Stylish storage hacks will help to create a truly functional and curated room by helping you to consider every inch of space.
From making the most of every nook and cranny (think alcoves, sloped corners and under-stairs storage) to decorative baskets, bespoke built-ins, and multifunctional furniture, there’s plenty of ways to up your organizing game with the right storage ideas.
Need a little inspiration to get organized? See more expert tips from top designers below on how to improve your home’s storage potential.
Table of Contents
Storage hacks for a streamlined space
1. Make use of awkward spaces
Make the most of every nook and cranny in any room to optimize storage and minimize clutter.
‘Use your imagination and make really clever use of alcove shelving, sides of chimney breasts, and hallways by creating simple, organized storage,’ says Helen Parker, creative director at deVOL.
‘An unused space in your home can easily become an invaluable place to neatly store your things without protruding into your living space. A beautiful set of painted doors behind which you keep your clutter is sensible streamlining.’
The alcove in the dining room above has been filled to capacity with an attractive dresser that could be home to anything from ceramics and tableware, to overspill from the kitchen, including glassware, tea towels, or even dried goods.
2. Go wild with wicker baskets
A wicker basket is a multitasking marvel that can hide clutter, while leaving it accessible and chic at the same time.
They can be popped in cubby holes, built-in storage, sideboards, or left standalone for a handy hiding place for everyday necessities.
‘It’s no secret that I love wicker baskets,’ says interior designer Marie Flanigan. ‘If you’re looking for aesthetically pleasing and functional storage in any room, these are always my go-to accessory.
‘I also love how wicker baskets make brilliant living room toy storage ideas, keeping items camouflaged but, because there’s no lid, bits and pieces are easily accessible to little hands.’
Baskets are also a great option to add to a console for a stylish hallway storage idea, or to a unit for a handy laundry room storage idea.
Jessica Davis, of JL Design, adds: ‘If built-ins aren’t an option, decorative baskets can be a much more cost effective option.’
3. Create cabinets around your entertainment center
For a luxurious look that keeps your living room ideas inspirational and contemporary, opt for a media or fireplace storage wall.
‘One major organizing trend we have seen in recent years is for a feature wall of joinery, incorporating either a fireplace, TV or both,’ says Hux London.
‘Particularly suited to more contemporary schemes, these feature walls work equally well in basement cinema rooms, luxurious living rooms and open plan kitchen areas. Where gas or gel fires are desirable non-combustible materials are essential, such as polished plaster and natural stone.’
‘Creating cabinets on the lower level of an entertainment center is a sleek way to create more storage space,’ agrees Lindye Galloway, Founder + CCO of Lindye Galloway Studio + Shop.
‘Built-ins on the side of a fireplace can have closed cabinets or open shelves that allow for a mix of organization and decor.’
4. Invest in a cool oversized credenza
With the likes of Sarah Sherman Samuel carrying out designer IKEA hacks to create cool, affordable credenzas, you can rest assured they’re an investment worth making – from an aesthetic and organizational perspective.
‘Credenzas provide a great deal of added storage space,’ says Kim Armstrong, Owner + Principal Designer of Kim Armstrong Interior Design.
‘If your room is large enough you can use one up against a wall, use one as a sofa table, or use one as a media cabinet,’ she continues. ‘Armoires are also a great piece to house miscellaneous items if you can find the wall placement for it.’
You can choose from a host of credenza styles, from Scandi-inspired wall back tones to decorated Art Deco options.
‘We love adding an oversized sideboard to family rooms and using bins to keep clutter out of sight,’ adds Lauren Lerner, Founder + Principal Designer of Living With Lolo.
5. Add wall-to-wall built-ins
Built-ins are always recommended for the ultimate storage solution and can accommodate a lot of organization needs.
Take it wall-to-wall in any room to make the most of the space available. Built-ins can create perfect bookcases in a snug, as seen in the image by Neptune above, or perfect storage spots for living room storage ideas or dining rooms.
‘Adding built-ins in any room is great for storing all kinds of games, toys, books or other household items,’ says Kim Armstrong.
‘The deeper you are able to make the cabinets, the bigger the items you can tuck away out of sight!’
6. Build bunk beds or a mezzanine deck in the kids’ rooms
Bunk beds with built-in storage and mezzanine decks are fresh kids’ room ideas that will help keep the space clear.
Nick Cryer, of Berkeley Place, says: ‘Mezzanine decks in bedrooms with high ceilings introduce funky bed or play spaces in kids rooms and free up more floor area.’
Wall-hung units, as seen in the cute room by Maestri Studio above, are also fantastic storage hacks, and can be used in any room.
7. Consider a storage window seat
Window seat ideas are a fantastic multitasking piece of furniture, whether built-in or in the form of a good freestanding ottoman bench.
Not only do they provide extra seating, perhaps a spot to sit and take your shoes off in a mudroom or hallway (above), but you can lift up the top to reveal more storage space, too.
8. Use a chest of drawers as a bedside table
When it comes to furniture, doubling up is a great bedroom storage idea. By using a small chest of drawers as a bedside table, you create an organizig hack that offers you more storage without taking up more room.
‘Don’t be afraid to use unusual furniture pieces to work in the space,’ says Camilla Clarke, Creative Director at Albion Nord. ‘A bedside table doesn’t always have to be a bedside table.’
Other organizing hacks in the bedroom include investing in a divan or ottoman bed for extra storage, or adding an ottoman bench at the end of the bed.
9. Introduce glass-fronted cabinets or antique dressers
Glass-fronted cabinets and dressers are the perfect blend of form and function, blending good looks with top organizational skills.
Use them as a bathroom storage idea to store and showcase your towels, pretty products and body brushes, or in a kitchen as extra storage for your ceramics, books and glasses.
A cabinet with added drawers means storage is more versatile, allowing you to store anything from linens and tea towels to plates or serving platters.
10. Work with hidden storage in the kitchen, hallway and bathroom
Hidden storage will keep you perfectly organized in those areas where there’s often things you don’t want on show (think kitchen essentials, unsightly shoes in the hallway, or private products in the bathroom).
Graeme Smith, Head of Retail and Commercial Design at Life Kitchens, says: ‘Hidden workspaces and drinks cabinets are preferred features chosen for the kitchen with a particular focus on items being hidden by clever mechanisms such as pocket doors, which are a great solution for both broken and open plan kitchens.’
He continues: ‘Hidden storage features are also becoming much more popular as consumers become interested in clever storage and maximizing on space.
‘From pull-out and pull-down features, hidden pantries and multifunctional drawers, we are now considering storage options for the kitchen more than ever.’
Wall paneling ideas are a visually pleasing front to hide hidden storage behind. Panel your entire wall and hide the television and children’s toys in hidden cupboards around it, or fill the walls with paneled hidden storage in the kitchen. This can be done by creating a storage space and paneling the cupboard fronts.
‘Full-height paneled bespoke cabinetry also works fantastically well in a hallway,’ says Irene Gunter, of Gunter & Co. ‘In this Chelsea townhouse (above), a wealth of coat and shoe storage is hidden behind the timber paneling.
‘The beauty of this slatted design is that you can’t immediately see what’s storage and what’s not. In addition, timber is a longer-term solution than painted walls, which get scuffed quickly.’
How can I declutter my house with storage?
There’s no easier way to declutter your house quickly than investing in some stylish baskets and storage bins.
Jessica Davis, Owner + Principal Designer of JL Design, says: ‘Storing toys in storage ottomans, baskets, or bins is a chic, fast way to clear clutter.’
‘Large, sturdy baskets are a versatile way to organize and hide things like toys or blankets,’ adds Lindye Galloway.
Freestanding shelves are also an easy and swift way to clear up the clutter. ‘Add shelves to open areas to make the most of empty spaces,’ say Jen and Mar, co-founders of Interior Fox.
‘Floating shelves or a tall bookshelf that extends to the ceiling will provide ample amounts of storage and a place to showcase decorative items.’