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Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Organizing Small Spaces: Stow it Down Under

I love my house, but at just over 1000 square feet its modest size can be a challenge, especially when it comes to storage.  This post will launch a series of posts about organizing your things when space is limited. 

The key to organizing a small home is to maximize functionality by creating multi-purpose spaces.  I have turned the space under my bed into an organized area with plenty of easy-access to regularly-used items.

When we converted our only hallway closet into a media closet to house our computer, internet, and theater-related electronics, I lost my linen closet.  I had just acquired several reasonably priced natural-fiber bins to beautifully organize my linens, but now I had to figure out where to put all of it. 

The solution?  Six-inch bed risers for my California King-sized bed that double the under-the-bed storage space.

I have always stored things under the bed in short containers, but with the bed risers, I can fit larger items and bins under the bed as well.  I put my linens in their nice white bins on the side of the bed that is only a few feet from the wall since my bed and the floor are both dark wood and I didn't want my storage bins to "pop".  I can easily slide out each bin to access the linens.  I also have a box of gift bags and a long under-bed box with other wrapping supplies on this side.

On the other side of the bed, which can be seen from the bedroom doorway, I put purses and bags and rarely-worn clothing in dark rattan baskets and my workout gear in another under-bed box with plenty of room on top for the oft-used yoga mat and hand weights. 

There is even room under the middle of the bed for banker-type boxes with important papers that must be saved, but shouldn’t need to be accessed.  The extra height makes the bed feel more substantial in our room, and hasn’t been a problem for us or our toddler to get in and out of the bed.  

The six-inch bed risers have turned a so-so storage ground into a useful, organized, and easy-to-access space under the bed.

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