Have you ever wished that your hanging clothes weren't squished together, or for your shoes to be cleverly stored so you can easily find them or just to have more storage and be better organised in general? Well, first things first: do we need MORE storage or BETTER ORGANISED storage?
BETTER ORGANISED STORAGE:
As our TV friend from THE LIVING ROOM and Clutter Organiser Peter Walsh would cleverly suggest, you may not need more storage but less stuff. Instead of placing more items in, consider instead what can come out.
images courtesy of The Living Room, Channel TEN
1 - Dedicate one day to bringing all of your clothes and personal items out of the wardrobe, placing them clearly visible so you can go through every single thing you have. You would be surprised how many items you have not touched for months, even years. Most likely you will not use half of these ever again, have the fashion or colours changed, or are you hanging on to them in the hope of fitting in again, don't worry you're not alone, we all do this! Leave them out and sell what can be sold; give away the rest to charity or to friends and family who may use them.
2 - Store back in your wardrobe what you are keeping in a way where the items you use more often are easily accessible, while the others used seasonally or for special occasions are placed in higher shelves or at the bottom row of your drawers.
When this is really needed, there are many clever solutions on the market that may not necessarily intrude on the floor-space and give you that extra storage you so wish for. But first, try to increase extra storage power to the furniture already in the room.
1 - Firstly the Wardrobe: the shelving you have in there may be a basic shelf or two, with often only one hanging rod. The solutions available on the market are many and very clever. Visit a few stores, explore the ideas they suggest and ask for quotes. Take a photo of your wardrobe, show it in the store and ask for advice; a good salesperson will surprise you with the many alternative solutions available, based on your personal needs.
images courtesy of Wardrobe World
2 - If your bed is an 'ensamble' then you are not using that precious under-bed space which translates into very valuable storage. Drawers under the bed are the optimal solution as they are quickly accessible and perfect for items that can be stored flat.
images courtesy of BedWorks
3 - Also consider a gas-lift bed. Lifting this one is not the difficult task you may think, and can easily be done by people of all ages, and the storage you gain is the best use of space you can achieve as it's out of the way and otherwise non-usable floor space due to your bed bing on top, and taking the most space up in your bedroom.
images courtesy of BedWorks
4 - A cheaper solution is adding drawers under an existing bed on legs; these can easily be found in many furniture stores, and storage specialists. I always suggest and prefer the ones with a lid, to keep dust and bugs out, and try to get the ones on wheels, as moving these in and out should be an effortless exercise. Measure the clearance under your bed and buy sliding boxes that fit, in both height and width, as being able to remove them easily also makes vacuuming underneath an easy task.
images courtesy of IKEA and Bunnings Warehouse
5 - Finally, add more storage only if needed as you will tend to hoard more clothes and other items if there is room for it. Another great tip is keeping your bedroom free of extra furniture and bench space, as it will increase the sense of space inside the room, removing visual clutter and spaces for you to dump things instead of putting them away, it also make moving around easier and prevents cleaning form being an acrobatic adventure.
Other valuable suggestions:
When buying any furniture with drawers check their depth as some may be disappointingly shallow with lots of space stolen by the sliding rail.
Bedside tables should have at least one drawer each to store/hide reading glasses, medicines and other private items. A shelf underneath is also very useful for storing that huge novel you are ploughing through, leaving the top clutter free.
Hooks behind the door will keep clothes off chairs or other furniture, but be aware that this solution may also take away from the tidiness in the room or door functionality.
Vacuum-tight storage bags will double the capacity of the upper shelves in your wardrobe and work wonders if of good quality; the cheap ones do not stay air-tight and will expand and split.
In the wardrobe there should be available hanging space for both long clothes, like coats and dresses for example, and short clothes like shirts, and folded trousers.
Boxes are very useful in the wardrobe to avoid ugly and unsuccessful piling up of stuff. Better keep the heavier boxes on the floor while lighter and smaller ones are perfect for higher shelves.
Use dividers for drawers, shelves and larger storage spaces in general as these are necessary to neatly store and easily find all items you own.
images courtesy of Howards Storage World
Finally, in your choices towards more satisfying storage in your bedroom, I would like to encourage you to "buy less and buy better". The cheap T-shirts or shoes we buy will only last a few wears and then look and feel, cheap. Let's substitute superfluous purchases with meaningful ones, spend the same amount but buy Quality instead of Quantity. We should only buy the things we need, be prepared to spend a reasonable price for an item and expect these to last more than just one season. This way you'll find you enjoy what you own by wearing them more, and end up with a clutter-free and inviting bedroom that you'll be happy to retreat to at the end of the day.
James Treble is an ambassador for Planet Ark and firmly believes in sensible purchasing, recycling and creative re-purposing. James Treble has more than 25 years of experience in the Building Industry, Real Estate and Interior Design. His knowledge and experience in adding value to homes, through clever design & styling, is now published for all to learn and benefit from. Interior Design For Profit is now available online.