I love our house. It’s charming, quirky, cozy, and so many other positive adjectives. But I’m going to be honest for a minute with you guys here. Our house virtually has no closet space. Zip. There is one regular sliding-door type closet it in my craft room, but that’s basically it. We don’t even have a proper master closet – just a couple of pipes screwed into the wall! So as you can imagine, if we don’t have a master closet, we definitely don’t have a linen closet. Which is also definitely a problem.
The previous home owners left a very ugly, very odd wicker/glass/half-painted shelving unit in one of the bathrooms. That my cats liked to also use as a scratching post. Yup. So when we moved in we quickly just piled on our linens and extra toilet paper and all the junk you would expect to put in a hall linen closet onto it. Only this shelving unit was all open so all of our stuff made for a very pretty picture like this:
Not only did our guests using the toilet have to look directly at the litter box, but they also had to stare at this monstrosity? It was almost too much to ask of them. Or us! I would cringe every time I walked in. I’d try to refold stuff or make it look nicer, but it would quickly get messed up again from us pulling out pillowcases or towels or the cats getting into it and making little beds for themselves…
Blech. This is real life friends and this is what we were dealing with. I’m sure some of you can relate! So when my husband asked me what I wanted to do for my birthday (the 7th on Labor Day) I, without hesitation, said ‘go to Ikea!!’ I guess it truly affirms that I’m a blogger if I want to spend my birthday with a million of my closest friends at Ikea’s Labor Day sale. (And yes, we made it out alive and with our marriage still intact 😉 Booyah.)
While we were there I picked out a gorgeous weathered-gray looking cabinet that I knew would be perfect for organizing the above mess. I threw in a couple of bins and baskets and knew that we would get it looking spiffed up in no-time! After spending my birthday evening staying up till 10:30 putting everything together, we had this pretty masterpiece:
Ahh, my soul! Organization, cleanliness and great furniture give me the warm fuzzies 🙂 Now how did I get from the previous mess to this organized gem, do you ask? Here’s how I did it:
1. Edit, donate, throw away – When we removed all the linens and supplies from the previous shelf, I took a look at every single piece and decided if I wanted to keep it or not. I got rid of a lot of extra sheets we didn’t need (you really only need 2 sets per bed) as well as miscellaneous college linens or towels that were too ripped or stained to be of use.
2. Refold and group like items – Once I had gotten rid of everything else, I divided what was left into categories (washcloths, hand towels, big towels, sheets, fitted sheets, pillowcases, etc.), folded everything nicely, and stacked the piles.
3. Utilize bins and baskets – Bins and baskets are seriously your best friends! I put my least used items (tablecloths, seasonal linens, extra curtains, etc.) into some soft-sided bins and put them in the bottom of the cupboard part of the shelf so they were out of the way. For slightly more used but still not frequently-used items, like pillowcases and sheets, I put in the gray bins on the bottom of the shelf – that way they are still accessible, but I don’t have to look at them everyday. And for items used frequently (like washcloths and hand towels) I made sure to either put them in a basket I could easily pull from, or on a shelf in the cupboard where they are easy to grab.
It’s seriously SO much easier to find what I need now. No more digging through piles of junk! It’s classy, sophisticated, and is the perfect storage space for all of our linens even if we don’t have a traditional linen or hall closet. Plus it just completes this bathroom space so well.
So, see, it really IS possible to organize all of your linens without a closet! This piece will definitely serve us well until we move into a house with more closet space (which will definitely be on my must-have list next time around)!
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Do you have a dedicated linen closet?