Small spaces require clever solutions. In some homes, there just isn’t any more room to add extra cabinets or shelves, yet you still find yourself with piles of books, electronics, dishes and more beginning to pile up. You may need to think outside the box to keep yourself from being swarmed with too much mess to handle! Here are some creative ideas you can tackle to help find some more storage in an already full home.
Most shelves are uniform – that is, they’re the same depth from top to bottom. That can create a sort of oppressive, towering feel, and will make your already small room feel more cramped. However, if you use shelves that get narrower towards the top – think stair steps or wedges – then you’ll get almost the same amount of storage without the towering omnipresence of a full set of shelves. It will make the room feel lighter and airier, which will help with the feeling of cramp and clutter.
Cabinets and drawers offer two very different types of storage – the difference between vertical and horizontal storage can be staggering at times. Yet, far too often, we see people locked into segregating them – using only cabinets in this room, or only drawers in that hallway. A narrow drawer under a cabinet can offer a few precious inches of storage, and make things fit more naturally.
Not everything has to be stored away in closed cabinets or drawers. It’s OK to use spots in view for storage, especially of small things. Try mounting a rack or a bin on the side of your cabinets, and using them to store similar-sized items; kitchen papers and wraps, for example. As long as you keep them tidy, it can serve as a decorative accent to the kitchen rather than feeling like your stuff is spilling out of your cabinets, and it will free up a drawer for less visually appealing items.
We can’t stress enough the benefits of vertical space. So often, walls and doors become wasted space, not helping at all with clutter and organization. Thin wire baskets can be attatched to doors – great for a spice rack in pantries, or for stationary in a closet. Pot and pan lids can be hung on the interior of cabinet doors, freeing up more cabinet space for bulkier items. Cabinets can be stretched to the ceiling, and small, under-cabinet wire racks can be used to store larger utensils. These are precious square feet; use them!
Finally, if you’re having trouble storing all your stuff, you may have too much stuff. We all end up accumulating things over the course of our lives; I have a drawer full of cookie cutters I have never used. Audit what you have – if you never use an item, do you really need to have it? By paring down to the essentials, you’ll have less stuff to have to manage and store. For example, it’s worth replacing towels more frequently as they get worn out rather than having a closet full of towels you never use. Simplify, and your home storage issues will become that much easier.