Thursday, 2 April 2015

Teeny Tiny Closet Hacks! - Use That Space Till It Squeaks!

Hi Honeys
I'm sorry I've been away for a few days, I've been purging & organizing and I'm now exhausted but so, so happy :) I can't wait to share what I've been doing with you, with the help, as always, of my dear sweet Hubby (thank you sweetheart x)  Do you remember my closet adventures? You can read about it here & how I've stored my handbags here

Having settled on a far smaller closet than the originally intended two door closet in the guest room, we set out to turn this tiny space into the TARDIS of closets, and we're not done yet! Wanna see what we've done this week and why I'm grinning like the Cheshire cat?

Teeny Tiny Closet Hacks - Use that space till it squeaks!

Organizing clothes, like anything else, is only fun when you aren't feeling completely swamped.  So before I could get to the fun part of organizing my teeny tiny closet, I had to purge.  That was so not fun :(  However, I'd like to say I am beyond thankful that I had managed to acquire enough to feel swamped in the first place. I know how lucky I am, in the world we find ourselves in and every day I start my day by taking a minute to be grateful for what we have.  It took a lot, really a lot, of years to accumulate them and it took me a full day to whittle my clothes down to the point where I .....

1. ONLY kept what I can actually wear. That's now, not some point in the future when I'll magically become the same dress size I was in College.  You know what honeys, I've discovered I'm ok with that :) I like to think I'm a nice person. I have a wonderful Husband who loves me far too much and his opinion is the only one that really matters :)

2. ONLY kept what I can look in the mirror and feel happy seeing myself in. For example, I am overly conscious of the necklines of clothes. I developed early and, well,  you know Dumbo sneezed and his ears shot out? yep, kinda like that & I haven't seen my feet properly since! 

In my next life I hope to have collected enough good karma to have a teeny tiny bust and be able to wear pretty strappy dresses & tops without constantly tugging them up and feeling far too "exposed."  For this life though, the girls stay covered! Often though, you'll see a lovely top or dress and when you get it home, well what looked great in the shop just screams 1970s TV barmaid at home! I found a couple of tops just like this and into the donate bag they went.

Having accomplished the tough bit, I then got to the fun part :) Everything else was to be kept in the teeny closet, other than underwear, Pyjamas & nighties, and t shirts which already have designated drawers.  Hubby & I are both lifelong geeks and our t shirt collections from movies & TV alone is shocking, not to mention tour shirts from over the years.  These are precious to us, in a very silly way. 

They are tangible connections to so many happy memories :) They also have their own very special storage to keep them safe from harm ( and moths). I'll share about this storage in a future post honeys, promise x  

So, back to the teeny tiny closet that could :) The first place I looked to for extra storage wasn't actually inside the cupboard/closet at all :) There is a pin I keep seeing every now & again showing towels being stored above a bathroom door, and I thought how clever! Do you remember the shelves we used in our kitchen honeys? we still had two of them, bought while they were on sale a while ago.

One of the shelves is black wood and we used this to tie in with our bed, which has a black wrought iron frame.  With the shelf in place, I decided to use this to store some of my treasures.  Things I don't need to access often but do want to be kept safe. Not valuable things then, to anyone except me.  

There is a pebble from a beach on the Ayrshire Coast from a lovely visit so many years ago, and lots of other little things that have traveled with me through the years :)  I already had these little sets of boxes in another room and I think they look so sweet up on the shelf.   

Shelf fitted above the closet door is used for pretty storage boxes which contain personal treasures and memories as well as a much loved handbag.

In between the two sets of boxes is a handbag I've had for so many years, I adore it, it's just so cute and makes me smile so I thought it was too pretty to live inside a closet :) So, next we open the closet and this is when the storage solutions (or at least one of them) get really clever :)

Originally the closet had one hanging bar and a fixed shelf.  When Hubby stripped and decorated this tiny closet he fitted a replacement hanging rail from Ikea and left the original shelf in place.  Then he did this.......

An additional shelf is fitted inside the closet above the original shelf and is used to store shoes in boxes.

You know just looking at that photo made me smile :) I've also noticed that a little paint is needed where the new hanging rail has been fitted! The things you notice when looking at photos :) <makes a mental note to fix>  oh well :)

So, back to the upper part of the inside of the closet :) Let's have a closer look at what Hubby did.......

Two clever shelves (one directly behind the clothes rail) make use of every bit of space in the tiny closet.

The first thing he did was to add a new upper shelf above the original closet shelf. It made sense to use the extra space provided by the very high ceiling inside the cupboard/closet.  This shelf is the same as the shelf above the door, in white wood, and is being used to store shoes in boxes.

With the exception of the shoes I use for work, which are used most often and so are stored in shoe cabinets in our little mudroom, my other shoes & boots are all stored in these clear plastic boxes from Home Bargains. The ones on this upper shelf are winter shoes & boots, and I'll switch them around as needed.

On the lower (original) shelf are more shoes :) Below this shelf is where the storage gets really clever and really useful :) Let's have a look...... 

A narrower shelf is placed directly behind the clothes rail in the tiny closet giving valuable extra storage for items such as hair accessories or jewellery.

On the wall behind the hanging rail, hubby fitted a narrow pine shelf.  This shelf used to sit above the radiator in our kitchen. Have you seen these radiator shelves honeys? They are narrower than is usual for shelves and are used (by us anyway) as a place to display family photos etc. 

The shelf doesn't intrude too much into the closet itself, it stops just short of the hanging rail and so doesn't interfere with adding or removing hangers. It is however a fabulous extra storage place and is just ideal for those additional things that don't automatically have a designated space.  I'll show you how I've used this wonderful little bonus shelf......

"Secret" shelf which sits directly behind the clothes rail is the perfect home to frequently used smaller items.

First is a clear acrylic storage box I've used to store all of my hair stuff such as clips, Alice bands, grips etc.  All there, in one place yaaaaaay :) No more rummaging through bags looking for that one clip that looks good with that certain blouse etc :)

Next to the box of hair things is a pink zipped bag which is home to my ankle socks, those trainer liner socks you wear that only cover your foot and aren't long enough to go up your leg? My legs swell and these have been a godsend at times because longer socks tend to mark my legs when they swell. It's not fun being a "spoonie" but there are ways to cope, this is one of mine honeys.  It also has a few pairs of "footsies" those little nylon sock types things to wear with shoes when you don't want to wear tights or stockings.

Underneath the pink bag is a blue travel pouch containing my TENS machine.  A TENS machine is used to interrupt pain signals, or rather to confuse the brain a little in order to reduce the effects of pain. The machine causes minor electrical impulses, a little like tiny shocks, and the brain tries to deal with these, distracting it from the greater pain elsewhere.  I use mine to help cope with the osteoarthritis in the base of my spine.

I got my machine through the arthritis clinic I attend at our local hospital.  They let me borrow one for a week or so and after that I was allowed to buy my own machine through them.  This was some time ago now and opinion on these machines seems split but it's certainly helped me at times. If you're curious about them, you should talk to your Physiotherapist, Doctor or health professional who can advise if it's appropriate for you.

Next on this tiny accessory shelf is a little glass jewellery box, inside are my favourite sparkles :) Just costume jewellery but they make me smile and now that they're sitting in my new closet I might actually wear them more often :)

I'm so happy with this extra little shelf, it's so useful and that space behind the hanging rail really is wasted space. Now it's incredibly useful, I can't believe I've gotten by all these years without it and every closet should have one :)

In the lower part of the closet I've added a chest of four plastic drawers. Since I'd moved my shoes back into boxes and up onto the shelves, this left the floor of the closet empty. Perfect for a little extra storage! These drawers are great and have sorted things like bed socks.... I do own a lot of socks... all with different purposes :) These ones are warm fluffy bed socks for cold chilly nights. I get up two or three times during the night and in winter these keep my wee toes warm :)

In this same drawer I've stored my slipperettes, those little pull on woolly version of footsies. They have little non slip treads on the bottom and the cotton versions are ideal when going to the swimming baths, since it helps prevent slipping, even in the pool.

I've also used one drawer to store my leggings & yoga pants, the most comfortable clothing item in the world and great for loafing about the house in or doing housework :) I'm loving these little drawers. Such a simple way to organize and sort things.  

A small chest of plastic storage drawers under the clothes rail sorts items such as socks and yoga pants.

I said at the beginning of this post that there is still work to be done on this tiny closet and there so is :) I still have plans for the inner door.  I did say I was going to use up all the space till it squeaked :)

Do you remember I'd added two hooks already to the inner door honeys? I used them to store my pashminas, which are stored on a multiple level hanger (you can see how I organized them here honeys) and also the jewellery storage dress, as you can see in this photo......

Hooks fitted to the inside of the closet door are home to pashmina scarves organized onto their multi level hanger and a "dress" shaped hanging jewellery organizer.

The storage dress has had more added to it (love those clear pockets!) and has been moved onto the hanging rail because of it's weight.  I've replaced it (for now) with my reindeer wrap. I love this soft snuggly wrap around :)

The jewellery pocket storage unit became too heavy to live on the inner door and was moved to the clothes rail to be replaced by a warm wrap for reading on cold nights.

I use it on cold nights when I can't sleep, while I'm sitting in bed reading or surfing (the web) on my tablet, it's fab to wrap around my shoulders and keeps me warm, Jade loves the pom pom nose too :) I've said before you'll find reindeer all around our home on anything from coffee mugs to a chrome deer head on the wall of our new craft room :) If you haven't read it already, I explain why here :) 

We have a large cream cotton pocket storage item I'm going to add to this inner door, I'll share photos when it's done honeys :) Phew! This has been a long post! I'll quit waffling for now :) Any thoughts anyone? Does anyone else have a little accessory shelf in their closet? I'd love to see how you've organized your closet, if you'd like to share, do leave a link below.

Well dear ones, I have to go get organized for work tomorrow, till next time, have a wonderful Easter weekend, eat lots of chocolate eggs & have heaps of fun, hugs always xx


  1. I just LOVE all the things you do to your house. One day, if we get a place of our own (not rented) I hope to persuade hubby to do similar things. That shelf above the door is bloody GENIUS! It reminds me of my friends in Sweden, because they use high level shelving like that a lot in Sweden. xx

    1. Aww bless you Leah for being so sweet I saw the shelf above the door idea on Pinterest except it was in a bathroom, it's been great so far. I adore Sweden & all things Swedish! I'm completely obsessed by Nordic TV in general and Krister Henriksson's Wallander in particular. Thank you so much for visiting Leah, you're an angel and always make me smile, sending heaps of huggles honey xxx