I moved to a small apartment and the bedroom is very small. I need some ideas for storing clothes. I have two small sets of drawers and a hanging rail but the rail looks out of place. I have hung a nice curtain on it but it still looks bulky. Any inexpensive ideas I could use without cluttering the room up would be great. Many thanks.
By Helen from UK
Don't you have a closet in your bedroom? I don't have anymore clothes than will fit in my closet and the dresser and chest of drawers. When you can't fit them all in the amount of storage for your clothes it is time to sort through clothes and get rid of some of them. My bedroom also serves as the store room. I have totes and boxes all over, with various things stored in them. I only use half of my closet for clothes, the other half has my Christmas tree, and stuff like that in it.
Apartments in the UK tend to be very short on storage space, unfortunately. We don't have a single closet in our entire place! Those stackable plastic tubs make for decent storage, more sturdy than boxes. You might also try some of those vacuum bags that compress clothes.
How about under your bed? Or under anything? Do you have luggage not in use? How about some big decorative wooden boxes (like a trunk or a hand painted wooden box). Or how about a coffee table made out of a trunk or wooden box (put clothes inside). Go to flea markets and thrift stores and find something cheap and redo it yourself to go in your space. You probably have some places to store things - just look around - you may have to reorganize - change things around. Another key is - in small spaces, go "up" instead of filling in spaces on the floor. Like a stacked washer and dryer. They came up with that idea for small spaces. Try stacking your wooden boxes or maybe even put a chest on a chest. Or how about a floor to ceiling bookcase? Let your imagination kick in. You will be surprised what you will come up with.
One thing I learned about living in small spaces is to utilize wall space more. Can you install some shelves on the walls? You can store some neatly folded sweaters or other tops. If you can hang another rail below that one that you have, it will double that space for storing shorter items like jeans, shirts, etc. I also bought those hangers that are supposed to double your closet space and they do work! I found them the cheapest at the Christmas Tree Shop. The only bad thing is that you can't hang any heavy on them like jeans. I still use heavy metal or wooden hangers for them.
I had the same problem. I started a vintage suitcase collection. Usually less than $3 at yard sales or thrift stores. Lots of colors and shapes. They stack well or sit nice on a shelf. The luggage tags help me remember what is in each one. I get lots of compliments.
Oh yes, if you and your family are the only ones to see your bedroom, who cares. When I know I am getting company that will be going into that part of the apartment I close and lock my bedroom door. Then I think back to a few years ago I knew a woman whose apartment consisted of one large room. No couch, she had a double bed against one wall, one easy chair, then there was a small enclosed bathroom, and the rest of the main room was kitchen. Now she would have a problem with storage, but she wasn't ashamed to ask people in.
I found some awesome bins with rollers and split tops that allow you to store under the bed with access to either side of the bin from there. Walmart carries them here, I think they were $6 a piece. Space bags work well and you can store extra bedding or out of season clothing in them and stack them on the closet shelf. I don't recommend under the bed in case they re-inflate as they sometimes do.
Wicker baskets or trunks make great bedside tables, add glass tops and store things inside. Cedar chests work nicely as an end of the bed bench which can double as storage also. Over the door systems work well also, use the shoe caddie for shoes and socks or put over the door hampers rather than taking up floor space. If your closet has a regular door use over the door systems on that also. Put hooks inside the closet for belts, robes etc. You can also use linen closets for clothing storage if you down size towels etc. Stacking old suitcases are great for end tables and storage. Good luck.
Those wooden racks that expand (like to hold coffee mugs) are great to hang on a wall for purses, scarves, necklaces or other "dangling" things, or even a light robe, hats, etc.
Whatever furniture pieces you have make sure they do double-duty. Everything should serve another purpose (like the end table idea being baskets for end tables), storage cube for seating and holding your shoes maybe?
If you have pillow shams you are using just to dress up the bag, fill them with your pajamas or other soft garments that won't matter if they get shoved around.
Check thrift shops for a skinny, tall shelf unit to utilize shelves going UP. It doesn't sound like you have a closet with a door, just a rod. How about getting one of those rolling closets that are covered so your clothing doesn't collect dust? Just set the whole unit in there, even if it protrudes a bit. If it DOES fit in, still keep a nice curtain to cover the opening. You can decorate with ironing on "stripes" of wide ribbon and iron-on seaming tape, or do edges (does an expandable shower rod fit the width of the closet space?). Slide a curtain or a nice fabric shower curtain on it.
Sounds like you're going to have to shop to get some items but it will be worth it. Like someone said, those narrow, smaller rolling plastic carts with drawers come in handy to store things and clothing. Use those or at least 1 for a side table (even a round tablecloth fits good over it perfectly to cover).
The best thing that I bought was a couple of cabinets from Home Depot, probably meant for the garage. They are 6 feet tall, 48 inches wide and 21 inches deep. They have shelves, but can be gotten with a hanging rod and 1 shelf. I keep clothes in one and all of my crafts, sewing, office supplies, jewelry, make-up, lotions etc. in the other. My home looks neat and clean because everything has a place to go. There is also storage on top of them where I store my shoes and handbags. I use decorative boxes so, even though it is exposed, it all looks nice too.
My favorite is a new round trashcan with a wood top. Add a tablecloth to the floor and you have a bedside table, kitchen table etc. depending on size of the trashcan. Great for out of season storage etc.
My Daughter has some pretty tote bags hanging on hooks in her bedroom that holds things. Really pretty. Try picking up some of those at the thrift stores. You can put most anything that's not too heavy on hooks.
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