Even if you are not a fashionista your bedroom must be able to accommodate a lot. Books, jewelry and extra sheets and blankets all take up space. So do books and jewelry, not to mention things like extra sheets and blankets.
That’s why “storage is critical,” said Shannon Eddings, an interior designer based in Austin, Texas — especially true in small homes, where there are few places to hide clutter.
As Ms. Eddings noted, “Not everyone has big closets.” And in truly compact bedrooms, there may be no closets at all. There are many ways to maximize the space in even the smallest of bedrooms. Add Cabinetry Around The Bed
The bedroom’s bed is often the biggest object, so the space around it and above it can be wasted. To make the most of these areas, one solution is to build a do-it-all headboard wall with integrated storage.
Regan Baker, an interior designer in San Francisco, has designed custom cabinetry for exactly that purpose. She said that she would install floor-to ceiling cabinetry to maximize the space in a room. The unit’s sides have taller storage compartments that look like closets. A full-length mirror is mounted on the backside of one of the doorways. Baker explained that by combining so many features in a single item, it is not necessary to have many pieces of furniture. And because it’s a beautifully crafted piece, “it’s the focal point.”
Create a Sleeping Nook
Another way to add built-in cabinetry and shelving is with a sleeping nook. Ms. Eddings created a lilac sleeping nook in Austin, which included integrated shelving, lighting, and closet-like cabinetry on one side, and a twin-size trundle under the main mattress. In one project, she designed a wall of storage that was floor-to ceiling, with shelves, cabinets, and a Murphy hidden behind panels that looked like doors. The bedroom now doubles as a home office.
“We’re doing that more and more,” she said, “because it provides a lot of floor space in a small room.”
Use a Dresser as a Night Stand
If you’re not ready to invest in custom cabinetry, a simpler approach is to use furniture that serves multiple functions.
Most night stands offer a minimal amount of storage, with a shallow drawer or two. A larger chest of draws can be used as an alternative. Ms. June sometimes uses mismatched pieces to create an eclectic look. She also places a pair of matching dressers on either side of the bed. Use the space under the bed. Companies like Flou and West Elm offer storage beds that allow the mattress to be tipped up to reveal the space beneath. Some designers design their own pieces and many furniture companies produce them. Baker designed bunk beds that have storage drawers integrated into the base. Yvonne McFadden is an Atlanta-based interior designer who designed a bed that has a large drawer. It was made for a Roswell, Ga. home. The drawer is currently used to hold a trundle, but it could also be used for other items. She said that the closet was very small. We wanted to make the storage easy and fun, and we made sure that there was enough of it. “
Building a Better Closet
Don’t overlook your existing storage space. If your closet is only equipped with a shelf and a rod, it may not be the most efficient. To make the most of a closet, Ms. June suggested taking stock of everything you need to store and then outfitting the interior with a system that gives everything its place.
“I always measure my clients’ clothing,” she said, “to make sure we put shelves and hang rods at the right heights.”
That might mean installing two levels of hanging rods for shorter items and numerous shelves that can hold shoes and bags. Ms. June often uses Elfa products from the Container Store, which are adjustable, so the components can be repositioned as needed.
Sometimes, she changes the shape of the closet itself. “We used an Elfa system inside that closet to really maximize the space,” she said. “Then we used an Elfa system inside that closet to really maximize the space,” she said.
Ashley Macuga, the principal designer of Collected Interiors, a firm in San Carlos, Calif., once removed the doors and contents of a closet to add built-in drawers and cabinets inside.
“Instead of awkward doors, where it was difficult to access everything, we decided to take them down and do a full built-in,” Ms. Macuga said. “The drawers are where they have most of their clothes, so that also allowed us to avoid a dresser in the room.”
Not every solution requires building or buying big pieces of furniture. One of the easiest ways to increase storage is by adding large-scale containers.