Storage Solutions for Small Bedrooms

Sneaky ways to store everything from shoes to jewelry in your short-on-space bedroom.

By Debra Wittrup


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Amanda closet jewelry
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Shadow Box Jewelry Storage

    Create works of art and keep your jewelry safe and tangle-free at the same time with these shadow jewelry boxes. Use plain shadow boxes with front hinges so that contents are easily accessible. Arrange necklaces, earrings, and bracelets in each box and hang with silk or T pins. Hang the boxes in a grouping on your bedroom wall.

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Jewelry Tabletop Display

    Put your jewelry to work as eye candy with this clever and decorative display. Use tarnished-silver cake pedestals and compotes to arrange your collection on a dresser or tabletop. Add some pretty little collectible dishes to hold smaller pieces, and frame a piece of metal mesh for a dazzling backdrop of suspended necklaces.

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Table It

    Even found furnishings can add a surprising amount of storage and display space in a small footprint. This console table offers lots of surface for showing off collectibles and other possessions. The bracketed shelving above supports and suspends both decorative accents and a few necessities.

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Knee-Wall Storage

    If your bedroom has less than standard-height walls, don't despair. As this bedroom proves, you can stash a lot of stuff along a short wall and still add some attractive decorative elements. Long, low benches provide ample surface storage while baskets and bins underneath keep small things tidy.

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Wall Panel Storage System

    Jazz up a blank wall with common slat board cut in interesting shapes for on-the-wall storage and display. Less expensive than furniture and more fun than storage bins, the slat board is available at home improvement centers in 4x8-foot sheets that can be cut and mounted with ease and painted to match your decor. Use more board to create an instant bedside shelf and headboard for a coordinated look.

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Storage Furniture Headboard

    If you don't have a headboard, turn that deficiency to your advantage with this clever storage idea. Place a free-standing armoire or cupboard behind your bed with the front side facing away from the bed (be sure the back of the piece has a nice finish or paint it to match your bedroom decor). Position the storage piece so that access is easy from the other side and creates a small dressing room behind your bed.

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Bookcase Headboard

    Positioned behind a bed, a wall of bookshelves becomes a decorative miracle worker—it's a headboard, focal point, and display unit all at once. Employ one of the shelves as a bedside table with an alarm clock and reading lamp. Then fill in the rest of the shelving with treasured collectibles, books, or family photos.

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Neat and Nifty Nightstand

    Bedside tables with shelves work best for storage purposes. This simple but hardworking nightstand offers a tabletop surface for a lamp and tray of necessities while a lower shelf holds reading materials and a drawer corrals smaller items. Underneath, a woven storage basket keeps a warm blanket close at hand.

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Bedside Shelving

    If you don't have the luxury of a bedside table, create a dreamy shelf that's made using simple curved brackets and a plain board trimmed with molding. Attach the molding along the front and sides, mitering the corners to give it a more polished look. The small shelf takes up no floor space yet offers an ample surface for an alarm clock, reading material, and decorative accents.

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Bedtime Bookshelf

    When square footage is at a premium, this space-saving alternative to a bedside table is perfect for a bookworm. Paint hymnal holders—available on ebay.com and other online auction sites—and attach them to the wall next to the bed. Hang a wall-mounted lamp beside the bed for a well-lit reading nook.

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Kitchen-Inspired Bedside Storage

    Find unexpected yet convenient storage space under your mattress. Join kitchen cabinet components to fashion a platform bed base. Fill open shelves with baskets of reading material and deep drawers with folded clothing. Top a shallow drawer with a slab of wood or countertop to serve as a pull-out nightstand.

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Storage-Savvy Bedroom

    Creative storage solutions turn this charming bedroom into a calm and tidy haven. A low shelving unit stands in as a footboard while providing a spot to sit down as well as a place to stash stuff in sturdy and colorful baskets. Next to the bed, a stack of flea-market suitcases in graduated sizes makes a unique nightstand. Each suitcase offers plenty of storage space for out-of-season clothing. To elevate your stack, place the suitcases on a painted board screwed to matching painted furniture feet.

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Rolling Under-Bed Storage

    Repurpose an old, battered suitcase for storage underneath your bed. Remove a damaged half from a flea-market suitcase to create an open drawer and add casters to make it conveniently mobile. Stitch up a pretty fabric cover and attach to the suitcase edge with Velcro to keep your stored contents dust-bunny free.

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Boxed In

    Colorful boxes make a pretty accent atop a dresser while also providing additional storage space for those little items and keepsakes that are so easy to misplace. Stack boxes with pretty edging in contrasting colors for visual interest.

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Pretty Storage Closet

    This color-coordinated closet is storage central, decked out with useful accessories. A trio of open shelves along one side places folded items within easy each. Fabric-lined baskets contain everything from bulky linens to delicates. Nestled under the shelving, a small dresser provides valuable drawer space, while a slim bulletin board turns into the perfect spot for hanging hats, scarves, and purses. A shelf surround augments the storage capabilities of a typical rod for hanging clothes.

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Closet-System Storage

    Even if you don't have the luxury of a built-in closet you can have the functionality of one. With a well-planned closet system, you can dedicate a wall of your bedroom to a good-looking storage system that coordinates with your room decor and makes artwork of your wardrobe.

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Flea Market Wardrobe

    A down-at-the-heels $40 flea market dining hutch sheds its roots and, with a few easy modifications, becomes a chic wardrobe in a space-challenged bedroom. Updated with paint and customized with roll-out jewelry drawers and slanted shoe shelving, the retrofitted hutch turns a wall into a storage-and-grooming space set off by a fashion-conscious collage of vivid magazine tear sheets.

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Bookcase Closet

    For a clothing caddy with both open storage and hideaway potential, choose a bookcase with a doored lower section. Arrange shelves to keep stacks of clothing manageable. Show off your favorite purses and hats as decorative elements. Add a bit more privacy with cafe curtains clipped on each end and threaded onto tension rods.

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Make a Pretty Storage Box

    Small touches make your bedroom storage more personal. Here, a standard craft box gets a personality makeover with coats of white primer, white paint, and tissue paper strips applied with a decoupage medium such as Mod Podge. Line the inside with felt held in place by crafts glue.

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