Creating a Happy, Colorful, Handmade Home & life on the shores of lake superior

February 11, 2014

A Foolproof Way to Organize a Shoe Closet

Amid the chaos of painting, unpacking, and tearing apart the kitchen, it feels promising to open up a closet door and see orderliness.  I'd like the kind of closets where everything has a home.  I'm chipping away at that goal and the shoe closet is now completely organize - and I actually have room for more shoes!!  

How to organize shoes

Last time you saw it, the narrow closet by our front door had a fun coat of aqua paint, plus Hubby had cut simple white melamine shelves to fit the existing brackets.  But, um, the closet wasn't very functional:


In the townhouse we had a tall shoe rack but it wouldn't fit anywhere in the lakehouse.  In the coat closet (photos soon), we have our small shoe rack from Costco and this is where we keep the shoes and boots we're wearing regularly.

For out-of-season flats and fancy-pants heels, I picked up dozens of Sterilite shoe bins and went to town organizing my shoes.  I was able to double up some canvas flats, but a few really bulky runners wouldn't fit in the bins.

Affordable clear shoe storage bins
How to keep shoes organizes in any closet

I don't miss the old shoe rack at all.  I can still see all of my shoes clearly, but everything lines up so neatly.  I can even grab a bin and toss it on the bed while I ponder an outfit, without worrying about getting dirt from the world all over my white bedding.  When I was a teen, I put photos of each pair of shoes on their shoe box in an effort to stay organized, but these clear bins make it so much easier!

I've read that shoes are supposed to "breathe" when stored, but if it becomes an issue I can easily drill holes in the back of all of the boxes for some air holes.  So far, no problems whatsoever!

Organized shoe closet
A foolproof way to organize shoes
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15 comments

  1. So pleased for you! And what a great idea to store shoes near the front door. Makes it so much easier to maintain a "shoes-off" policy in the house. I'm about to move to a house where no such closet is available, but I'm already thinking about alternatives. Any ideas out there for a house that puts you directly in the living room from the front door?

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    1. We definitely doff our shoes the minute we get in. When it's really cold, I have indoor uggs to keep me warm.

      It's tricky to have a door lead right into the living room. My parents' house is like that, so they enter through the back of the house instead. I think there are some great options out there, though. I think an ikea shoe cabinet might be an idea. They make quite a few that don't look like they store shoes, in many different styles:

      http://www.ikea.com/ca/en/catalog/categories/departments/hallway/10456/

      Alternatively, you could work in shoe/coat storage into whatever storage you're using for your television or other living room furniture. Again, Ikea makes great solutions. The Besta system is really versatile and can house television and closed storage in one tidy unit. It's what we have in the living room, but it's only one combination of many:

      http://dans-le-townhouse.blogspot.ca/2012/09/reader-q-our-television-solution.html

      If Ikea isn't an option, a cute vintage sideboard or dresser could also be used for shoe storage and no one would be the wiser. Something with doors instead of drawers would lend itself to use with bins like mine. Add some lamps, a mirror and a place to stash keys (like a pretty bowl) and I'd trade my closet! Also, a bench with storage inside could conceal shoes and look attractive by an entry way. It could even double as an ottoman, depending on your living room layout.

      Hope this helps! Good luck with the move and settling into your new place.

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  2. oh this is dreamy to have shoes this organized!! you go girl.

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    1. Thanks!! It certainly feels like a weirdly major accomplishment to have an area look this tidy.

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  3. That organized shoe closet is the best thing I've seen all day. There is no better buzz than the "behold this organized space!" buzz.

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    1. It is the best thing I've seen all day too, lol. Hubby caught me standing in front of it, snacking on a yoghurt, admiring my shoe-view over the lakeview!! It's inspiring me to unpack more.

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  4. Another person who loves shoes as much as I do. Great solution!

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    1. I do love shoes! But I'm also on a quest for the perfect shoe. Have not found it yet, so I've kissed a lot of frogs, so to speak. Hubby's life is much easier: walk into store, try on two pair, buy one, wear them forever.

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  5. Very good idea indeed but i'm a bit concerned. After a long day in a pair of shoes if you come home and put them right away in a box wont it be hard for the shoes to get aired and dry?

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    1. We have a little shoe rack in the hall closet where we put shoes we wear often. This system houses heels and out of season stuff. I think that's a sign of too many shoes, right?

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  6. Haha i guess so. :D Anyways thank you very much for the idea and the reply! :)

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  7. these amazing tips and tricks for organizing your entire home.

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    1. Thanks Jenny! I'm a huge fan of storage bins everywhere in my house - my kitchen and fridge are full of them too, they make so much sense in a small space!

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