Finding products that fit perfectly is the key to effectively organizing a small space. Having a place for everything keeps your home from getting overwhelmed with stuff, no matter the size; when space is at a premium it is more important than ever. Late last year we tackled a whole-apartment organization project. The systems we added to the space made such a huge difference! Walk through our client’s home with me to see how we implemented effective solutions to contain and organize this family’s belongings.
Like most apartments, kitchen and pantry space were not abundant. Pantry cabinets were the solution! It gave them much-needed additional storage for food products and kitchen gear. We measured carefully to get bins that would maximize the height of the shelves, so that they could still have all of the essentials on hand. The bins also act as drawers, making it easy to slide them off the shelves to see what’s inside; for this same reason we chose clear acrylic bins.
This credenza also acted as pantry space. These clear storage boxes allowed us to almost double the space (!), which left room for the top to be used as the family command center. The Family File Box and paper trays you see are part of my Weekly Reset system, which keeps papers from piling up around the house – so important when organizing a small space. You can purchase my workshops on these topics HERE.
The Living Room
This shelving unit housed their child’s activity supplies. In this case, grey drawer boxes dressed up this open area of the living room, while providing even more storage. Decorative items were kept on higher shelves and away from little hands.
You will be amazed at how much we were able to fit into the bathrooms in this apartment! The team worked hard to maximize vertical space in cabinets and linen closets, something useful for any home, not just when organizing a small space.
Pro-tip: Daily use items can stay on the countertop in attractive acrylic trays and drawer units, but less frequently used items should be stored in other spaces.
Under this sink, we used our favorite all-purpose bins to store taller items like lotions and soaps. They are clearly labeled, so everything is always easy to find — even on a sleep-deprived morning.
This narrow cabinet had no upper impediments like plumbing. We were able to use stacking drawers to really maximize the height and make a home for makeup and beauty supplies.
In this space, we had to work around a sink and plumbing. We used a combination of the all-purpose bins and stacking drawers. Bulkier items went on the top of the left unit, and a tray contained miscellaneous items on the right.
There was also a really great linen closet to utilize – lucky us! An over-the-door system was the PERFECT solution — it allowed us to add 30% more space to this closet. We subdivided some of the wire shelves to house smaller items, and were even able to add a bar for a hand towel! Notice that we also swapped out the flat lazy susan for taller, divided acrylic ones. These work a bit better for storing taller beauty products. They won’t fall over when you spin them!
These Elfa drawer systems made a huge difference in every closet in the apartment.
Bonus: they are so easy for kids to use! They can just sort their clothes into the appropriate drawer – and then file fold when they get older. Bins up top in kids’ closets are a must. They hold off-season items, as well as clothes that don’t fit yet or need to be donated. After adding the third drawer system, enough space was freed up that we were able to add a keepsake bin as well as several small bins to hold toys.
In the primary closet, we again utilized the Elfa drawer systems, this time freeing up valuable real estate that allowed the client to display some of her favorite items on the shelf. On the upper shelf, we hid less frequently used items in white weaved baskets.
Pro Tip: Thin hangers like these allow you to fit more in a closet than bulky plastic hangers. They are worth the extra investment when organizing a small space!
As you can see in this guest room closet space (which also housed our client’s husband’s clothes), the right products allow you to use every single inch of a space. We used linen storage bins along the top to attractively store accessories and household items that needed a home. Taking accurate measurements before purchasing investment pieces really pays off.
We were so happy for these clients! They were able to keep everything they loved in their smaller, temporary space while they waited to move into a larger home. We got creative and found solutions that really transformed the space and made it work for them.
If we can help you do the same in your home, please reach out to set up a free virtual consultation. Homes of every size can benefit from organizational systems, and we would love to help you love the space you are in!