Tuesday, 12 May 2009

Shoe Storage Ideas - Thinking Outside the Shoe Box

What products are available and being creative... "thinking outside the shoe box" if you will.

How much space do you have?

You need to have good measurements for your closet or entryway. Closet products are generally sized in 12 inch intervals as a closets are usually 24 inches deep but your entrance way can be large enough for a storage bench or small enough that it won't even accommodate shoe storage so get good measurements.

How many shoes need to be stored?

Which shoes do you wear most often and which ones are simply stored away? We usually only wear about 20% of what we own so some of your footwear will be worn often and those are the items that you need to keep readily accessible. Everything else can be stored away.

Products for shoe storage

Boxes- boxes are suitable for storing shoes that are not to be accessed frequently. Look for clear plastic boxes so you can easily identify what is in there. Make sure if you are using boxes for shoe storage that are all of the same variety and that they are made to stack together.

Shoe racks - shoe racks can be plastic coated metal, laminate, and melamine covered particle board and even real cedar. Look for shoe racks with stackable components so you can use the vertical space in your closet. Try raising the closet rod to 72 inches and then putting the shoe rack on the floor. This arrangement provides space for shoe storage and still allows enough vertical space above your shoes for hanging garments. You will need about 8-9 inches per pair of shoes so a 24 inch lineal space on a shoe rack could accommodate 3 pairs of shoes stored side by side. Generally shoe racks made for storing shoes in this way are manufactured in 24 inch widths.

Underbed shoe storage - some products are now made to fit underneath the bed to provide use of space that is otherwise wasted. Underbed units are made of either soft plastic or rigid plastic boxes with hinged lids. This is another shoe storage idea for those shoes that are not accessed often. If you need extra space under the bed to accommodate a storage unit then raise the bed a few inches. There are specific products available called "bed risers" that can be used to get the bed a few inches higher in order to make the horizontal surface under the bed more usable for storage. You can even go to the big box store and purchase bed casters that are adjustable to different heights and they might provide the few extra inches you need.

Think "outside the shoe box"

It is not always necessary to use a product designed for shoe storage if you want to store shoes. Other types of furniture can sometimes do just as well. I have seen metal lockers, book cases, storage baskets, and even laundry baskets used to corral those loose shoes.

Here are three ideas for shoe storage that essentially make good use of products that were designed for something else.

1. Do you have a big decorative clay pot? Instead of planting a plant in there and dealing with all the dirt and constant watering use it to store shoes right by the entry way.

2. A vertical CD holder doesn't have to be for CD's, some of them are great for storing your footwear.

3. One of the most creative shoe storage ideas I have seen is the use of an entertainment unit placed at the end of a king size bed. It is often hard to find a bench that will span the entire width of a king size bed but this unit fit perfectly and the owners used the "cubbies" for shoe storage. If also provided a perfect place to sit while donning shoes.

So if you want new and original shoe storage ideas for all of those shoes you have on the floor and not on your feet, just get creative and think outside the shoe box.