Narrow Closet Ideas When An Island Won’t Work

Over the past decade, we have noticed a huge uptick in a request for closet islands. This is understandable, as we are exposed to so many amazing photos of closets with islands. They are incredibly functional, beautiful, and highly recommended for a large walk-in closet or a dressing room.

However, it’s important to note that closet islands are not for everyone. Recently, we have found that clients want an island in spaces that don’t make sense. For instance, if you put an island in a long, narrow closet, it will make what was once a spacious area become too cramped to be functional. It is hard to open the drawers without bumping into shelving, or practically standing in the row of hanging clothes behind you. Not to mention, bending or squatting in a tightly packed closet can get very uncomfortable. No amount of beautiful shelving, hanging space, or drawers will make a closet like this something you enjoy.

My Custom Closet has several narrow closet ideas that, when done correctly, can be just as attractive! By strategically installing shelving, hanging spaces, and drawers on two walls located directly across from each other, we can maximize your storage space while still giving your closet an open, welcoming feel.

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Adding an island to this closet would do nothing but ruin an otherwise perfectly functional (and attractive!) space.

When working with closets like this, the design has to makes sense. You want to be thoughtful in drawer placement; sometimes this means having open shelving directly across from a wall of drawers to make things less awkward when two people are trying to get ready at the same time.

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Take a look at this stunning closet we designed in a 130-year-old farmhouse in Collegeville. Because of the interesting layout of the rooms in this big house, the clients needed to utilize a long hallway-turned-room to accommodate more than 150 pairs of shoes, as well as proper storage for designer clothing for two.

The results were remarkable. We transformed a sprawling galley-style closet with an angled ceiling into an attractive and efficient storage space. The client selected truly beautiful brass hardware to match the textured gray color upgrade for the installation. Add the original wide plank wood floors to the mix, and the contrast between old and new makes the entire closet feel truly warm and inviting.

The vertical space is used to the utmost, you don’t have the hanging sections directly across from each other so that the client does not feel claustrophobic when walking through the space. Additionally, the client was wise to see that drawers across from open shelving made more sense. At the end of the day, the client was thrilled to have a gorgeous closet that is totally magazine- and Pinterest-worthy, both in style and function!

Allow us to have a My Custom Closet humble brag moment here….we will NEVER try it over-sell you. It is more important to us that you have a closet that makes sense, than it is to just “make a sale” and give the client whatever they’re asking for regardless of whether their vision will actually work for the space. We have passed on thousands of dollars of additional closet desires from clients, simply because we know that, in the end, our name is on everything we do. We want to give our clients the closet they desire, but also to create an installation that functions properly and is pleasing to the eye.

Closet organization is suppose to simplify your life and create an organized, stream-lined look for all of your belongings. Cramming in more drawers or an island may not necessarily be best. It can be counter-productive, and can often double your bottom line closet expense. We will be honest with you and tell you if it’s not a good idea. Our creative narrow closet ideas may save you a bundle of money.

Click here to start planning your dream closet design with My Custom Closet.

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