As a student, I had my fair share of questionable living quarters. One year I stayed in a room where, when I lay in bed, my head was less than a meter from the stove, and I could touch my desk at the other side of the room with my foot at the same time.
Having a small bedroom is not in any way a bad thing, it just means that you have to be far smarter with your layout and organization. Especially if you have way too much stuff, like me.
I love researching different ways to store all my bits and bobs, whether that be tiny items like jewelry or bigger bulkier items like spare bedding. As a total believer that a clear space makes for a clear mind, I am ready to convert my small area into an organizational haven.
Savvy Bedroom Storage Ideas
1. Consider swapping out a traditional wardrobe
When I lived with my parents I always had a big built-in wardrobe, so you can image my shock when I tried to fit everything I had in there into, essentially, a falling apart wooden box.
There are many alternatives to traditional wardrobes when working with a small space, but I really love the look of this ladder clothing rack. Not only does it look insanely pretty, much more so than a simple metal clothing rack, but it is also an opportunity for you to put your DIY gloves on. You could have so much fun painting this any color you want to match your room, and there are loads of space beneath the hanging clothes to store other things like shoes or bags.
2. Make friends with the space under your bed
Under bed storage is so unbelievably handy. If you’re toying with the idea of getting a single bed to save space, rest assured that you can stick to a double if you use the space beneath it effectively.
Baskets, plastic containers, and vintage trunks are but a few options of things you can use for under bed storage, and the only requirements are that they are of an appropriate height and will be easily accessible. Speaking of easy access, boxes on wheels are great for sliding under the bed, and I think these wooden patterned ones look really cool. They aren’t the deepest, but if you are looking to store something like books or office supplies, they would be perfect.
3. Be creative with your bed frame
When I was a kid, I would have absolutely loved something like this storage platform bed. A heightened bed filled with all my toys and books? It’s like a bunk bed, but better.
Saying that I would love this just as much now, although I can think of more practical uses for the storage space other than for toys. This specific example is made from deconstructed kitchen cabinets and an excellent example of changing the purpose of something to suit your needs. You could really personalize this, choosing different sizes and numbers of drawers to fit with whatever you will be using the storage for.
4. Up-cycle items you already own
I like the idea of taking items that you already own and adjusting them to create storage space, instead of always buying new things. That is the opposite of what you need to be doing when you have a small space.
This organizer mirror is a perfect example of up-cycling. In the example here, it is used in an entranceway for keys and things like that, but I personally think it would be perfect in a bedroom. Instead of a full vanity, you could use this mirror for all your hair and makeup products. It would even be an ideal place to store your hair tools like straighteners and dryers, to avoid pesky cables trailing around the floor.
5. Opt for double duty furniture
One of the best ways to save space in a small bedroom is by using every piece of furniture to its full potential, especially when it can be used for more than one purpose. Whether it be a stool that opens up to store shoes or a vanity turned desk, there are loads of ways to do this.
If you don’t require a massive desk for work reasons, one of the ways in which you can save space is by using a smaller desk and placing it near your bed so that it acts as a bedside table. In this example, the desk is small enough to fit into this little bedside nook but is still big enough to be able to read or type at. Not only will this save you space, but it will also save you money.
6. Make an easy reach beside caddy
I had never seen something like this before, but I think it is a genius idea. If you were really struggling for space, a bedside caddy like this could even totally remove the need for a bedside table.
This DIY looks incredibly easy to make, and you could pick colors or patterns to suit your room. You would never have the problem of an overloaded beside table again, or a pile of bedside items on the floor if you don’t have one, as this would hold everything from your book to the TV remote control. You can, of course, buy things like this, but I think the idea of making your own is much more unique, and you would achieve a strong sense of accomplishment once it is finished.
7. Disguise your storage as a comfy place to sit
You don’t need to use this bench as a window seat, we aren’t all lucky enough to have beautiful big low windows, but having this anywhere in a bedroom is a great way to add both storage and a comfy place to sit on.
Shelf units like the one that is transformed here are extremely easy to find, and often not too expensive, just be sure to buy a sturdy enough one to sit on. If you covered this with a nice fabric and loads of cozy pillows, no one would ever know that it was supposed to be a shelf unit. These types of units often come with baskets or drawers that can slot into the gaps, so you could use them to hold your things or just as easily use the open spaces for books or shoes.
8. Use handy hanging storage on the backs of doors
If you take the time to make or purchase a proper organizer like this one, then the backs of doors, that being main room doors and wardrobe doors alike, can be the perfect place to store a whole range of things.
This example has used the door hanging to store gift wrapping materials, and I like the fact that they have stuck to a theme of what to keep in it. I personally would probably use it for either work supplies or beauty related items; the opportunities really are endless though. An organizer like this is far more efficient than simple hooks, and it could remove the need for a set of drawers without taking up any floor space whatsoever.
9. Find creative ways of organizing your workspace
Being the organizational freak that I am, I absolutely adore the look of this giant pegboard for organizing all your stationary bits and bobs.
I am constantly muddling up bits of paper and letters, so I would make sure to create mine to have different pockets to sort them into. I also think this would work really well as a kind of inspiration board, and if you had any space on it after covering it in holders for all your things, you could stick up inspirational quotes or photos of family and friends. Storage doesn’t have to be boring, and this pegboard is the perfect example of that.
10. Make your storage a feature piece in your room
Coats, jackets, and scarves are a vital aspect of life in a cold country, so I can’t really get away with not having a place to hang things in my bedroom.
Stumbling across this hanging rack turned photo shelf made me realize that I could make my storage pretty, and that would stop me from getting frustrated that I couldn’t hide it away anywhere. I personally love the idea of using the shelf above this hanging rack to display photos or posters, but you could easily adjust the depth of it to turn it into a bookshelf, or even place a mirror above it and create a makeshift vanity.
11. Consider the option of built-in storage
This won’t work everywhere, as landlords of rented properties probably wouldn’t be a fan of you cutting into the walls, so make sure to check first. If built-in storage is a possibility for you, however, then it is a great one.
I used to have built in wardrobes and they were a lifesaver, although it is too easy to just throw things into and forget about them. There are loads of really cool ideas for built-in storage, like hiding it behind a mirror that then opens to store all your beauty items, or covering it with a poster or a piece of wall art to really conceal it. You could be creative with this, and also personalize the interior of the storage to suit your needs.
12. Utilize those corners
It can often be a pain trying to figure out what to do with corner spaces, especially in a small room, as many things are too bulky or just won’t quite fit right.
These floating corner shelves would be absolutely perfect in any corner space, even squeezed into a tiny area like in this example. You could make as many as you want, in whatever material and color you want, and they really look easy to make. Storage reasons aside, these would also make a great feature piece in a room, especially if you covered them in prettily potted plants or beautiful photo frames.
13. Turn your jewelry into artwork
I am beyond fed up with keeping my jewelry in a box and having to untangle the mother of all tangles every time I want to wear any of it.
Not only is this coat hanger DIY practical in solving that problem, but it also looks incredibly pretty. I like that the one item is suitable for hanging all types and lengths of jewelry, from little earnings to necklaces that go on for miles, and it is so incredibly simple to make. All you need is a wooden coat hanger, which you probably already have, and some looped screws, then you’re good to go. No need for a chunky jewelry box to take up your desk space ever again.
14. Turn your headboard into a storage haven
I really love the look of this headboard storage, and even if I didn’t need it for storage purposes, then I would probably use it anyway to display pretty books or plants.
It is a bit of a DIY masterpiece, so maybe call in some help for this one, but the outcome is incredible, and something you could use for years and years. You could paint the wood, or even paste on patterned wallpapers if you really wanted to jazz it up and make it your own. You don’t necessarily want your bed surrounded by various units and drawers, so by incorporating storage into your headboard, you are avoiding that situation while still efficiently utilizing the space.
15. Shelving doesn’t have to be boring
A recurring theme with really effective storage for small spaces seems to be that it is off the ground. This makes a lot of sense, and having different shelf options in a room removes the need for bookcases or multiple sets of drawers.
I like the idea of this round hanging shelf a lot because it serves a purpose as well as looking really sleek and cool. When I first saw this photo, I imagined that it would be extremely difficult to recreate, but it is, in fact, the opposite. These would look amazing in any room in the house, and a great way to add some storage space and style at the same time. I will definitely be making one of these; it could be fun to make a couple in different sizes too.
16. Think of space saving ways to store your shoes
I don’t know about you, but shoes are something that I always struggle to find efficient storage for. Either they’re piled on top of each other because there just isn’t enough space to lay them all out, or they’re taking up endless floor space being all lined up together.
This shoe grid looks like it would solve both those problems. You could easily see all of your shoes if they were organized like this, and the fact that it is sitting up means that it takes up a fraction of the space that it would if they were all laid out. This grid could be used for multiple other things as well, like threading scarves or towels through it, and it could be displayed in your room or hidden away in a wardrobe.
17. Convert to a hanging laundry hamper
Having a massive laundry basket sitting in your room is only going to hinder you on your way to being storage savvy.
Making your own hanging laundry hamper to hang on the back of a door or a bedpost is simple, as is shown in this DIY. All the materials needed can be cheaply sourced in craft shops if you don’t have them already, and you will be left with something that you can use most likely forever if it doesn’t go through too much strenuous activity. I love the pretty floral pattern used in this example, and I would probably go for something similar, but you could just as quickly go for a plain neutral color if that takes your fancy.
18. Purchase some hanging rods and get creative
I have come across so many ways of using hanging rods as storage to save space in a small room.
This scarf storage is excellent because it avoids having them all piled up on the back of the door, making them less likely to fall off and far easier to see. With these rods arranged like this, the scarves are going to be kept in a much better condition, and you are utilizing this small space behind the door that could be used for little else. You could also purchase rods like these to hang storage baskets from, or add hooks onto the rods so that you can attach jackets and coats from them.
19. Embrace the wonder that is the hanging drawer
My mom always had hanging drawers like these, and that is something that I have taken into my own homes with me too.
They are incredibly useful, inexpensive and very lightweight, so absolutely perfect for storage. There really are no limits on what you could use them for, in the past, I have used them for accessories like hats and gloves, trainers, T-shirts, the lot. You could have these hanging on a wall on display or, like I do, inside a wardrobe if you have one. You could get away with not having drawers for clothes if you had one of these, an especially for college dorm rooms these are a perfect way of maximizing storage space with limited resources.
I feel like my bedrooms from now on are going to be entirely sorted storage wise, and there will be no bits and bobs lying around visible to the naked eye. It is important to be able to make a space suit you, and having adequate storage in it is a great way of doing that.
I am already a lover of the hanging drawers, I have more than I care to admit, but I really want to give some of the other ideas a go too. The headboard looks really cool although I would definitely have to enlist some help in the DIY process, and the storage mirror would be convenient.
Are you storage smart in your bedroom? Have any of these ideas inspired you to change up your space for the better?