Coat closets tend to be treated as a functional space, that holds coats, boots, and accessories both in the season as well as out. This makes them prime real estate for clutter and disorganization. Suddenly that coat you put away in September is nearly impossible to find in March.
Fortunately, with a little creativity and perhaps a bit of elbow grease, coat closets can be a very forgiving space. The key is to infuse whatever upgrades or updates you choose with effective storage solutions that meet your needs through all four distinct seasons.
In this article, we will explore some of the more effective, and often simple ways to help get your coat closet organized and then keep it organized.
Install Cubbies For Storage & Family Members
Cubbies have evolved since the kindergarten days of storing your backpack and lunchbox to become a functional modern storage solution. They tend to be very easy to assemble yourself, or they are sold in a lot of hardware stores as adjustable kits.
If you have the available space in your mudroom or entry way, you might want to try assigning each family member their own cubby space to keep their items separate. Then you can dedicate a few other cubbies toward the back of the coat closet for long-term seasonal storage. This makes it easier to keep out-of-season items out of the daily rotation, yet make it easy for you to find them later when the seasons start to change back again.
Strategically Implement Wire Baskets
Wire baskets are enjoying a vigorous renaissance in coat closets and a lot of other home spaces. They allow for a lot more airflow, which can be handy in winter and spring for drying out lightly damp mittens and scarves.
You can also mount wire baskets on runners to make them act like a pull-out drawer. They can then be installed under a shelf to make more efficient use of the vertical space under solid shelves.
Install Baskets Or Pouches Behind The Coat Closet Door
The backside of the coat closet door is one of those places that often go ignored. Though with a little bit of work it can be turned into a great place to store footwear as well as simple loose items. Pouches and shallow wire shelves only take up a few inches behind the door. You can then keep shoes, boots, and other quick-access things for times when you want to make a quick change.
There are even some versions that hang over the upper door by thin metal brackets, so you don’t have to permanently alter the door itself. They are a great option for apartments and rental townhomes where you don’t want to alter the status of your deposit just to store some shoes.
Add Shelves With Dividers Above Your Closet Shelves
Vertical space can be prime real estate in a lot of home storage spaces. A lot of coat closets end up having shelves above the hanging rods that are set around five to six feet high. This is an acceptable height to hold things like heavy boxes of seasonal storage items where they can be brought down by the average person.
If you don’t have a lot of large boxes that need to be stored away in the coat closet, you can just as easily repurpose them by adding smaller shelves. Placing dividers or using adjustable rails lets you further customize the space to what you want to store there. This really helps you maximize the available vertical space.
Install A Wardrobe Unit In The Back Of The Coat Closet
Shelving space can be at a premium in a coat closet. Especially if you need to store away things like sports balls, pet items, and other outdoor equipment without letting it tangle into a heap.
A simple wardrobe closet with doors and adjustable shelves lets you tuck things away at the back wall, which is typically unused space. Yet you can still grab them quickly when you need to. Some prefabricated wardrobes can be assembled with the doors left off which might save space in a narrow coat closet.
Hang Large Hooks For Scarves Handbags & Casual Jackets
Large hooks are an incredibly versatile way to hang light to medium-weight items. They can hold decorative and functionally warm scarves without having to lace them onto hangers with coats. If you have several handbags to meet on any occasion, you can hang them from the hooks to let you choose from the array at a glance. It’s also handy for letting you quickly transfer important items from one handbag to the next.
Use Stackable Totes With Labels For Seasonal Items
The coat closet is a popular place to store seasonal clothing items and sports equipment. Especially if you don’t want to overload the garage or basement which is already overloaded.
Heavy-duty plastic totes can be stacked one on top of the other to give you a waterproof container for out-of-season clothing, footwear, and sports equipment. Putting an accurate label on the side or top makes it easy to find what you are looking for. This is handy if you happen to do something like put away a pair of boots in the spring, only to have the weather switch a week later and you need to quickly grab them back out again.
Protect The Floor To Improvise Your Coat Closet As A Mud Room
Let’s face it, not all of us are gifted with a home that has enough space for a mudroom. Unfortunately, kids, pets, and messy spouses still need to get into the house, and they often bring a staggering array of mud & wetness with them.
Laying down a full coverage area rub with a waterproof rubber backer in the coat closet lets you improvise it a little bit as a mudroom. At the very least it gives everyone in the family a place to take off their dirty, wet outdoor clothes without tracking them into the rest of the house.
If the rug ever gets too dirty, you can take it out and clean it or have it replaced. This might be the preferred option if you live in an apartment, townhome, or long-term rental condo and don’t want to absorb a massive carpet cleaning bill when it comes time to move out.