• Smart Storage Ideas for Smaller Spaces

    Modern housing seems to be getting smaller, but our need for storage doesn’t change. Whether you live in a tiny flat or have a bit more room to spread out in, the day will come when you feel like there’s nowhere to put anything.

    If that day is upon you, one or two of these ideas might work to help you free up some space.

    Vertical Storage

    You can never have too many shelves. Novel and inventive shelving solutions these days mean you can fit some in even the smallest of crannies around the house.

    The obvious areas are along walls and in alcoves but there are other places too. When considering vertical areas, include the sides of cupboards or cabinets, inside your wardrobe or on the backs of doors. You can also get over door storage systems with shelved box containers to make the most of that useful storage area.

    As well as traditional shelving attached to walls, look for cubby designs that you can either hang or stack on the floor. There are even octagonal ones that look great painted in bright colours for children’s rooms. Alternatively, maybe free-standing ladder type shelves would suit your decor. There are different designs to suit most rooms, from towel rails for the bathroom to narrow bedside shelving.

    If all else fails, consider a shelf above a door. They’re useful in all rooms, and if you wanted to expand the idea you could create a faux recessed doorway that looks like a library room.

    Organise Your Space

    Most of us tend to keep everything we own at home, either in use or stashed in the garage, shed or loft. It’s all very well, until you realise all your spare space is taken up with things you don’t use often, and there’s nowhere for the stuff you use every day.

    A better way is to be choosier about what shares your living space, and one way of doing that is through a storage unit hire. With self storage, you can clear all the seasonal stuff out of the house, leaving behind just what you’ll use for the coming months. As the seasons change, swap things around, refreshing your possessions and decor according to the time of year.

    Everything is fair game with this system, including bigger kitchen items with a seasonal use such as ice cream makers, or kitchen equipment you go through fads with. Clothes especially, are things that accumulate almost behind your back, so putting all the winter clothing into storage clears acres of room in the wardrobe.

    It’s useful too if you want to save good baby things for the next addition to the family. Saving cots, buggies, or prams, changing mats, even sterilising equipment and good clothes can save a small fortune when they’re next needed. You never know when you’ll need long term storage for life-changes. 

    Hard-Working Furnishings

    When space is tight, everything needs to work twice as hard to earn its keep. So, choose furniture that helps with home storage, such as tables with drawers, storage footstools or ottomans and chests. 

    While those are great in the living room for hiding all sorts of small things in regular use, up in the bedroom storage beds can help control clutter too. Divans and ottoman styles provide lots of space either for spare linens or bigger playthings in kids’ rooms.

    If your kids are the right age, maybe swap out their floor-standing bed for a raised version. Fitting in either a desk, play area or wardrobe underneath the sleeping platform leaves more floor space for other things. Little children might appreciate space in the bedroom to jump around in, whereas an older child might like to have their own small sofa when they want some privacy or quiet time alone.

    If you’re swapping out items of furniture so things work better at home, the good items you’re replacing are also candidates for your self storage room. Situations are always changing, and it’s nice to know you’ve got good items in store when they’re needed again.

    Keep Your Surfaces Clear

    It’s amazing how much more spacious and relaxing a room feels when the surfaces are clear.

    If it’s on ongoing battle to keep surfaces looking neat and tidy, consider having a few decorative tubs or baskets around to catch all the little things that are normally just dropped. Spend a couple of days just observing how objects pile up on a surface, then consider how to tackle it.

    It could be hats and scarves dropped on the counter in winter, keys thrown down anywhere when someone comes in, junk or other mail piling up in the hallway… there are hundreds of objects we pick up and put down every day. Having a little basket or dish, or a well-placed hook or two might help encourage your household to keep their possessions in order. 

    It takes cooperation, so you might need to do a bit of gentle cajoling at first. It’s worth it though. Sorting out storage really can help create more spacious-feeling homes.


    Lifestyle Blogger based in Devon.
    I like to write, drink tea and read great books.

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