10 Genius Storage Ideas for Small Spaces

When square footage is at a premium, it can feel as though storage solutions will only present themselves with the assistance of magic (if you don’t want to get rid of all your stuff, that is). But thanks to the tiny home movement, no wands or wizards need to be called upon—storage ideas for small spaces are in greater supply than ever. Yes, some require a handyman—the power of a well-made built-in cannot be overstated—but others don’t require more than a rearrangement. Below, we’ve rounded up ten particularly smart and easily adaptable storage ideas for small spaces from the book Small Homes Grand Living, coming June 8 from Gestalten.

Shelf Dividers

If your small space is a studio, you might be trying to find inventive ways to delineate the bed “room” from the living “room” without putting up a wall. Stacking crates or even floating an open shelving unit will provide you with extra space to stash things while you’re at it.

Design: Muuto; Photo: Petra Bindel

Wall-Mounted Seating

If your lease or budget permit it, install a floating bench-shelf low along a wall, or have one fashioned from an inexpensive material like plywood and mounted the way BY Architects did in the room below. Seating that doesn’t clutter floor space? Check.

Design: BY Architects; Photo: Aleksandra Vajd

Hanging Bike Rack

Go big with a fancy pulley system that draws them up out of view, as Tribe Studio did in the home pictured below, or simply screw some vinyl-coated c-hooks into a joist and loop the back tires over them.

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Design: Tribe Studio; Photo: Katherine Lu

Raised Platform

If your ceilings are tall enough, consider adding a raised platform to a room (or part of a room, if you’re in a loft or studio) and you’ll be able to stash all kinds of things within it: suitcases, winter coats, or even a whole extra mattress for when unexpected guests appear on your doorstep.

Design: Nicholas Gurney; Photo: Katherine Lu

Floor Cabinets

Same part of the apartment, different functionality: Build cabinets on top of the floor and you’ll be able to easily compartmentalize—and access—clothes and supplies.

Design: Bogdan Ciocodeicā; Photo: Radu Sandovici

Fold-Down Desk

In many small rooms, it would be crazy to consider making space for a full-size desk. But you can’t write that novel in bed (well, you could, but it sure would be nice to sit on a chair occasionally), so either slip a stool under a console table or find a fold-down desk you can affix to the wall, the way the Danish firm Norm Architects did in this spare black-and-white room.

Design and Photo: Norm Architects

Peg Board Wall

For easy re-arranging, good looks, and an abundance of adjustable storage, consider a pegboard wall, like this cheerful peachy one by Position Collective.

Design: Position Collective; Photo: Balázs Glódi

Banquette Seating

Build a bench in that underutilized corner of the kitchen, top it with a custom cushion, and you’ll only need a round table and two small chairs to make it feel like a legitimate dining area—just be sure it’s the kind of bench you can open from the top, so the storage factor is maxed-out.

Design: Kvart Interiör; Photo: Anders Bergstedt

Convertible Furniture

Instead of opting for single-use pieces, consider adding furniture that can convert easily for use in another way. A drop-leaf table can be a console, a desk, or an all-out dining room table depending on how you set it up. And two consoles, side-by-side, can be rotated to stand back-to-back for bar-height table seating.

Design: A Little Design; Photo: Flat in Taipei

Under-the-Stairs Storage

Yes, you can opt for glamorous built-ins like these from Workstead—or simply get creative with how you arrange furniture in that underutilized nook beneath the stairs. (Just no cupboard bedrooms under the stairs, please.)

Design: Workstead; Photo: Stefanie Brechbuehler

All images excerpted from Small Homes, Grand Living, Copyright Gestalten 2017.

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