When it comes to storage, we sometimes have to defy physics. Hit a great sale? Cram more clothes in the closet. Restaurant leftovers? Cram it in the refrigerator in the tiny space above the creamer. But there’s a better way. These tips can show you how to optimize space in underused areas of your house so you’ll never have to cram again.
Many of us associate the space under our beds as hiding places for unhealthy snacks, dirty laundry, dust bunnies, and monsters. No more. Reclaim that valuable real estate with efficient, stylish containers. Easily find clothes or shoes in clear plastic boxes that will keep the dust off your stuff. Or create your own “drawers” by adding wheels to shallow wooden crates that can roll in and out.
We all multitask. We juggle a million things at once and look good doing it. So why give your furniture a free pass to just sit there and do one thing? Just about any piece of furniture can be multifunctional if you shop strategically. A hollow ottoman can store throw blankets and remote controls. You can buy benches with compartments or shelves underneath. Save space with a coffee table that converts into a desk.
Take a page from Harry Potter’s pitiful childhood and maximize the space under your stairs. If you can’t access it, some minor renovations can open it up for shelving. Some DIY enthusiasts have turned the area into a triangular chest of drawers or a built-in desk. And even if you don’t want to start a project that big, you can put up shelving units of graduated height against the wall for custom-looking storage.
If you’re looking for ideas on how to optimize space in underused areas of your house, look no further than the closest door. You’ve seen the insides of pantry doors that have spice racks, haven’t you? You can do something similar all over your house. Inside your closet door? Hang a shoe organizer. Inside the coat closet? Install a wrapping paper station. Inside your bathroom cabinets? Use a rack for smaller toiletries. Inside your office door? Vertical bins for supplies and files. When you notice empty air, you’ll get in the habit of imagining ways to use it. Then, the sky’s the limit.