Can you recommend a closet storage system?

PipdogNovember 19, 2013

Our new home has smaller closets than our current home, so we are going to need to be creative about our storage, especially in the girls' bedroom (two little mini clothes horses that have a lot of stuff). They will need some drawers as I doubt we will put a dresser in their bedroom. I was thinking something like this, although not pink:

Traditional Closet by Spring Lake Closet & Home Storage Designers Bella Systems

or this:

Eclectic Kids

I've been looking at the IKEA system but don't know a lot about it. Has anyone used IKEA? Or are there other brands I should be looking at? This is for kids, so I'm not interested in anything too spendy, like Poliform.

Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I like IKEA.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 12:04PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

From what I understand, and this is only my impression since I haven't installed anything like this, Ikea is a really good solution, unless you have the money for high-end custom solutions.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 12:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I like the versions you showed. One thing I'd do is make sure that you can change out some of the parts for when the girls get older. Maybe one will gravitate toward wearing mostly dresses, and the other is a jeans-and-sweaters girl. So you end up needing a lot more space for folded items and more space for longer hanging clothes. I think that's why I like the Elfa systems (Container Store) and similar "buy the interchangeable pieces" methods. They have pullout "drawers," too.

I have the Elfa in my hallway closet (that used to be a closet rod and a high shelf). Gave me great storage capacity.

The shoe shelves in the top photo seem to be wasted space, IMO. If you have regular closing doors, instead of bifolds, the back of the doors would be a better place for them, since most kids I know either just kick their shoes off wherever in the house and in their room and don't necessarily put them properly on the shelves. Your kids might be different, tho...

I do have a less-expensive Closet Maid one in my loft-space closet, for out-of-season clothes, extra blankets, etc., but it doesn't have the "tweakability" factor.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 12:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We priced custom solutions and IKEA, and ended up using IKEA in the walk-in master closet. It just seemed silly to spend 4X the cost for a closet. We got 4 huge PAX boxes (93" high, 22" deep, 29" wide), 5 hanging clothes rails, ten 29" wide Komplement drawers, and ten 29" wide deep shelves for just about $1000 (maybe $1100) -- we also paid a few hundred dollars to have them delivered and put together. Our bid from California Closets was close to $12,000 (admittedly for equivalent drawers/hanging space/shelves, but with all kinds of additional shelves on the opposite wall, but still).

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 1:48PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

elfa elfa, elfa! Cannot praise it enough! We had elfa closet systems installed in both MB closets (one sliding, one walk-in) and they have more than maximized our closet storage capacity, are well-made, and look nice, too.

We got elfa for both closets during the annual elfa sale (a year apart). The sale runs from Dec 26 to mid-February every year; 30% off EVERYTHING elfa, from the smallest of nuts and bolts, up to and including installation. You can put together your design on your own, or work with someone online or in-store. Our elfa design person (in our local store) was invaluable, very patient and very helpful, as we tweaked and modified the design/layout for my walk-in closet, until coming up with the design we ended up using. Even after the installation (shortly after), I was able to return or exchange a few of the components once I started putting my clothes away.

FWIW, shortly before we did the first closet(?) we had purchased some add'l Closet Maid shelves (at HD) to add to our guest bedroom closet (which up until then had only one long CM shelf along one of the closet walls). The cost for those shelves, along with track, standards, brackets....wasn't much, if any cheaper than the elfa stuff during the elfa sale.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 1:50PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

The Container Store also has great closet systems (Elfa).

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 3:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo


My daughter converted one wall in their master using the Pax from Ikea.
They love it.
The before photo shows you they had one small closet and for some reason an indented space in their master.

They took out the closet and used the entire wall, put molding around it and it looks built in.


finish ( I do not have the greatest photo of this) They also painted the walls after to a greenish rather than the gold.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 4:57PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Elfa at The Container Store. There is one in Pasadena that you can visit for ideas.

    Bookmark   November 19, 2013 at 5:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We did the espresso color Martha Stewart line ordered through HD and like it really well. You can customize it to fit your space and we did the installation ourselves. It comes in white also... maybe another finish as well, and so far it's been great. Price was much better than CA Closets that we have had previously, and I like it better, perhaps because we have so many drawers and the sloped shoe shelves. I had considered Ikea, but couldn't customize it enough to fit my spaces.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 2:54AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We have elfa and pax. I love both. Pax was cheaper for two of our rooms and fit with our dimensions; we used elfa in 2 others. Turning 3 closets into more of a built in cabinet look with TV and hampers hidden in the middle. The elfas are in every other room. We set up one closet in our sons room as a desk then his walk in closet has been customized to store clothes. Even the guest rooms have been given new purpose with the systems. I think the quality is pretty similar although I feel like there are more options with the elfa.

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 4:22AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

i have boys, so maybe girls are different, but they prefer shelving over drawers... looks messier, but empty drawers are pointless! lol i like and use the drawer units, but would add more shelving too! (we had a CC competitor install ours...)

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 8:43AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Another Elfa fan

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 3:58PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo
WalnutCreek Zone 7b/8a

One thing that is so great about Elfa is that you can go online and design your closet OR, even more fabulously, you can go to a Container Store or call at the number shown on the link below and the Container Store employee will design a closet for you and suggest ideas based on their total knowledge of the system and based on your needs and this is at absolutely no charge.

Here is a link that might be useful: Elfa Closet System

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 6:12PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Not too many IKEA stores in my immediate area. However, if you live near a Mills Fleet Farm (MN, ND, IA, WI), they carry Easy Track system which is very strong, relatively inexpensive, and easy to move around because it works on a hanging system. So, you could easily change things around with different components as your kids age.

Here is a link that might be useful: Easy Track

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 7:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We have Elfa in our MBR for DH. Even in a tiny closet, it made a huge difference.

Lyban, your DD's Pax system looks fabulous

    Bookmark   November 20, 2013 at 8:10PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We just installed ikea pax in our master closet -- built in (still a work in process). Great space and very affordable.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 8:47PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

laura, we did the same - 4 Pax sections - double hanging on both ends, hanging and 5 drawers in one of the middle sections, and shelves and 5 drawers in the other middle section. The only thing I haven't figured out yet is shoes. I like what you did at the top of yours! BTW, for anyone considering Pax, the drawers are HUGE!!

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 9:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Can you use PAX for an existing closet with doors, like the first picture?

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 10:22PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I used Martha Stewart and it was easy to put together, ok, well over 2 weekends anyway. I have the cherry stain and it looks pretty good! You can design your closet on-line and it was reasonably priced.

    Bookmark   December 11, 2013 at 10:49PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

we used john louis for our small bedrooms. it is solid wood, and very versatile. i think it looks nice for the price. one standard kit was enough for 2 closets. though adding drawers is something you need to buy extra. they sell it at costco and amazon.

    Bookmark   December 12, 2013 at 1:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I'm a big fan of John Louis as well. Pretty good quality for the money.

If you need space within drawers etc try those vaccum pack bags that suck the air out and compress real tight. I have some I got via a TV ad and they work great!

    Bookmark   December 13, 2013 at 1:35PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We don't have an IKEA near us so after looking at what was available locally decided to design and build our own. I wrote three articles on how we did it. I linked to the final one below, but there's links to the planning and supply list article with in the building article.
The photo is a composite showing both sides of our walk in. One could easily customize the plans for a straight closet too.

I have storage bins in each of the shelving "cubes" on each side that work very well for storing folded items.

Here is a link that might be useful: Building a Custom Closet

    Bookmark   December 14, 2013 at 1:05AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

I've used Easy Track a number of times for closets. Reasonably priced from lots of sources, & I like that the elements do not use the floor for support. This way, if in the future you decide to change flooring, you don't have to disassemble the closet hardware. Cleaning below is easy with no components on the floor.

Here is a link that might be useful: Easy Track Website

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 9:49AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We've had (from PO or or we had installed) California Closets in every house we've lived in, and I can't recommend them highly enough. They're like iPhones, they just work, and work perfectly. We had one closet system ordered online from a eAsy closets (I think that was the name) and a contractor installed it while we were renovating our Fla house. That closet has never looked as good or worked as well as the California closet installations. We do have Elfa rolling baskets in one storage closet and IMO California closets components are better quality.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 10:28AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

We got a quote from California Closets for our master closet - $12,000. We installed IKEA Pax units for about $1,400, including hiring IKEA to deliver and assemble.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 11:52AM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

thanks everyone for weighing in. We discussed with a local closet installation company and got some quotes that were close to sjhockeyfan's, so we're headed to IKEA and Container Store to get some pricing. I was hoping to do all this before we moved in, but this will likely have to wait until after the holidays. Too much on the to-do list! I'll update once we have our closets done.

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 12:54PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

@beverly27: thanks for the great "shoe-porn" in the last picture. I wish I has that kind of space!

@pipdog: I love my Elfa system. I purchased during the sale and before my space was built out. I fit my full wardrobe (which is not totally out of control) in a 58" closet, including my three shelves worth of shoes. When it was time to install, I had to have a couple pieces cut down and the folks at the Container Store took care of it right away. I used the Costa Mesa store and I actually had to sign on and wait for a meeting with the Elfa rep. They are that busy during the sale!

    Bookmark   December 15, 2013 at 1:11PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

After all this time, I was able to take a picture of my IKEA Pax wall - 4 units side by side.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 1:08PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Pipdog, just saw on another forum that The Container Store Elfa sale is starting shortly. 30% off. Don't have exact date but this person received a catalog with the announcement.

Good luck!

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 2:44PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

The elfa sale usually begins the day after Christmas, and runs into mid-February sometime.

The 30% off includes EVERYTHING elfa down to the littlest screw, wall anchor, etc. and includes 30% off installation (if you opt to use their installers).

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 3:28PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

sjhockeyfan-did you design it yourself with their website or did they help you lay it out in the store? We are considering a road trip to IKEA to do closets for our new build as well.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 4:23PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Autumn, we investigated in advance of building the walls for our closet, so we knew that 4 of the large units would fit (since you're building, you could do the same). As far as the exact design, we did it at the store with an associate's help. We have 5 short hanging sections, one section with all shelves above a short hanging sections, two sets of 5 drawers each, and some extra shelves where we could fit them. We actually measured what we needed in advance, although I will say I forgot to account for the [very few] long hanging items I have (a few dresses, even though I hardly wear dresses). I'm not going to modify the closet, I'll just hang those elsewhere.

One thing you should know is that there is one color that you have to order (we couldn't wait for it - called something like "whitewashed oak" or "driftwood" or "weathered" I can't remember). We just got birch.

We paid to have someone else put them together, and the whole thing including delivery and assembly was less than $1500.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 4:40PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

Just an FYI in the Elfa system, we installed a wall mounted shoe rack shelving unit In the laundry room and then discovered that my husbands size 12 work shoes (dress shoes) would not fit. The shelves were slanted and the heel part of his dress shoes were too big to catch the rung or something and since his leather shoes are heavy they'd slide off. This may not pertain to you, but I was pretty Dissapointed as half the reason I installed the thing was to get my husband's shoes off the floor. I still like Elfa, but now I know that their slanted shoe shelves don't work for my husband, or at least they didn't as this was about eight years ago.

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 11:16PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

This blogger post the dates of the Container store sales..
Can't wait...

Here is a link that might be useful:

    Bookmark   December 20, 2013 at 11:37PM
Thank you for reporting this comment. Undo

sjhockey-Thanks for the info. We have a 'non-traditionally' laid out closet, walls already built. I need to think it over some. Like you - very few long hanging as well. I think we have a lot of space but I want to be sure we lay it out to maximize it. :)

    Bookmark   December 21, 2013 at 10:50AM
Sign Up to comment
More Discussions
what could make these sheers more modern?
The bamboo roman shade in one of these windows fell...
Wood filler when sanding isn't possible
My toilet paper holder is attached to my vanity. I...
Budget kitchen remodel
We relocated to a new state, and bought this home last...
TIGHT Space for Mirrors (Between the Light Fixture and Backsplash) :(
We are coming into the home stretch. Although there...
Monrovia Mom
BM Manchester Tan in a room with tall ceilings or a wide open space?
Does anyone have BM Manchester Tan in a room with tall...
Sponsored Products
Thompson Slider Espresso Wood Top Storage Ottoman
Cappuccino Charlie Console Table
$99.99 | zulily
John Louis Stand-alone Tower Shelf Standards
Foremost Bathroom Haven 25 in. W x 22 in. D Vanity in Espresso with Colorpoint
Home Depot
Zinc Metal and Wood Drum Accent Table
Cost Plus World Market
Flash Furniture Vertical Storage Folding Chair Dolly - 50 Chair Capacity - NG-DO
Beyond Stores
© 2015 Houzz Inc. Houzz® The new way to design your home™