Tips & Tricks for Renters

No Closet Space? 5 Alternative Ways to Store Clothes & Shoes

Lack of space is the underrated enemy of the longevity of our clothes and shoes. Not only can insufficient storage damage them easily, but it also creates clutter and weighs on us — perhaps even more than we realize.

Plus, if you’re looking for an apartment, you already know that renters often don’t get to be picky about closet space — which is where creative storage ideas come into play. Sure, you can buy wardrobes and build your own shelves, but where’s the fun in that when you can make the most of what you already have and save space while you’re at it?

So, if you struggle with tiny or non-existent closet space for your clothes, shoes and accessories, we’ve got just the tips for you!

1. Use Your Doors


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The idea here is to make use of any available space, including the doors around the apartment. Invest in over-the-door organizers and shoe racks that can save you a lot of time and space.

Alternatively, if you’re not into the typical over-the-door shoe rack, choose a replacement that’s suitable for various items, such as textile door organizers. Most of the options you’ll find are compartmentalized, which makes them ideal for accessories and clothing that you don’t mind getting a little wrinkled, as well as shoes (think flip flops, flats, sandals, kids shoes and other non-bulky types).

You could also attach hooks to the door itself to keep go-to clothing — like jackets, hoodies, sweaters and jeans — easily accessible. This works especially well in studios and one-bedroom apartments, where every inch of space counts.

2. Go Up

If there’s not enough room, rethink your quarters and look upward. Start by hanging your daily items directly on the walls with permanent or adhesive hooks. You can also put up a plain wire rack that’s ideal for storing heeled shoes, while also serving as wall decor.

Likewise, minimalistic clothing racks also don’t take up too much space — you can buy them or even create your very own. In fact, just about any type of stick or bar can double as a clothing rod. You can attach it to the walls or even suspend it from the ceiling, so don’t be afraid of some good ol’ DIY. Plus, here’s a pro tip for saving even more space: Instead of using hangers, use S-hooks, especially for your pants and clothing that don’t wrinkle easily.


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Speaking of DIY and going up, don’t overlook the practicality of using a plain ladder as a clothing rack or quick layered shelf with the help of a few wooden planks. This would also be a great option for displaying your shoe collection.

3. Utilize Under-Bed Storage


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This one’s a classic storage area that most of us are familiar with from childhood. The trick, though, is to make sure there’s enough space under the bed so that your items don’t get squished or damaged in any way. For example, consider investing in handy bed risers, if necessary, as well as containers that will keep your shoes and clothes safe from dust, moisture or anything else that might affect them underneath the bed.

This is also a perfect spot for bulkier items that you don’t necessarily use daily, such as out-of-season clothing, Halloween costumes, shoes for special occasions and even certain accessories.

4. Hide Items in Hollow Furniture


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Going vertical is a good answer to your storage problems, but so is a good hiding spot. And to that end, some pieces of furniture can serve multiple purposes. For example, various models of ottomans, benches and even some coffee tables can easily turn into trunks as long as they’re hollow. Along the same lines, you could also invest in bed frames with drawers or other types of usable space.

5. Bring Out Boxes and Boho Baskets

See-through cases always make it easier to decide on an outfit because you actually get to see the items inside. However, they’re not always the nicest bins to look at, especially if you have to store them in plain sight in the absence of a dressing room or closet.

So, instead, use mesh bins and colorful containers. Or, get creative with vintage-looking wooden crates that you can stack on top of each other to create a sturdy shelf. In the meantime, if you need something stackable, give plain old boxes a try. The results might turn out better than you think.

Being without a dressing room is one of the most common challenges for renters. Fortunately, clever storage solutions are always about making do with what we have. So, the good news is that there’s always a way!

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About the author

Alexandra Ciuntu

Alexandra Ciuntu is a creative writer and researcher for RENTCafé. With a background in e-learning content writing and a passion for knowledge-sharing platforms, she has previously covered topics from prop-tech to renters insurance. She now enjoys researching and writing about the renting lifestyle, renter demographic shifts, and residential real estate market trends and news. You can connect with Alexandra via email.

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