43 clever ways to fit as much as possible into small spaces while still being organized
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My kitchen is tiny, just like all the kitchens in the converted 1950s car dealership I live in. Other people in the building have spent tidy sums taking out walls to expand theirs. Instead, I decided to create the kind of cooking space you might have on a space ship and maximize every inch of it. I replaced the backsplash with pegboard, made every cupboard pull its weight, and turned every available space into storage. The result is a place where I can cook with maximum efficiency. And everyone who walks into it rethinks the space they thought they needed. Maybe, like my kitchen, your too-small space is an opportunity waiting for one of these 43 clever ways to fit as much as possible into small spaces while still being organized.
Why not hide the living room or kids room clutter in furniture that doubles as storage, for example, and save the closets for your clothes. Or take advantage of the vertical space in your bathroom with some decorative shelving and turn your collection of lotions or essential oils into a useful display? Or, if your kitchen lacks adequate storage, get some of your produce out of the cupboards and hang it from the ceiling where it’s ready to cook with or snack on?
Sometimes finding storage involves thinking out of the box. Read on and find your inspiration.
1. This rack that stores lids on the wall
Hunting around in a chaotic cupboard looking for a lid while a pan boils over is frustrating and a sign that your storage is getting in the way of your cooking. This lid rack keeps all your lids where you can see them and find them. Whether you mount it inside a cupboard or to the wall is for your space to tell you.
2. These under-bed bags to store sweaters & linens
Instead of letting clothes and bedding that don’t fit the season crowd your closet, get in the habit of stripping out the off-season stuff and tucking it under the bed in these two under-bed bags. They fit lots of clothes and big comforters, are easy to unzip, have a clear top so you can see what’s in them, and have handles so pulling them out is easy.
3. The vacuum storage bags that save space
You might have more space in your storage areas than you think because a lot of what you are storing is air. These vacuum storage bags let you remove the air from your stored goods so they fit in less space. Just fill the bag with linens or sweaters or whatever, hook your vacuum cleaner up to it, and suck out the air. You’ll fit more stuff in the same space.
4. A hanging fruit basket for on-demand snacks
Keep your fruit, tomatoes, and avocados in this three-tiered hanging basket and they will ripen naturally and always be easy to grab when you want a snack — without taking up any cupboard space. The distance between each basket is adjustable and you can hang it by hooking it over a pot rack or sinking a hook into the ceiling.
5. These storage cubes that are also furniture
Closets aren’t the only place to store things. You can keep toys, linens, shoes, and other supplies right out in the open in these storage ottomans that make great footrests or extra seating. Line a few up in an entryway for everyone’s shoes or use them around a child’s craft table. They are versatile, lightweight, and come in seven colors.
6. A set of shelves that uses the vertical space in the bathroom
Instead of cluttering up a small vanity with your personal care items, use the wall space as storage by sticking these small and adhesive mounted shelves to the tile or mirror. Your lotions and toothbrushes will be easy to access, and it will free up space on the sink. They work well in the kitchen, too.
7. This shower curtain with loads of pockets
In-shower storage is hard to come by until you hang this shower curtain that’s covered in see-through, mesh pockets. There are three sizes of pockets to hold everything from bath toys to razors and shampoo. The holes for curtain hooks are reinforced with metal grommets to handle the weight and the fabric is water repellent to discourage mildew.
8. A narrow dresser you can fit anywhere
This cute little dresser with four simple fabric drawers makes a terrific, organized bedside table, sneaks into a corner of the closet for socks or underwear, hides under your desk for keeping office supplies sorted, or whatever you need. The top is wood and the drawers come in 12 color options that range from serious to playful and will fit lots of rooms and ideas.
9. This wall shelf that keeps mail & keys organized
You’ll never lose another important bill once you install this wall shelf system that gives a dedicated spot at your entryway to set down mail, keys, and the dog’s leash, so you always know where to look for them. With five wooden hooks and a roomy basket for your mail and wallet, this shelf will keep everything important handy.
10. A two-tier lazy Susan for organizing lots of small things
Lazy Susans are the unsung heroes of making a small space work. You can cram items onto them and then spin to get to the one you want. This two-level, 10.5-inch diameter stainless steel rotating organizer is perfect for spices, cosmetics, or even in the fridge for your collection of hot sauces or jams.
11. These hooks that add storage under shelves
Turn the unused vertical space in your kitchen into quick storage for mugs and tea cups with these six hook racks that slide onto the shelves, each one putting six hooks underneath. You can use them inside the cupboards or let the hooks hang under cabinets to keep mugs near the coffee machine.
12. A plant stand that expands your window space
Fitting all your potted plants in the limited space around a sunny window is much easier with this five-tier, bamboo plant stand. It assembles easily, holds lots of plants in a small footprint, and is light enough to set on a table or stand on the floor.
13. The roll-up dish rack that’s also a work surface
Unroll this silicone-wrapped steel dish drying rack over the sink when you want to let dishes drip dry or when you need a place to put a hot pan, a cutting board, or anything else. It creates a solid, heat-resistant spot over the sink or on a counter to work on. It’s super useful but when you aren’t using it, you can roll it up and store it in a drawer.
14. These under-shelf baskets for more convenient storage
Instead of stacking your teas or dry goods in the cupboard, which creates an avalanche when you want something that’s on the bottom of the stack, install these slide-on shelves and put often-reached for items on them instead. There are two of them, and they come in black or white.
15. A collection of macramé plant hangers
Fill the window with happy greenery and get your plants up off the window sill by hanging them in this set of five, decorative macramé plant hangers. They are all different lengths and styles so they create real visual interest while giving your plants everything they want.
16. This versatile storage cart that fits in the smallest space
This versatile cart can solve challenging storage problems all over the house. Assemble it with three shelves, two shelves, feet, or casters to suit the situation you have. Then add the hooks where you want to hang a towel or a tool. The shelves drain so you can keep wet items on them and the unit is less than 9 inches deep so you can slide it in between appliances or under a desk.
17. A tension shelf you can install anywhere
Need another shelf in that cabinet or closet? This shelf goes from just under 16 inches to almost 24 inches wide and holds itself in place with tension. Just open it to the size of your cabinet and screw it in until it holds tight. It comes in four colors.
18. These shelves that turn your to-be-read books into art
If you love books, you will love this set of three floating shelves that let you stack books so that they look like they are floating on the wall. Slide the bottom shelf between the cover and pages of a big book and stack a collection on top. Use them to create artistic collections or just get your books off the bedside table.
19. An organizer for all those rogue storage lids
How much time do you waste looking for the right lid for your food-storage container? This lid organizer will let you put them all in order of size so you can stop doing that and those lids will take up much less space when organized.
20. This two-tier solution for the mess under the sink
Look under the kitchen and bathroom sinks. There’s a lot of space under there, but the awkward shape can make it difficult to maximize. These shelves allow you to reclaim that space and keep it organized. They accommodate the plumbing, lift supplies up off the cabinet floor, and add another shelf to take advantage of the vertical space.
21. A big box of slim hangers that creates closet space
These velvet hangers are half the thickness of plastic ones, which means they will free up lots of hanging space in your closet. They have hooks that swivel 360 degrees, are covered in non-slip velvet to keep clothes on the hanger, and have a notch for sleeveless items to slide into. Well over 32,000 people give these five stars.
22. A tilting wall mount for your big TV
TVs have gotten light and slender in recent years but the entertainment center — once a central piece of living room furniture — still takes up too much space. Mount the TV to the wall and get rid of bulky furniture with this inexpensive and sturdy TV mount that tilts the screen so you can see it easily. It holds up to a 70-inch TV and comes with everything you need, including directions, to mount it.
23. This shelf that creates order on your desk
Set this little bookshelf down on your desk or bedside table to organize books and supplies you like to keep handy. You can configure it in several different ways to fit the space and stuff you have. The white finish is neutral and fresh.
24. These cubbies that organize your drawers
Put this three pack of organizers into a drawer or on closet shelves and stash small items like baby clothes, socks, or underwear in them so you can see what’s there and find precisely the item you are looking for. Each organizer has 24 slots, and they come in four color choices.
25. The under-desk trays that hold wires & power strips
Instead of letting the power strips and everything that plugs into them create an ugly mess on the carpet, mount them under your desk and keep everything tidy and within easy reach. This two-pack of organizers screws to the underside of your desk and holds power bricks, wires, and power strips, even providing a rack to wrap wires around.
26. A slender cabinet for in-bathroom storage
This slim cabinet is under 6 inches wide so it will fit into the smallest corner in a bathroom and provide storage for bathroom supplies and toilet paper as well as dispensing TP from the slot in the top. A shelf on top makes a great place to set a phone or wipes, and it comes in white or black.
27. This clever peg board that turns the wall into storage
Mount this clever peg board anywhere you want some hooks, a shelf, and some clips to organize anything from the entryway to the kitchen or laundry room. You get two pieces of square 11-inch pegboard, a shelf that snaps in, two clips, and seven hooks. What you do with it is up to you.
28. These shelf dividers for instant order in the closet
Slide these two dividers onto the shelves in your closet to create a space that works better than the free-for-all that's there now. Stacks of folded clothes won’t collapse, bags and boots will stand up, and you will be able to find what you need. Just push them on to install them.
29. A roomy & attractive in-shower storage shelf
Mount this big shelf on the wall of your shower so you can have all your soaps, shampoos, razors, and sponges handy and off the floor. It’s not only wide and spacious, it’s easy to install with the included adhesive strips. The caddy is made of rustproof steel, drains efficiently, and has three handy hooks in the front.
30. These eight bins that bring total order to the fridge
These eight bins will tidy up the fridge fast, free up space, and make finding what you want easy. Forget about loosing all your condiments in the back. Just put them all in one bin and pull the whole thing out. Beer and sodas will no longer take up an entire shelf because they will stack and dispense from the can bin. There are bins for eggs, produce, and everything else you keep in the fridge.
31. The stacking bins that free up space in cupboards
Stack these two big bins on top of each other to free up shelf space in your cupboards. You can fit twice as many cans in the same footprint this way, and since the bins are clear, you can always see what’s in them. They are useful in the closet and office, too.
32. A set of drawer organizers for cosmetics or office supplies
Arrange the 23 pieces in this huge set of drawer organizers the way that best keeps your office supplies, crafting tools, or cosmetics organized. They stack to take advantage of the vertical space in your drawers and are clear so you can see what’s in the ones underneath. The size variety goes from big enough for kitchen tools to small enough for paperclips.
33. This weird system for storing hats
If you have a massive cap collection, you need a good storage system or they will be everywhere; this weird system is simple and effective. Mount the strangely shaped brim holder to the wall and insert a brim into it. Then stack the rest of your hats on top of that one. You can nest lots of caps this way and each one is easy to grab just by lifting the ones above it.
34. A clever hanger that holds five pairs of pants
Make space in your closet by hanging pants, skirts, or scarves on this clever S-shaped hanger that holds five items in the space of one hanger. It is strong, sturdy, rust-resistant stainless steel that won’t bend under the weight, and each arm is covered in a non-slip rubber so fabrics stay put. This four-pack comes in five color options.
35. These stackable wine bottle holders
Create the wine rack that suits your space by stacking these bottle holders in the configuration that best fits the interior of your fridge, a shelf, or countertop. Each of the four pieces holds one bottle and you can add more to build whatever you need. They also are great for storing reusble water bottles.
36. A wall-mounted storage rack for towels
Store your hand towels right where you will reach for them and show them off at the same time by mounting these two three-tier towel racks to the wall near the sink. Hang them side by side, stacked, or in different bathrooms. They come in six finishes.
37. This over-the-door shelving system for a quick pantry
Create a pantry on the back of the kitchen door or a laundry storage room on a closet door with this over-the-door storage system. It hangs over the top of the door, screws into the bottom for stability, and brings six wide baskets for easy storage right where you need it without eating up any floor space.
38. The clever cutlery organizer that uses less space
You can store significantly more flatware in this organizer than you can in a flat one because it cleverly takes advantage of the vertical space in your drawers to nest the flatware. It’s just as easy to find what you want but you will free up drawer space for more cutlery or kitchen utensils.
39. This vertical rack for cutting boards & bakeware
You can save a great deal of cupboard space by turning cutting boards, cookie sheets, pie pans, and other unwieldy flat items on end and storing them in this adjustable rack. The wire dividers snap into the base so you can set the spaces that suit your gear and put everything away neatly where it’s also easy to retrieve.
40. A bedside storage caddy that keeps everything at hand
This bedside caddy is like giving your bed pockets. Just slide the base under the mattress and let the pockets hang down. You can store remotes, glasses, a tablet or something to read right where you can reach it even if you have no bedside table or don’t want to clutter it. It works on a couch or armchair, too.
41. These stick-on hooks you can use to hang anything
Once you have this package of hooks and strips on hand, you will discover a million uses for them. Hang the scoops right on the pantry door or all your belts in a line inside the closet. Keep kitchen tools on the wall or your hairdryer hanging inside the cupboard. They are so versatile. You just peel and stick to hang them and they come off cleanly if you change your mind.
42. A three-tier shoe bench you can sit on
Whether you set this bench down in your walk-in closet or at the entryway, it’s a great place to store shoes and to sit when you put them on. It assembles easily, comes in three finishes, and is easy to vacuum under.
43. This small shelf that replaces an outlet cover
If you remove the outlet cover in your bathroom or kitchen and replace it with this one with a built-in shelf, you have the perfect place to put your electric toothbrushes, an Amazon Echo or Google Home. You can even use it to create a charging station for your tablet or phone. It’s super easy to do and keeps your electronics right next to the power source they need.