life in a tiny apartment.

April 9, 2014

Tip #99: Shoe racks.

This is more of an update than a tip. But if your closet is anything like ours, it just might be a tip. (Just remember that what works in my space might not work in yours, and vice versa. K?).

I’ve written before about shoes and the helpfulness of choosing versatile storage options, even when they’re hidden. In our new apartment, we’re lucky to have pretty ample closet space, but since we’ll be allocating half of it to creating a little private space for bébé (both things being real a WIP), we’re still sharing just slightly more space than we had in our old place.

To take advantage of our closet floor space, we decided to replace an old hanging shoe rack that we kept in our classy padlocked hall closet, with something that could stow shoes down below.

When space is limited I find that traditional shoe racks take up more room than they’re worth. Like it or not, in a tiny apartment you’ve got to be able to squish sandals and sneaks (Example A), When you’re dealing with a shoe rack that provides single spaces for shoes to hang (ahem), you might find space wasted, or, more likely, your shoes all over the ground.

Since we found ourselves with more room, but not more money to buy lovingly used vintage crates (dagnabbit), I opted instead for new simple wooden crates (in two styles). They’re not honestly the most eco-friendly options in the world, but they were the most affordable, made from real wood and not composites, and I decided to compromise. The divided crates are helping to preserve some of my more delicate shoes from getting overly squashed and being able to stack them below James’s shirts means we have all of our shoes in one spot.

To each her own, but I wouldn’t be thrilled about repurposing a metal shoe rack as side table, but I’d happily do the same with a simple wooden crate.

Tiny apartment survival tips #1 – 98, right here.

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  • Reply Sam | ashore April 10, 2014 at 2:19 am

    they're the lovingly used vintage crates of tomorrow!

  • Reply Erin April 10, 2014 at 3:18 pm


  • Reply Rachel April 10, 2014 at 6:22 pm

    Just came across this series. Love it! Thanks for sharing all the helpful tips. My husband and I just moved into a tiny apartment. I wrote about our experience here:

    • Reply Erin April 11, 2014 at 12:24 am

      Thanks so much for visiting! Good luck in your new digs!

  • Reply Carol on Carroll April 10, 2014 at 7:53 pm

    these look super handy for all kinds of things. do you think that they could be hung on the wall too?

    • Reply Erin April 11, 2014 at 12:21 am

      Oh, I'm sure you could figure out a way!

  • Reply dtm April 10, 2014 at 9:32 pm

    How did you divide the crates into compartments?

    • Reply Erin April 11, 2014 at 12:21 am

      Two of them came with dividers! (Links above!)

  • Reply Brooke Manolis April 11, 2014 at 2:07 am

    I really like this idea a lot! We did something like this for our "entryway" (aka the space between our front door and the living room to the immediate right) and it worked well!

  • Reply Krish Banzet December 18, 2014 at 9:56 am

    The customer service is also impeccable. They will go out of their way to make you feel welcome, promptly responding to your emails or calls. They take their time explaining things to you. I was looking to find more about this self storage web site design.

  • Reply January 9, 2015 at 3:24 pm

    The shoe storage is great! I love it!

  • Reply Hannah January 26, 2015 at 9:14 am

    Love this idea! Question – are those Saltwaters black or navy??

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