When it comes to making shelves not look so cluttered and stacked up, think out of sight, out of mind. Even the most organized shelves can look really full and cluttered. So to eliminate this and prevent being so overwhelming, I came up with this idea, to "hide" them. This tip is based on the idea of keeping your closet doors closed to make a room look less cluttered.
Hide shelves behind a curtain. First screw tiny "C" eye hooks in ceiling. Hang a curtain from these hooks. The super cheap method is a $1.00 vinyl shower curtain panel, in a solid color, at the dollar stores. The benefit is, it already has the holes at the top, to allow it to be hooked easily. It is not necessary to have a hook for EVERY single hole. Just enough to keep it from gaping.
As you're hanging and measuring where you want it, just mark your places on the ceiling to correspond where the holes are in the shower curtain. You can wrap the curtain around sides, as well. Just remember to make sure and put a hook at the corners for a sharper corner, or it will curve around the shelf, making it harder to get things out. Put your curtain at least 6 inches or so in front of shelves, to allow room to get to things, without it being tight. Pull curtain to the side and tie like a curtain or you can unhook partially or completely, if needing to remove multiple or large items. But it sure looks better when company or others are around that would happen to see them!
Another idea is to use a panel of fabric or old long curtain panels. Screw the hooks where needed. Clip heavy duty binder clips onto the fabric where you screwed the hooks into the ceiling, measuring as you go. The handle part of the clip can be latched onto the hooks. It's so easy, just not as neat looking, but it does the job. You could paint them to match the color of curtain and then would not be noticeable at all.
By flightnurse9 from Fairfield, IL
That's a good idea, now I just have to find somebody that will do that for me in a couple places in my bedroom and kitchen.
I've done this with curtains and it also dresses up the room. Just make sure you've thinned out your belongings before hiding them, though. Otherwise, you're not getting rid of the overall problem.
Another thing you might want to consider is a cafe curtain rod placed slightly higher than the shelf opening. Then you an use shower or cafe hooks to attach the shower curtain. You could slide the curtain back to gain access to your stuff.
Flat sheets are a very inexpensive way to curtain off an area. Use a tension rod cheaply avail in mass market and home improvement stores and no holes, hooks or hardware is needed and flat sheets can be had inexpensively at Wal Mart or at thrift stores.
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