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Posted by on Nov 11, 2011 | 2 comments

Let’s Get Organized! Creative Storage for Small Spaces

Let’s Get Organized! Creative Storage for Small Spaces

Undoubtedly, the subject comes up in all of my conversations with folks from the Del Ray area — I can’t get organized because I don’t have STORAGE!  Well my friends, I’m here to report that we have options!

We have had the great opportunity to tour many houses in the Del Ray area and have gone through our own houses to offer you some easy solutions for organization and storage.  So sit back, take notes and apply:


What to do with all of your books (because we’re all smart, we have so many). This is a built-in bookshelf in the entryway, jammed with books, DVDs, and CDs. A great use of space.

built-in bookcase

Why not color-code your books while you’re at it and make it a piece of art?

color-coded books

We’ve seen this idea fulfilled in two home tours, the perfect book shelf for small homes. In one, the homeowner took out the upper railing and installed a bookshelf with a new railing. In the other, the stairway has become a bookshelf on both sides. Ingenious!

Built-in bookcase stairs    IMG_6588


What to do with all the kids’ stuff.  This is the number one complaint I hear.  My motto is hide, hide, hide. Or else neatly organize into baskets dedicated to one type of toy, like the musical instruments shown here, the tried and true toy basket.


I even have a covered basket of toys that I keep upstairs in our “formal” living room where it’s hidden from visitors but convenient for the kids when I’m making dinner.


These fun storage bins, keeping toys under control, are from a post we did on a creative playroom remodel.


What a great idea to use this small wooden box with drawers from IKEA  to organize small play things.


This is my toy closet mecca. We were lucky enough to move into our house with this amazing closet in the unfinished basement (weird I know). When we finished our basement and made it a rec room, I turned this closet into the toy closet with doors we can close to hide everything. I used storage bins, totes, hanging sweater holders and a clothes hanger to organize my boys’ books, toys, dvds, art supplies, puzzles, and dress up clothes. It has been a Godsend for me and my – I don’t want people to think my house has been taken over by monster trucks – OCD complex.



Take advantage of the basement stairwell by hanging pots and pans on the stairwell wall.


Still my favorite utilization of space for wine in our kitchens.


Take advantage of small usually unused spaces in your kitchen (mine is between my fridge and wall) by constructing simple build-ins for spices or, once again, wine!

Built-in wine rack


Here’s another example of making normally unused wall space in our small kitchens into usable storage.


Shelves purchased from IKEA are an easy way to add extra shelf space to your kitchen and dining area.

RIBBA Shelves in Kitchen

There are even solutions to utilize ALL the space in cabinets. I got these space savers at The Container Store for a song and look how much I can fit in my cabinet now! I’ve also used for linen cloesets and under the sink storage as well.


Don’t forget about corner cabinets and shelving. They nestle into corners rarely used otherwise and add ample amounts of storage for cookbooks and dishes.



Where did all my closet space go? We all need more closet space but chances are we just have to use what we’ve got. Here are some clever ways to use multi-purpose furniture to add more storage.

DIY mudroom to store all sports things and rain gear that you don’t use on a regular basis.


Don’t forget about using the space under your bed to add rollaway storage carts or rubbermaid bins.

Custom-built king-size bed

These days its so easy to find cheap closet solutions and install them yourself. This is the perfect way to utilize a corner in your utility room by your washer and dryer. You can get the racks cut to size at Home Depot.


This storage bench is a great way to corral the smallest of the children’s shoes, keep them close to the door, and offer extra seating at the same time. No one has to know what’s under their bum.


This go-to storage bench serves so many purposes. Fun place to curl up and read a book on a rainy afternoon, extra seating in the dining area and AMPLE space to store linens, blankets, or whatever else you just can’t find a place for.

built-in storage bench

We hope these ideas have inspired the creativity that we know you have.  Take a look around  your house and see how you can use wall space, corners, awkward space gaps, space underneath beds or couches or just reorganize your current closets and cabinets to fit more in.

Posted by Sara


  1. Where did you get the tall wine rack? I am thinking of doing the exact same thing!

    • When the homeowner had the kitchen remodeled her contractor put that in to make up for a miscalculation. I believe it was a custom job. In this kitchen the owners added a wine rack to their base cabinets — I think this is a standard cabinet type.

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