Finding a place for everything and putting everything in its place is one of the greatest challenges of modern lift… and the inspiration for countless products, television shows, books, and consulting businesses.
As anyone with children well knows, it only gets worse once they arrive (why does every child’s toy seem to generate about 20 random little plastic parts); and the need for adequate storage becomes even more critical.
Most modern homes have bedrooms with standard six by three foot deep closets and one bar, set about 5 feet, with a shelf on top. You may also have another closet, about the same size in your hallway. These spaces, when used as constructed, are incredibly inefficient. With an overall are of about 160 cubic feet per closet, most people use less than half (about 60 cubic feet) – the space taken by one row of hanging clothes and shoe boxes on the top shelf. Look high and low. You can reclaim that 100 cubic feet! By raising the existing closet bar,and adding another bar underneath and slightly in front (be sure to leave about three and a half feet so your clothes don’t brush the floor) you’ll double the space and still have enough room to hang longer clothing. Don’t forget about the side and back walls of your under-used spaces, whether they’re closets, your garage or basement. Numerous modular storage systems are available that integrate hooks, baskets, and shelves to help you store just about anything.
When looking for more space, look up, way up! Move coffee makers, can openers, and other appliances up off the counter top by utilizing space saving models that mount directly under your kitchen cabinets. Most are slim and sleek by design and help you free up valuable work surface area without adding visual clutter. Garages and closets offer many storage opportunities for items that you don’t use regularly. Whether they’re seasonal tools, holiday ornaments or things that belonged to the kids, there are usually a few items you want to keep for the next generation. Install shelving or modular shelving units up above the five-foot mark for those rainy day treasures.
If you’re in a home that is past the three-quarter century mark, you may have no closet space at all since many Victorians used chifforobe or a wardrobe instead of built-ins. Take a hint from the Victorians and seek out furnishings that include out-of-sight storage. Look for lift-up lids on bench seats, stepstools, and other items that can do double-duty.
Very small spaces don’t always offer the opportunity for out-of-the-way storage. If you find that you need to keep things out in the open, but hate looking at the clutter, it may be wise to invest in some cabinetry.
Many Americans are discovering that cabinets are not just for kitchens any more. When used creatively, they can provide storage exactly where you need it. Design custom-build units that allow you to make small areas work in the most efficient way possible. Take into consideration how you want the area to function and you will gain practical office, work, or storage space.
So whether you choose cabinets, shelving, modular storage systems or a combination of them all, you’ll find there are numerous ways to stash the goods of everyday life.