How to Organize Shoes
A single pair of shoes can say a lot about a woman—so it’s only fair that most women have several pairs of shoes. Between your practical slip-on sneakers, business-casual ready pointed toe flats, and more casual-chic Chelsea boots, all of your shoes serve a stylistic purpose that can change at the flip of a coin depending on how you're feeling or what’s next on your calendar. With so many options before you, you may find your shoe collection to be more of a curse than a blessing.
Believe it or not, a little organization can go a long way, and figuring out how to organize shoes just takes a bit of time, patience and creativity. Even if your shoe collection is rapidly taking over your closet space, creating a functional storage system for your shoes can restore the visual harmony your wardrobe (and your eyes) deserve.
There’s no denying that keeping all of your footwear neatly corralled can be a challenge without some pointed and consistent effort, but there are plenty of tricks and tips that make organizing your shoes straightforward. Read on for some of our best tips for how to organize shoes and revive a sense of order in your wardrobe.
10 Ways to Store Your Shoes
Method #1: Capitalize on your under-bed storage
Saving space in your closet is made possible when you capitalize on your under-bed storage instead. Depending on how much clearance your bed frame grants, you’ll be able to set up sliding drawers or bins underneath your bed that can accommodate shoe collections of all sizes.
Pro-tip: Because under-bed storage isn’t the most accessible way to store your shoes, we recommend strategically organizing. The first step is taking a full inventory of your shoes, and sorting through the pairs you wear regularly and the pairs that are reserved for special occasions. To best catalogue your shoes by bin, drawer, or distance away from your immediate reach, position those you wear most up front and those you wear least toward the back. It may even help to sort by season to ensure the shoes you’re most likely to wear are the most readily available.
Method #2: Furnish with floor trays
Even if you’ve gotten into the habit of taking off your shoes before entering your home, slip-ups happen, guests come over, and dirt eventually gets tracked in. This is especially true for organizers who store their shoes in a closet or bedroom rather than their home’s entryways. Stop dirt in its tracks by furnishing your high-traffic entryways or closet space with rubberized floor trays.
Not only are floor trays a great way to designate space specifically to your shoes, but they’re also perfect for smaller homes and apartments where entryway cubbies or racks may not be a feasible option.
Method #3: Repurpose a bookshelf
Despite their literary designation, bookshelves serve as so much more than mere keepers of books. As the ultimate vertical storage solution for any shoe collection, bookshelves offer a multi-tiered construction that lets you organize your shoes in a uniform manner. Whether you decide to dedicate every tier to shoe storage or make your bookshelf multi-functional—part storage, part book-bearer—this basic piece of furniture is a smart one-stop-shop solution.
Pro-tip: Choose a bookshelf that offers varied shelf sizes to accommodate your shoes of all sizes. Shorter shelves are great for storing ballet flats and sandals while taller shelves provide enough space for your rain boots and thigh-high numbers. Ultimately, you want to saddle yourself up with a bookshelf that perfectly accommodates your needs, and the more eclectic your collection, the more clever you’ll have to be when coming up with ways to store your shoes.
Method #4: Create wearable wall art
Your walls are likely the last place you’d look to for shoe storage solutions, but these barren, blank canvases can perform double duty when you transform them into functional storage spaces. Mounted shelves and cabinets add a level of dimension to any room while giving you additional surfaces to line up your shoes.
Pro-tip: Rather than spotlighting your everyday shoes that have seen their fair share of wear and tear, put your fancier numbers on display. The more pristine the condition of your shoes, the more artful your makeshift exhibit. At the end of the day, the goal is to add to the overall aesthetic of the room, so it’s only fair to pick your most fashionable and polished pairs.
Method #5: Stack up on shoe racks
If you have open floor space available in your closet, a shoe rack or two goes a long way in organizing your footwear. The beauty of shoe racks is that they come in a wide variety of shapes and sizes—whether you’re looking for a simple two-tiered rack or a more elaborate rolling rack, you’ll be able to find exactly what you’re looking for.
Method #6: Utilize unexpected storage space
Those trying to make the most of limited closet space may find themselves between a rock and a hard place looking for extra room to work with. By seeking out unexpected storage spots, like above doors or in empty corners, you may find plenty of vacancies just asking to be remodeled into shoe storage features.
Method #7: Get crafty with wooden crates
Cultivate order out of the chaos that is your sprawling shoe collection with the help of crafty, customizable wooden crates. No matter what kind of interior design theme you’ve got going on in your home, simple wooden features are seamless additions that add a homey, organic touch. Not interested in the wooden look? Sanding and painting wooden crates is a fun art project you can do yourself to best ensure your crates mesh well into your aesthetic landscape.
With four or five wooden crates, you can build an affordable shelving structure that puts all of your flats, boots, sneakers, and sandals on display. The best part? Should you one day decide to downsize your shoe collection, wooden crates double as great storage containers for everything from folded clothing to doggie bags and leashes.
Method #8: Take advantage of vertical space
Empty vertical space is one of the most frustrating things to look at when you’re not quite sure how to put it to beneficial use. You likely have more untapped vertical space in your closet than you realize! Between those empty corners and bare spaces on your racks exist the perfect zones for hanging shoe organizers or additional shelving. No matter how you decide to capitalize on your vertical space, you’ll be able to create a new home for your shoe collection.
Method #9: Make use of an over-the-door organizer
Over the door hanging shoe organizers are a total no-brainer if you’re searching for effective, compact ways to store your shoe collection. Not only are these space-saving organizers a great way to keep your shoes from cluttering your high-traffic floors, but they allow you to put your pretty little numbers on display. This adds a spice of accessibility that is bound to make your daily outfit-picking process infinitely simpler.
Pro-tip: If you’ve got an impressive collection of boots, opt for an over-the-door organizer that features specialized boot hooks. These nifty additions make it easy for you to hang all of your ankle and tall boots without any sagging or unsightly fuss.
Method #10: Reevaluate your closet space
Your closet serves as a home base for all of your clothes, accessories and shoes, and as your style evolves and expands, you may find that your crowded closet is more of a nuisance than a blessing. To relieve yourself from the eventual headache of an overstuffed closet, take the time to reevaluate your space. Whether you’re working with a lavish walk-in closet or a minimalist clothing rack, reassessing and re-organizing your things can effectively create new space for your shoe selection.
Pro-tip: Installing tension rods is an excellent way to create additional storage space out of small, unused areas in your closet. These adjustable fixtures make it easy to manifest a boutique-esque visual appeal that keeps your wardrobe looking neat, pretty, and tidy.