Jana Ratzenbek
Jana Ratzenbek

Latest posts by Jana Ratzenbek (see all)

So you live in a nice and cozy lit­tle home ? You love every square inch of your cot­tage, but there is some­thing you wish you had more of.  It’s some­thing that every large home has an ample sup­ply of, but your home doesn’t.  Yep, I’m talk­ing about stor­age space !

My small home does have some clos­et space.  The clos­ets are bare­ly large enough to accom­mo­date my cloth­ing & shoes, my house sup­plies, and my bare essen­tials.. but that’s pret­ty much it.  Some of us are lucky enough to have a garage,  but most peo­ple I know use it to store their junk… rel­e­gat­ing their cars to the dri­ve­way for park­ing.

So where could you find that space you need to house all that mis­cel­lany you man­aged to col­lect over the years ?

Try this lit­tle mind trick… take a good look around the house, then close your eyes, and think about all the lit­tle hid­ing spots in your home.  Now open your eyes… VOILA !  Emp­ty space !

Your friend, Mr. Pantry.  You are one step clos­er to more effi­cient stor­age for your kitchen items. Look at the shelv­ing in your pantry, there is great stor­age poten­tial there.  If you are on a tight bud­get, con­sid­er a sim­ple re-con­fig­u­ra­tion of your shelves. Cor­ner to cor­ner shelv­ing adds addi­tion­al inch­es of use.  Adding floor-to-ceil­ing shelves can gain you an extra row or two of shelv­ing.  If you have a few more rubles to spend, con­sid­er adding a Lazy Susan in your kitchen corner(s).  Sud­den­ly all that clut­ter on your counter will dis­ap­pear !

Hide-And-Seek !  We all played that game when we were kids, I know I did !  I explored every lit­tle nook and cran­ny of my child­hood home, and found the tini­est of hid­ing spots to evade my seek­er !  Crawl spaces, emp­ty space under­neath the stairs, under­neath the bed, you name it ! You can use many of these lit­tle hid­ing spots for stor­age.  Why not use that emp­ty space under­neath your stairs for a cool shoe clos­et ? How about a floor-to-ceil­ing pull out cab­i­net on wheels, some­where in your laun­dry room ?  This can be used to store all your deter­gents and laun­dry sup­plies.

Unused kitchen space.  There is plen­ty of emp­ty and unused space in the kitchen.  You’re prob­a­bly look­ing around and telling your­self… not in my kitchen!” There are spaces that you may not notice or see.  What about those “fillers” in between your cab­i­nets ?  Or the space you may have between your fridge and cab­i­nets ?  A space as lit­tle as 3” is large enough for a sim­ple hide-away spice rack.  That could free up some space inside one of your cab­i­nets.

Re-con­fig­ure your clos­ets.  Adding some addi­tion­al shelv­ing in your clos­ets could work won­ders in your quest for more stor­age.  Wire shelv­ing is very inex­pen­sive and you can do it your­self.  Two or three shelves on the side will take up about 12” of your hang­ing space, but will add plen­ty of space for your shirts and small things to store. You could hang a small bas­ket under each shelf to store your gloves, socks, scarves, etc.

Look up above, it’s your attic !  You’d be sur­prised how much stor­age can be cre­at­ed in your attic !  Nail down some ¾” ply­wood strips on the attic joists so you have a safe and stur­dy sur­face to walk on.  Now you have a place to store some large box­es and sea­son­al items that you only use once a year. Just remem­ber, attics tend to get very hot in the sum­mer, and cold in the win­ter.  Be care­ful not to store cer­tain items, such as elec­tron­ics, that could pos­si­bly get dam­aged in exces­sive tem­per­a­tures !

Garage Over­head Stor­age.  For those of us for­tu­nate enough to have a garage, an over­head rack is a no-brain­er.  They take up very lit­tle space, and don’t get in the way of your car.  Here’s anoth­er idea I got from a friend of mine that ren­o­vat­ed her kitchen. She used a few of her old kitchen cab­i­nets and hung them on her garage walls.  She keeps all her jarred and canned non-per­ish­able foods in there, as well as her paper prod­ucts.

Out­door stor­age trunk.  If you have a deck or patio in your back­yard, a heavy-duty plas­tic trunk is a great place to store cer­tain things that you would oth­er­wise store in your garage.  It’s always a good idea to place things into con­trac­tor grade trash bags before plac­ing them in the trunk.  This keeps the insects and crit­ters away !

Get rid of some stuff !  Many peo­ple I know are “hoard­ers”, they sim­ply can’t let go of cer­tain things. Don’t fall prey to this. It’s nev­er a good idea to get too attached to things, espe­cial­ly replace­able things. If you haven’t used it in over two years, chances are, you will nev­er use it !  Have a garage sale.  Con­vert some of that old, unused junk into dol­lars.  Donate that old baby stroller, or your kids old toys that they no longer play with to a local char­i­ty.  Sell it, give it away, or just throw it away !


As you can see,  there are so many things you can do to cre­ate more space in your home.  I think I could write a whole book about it !  Just find an emp­ty space, use your imag­i­na­tion, and don’t let any­one dis­cour­age you. Every­thing is pos­si­ble !

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