Thursday, January 26, 2012

Behind door number one: Closet and cabinet door storage

I'm really too young for a Monty Hall / "Let's Make a Deal" reference, but here I go anyway. I understand that contestants would wear crazy costumes, and get groped by the host, then choose one door out of three. If you picked the right door, you'd get a car or something, and if you chose the wrong door, you'd get a goat. (Did they get to keep the goat? I would totally like a goat as a pet.)

But even though they might not want to bring back the show (maybe the host was too handsy), you can still play at home! And in the home version, EVERY door is a winner. The prize is… more storage space!

Well, it's a good prize if you live in a tiny-ass apartment, anyway. Here's a collection of all the different storage ideas that are hidden behind your closet and cabinet doors. (And one note before you try this at home: make sure you can close the door with your new rack or organizer on the back of the door BEFORE you install it, duh.)

This floor-to-ceiling closet door rack from Ana White, Homemaker has the added support of rolling casters at the bottom. It helps distribute the weight of the rack and its contents, while still gliding along and making it easy to open the closet door.

If you find your cleaning supply closet in need of cleaning, sort your various bottles and cans by type of cleaning job in racks mounted to the door of your closet. From Better Homes and Gardens.

Keep reading for more ideas for the kitchen and bathroom...

Rattling those pots and pans is only fun when you're doing it on a 1950s rock n' roll tune. Keep your pot and pan lids from rolling around your cabinet by sliding them into a towel rack mounted on the inside of the door. From Martha Stewart via Apartment Therapy.

Dog owners everywhere can sympathize with the sight of under-sink cabinets overflowing with plastic bags to keep handy if Buster has to do his business. To keep them under control, Family Handyman shows you that all you gotta do is mount an empty rectangular tissue box to the inside of a cabinet door, and stuff the bags inside.

For the less handy, Better Homes and Gardens simply mounted a memo board to the inside of a cabinet, allowing pushpins, clips, and even magnets to be used to hang mini-containers.

As an avid baker, I really love this one. Beckie at Infarrantly Creative mounted hooks to the inside of a kitchen cabinet for all her measuring spoons and cups, with each neatly labeled. Even better, just above it she put a volume/weight conversion chart just above it with a vinyl sticker. Totally genius.

Instead of awkwardly cramming your cutting boards into a cabinet, trying to get them at the exact right angle where they fit without taking up the entire space, Family Handyman shows you how to make a cabinet door rack, where you can slide them in neatly.

Daniel of Manhattan Nest and I have the same dream 1950s-inspired kitchen. ("Those ladies were organized, they had cute stuff, and between sneaked sips of the cooking sherry, they really seemed to have their shit together," he says. He and I should totally dress up and play Mad Men sometime.) He also installed this neat and practical spice rack on the inside of one of his kitchen cabinets. He used a Rationell Variera spice rack from IKEA (which no longer appears to be online), with printable labels from Paper Source.

Why is it that junk drawers always collect packets of ketchup and soy sauce? One inevitably leaks, and the next thing you know everything else inside is covered in a layer of sticky goo with another layer of dust on top. Yeah, I really want to put that on my fries. Instead, organize all your little food odds n' ends with a pocket shoe organizer hung on the inside of a pantry door. If you use a plastic one, you can just wipe down any errant condiments that have escaped their packets. From Money Saving Queen via Lifehacker.

Moving on to the bathroom, we've got another clever IKEA hack in the form of using a KNUFF wooden magazine rack to store your beauty tools out of sight -- because after all, while they make you look pretty, they ain't pretty when they're strewn all over your bathroom counter. From The Suels' Blog.

Similarly, Family Handyman (which is killin' it on the organization front -- so many good ideas!) has a curling iron holster made out of PVC pipe that's mounted to the inside of your cabinet door. This one is a little more tool-specific, so be sure to measure your trusty irons before hitting Home Depot. Don't forget to let your irons cool before putting them away, though!

This ready-made bathroom cabinet rack works just like your showerhead rack -- except it stores those tools that'll electrocute you if you tried to use them in the shower. From HSN via Unplggd.

And finally, we finish up with another tip from Martha. Her idea to mount a piece of galvanized metal to the inside of your medicine cabinet can be used either on the very back of the cabinet, or on the inside of the door. Once in place, you can glue magnets to things like your tweezers, bottles, or even toothbrush, and keep them safely tucked out of sight.


  1. Great blog. Just discovered your site, and look forward to reading more.

    Just a quick question, I noticed that some of these items are from different online stores or collections, but are there certain department stores that would be best to shop for these storage items? I saw IKEA, but as far as stores that you can almost find anywhere? (We're located in a small college town)

  2. They actually did bring back Let's Make a Deal, it's been on for a few years now. Wayne Brady hosts it. :)


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