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The Common Reach-In Closet: Can it still Sparkle?

 

Going Vertical Just One Way To Maximize Space

We’ve probably all tried to live with our closets having just a single hanging rod and a shelf above. Most people don’t need a whole closet of long-hanging space, so the area below the hanging clothes ends up full of boxes and bins of stuff that won’t fit elsewhere. The depth is limited and the ceiling height can be high. People hope they can fit bulky items on the top shelf, but with only a narrow space between it and the doorway, they just don’t fit. So, how do you find a way to work with the reach-in closet? Please try these expert tips. We’re certain you’ll have a happier relationship with your space, and find some beautiful sparkle too.
Couples Reach In Closet Space

This reach-in closet is a collaboration with Wendy Interiors. Photo credit: Peter Braune

Use Principal of Verticality

This is the cure for the single rod-and-shelf conundrum. Add a storage system that includes double-hanging rods or shelves above half-hanging. Most clothing fits within half-hanging, and you’ll double your storage space. If you’re using a reach-in closet for off-season storage, consider setting it up with double hanging, long hanging and shelves for sweaters (so they don’t stretch out on hangers).

Drawer placement essential

If you want drawers, pull-out baskets or a hamper, they must be in the center of the swinging doors. This is necessary so the drawers can be opened easily, and so you can reach beyond them into the corners of the reach-in closet. And if there’s only a pair of sliding doors, that’s more limiting. You can have small pull-outs, but be very careful when measuring to make sure they’ll work in the open door opening.

Shelves keep It harmonious

Adding some shelves keeps the whole closet neater. It’s room for shoes, folded clothes, hats and scarves. With a custom-built closet system, the shelves are adjustable to adapt to the changing needs of your family. Ask your contractor to miter back the top shelf, to make it a narrower dimension. This provides a little more space for bulky items to fit through.

Reach in Closet, Brown Cabinets, Closet Storage, Custom shelving

Children’s closets with adjustable features

Ask about having an extra closet rod to add in when your child needs larger sized clothes. With a custom closet system, the adjustable shelves can be removed, transforming a shelving unit into half-hanging, with a little planning ahead. Toy closets are usually reach-in closets as well. Just work with your contractor to make sure the storage system will accommodate the size and weight of the toys. And consider leaving space below the bottom shelves to roll in children’s toy cars and toy carriages. Above all, your space should work for you. A house full of reach-in closets can provide great storage for your family, as long as it’s designed to fulfill your particular needs. A reach-in closet can be beautiful as well as functional, just use some of the tips and you’ll see.

5 Great Garage Storage Tips

Custom garage storage, ski storage options

Custom Garage with Slat Wall, Hooks and Weather-Resistant Cabinets

The garage is a wonderful multi-purpose space in the home.  It can be used for so much more than storing your car in theory, but in reality, many of us can only dream of storing the car in the garage…

Let’s start with organization—so we can finish with the fun stuff: More Space!

(1) On a nice sunny spring morning, start working in zones by season.

  • Place the winter equipment in one corner (shovels, snow blower, salt)
  • Move the spring planting gear to another corner.
  • Summer items, including furniture, cushions, pool gear, beach gear can go into a corner or on the driveway for now.
  • Fall tools, rakes, mulch, covers go in the final corner.
  • Miscellaneous items—can go on the driveway for now.
  • From now on, when you put things away, they go into their zone.

(2) Sort with the goal of getting rid of things—plan to fill up your curb or call a junk removal company.

  • Anything that’s broken, torn, rusted or “might be useful someday” gets thrown away.
  • Anything that’s ugly (yes, it’s still ugly) or never worked well (rickety ladder, collapsible lawn chair) can be given away or thrown away.
  • The goal is to purge the old stuff—to make space for your new more useful garage space.

(3) Dream a little—what’s missing that you’d love to have?

  • A Kid’s Activity Center: the whole family could work on projects in the garage.
  • A “Mudroom” Area: A designated area to store coats and jackets, muddy boots, and dog leashes.
  • A Workbench: A place for the home projects to live.
  • Parking Space
  • An Entertainment Refrigerator

(4) Think it through, and decide what will fit in the garage with a little organization.

  • Garage Storage Systems have two goals: (1) to get your stuff off the floor into cabinets, onto shelves, or in a loft; and (2) to get your stuff off the floor to hang on installed slat wall.
  • Slat wall systems can take care of everything from skis to golf bags, sports equipment, ladders and shovels, beach chairs and umbrellas, poles and posts, the list goes on….
  • Smaller items are stashed on shelving, freeing up floor space and counter space.

(5)  You can have the space you always wanted in your garage…for the stuff you actually want to keep. With proper sorting and a great storage system, you’ll find floor space for your car, your kids, and maybe even for a Mudroom, Workbench, or Kid’s Activity Center.