How to make the most of this tiny closet?

marti8aSeptember 13, 2013

This is my master bedroom closet, a whopping 5x3.5 feet, 8 feet high.

We use the closet mainly for hanging clothes, and I only have a few dresses, so can stack two rods for the most part. I usually keep my suitcase in this closet, but I need to talk to dh about putting it in the top of another closet.

Here are the configurations I've had since we've lived here.

When we moved in, the closet had one rod on the left and two on the right (one over the other). There were two shelves over the single rod, with a little less than a foot in height for each, and one shelf over the doubled rods, also about a foot or less in height.

That was 10.5 linear feet of hanging space and 10.5 linear feet of shelf space. I had the single rod on the left and half the bottom rod on the right, and dh had the top and half the bottom of the rods on the right. But he wouldn't get rid of his worn out clothes even after buying new clothes and eventually took over the whole bottom rod.

So then I replaced the single rod on the left with 2 rods also. Then dh and I had the same amount of hanging space and I put my few dresses in dd's closet, which didn't work out at all. That gave us 14 linear feet of hanging space and 7 linear feet of shelving space and no hanging space for long things.

And now I have it this way:

with doubled rods along the 5 foot wall, and a one foot rod on the 3.5 foot wall, both with one shelf above, like this:

But with the suitcase above the hanging clothes, it was kind of like this

and really hard for dh to reach anything past the front of the suitcase. It, and the rod made it hard to get anything out. It gave us 11 linear feet of hanging space and accommodated our hanging clothes best, but the hardest to access. It also gave us only 6 linear feet of shelf space.

Now that the kids are gone, I'm thinking I will go back to the doubled rods on both sides as that gave us the greatest amount of rod space, and I can put my long things in one of the other bedroom closets. We really don't need the shelf space as we have a dresser and chest for folded clothes. I think we have some folded clothes in plastic boxes, caps, old purses, and boxed seldom worn shoes/boots, nothing important.

But since we are planning on selling, would that be a turn off to prospective buyers - not to have any space for long things? There's also really no room for shoes with doubled rods as clothes hang just above the floor and the shelf above is really too high to reach. Dh's shoes are in the family room closet (because they smell), and mine are in the hall linen closet.

Is there an option I'm not seeing?

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I think I like the original layout. It gives you more variety, even if there is a little less space. Most people have coats, dresses, suits, etc. that they want to hang up and it will give you more space for these items.

For now, what if your husband gets rid of some clothes...or moves them to another closet? Since the kids are gone, why not have the clothes you wear most often in the master closet...and both of you store the extra items in another area. With the suitcase :)

    Bookmark   September 14, 2013 at 12:02AM
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Oh I forgot. This was actually my first choice instead of double rods across all of my side.

I have some things in the other bedroom closet now, mainly things that need to be mended, or just a scooch too small (I'm optimistic), and some winter things.

The problem is that that closet is only 3 feet wide and the shelves in it have the linens, since it is wide enough for blankets and my shoes are in the linen closet (which is only 11 inches deep).

The other bedroom closet is going to be my sewing area since there is no room anywhere else. It's almost 6 feet wide with French doors and I can put a sewing table/desk in there and shut it when we have company. I don't really know if that will work or not.

    Bookmark   September 14, 2013 at 12:39AM
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Marti this is a tough one for sure. I like the look of the rods along the long wall. I have a total love hate relationship with those plastic drawers. I used three of them stacked on what would be your short wall to keep my shoes in.They do not come up very high so I can reach around them as needed.

I am with LL. Move the clothes you and DH do not use to another space to bring out as you need to use them. Change of seasons or weight. LOL I am there too so making a joke of this.

In one house we had was a 6 foot closet and we used water pipe and fittings to make a top rod all the way across and then a second rod only part way with the proper lengths of pipe and fittings it all screwed together and made wonderful hanging space. It left about a foot for hanging long things.

I would ditch the suitcase and put it in the garage. I keep ours on the shelf in our closet but they are soft sided so do not take up much room when empty. We usually do not use them much but have used them more since Joe had been sick.

My second choice is the way you first had it described. Most important is to get rid of the clothes not worn. And I need to take my own advice on this one too.


    Bookmark   September 15, 2013 at 1:14AM
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I've been working my way through my clothes, trying on a couple of things every day to see what fits and what needs to be ditched. I need to have dh do that too but I will practically have to dress him myself to get him to do it.

Our garage is too dusty for the suitcase in the garage but I'll see if I can find somewhere else.

Chris, I think that is exactly what I'll do, but using the rods I have already. I don't know why it didn't occur to me to put the top rod all the way across. Thanks!

    Bookmark   September 15, 2013 at 12:19PM
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Regarding shoe storage, we solved our problem with shoes by buying some of the under bed storage boxes on wheels... drop the shoes in, push them under the bed, easy to get to but out of the way. One or two pairs on the floor or in a basket in a corner if you use them every day, or store near the front or back entry of the house if you are one of the many who remove shoes when coming into the home. best wishes

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 7:56AM
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You'll laugh, but I am going to put some cabinets (with doors) in the dining room for shoes. That's where we always seem to put them on and take them off, so they might as well be close.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 11:28AM
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Not laughing at all. If it works for you then do it.

    Bookmark   September 18, 2013 at 1:58PM
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I think that's a great idea!

    Bookmark   September 26, 2013 at 11:01AM
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