves. Or a combination of these organizational aids might work best for you. Some companies even make mix-and-match sets where you can put together the exact setup to achieve your small closet organization.
If you're handy, you can also design and build your own custom closet organizer. You'll have to price materials at your local supplier if cost is an important factor in choosing your solution. Before you price materials, however, you'll need to have a pretty good idea how you plan to organize your closets for extra space storage.
Install Multiple Shelves and Rods
If the idea of sketching a whole organizing system sounds too difficult, you can still install extra shelves and rods. Standard small closets often only have one rod and maybe a shelf above that. You can achieve better small closet organization to create extra space storage by providing more shelving or hanging space.
Give Everything a Home
Sometimes the problem with creating extra space storage is not that everything won't fit in the storage space you already have, but that you can't find what you want at the right time. You can solve this problem by giving everything a designated home. That means each item has only one place to which you will return it when you're done using it.
You can further improve on the previous small closet organization tips by categorizing items. Categories can help you as you try to determine a home for every belonging or can narrow down the position. If your closet holds clothes, put all the short-sleeved tops together, all the long-sleeved sweaters together, all the pants together, and so on. You may break those categories down further into colors: green short sleeves, blue short sleeves, purple short sleeves, on down the line.
If you store your DVDs in a small closet, categorize them by genre and then store them alphabetically. If dealing with games, group them by type: card games, board games, travel games, puzzles.
Conquer Specific Problems
When you run into specific problems you don't know how to solve, read up on further organization tips. Others have probably already faced the same. Keep your eye open for small closet organization tips that may help your specific situation. Clip good ideas from magazines and jot down a crafty idea your friend implemented. See if you can use or modify their solutions to conquer your problem areas.
Store Outside the Closet
It may be much more practical to create extra space storage areas outside your closet. Stow items under beds, for example. But don't just shove everything under there. Invest in some plastic totes to keep dust out and categorize (off-season sweaters in one, summer tank tops in another). If you have enough floor space, use a large dresser or wardrobe for clothing.
You can also store off-season clothing in totes in the attic or on rolling garment racks, covered with plastic or tough fabric, in the garage. Some people have even hidden boxes behind decorative screens.
Other extra space storage solutions include hollow ottomans, storage couches, chests, and hinged benches. Use these types of furnishings as much as possible to free up storage space in your small closet.