I get a lot of storage related questions in my email, at least one a week and they are usually along the lines of “how can I store X without shoving it in a drawer?”. So this post is majorly overdue and I feel quite guilty in letting it drag out this long but I have been trying to think of a way to do this as well.

I’m always a little wary of how much I share on the internet because my house is a very personal place, only my absolute best friends have ever visited and even then I invite people over sparingly because I like my privacy very much.

The way my apartment is set up I have very limited storage space so every little bit has to count. In the bedroom we have a large mirrored built in wardrobe but even though there is lot os space it’s 50% useless because one of the door opens to a wall which hides the water heater and another of the doors opens to a hanging space which isn’t wide enough to actually hold coathangers -_-‘ I swear whoever designed this apartment had never actually lived inside an apartment.

So once all of that is blacked out, my wardrobe space is effectively reduced to this:

Storage Ideas

The storage here has been a work in progress ever since we moved in as I experimented with the space and found out what worked and what didn’t. Today I’ll show you what worked and what didn’t in this space and if you guys like this post I might do something similar with other areas in the apartment.So here’s a quick run down of the above:

  • On the left you can see where I hang my clothes, shirts/skirts up the top and dresses/jackets down the bottom.
  • Below that is where I was keeping my books stored on a shallow shelf, that wasn’t working because I needed to get them out quite often so I moved them to the shelf at the very top of the cupboard which until then was holding random junk I hadn’t found a place for yet…
  • Which brings us to the top shelf holding random junk I hadn’t found a place for yet! Most of the stuff up there were bits and pieces left over from when we moved in. Since this photo I have cleared it out, replaced it with my books and boxes of keepsakes we can’t seem to get rid of.
  • Under that we have a set of 3 shelves. I will go into detail about each shelf below but one thing to note is that I have attached stick on hooks to the sides to hold scarves and hats. I no longer keep the hats in this area because I now have too many but this is a really good way to display them if you’ve only got a couple!
  • Lastly under the shelves there are 4 sets of drawers holding important things like stockings, pajamas/roomwear and unmentionables. ‘Nuff said ^_^

Below you can see a closer picture of the three shelves.

Storage Ideas

So let’s go through shelf by shelf and have a look 😀

The bottom shelf holds most of my jewellery. Other than a few prized pieces most of this has been sourced from junk stores but even though it’s not expensive it’s all very pretty so I want it displayed. Also I tend to be forgetful so if it’s not displayed to remind me I’ll never wear them XD

The main storage points to note here are:

  • Silver tray to hold bracelets and wrist items
  • Homemade stands to display necklaces
  • Shelving at the back to hold neck ties, gloves, socks and stockings

With shelves that are quite deep like these the best way to get the most out of your storage is to add levels. If you just pile stuff in then you will have wasted the whole top half! I took advantage of the space by having the tray down low, the necklaces midway and the shelves right up to the top. The shelves are made up of the cute round box that my favorite tea set came in, similar the box at the back of this picture.

The shelves are the most packed area and as they are quite shallow they are perfect for holding (and displaying at a glance) things like stockings, gloves and scarves. I keep the things I use the most (scarves and handkerchiefs) in the middle because it’s the most accessible area. The stockings and socks I keep here are generally the ones I don’t use very often but are still pretty enough to be on display. It’s kind of annoying to get things out of those areas so I keep my every day stockings in the drawers below.

Storage Ideas

At the bottom of this shelf is a silver serving tray I picked up a thrift store for 20c. This area is the key to my jewellery storage because if I’m in a hurry it becomes a dumping ground but still looks relatively nice. I keep bangles, bracelets and watches here because they can be easily picked out when getting dressed and are still displayed very nicely. When you have a lot of similar colours and elements like pearls and diamantes stuff looks pretty even when it’s all in a big messy pile. In fact I’m sure if I took a close up picture and stuck a vintage filter someone would call it art ;P

Storage Ideas

Now moving up to the second shelf!

This area basically holds pretty things and trinkets that are too nice to be shoved in a box but also not particularly useful and therefore not going to be touched on a day to day basis.

Again here I’ve created levels to utilise all of the available space. Up the back are my Japanese magazines, next to them is a lovely box my tea set came in which is full of small toys and trinkets. That is used as a shelf for one of my hats which has other smaller accessories that I never use but don’t want to throw away inside it. In the front half of the shelf from left to right are:

  • A collection of small toys including my absolute favorite Sylvanian Families in a picnic setting.
  • Trinkets including a broken but adorable clock, collection of oversized diamantes and a ship in a bottle that my Grandfather made.
  • A velvet necklace display holding my nicer necklaces, behind which is space for small accessories like a pink bow belt.

Storage Ideas

Now the very top shelf is fairly self explanatory… bags… lots of bags.

I don’t have a huge number of bags compared to a lot of girls but storage for them is still important. Unlike a lot of girls I also don’t change my handbag very often, I really only go between two depending on how much stuff I need to take. The two that I use regularly live on my dresser while these are all of the left over ones that I bought thinking I would use but never actually do >_<

When we lived in our previous house I had one of those bag hanger things that is like a strip of fabric that hangs off a hook with various clips (sorry couldn’t find a photo of one) but it was so bulky and awkward that I ditched it here in favor of the shelves.

The largest bags get filled with either smaller bags or my traveling gear (like luggage tags, travel wallet etc) because that’s pretty much the only time they get busted out hahaha! It also helps the floppier bags to stand rigid and be stacked like books. Smaller bags like the fluffy bunny one get stacked on top of the big ones  so it’s like a solid cube of bags 😀

Storage Ideas

So I guess that concludes the first storage area in my house! Hopefully this post was useful and answers a bunch of questions and requests, if not feel free to leave them in the comments. Or tell me your favorite storage tips for living in a small apartment, I would love that too!

Writing this post was actually a lot more fun than I was expecting so if you would like me to turn it into a series just let me know ^_^