by Paul Sanders
In nearly every household, closet space is at a premium. If you're tired of cramming your clothes into a tiny space, try maximizing your available space with storage racks, shelves, closet organizers and other closet storage systems. Whenever you set about reorganizing a closet and implementing storage solutions, you may want to avoid some common pitfalls and take advantage of opportunities. Here are some storage and organization tips to help maximize your closet space.
Measure twice, hang once. Whenever you're installing storage racks or shelves, double checking your measurements is a great idea. You don't want to get halfway through your installation only to find that your storage racks do not fit properly or that they are not functional once inside the closet.
Leave clearance between racks. Leave some vertical space between different kinds of storage racks. For example, with a hanger rod, leave 6 inches between the rod and the bottom of the clothing on the rack above. Spacing like this makes everything easily accessible and keeps your closet open.
Keep walkways clear. Placing storage racks too close to the closet door or installing racks that are too deep can create an obstacle to accessing parts of the closet. Define a clear pathway in your initial design and select storage racks that will leave that walkway clear. Double check the functionality by cutting the shape for your racks out of cardboard and using them to make sure doors can still open and shut after you install the racks.
Use vertical space. The spacious top shelf in your closet is the ideal place for additional storage racks. Storage racks are much safer than piles of precariously stacked boxes, and they look more organized as well.
Leave the floor clear. It's best to keep the floor clear of clothes, shoes and loose boxes. Make use of floor space under existing storage racks by placing shoe racks or other organizers under them. You can also use over-the-door organizers to keep shoes off the floor.
Move some items to long-term storage. Even with new storage racks, your closet may feel overstuffed. Consider moving off-season clothing into long-term storage. Also, this may be a great opportunity to consider whether certain items belong in that particular closet or can be moved elsewhere.