I don't want a 1000 pound dresser
March 13, 2008 10:45 AM   Subscribe

I'm moving to a new place and need to know what kinds of simple items I can use to furnish my place and keep it looking neat

I've just moved to a new apartment. I'm trying to live a spartan lifestyle, so bulky furniture is out. Still, I have some things that cannot be thrown away and need a place to stay.

Do yoiu have any low cost and nonbulky ideas for storage? I don't have very much closet space either, so these should be solutions that can be put into a room without looking too obstrusive or out of place.

posted by stedman15 to Home & Garden (8 answers total) 3 users marked this as a favorite
Check out Apartment Therapy for ideas.
Tiny Living also has stuff for minimalist apartments. It is a bit pricey though.
posted by special-k at 10:51 AM on March 13, 2008

one thing i've seen used quite nicely for small odds and ends: on the back-side of a door (front door?) hang one of those clear plastic shoe racks (where the shoes go in vertically). put your keys, cell phone, and any other odds and ends in this so you don't have a table-top or junk-drawer cluttered with stuff that you can never find.
posted by garfy3 at 10:57 AM on March 13, 2008

Here's the thing. Any one piece of storage furniture that is non-bulky is not going to hold much stuff. So you'll need a lot of different pieces. And that creates clutter, in addition to being less efficient storage.

Contrary to that, you can get a wall-full of Ikea floor-to-ceiling cabinetry that will look sorta built in and offer copious storage. An approach like this will be less obtrusive than a bunch of small stuff, or just leaving all your stuff exposed on shelves, hooks, etc.

Ikea's furniture isn't the greatest, although it's OK, and the price makes it a good deal. And even if you don't buy anything from them, it's interesting to walk through one of their stores because they have several complete apartment layouts showing what you can do.
posted by adamrice at 11:37 AM on March 13, 2008

I'm not sure what kind of storage you are looking for. From your title I'm going to assume you need clothing storage. How about a garment rack? You can hang most things up and put folded jeans and such at the bottom. This one is 46 bucks, but you can find them for less money if you want to forgo the canvas cover.

Also, plastic drawers can be had for little money. Also, under the bed storage containers are inexpensive.

Chrome carts come in all shapes and sizes and are useful and inexpensive. You can place books on them, plants, even a television and stereo equipment.
posted by LoriFLA at 11:54 AM on March 13, 2008

I really like open cube bookcases, like this one from Ikea. I have a wall lined with a couple in my office; I keep all kinds of stuff in there, from books to paint to AV stuff to projects in progress to files. Bonus: if you fill it well, it becomes a sort of pleasing wall decoration in itself. Minus: things get dusty pretty fast.

You could also look at getting some sturdy floating shelves, like these, and put all your stuff on them. Again, things would need frequent dusting.

What are you trying to store?
posted by peachfuzz at 12:52 PM on March 13, 2008

Collapsable, zippered storage boxes that can slide under a bed. Ikea sells them. Especially good for seasonal clothes or bulk items like socks.
posted by pandanom at 1:03 PM on March 13, 2008

The Container Store and Ikea have products that may help you.
posted by watson415 at 1:16 PM on March 13, 2008

Seconding the clear shoe organizer over a door. Be sure it's clear so you can see the contents of the pockets at a glance. I use one for pens, batteries, extra water bottles, all sorts of stuff that ordinarily would need cabinet or drawer space.

A similar product is a jewelry organizer that hangs in a closet (but takes up no more room than a shirt on a hanger. It has smaller pockets, obviously, so is good for jewelry, watches, sewing notions, etc. - all those wee tiny little thingies that you can never find a good spot for. I have one of these, and it works very nicely and doesn't take up much room.

I love hooks:

I use over-the-door hooks (similar to these) for hanging bulky jeans by their belt loops. It uses wasted space behind the door and frees up my closet a little.

I use a nice set of expandable hooks (like these, but wooden and nicer and made for hanging on a wall) that hang on the wall for winter coats (we have no "coat" closet close to any outside doors).

Small hooks are useful close to your entrance/exit door for hanging your keys, purse, grocery bags, etc.

If your bed is too low to the ground to make use of the space under it, you can raise it with bed risers.
posted by SuperSquirrel at 7:31 AM on March 14, 2008

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