Whether you’ve just moved in into a new apartment or you’ve lived in one for a while now, ask yourself if you’re using your living space in a way that helps you maximize storage. Apartments typically come with less space than houses, which means that you have to look into smart storage solutions to keep your apartment essentials organized and looking tidy. To do that, you might need to buy things for your apartment, but you can still turn to DIY projects to get similar results.
Here are some ideas to help you make the most of your living space:
1. DIY a hallway clothes rack
Your hallway packs a lot of storage potential if you know how to harness it. Think of the entrance wall as your canvas — use it to create a clothes rack out of hooks. Get creative with the design — you can create an asymmetrical hook pattern if it suits your fancy. This is simply an apartment must-have if you’re looking to save space without compromising the aesthetics of your apartment. Or, if you prefer a more unconventional setup, you can always use a clothes rack for the same purpose.
2. Create a home for your magazines and mail
Vertical space is your friend. The same principle applies to your magazines and mail in general. Instead of allowing them to pile up by the entrance, add a wall-mounted magazine rack to your new apartment checklist. Your stack of unread magazines can rest here until you’re ready to thumb through them.
3. Be strategic with your furniture pick and make it work harder for you
When it comes to the living room, the space might inadvertently attract clutter outsourced from other rooms. For this reason, when picking a coffee table, consider one with incorporated storage when you think about things you need for your apartment. Some of them come with built-in cabinets or with room for baskets or bins underneath — a great perk for that coveted extra storage space. An ottoman can pull double duty as a sitting spot and hidden storage too. But when you live in a small apartment as many cities offer, you might want to consider self storage to temporarily keep bulky items away from home. If you live in a small apartment in Seattle, finding a storage unit near you shouldn’t be too difficult, with the abundance of storage options that the city has to offer.
4. Incorporate floating shelves
Whether you see them fit for your living room or any other room, they are a practical addition to your storage solutions without compromising style. They’ve seen a well-deserved resurgence in the past years as they free up floor space for added convenience. As a bonus, floating shelves make the room look larger as they allow natural light to come in.
5. Add flair with decorative boxes
Your floating shelves don’t have to host decorations only, as you can use them for actual storage. Just put your desired items in decorative boxes for a touch of style and privacy and let them sit on your newly-added floating shelves. You can also place decorative boxes under your coffee table if space allows.
6. Use a folding desk
A work desk has become a necessity for many people taking on work from home. But do you have enough room for an additional piece of furniture? If your answer is “no,” perhaps a fold-down would work best for you. They typically fold against the wall so you can enjoy your space unencumbered once your workday is over. This type of desk comes in various styles and sizes, and some even have built-in storage. Just add a chair, and you’re all set!
7. Mount your bike on the wall
Perhaps you’re used to being active, and a bike is an integral part of your lifestyle. The question arises, though: Can you store it indoors, especially if your apartment doesn’t come with a balcony? It’s easy to mount it on the wall and have it work as décor. Paint the wall in a complementary color or accent it with a rug to complement the color scheme of your bike. Function and style have never been happier together!
8. Opt for a bed with built-in storage
If possible, pick a bed that comes with storage. You can keep certain items that can be flattened under the mattress. The great perk of this storage system is that your stored items are protected from dust by the mattress above acting as a dust-repellent shield. If you get a classic bed, fret not: You can make use of that precious storage space. Get the lower bins with lids to store seasonal items and other things that will not be used in the immediate future. Should your bed be higher? Simply add bed raisers to help you make use of that under-bed space for your items.
9. Invest in a Mandal headboard
The Mandal headboard is a versatile IKEA product that prides itself on its adjustable shelves adding headboard storage. You can customize your headboard shelves to your heart’s content! Besides, they can easily stand in for a bookshelf or a nightstand.
10. Create a nightstand out of stacked vintage suitcases
If you’re feeling whimsical, you can bring some old-timey charm to your bedroom by making a nightstand out of suitcases with minimal effort. Simply stack them to your bedframe level. Use the bottom suitcase to store winter blankets or other seasonal items that are used infrequently. This is an effortless storage trick as you only store the items and close the suitcase! Pay attention to the color scheme of the room and pick suitcases that match the current décor. Or, for instance, if your bedroom comes in a classic beige palette, pick colorful suitcases for your makeshift nightstand to add a pop of color.
11. Customize your closet for more storage
Your closet can be adjusted with simple tricks to help you store your clothes and other items in a way that helps you make the most of the space.
Here are some things you can do to achieve that:
- If your closet comes with one rod, add another one, so you hang more clothes. Use the upper rack for shirts, T-shirts, sweaters and blazers and the lower rack for pants and skirts.
- Install side racks to hang scarves, belts and ties without taking up much space.
- Make use of Command hooks to create a home for your handbags, umbrellas and other miscellaneous items.
- No closet? No problem. Make your own in a corner of a room — hang a clothes rack under a wall-mounted shelf. You can easily store other closet essentials on the shelves above.
12. Dedicate a bedroom nook to shoe storage
Simply install several tension rods in a narrow nook of your bedroom to help you store shoes. Don’t limit yourself to shoes, though — this is a perfect spot for anything that can easily be hanged. As you can see, tension rods are not just a curtain’s best friend.
13. Install a personalized pegboard organizer on the wall
A pegboard can be a beautiful addition to your bedroom. You can paint one and install it either close to your bed or anywhere else that suits you. There are many hooks and baskets made for this storage system. Store your essentials here, but remember to pepper them with décor for a touch of style — small framed photographs could easily find their home on the pegboard organizer.
14. Mount your jewelry and makeup on the wall
Jewelry and makeup need their special spot in your home. Larger spaces are not ideal for these items, so you need a smaller perimeter to contain them. Mount a corkboard on the wall and keep all the pretty necklaces and earrings there. Outfit the board with a gilded frame to give it an elegant look. For your makeup, install a small magnetic board and add small magnets to your makeup containers so they can be stored vertically.
15. Park a storage bench by the window
Book lovers would benefit from a window seat with a storage bench. While this gives you the perfect spot to peruse the pages of those unread novels under natural light, you also get the benefit of added storage. You can have your own mini-library literally at your feet.
16. Add a sliding pantry in the kitchen
If your apartment doesn’t come with a pantry or you simply exhausted your existing pantry space, install a sliding pantry between the fridge and the wall. This is a great storage solution that allows all your canned goods and spices to sit neatly and be easily retrieved when needed.
17. Get your cleaning supplies all chic-ed up
Keep your cleaning supplies organized and out of sight with a simple wall mount that can either go inside a slim cubby in your kitchen or hallway. Alternatively, you can let them shine on display if you install the mount on a wall. They’d still be organized and have their own place.
18. Invite nature in with a planter
You might not have enough room for plants, but would you still like to cultivate your love of living things? A wall planter might be the ideal solution to bring a small sample of nature into your kitchen. You can go out shopping for your favorite herbs now!
19. Install a shelf above the bathroom door
This is a spot that gets less use, but you can turn it into a nifty storage spot. Keep your towels and bathroom linens here. Get a bathroom stool if it feels they are a little out of reach. It’s worth it to have this storage hack to clear off the floor space and have a spot for some of your essentials.
20. Double up the medicine cabinet space
If you need extra space for your medicine cabinet —whether it’s for your significant other or your roommate, add another one next to the existing one. You’ll have extra room for your toiletries and bathroom essentials that can’t be stored anywhere else.
Did our suggestions help you use your apartment for better storing your household items? Let us know in the comments section below.