Add more space to your closet with these clever closet hacks! These closet organize tips and tricks will help your closet feel larger.
35 Clever Closet Hacks You’ll Love
Whether large or small, walk-in or bi-fold, shared or personal, there’s something every closet can use. Organization.
Our closets pull their fair share of weight around the house – hiding away our chaos and keeping our living areas tidy and clean; which is why it’s so easy to let them get out of control with clutter.
Not only is an organized closet a time and sanity saver, but it frees up space as well.
With a few tweaks and extra organization you can feel like you’ve doubled your closet space! This list of clever closet hacks will make your closet feel larger and more organized in no time.
Note: In the years since we first wrote this post, some of the blogs whose projects we featured have shut down 🙁 In those cases, we’ve removed the link and tried to find similar options so you can still DIY these closet organizing hacks!
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Built In Closet Drawers
These closet built-ins look high-end, but there’s a secret under there… plywood! The inexpensive frame and box bases are softened with fabric on the inside and concealed with MDF for a sleek look. Customize the measurements to fit in any closet space.
That tutorial isn’t available anymore, so check out Shara from Woodshop Diaries showing how to make closet drawers as part of a whole custom closet system.
DIY Closet Organizer
Ready for a closet revamp? Follow this tutorial to build your own custom closet organizer!
You can make the look luxe using gold fixtures, contact paper, and drawer organizers, too.
Be sure to check out this walk-in closet renovation and see more custom closet ideas here.
Behind the Door Closet Shelves
Instead of putting the shelves into the front of the door, why not build them onto the back of the door?
In this tutorial, you not only find plans for building the shelves (which are on wheels to help support the weight and ease the movement of the closet doors) but also learn how to turn bifold doors into regular swinging doors on hinges.
You’ll also like: How to Build a Back of Door Shelf or Cabinet Door Cubby Organizer
You can use these extra shelves for storing tons of clothing items, baskets of clothes, odds and ends, and accessories, then close the doors up to tuck all the clutter and bulkiness away.
Hidden Shelves on the Side of the Closet
Nearly every closet has a small recessed area hidden to the sides of the doorway. Make use of this neglected space by sizing inexpensive wire shelves to custom fit. You’ll add a lot of shelf storage in what was a completely unused corner.
Have an odd shaped corner in your closet? Build custom plywood corner floating shelves instead!
Closet Bookshelf Door
If you’re up for a bit more work, this DIY is genius. A bookshelf built into a door makes use of the wasted space between the back of the door and the interior of the closet – but through the FRONT of the door!
While this tutorial doesn’t specifically show a clothes closet, the possibilities here are plentiful – you could place baskets of clothes on the shelves or display cute items like clutches and hats that are normally tucked away, and free up hanging space in a super polished, classy way.
Add a Shelf Above The Door
There are a lot of completely ignored nooks and crannies in your closet where you can squeeze in some valuable storage spots.
For example, this built-in shelf takes advantage of the wall space above the door in a bathroom (but could just as easily be built into a closet).
You could also use the same wall space above the door for open shelving or hooks or shaker pegs for off-season boots.
Angled Wire Shelves for Baskets
Ok, so this is a laundry closet. But I loved the ingenious idea of attaching the wire shelves to the wall at an angle. This way, any baskets you put on top will slant downward, allowing you to easily see and grab what you need.
This could be a lifesaver in a clothes closet where you may need to hang shelves quite high to make good use of vertical space.
Pull-Out Crate Storage
These pull out crates are genius! In the tutorial, they’re built into a coat closet, but this would be a great idea in a small room so that you don’t need a dresser at all!
Put all your folded clothing in the crates and attach them to the wall with drawer slides. Easy in and out storage for a fraction of the cost of built-ins or a full dresser.
DIY Double Hanging Rod
Adding a lower rod in your closet is a snap with this clever idea.
If you don’t want the rod to extend the whole length of the closet (or if you need to leave room for extra long hanging items), you can add a shorter dowel under one section of the existing rod using lightweight chain, eye screws and s-hooks or carabiners.
It’s an easy way to double hanging space and can be done in just minutes.
DIY Hanger Extender
A length of chain has multiple applications in closet organization! In this case, chain is hung from an s hook over the existing clothing rod.
Using normal hangers, clothes are hung on every other link, so a total of 4 or more hangers only takes up as much room as one!
This hanger extender is so simple and cheap to DIY you don’t need any fancy gadgets, but it plays the same role as these hanger extenders if you’d rather purchase than make.
DIY No-Slip Hangers
If you’re tired of blouses and dresses falling off hangers, you can make your own no-slip hangers and you only need two items – one you already have!
Just take a normal hanger – wire or plastic – and wrap them with pipe cleaners.
DIY Double Hanger
Don’t throw away your empty soda cans! At least not the tabs on top.
Keep those tabs, slip them around a hanger hook, then slide another hanger through the bottom hole of the tab.
Two hangers hung for the space of one! And at no cost to you, you just doubled your hanging space.
Repurposed Tie Hanger to Tank Top Hanger
A tie hanger? Sure you could hang ties on it. OR you could use it to corral your tank top collection.
Folding and stacking those tops takes up valuable real estate on the shelves (and time!). With a tie hanger, you can easily see each top and grab what you need without messing up the whole shebang.
DIY Hanging Bra Organizer
Apparently, those of us who fold our brassieres are doing it all wrong… bras should be hung as you would a shirt, to keep their form. But who has room for that in their closet??
Enter, the hanging bra organizer – or a multitude of hangers all hung neatly in a vertical line. All you need are wooden hangers and eye screws!
Since you only need about a 2 inch drop between hangers, you could connect anywhere from 5-10 hangers together, depending on how high your rod or hook is placed. Get those bras out of the drawer and free up some room!
Hanging Sunglasses Storage
Use a cute hanger to store your sunglasses. Just hang them over the crossbar so you can easily see each pair, and grab what you need on your way out the door.
Hanging Basket Set for Accessories and Scarves
While you normally find thesetiered hanging baskets corralling fruit in the kitchen, they are super useful in a closet as well.
Keep your accessories in one spot, within easy reach without using up valuable shelf or drawer space.
Organize with S Hooks and Baskets on Wire Shelves
If you’ve got wire shelves in your closet, this hack is a must!
Find baskets with holes, handles or a large weave and hang them from the underside of the shelf with metal S hooks. Square baskets with chalkboard labels would be perfect!
This is the perfect spot for socks, undergarments, belts, scarves and other small items. This tutorial uses them for storage in a pantry, but there’s no end to the applications!
Hanging Crates for Accessories or Baby Items
Here’s another idea for under shelf baskets that will work for wooden shelves instead of wire. Instead of S hooks, use hook screws and screw them right into the underside of the shelf!
Hang some small plastic crates (similar to these) and toss in all the miscellaneous odds and ends one stores in clothes closets – belts, tights, socks, handkerchiefs, scarves, headbands… well, you get the idea.
Read more: Tips for Organizing Kids’ Closets
Baskets on the Back of The Door
Baskets of all shapes and sizes are crucial for organization. Here, slim and stylish wire baskets are hung directly on the back of the closet door to store cold weather essentials.
Even a small, packed closet has a bit of door space available to hang skinny baskets like these wire mesh desktop file baskets.
DIY Acrylic Clutch Purse Holders
These awesome clutch holders make use of neglected wall space. They’re made from clear plexiglass so you can see exactly what each one is holding, and your purses double as wall art. Plus, they are super modern and cute!
Lid Rack as Wallet Organizer
Or, if you’re unsure of your plexiglass-building abilities, get a pot lid rack organizer. These are found in kitchenware departments and are meant to contain lids for pots and pans, but slide it onto a closet shelf and slip your clutches and wallets in and you’ve got a handy fix for messy purse storage.
Dollar Store Hook Rack Hack
Wall racks with hooks are super useful, but what if you haven’t got enough wall space for the amount of hooks you need?
The solution in this case: Attach them to a hanger – one on each side – with zip ties! It’s a nonpermanent solution that can come apart when needed, and can easily hang a number of scarves, belts, small bags or even necklaces.
Tension Rod Scarf Storage Behind Door
Tension rods are very handy in a closet! You can hang them in the same fashion as you would for shoe storage – in a nook or to the side of your closet, then loop scarves around the rods.
The plus side to this is that they actually look colorful and artistic, so if they’re in your room instead of your closet it can double as free decor! (And that frees up some closet space, too!)
Clothespin Clip Rack
When it comes to hanging clothes up, what could be smarter than clothespins? That’s what they’re for right?
Well, they can also organize your closet if you get smart and attach them directly to the wall with some removable but hefty adhesive.
Just line them up vertically and you’ve got a spot for tutus, scarves, necklaces, caps, or any other hangable, clip-able collection.
DIY Clothespin Scarf Holder
Don’t want the clothespins directly on the wall? Check out this clothespin scarf holder.
Use reclaimed wood and wood glue, then hang it on your closet door. Here it holds scarves, but it could easily organize any number of clothing items.
DIY Slide-Out Scarf Organizer
These clever slide out organizers make use of drawer pulls in a new way.
Mounting towel bars, ikea rails or other mountable rods to MDF cut to the desired size creates a scarf organizer in it’s own right.
But by attaching it to drawer pulls on your closet walls, you take it up a notch! Tuck it nicely and discreetly out of the way, pull it out when you need it. Perfect!
Shower Curtain Ring Belt Organizer
Here’s an organization solution that’s easy to do, easy on the wallet AND easy to place, since it doesn’t take up much room.
You’ll need a towel bar and a spot to attach it, either to the wall or the inside of your closet door.
Then clip shower curtain rings around it and slide one belt on each ring – you’ll never have to hunt through your belts, or take all of your belts off the same hook to get to the one at the bottom!
Tension Rod High Heel Shoe Organizer
For this shoe storage, all you need is a nook between two close walls – either inside your closet off to the side or in a corner of your room.
Hang tension rods every foot or so down the wall and place your heels over the tension rods. Instant storage, plus your shoes will look cute too!
Ready for a more permanent solution? Get the same look with a few scraps of trim molding.
More Ideas: 6 Creative Places to Store Shoes
IKEA Hack Bookcase Shoe Storage
Women’s dress shoes can be a pain to organize because the heels often get caught and tangled up, and they don’t always stand up nicely.
If you’ve got a spot in your room or closet, use an Ikea shelf to organize your shoes according to height, style and color.
Don’t have an Ikea near you? There are lots of affordable options for adjustable shelves at Target or Walmart and you can buy additional laminate shelves at Home Depot.
Framed Tie, Belt, and Hat Organizer
This is a pretty incredible organizer for the guy in your life. There’s a spot for everything he needs – all right there at his fingertips – and all you need to do it is a frame and a peg board!
There are even small baskets for cologne and dress socks. If he could use a little help organizing his necessities, this is an inexpensive and thorough way to go.
Continue Reading: Pegboard Storage Ideas for Every Room In Your House
DIY Sweater Boxes
All you need is a cardboard box and about a yard and a half of fabric to create a unique, customized sweater box to store and organize your cold weather staples.
These sweater boxes are the perfect shape and size to accommodate bulky clothing, and allow you to see items on the bottom of the stack.
Hanging Storage Cubbies
Not sure how to organize bulky items that take up a lot of room? Roll them up and place them in a hanging shoe organizer cubby.
You can use this method for anything from sweaters to jeans to jackets.
Daily Clothes Cubbies
Hanging cubbies are great for tons of things! Here’s an idea for organizing your morning routine as well as your closet – use one cubby for each day and set out the weeks clothing in advance.
If you find that your cubbies sag with the weight of clothing, cut cardboard to fit, cover with pretty paper and place in the bottom of each one as shown in the tutorial.
Creative Closet Lighting
A closet with no lighting wired in is pretty impractical. It’s hard to be organized when you can’t even see!
For this brilliant lighting solution, all you need are seasonal rope lights with a remote.
Hang them around the inside of the closet doorway (or even under shelves for an “under cabinet” lighting effect). No need to do electrical work to make that dark closet shine!
Add a Closet to Any Corner
If you’ve got a bedroom minus a closet, or you simply need to create more closet space than you already have, you can DIY a great looking wardrobe out of mismatched furniture!
Wardrobes are super pricey furniture pieces, but with this tutorial you’ll be looking at cabinets, dressers and shelves in a whole new light.
Here’s a tiny closet done right. Moving all the storage to the unused and almost unattainable sides (that are hidden away behind the walls) frees up the entire middle of the closet, giving it a walk-in closet feeling.
The new design allowed for shelves from floor to ceiling on one side and two rods for hanging clothes on the other – while still saving enough room for a hamper and mirror! The overall feeling is much more spacious and organization friendly.
More Great Closet Ideas:
- Linen Closet Makeover and Creative Storage
- 7 Tips for Smart Pantry Organization
- How to Maximize Hall Closet Space
Kimberly Mueller is the “me” over at bugaboo, mini, mr & me, a blog that highlights her creative endeavors. She especially likes to share kid crafts, sewing attempts, recipes, upcycled projects, photography and free printable gift tags/cards. When she’s not enjoying being married to her best friend, chasing after the natives (AKA her three kids) and attempting to keep the house in one piece, you can find her with a glue gun in one hand and spray paint in the other. Aside from DIY pursuits, she also enjoys writing, reading, music, singing (mostly in the shower) and the color yellow. Kimberly recently published a craft book entitled Modern Mod Podge. You can also find her on Facebook, Pinterest, Bloglovin’ and Instagram.
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