Small closets are a possibility, especially if they are smartly arranged to handle all of your clothing storage needs. They can transform the way adults’ bedrooms work and help kids keep their bedrooms clean and their clothes looking good, too.
We’ve selected our favorite small closet designs to show that your bedroom ideas don’t actually need a lot of square footage – just clever tricks to maximize the limited space you have.
Ideas for small closets
If you’re looking for small closet ideas that are ideal for a smaller space, this is a great place to start. We’ve rounded up our best ideas for closets, small walk-in closets and walk-in closets to inspire your bedroom makeover.
1. Glass doors allow light to flow through
“Solid doors can seem a bit heavy on the eyes in a small closet, so opt for a glass front instead,” says Melanie Griffiths, Managing Editor, Period Living. “They’ll reflect the light perfectly – even more so if you paint the frames white, the downside is of course having to keep arranging a small closet to perfection with clothes hanging on sleek hangers.”
2. Take advantage of the alcoves
Warm, elegant neutrals are favorites of the moment, and when paired with aged brass hardware, they exude a sense of calm and restfulness. Mixing them with woods, burlaps and natural fabrics around the space brings a feeling of airy opulence.
“In our Bespoke Design collection, we’ve seen an increase in contemporary shaker styles that have elegance without being too fussy and add texture to a space,” says Alice Hood, Senior Design Consultant, Roundhouse (opens in a new tab).
3. Brighten up a small closet
Good closet lighting ideas are essential, especially in small bedrooms. The key to a well-lit closet – or wardrobe – is to introduce multiple layers that integrate both ambient, decorative and task lighting seamlessly.
“Small closets will need additional lighting, especially where natural light is difficult to tap into – that’s where LEDs come in,” says Jennifer Ebert, Digital Editor, Homes & Gardens. “You can play around with them to give a theatrical feel, and lining the inside of your closet is also worth considering, make it a design feature when the rest of your scheme is plain.”
4. Use every square inch of bedroom space
“When space is tight, it’s worth considering where you can ‘make some’,” says Melanie Griffiths, Managing Editor, Period Living. “In this case the space has come on either side of the door to the bathroom and gives this room two matching closets that have been custom built to fit.”
5. Share storage space with a mini home office
“Sharing two items can be helpful, as you can see here with this idea of a compact closet desk designed in the small closet space,” says Lucy Searle, editor, Homes & Gardens. “It’s a great option and you can use the desk as a dressing table in the morning – the dual purpose design is essential and very useful in rooms that are small.”
6. Make the most of the space behind the bed
“While some homes can’t take an entire room to create a new walk-in closet, customers are becoming more and more creative with the spaces in their homes,” says Phillip Nagel, Director of Neatsmith. (opens in a new tab). “Go for open shelving (no door required) and definitely include LED lighting – as well as being practical, they will make even the smallest space special.”
7. Choose beautifully textured doors
“Incorporate your closet doors into your design scheme – making a feature of your doors can work well if they’re made from the same wood that’s used elsewhere, such as the shelves in this space,” says editor Andrea Childs , Country Homes & Interiors . “It will make them more cohesive and therefore fit better in the tight space.”
8. Choose a flexible freestanding closet
“Freestanding closets have their place and look best in older properties because details can mimic the architectural elements of a room,” says Andrea Childs, Managing Editor, Country Homes & Interiors. “Another benefit is that if you move, you can take it with you, which can’t happen if you have a custom closet.”
9. Bespoke beauty inside and out
“It used to be that built-in wardrobes were simply about hidden storage, but now there are so many options for compartmentalizing and illuminating interior space that joy can be found within,” says Alice Hood, senior consultant in design, round house (opens in a new tab). ‘TV shows like ‘Getting Organized with The Home Edit’ and Marie Kondo’s ‘Tidying Up’ have shown us what fun can be found in organisation, and whether it’s watches, knitwear or of wooden bead necklaces, I’ve found that most people have a part of their wardrobe that they are passionate about and need to show off.
10. Double the size of your small closet
“Create the illusion of more space with small closets through the clever use of mirrors, which not only serve as a practical addition to the walk-in closet, but will also help fill the space with extra natural light,” says Caroline Milns, interior design manager at Zulufish. (opens in a new tab).
“Opting for a fox mirror will give a timeless sense of glamour, especially when combined with a softer, more understated material palette such as the soft pink of the bespoke wardrobes and the wooden floor of this closet. A serene palette like this is a brilliant combination to create a harmonious backdrop with the many colors and patterns revealed once the doors are opened.