Planning My Dream Closet

My husband will tell you that one of my biggest complaints about our current apartment is the closets. Here’s a running list of the things I do not like:

1. The doors. The doors are those awful sliding kinds that slide over each other, so you can never at one time see everything in the closet. Plus, they get stuck on things and we can’t both get to our sides at the same time, which interrupts the “getting ready” process.

2. The hanging bars are too low. Which means there is a lot of wasted space at the top of the otherwise large closet and clothes hang too far down, so anything on the floor is obstructed.

3. The shelves don’t make sense. I like the idea of built-in shelving in a closet, but the current arrangement is too small and shallow for us to make use of it. I’d like to put drawers in the shelves for the hubs to store undershirts and things, but all of the drawers I’ve found that have enough room extend out past the shelf too far, so they wobble around and make the whole thing look like a big ol’ mess.

But because we signed a new 1-year lease yesterday, I’m just going to have to live with it for another 12 months.

I have a few plans for upgrading what we have (without investing too much time or money…it is only a rental, after all), but because I like to shoot for the stars, I decided to first come up with what I would do if I could completely makeover the closets. Here’s what I came up with.

For the hall closet:

1. First things first, those sliding doors have to go. They make zero sense logistically, and, well, I hate them. So, away with thee! I would replace them with normal swinging doors. You can open them to see everything inside, and then discretely close them to hide any messes that might crop up within. Not that this dream closet would ever get messy. It’s also magic.

2. Next, raising the bar. Literally. And figuratively. Anyway. I would move the top shelf up about five inches. On this higher shelf, we would store the stuff we don’t need to get to every day or anything out of season. (Gloves, hats, scarves would be neatly contained in matching, labeled boxes that also never get cluttered.)

3. With the higher shelf would also go the higher hanging bar. We hang most of our longer clothes (okay, most of my longer clothes) like dresses and jerseys here, and now we would actually be able to see anything stored on the floor.

4. Speaking of which, let’s talk shoe storage. I’d like to have two built-in shelves across most of the floor. With our current sliding door system, we can’t have shelves wider than half the closet, but this new system would allow us shelves that span at least 3/4 of the way across. AKA, more room for shoes! Yay!

5. Built-in drawers. Not only are they more aesthetically pleasing than the cheap-o plastic bins I bought at Target, they would also fit the space perfectly and give the hubs a place to store undershirts, socks, underwear, or whatever his little heart desires.

6. And finally, I would upgrade our current shelves to match the other built-ins. I would also extend them out to the doors so we can actually fit more than two towels on each. This closet doubles as a sort of linen closet/storage closet, so anything extra could be kept here in boxes or bins as well.

Isn’t it pretty? (And don’t you love how everything stored in our new closet also matches? This is how we live our lives when we have the perfect closets.)

Next, the bedroom closet.

This closet drives me crazy because it’s SO big, but the space is impossible to utilize because of the way it’s constructed. Here is what I would change.

1. Again, the sliding doors HAVE TO GO. It is my dream that one day Joey will be able to get a shirt out of his side while I’m getting shoes out of my side. AT THE SAME TIME. I dream big. Plus, when the doors swing out, you can take advantage of that space with hooks and baskets installed to the inside of the doors. FOR MORE STORAGE.

2. Again, moving up the hanging bar and the top shelf would make this a great place to store out-of-season items or anything we don’t need regularly, like crafting and sewing supplies.

3. The higher hanging bar means we can actually keep stuff on the middle shelf without it getting knocked around by shirts and sweaters.

4. If I’m truly dreaming, I would change the structure of this closet so the hanging bars/shelves only extend about 85 percent of the way across the closet. Then I would put one tall storage space on the side to keep guitar cases and hockey sticks. This would free up space in the front closet. (Have I mentioned that I would also change the front closet?)

5. And finally, raising the middle shelf/hanging bar would give us room to keep shoes and other boxes of things on the floor and actually be able to see them.

So there you have it. Much dreamier, right? Hopefully in the next couple of months, I’ll be able to at least modify what we have to be closer to what I would like. Honestly, even just changing the doors would make such a difference. (HAVE I MENTIONED HOW MUCH I HATE THE SLIDING DOORS?)

Alas, such is the life of a renter.

Anyone else battling renter woes? Have a project you would love to tackle, but just can’t? Or have any closet storage tips to pass along? Share in the comments!

3 thoughts on “Planning My Dream Closet

  1. My favorite part, “is too small and shallow ”

    I felt like your shelves were snotty and made superficial assumptions.

    Also, my mom loves reading your blog, because you guys are the same. She worked at the Container Store one holiday season just to re-do all the closets.

    • Haha, my shelves ARE snotty.

      And I’m glad you mom enjoys my obsessions as well 🙂

  2. This is too funny because I just posted about our master closets today! Since we were able to just create our master closets, I wouldn’t change much, but I’d totally alter EVERY other closet space in our house!

    Great ideas to switch things up! I’m praying that you can make your closets more workable for the next year! 🙂

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