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  • Writer's pictureTara M Stewart

DIY Closet Organization on a Budget

Let's create more storage space in your hallway or coat closet without pulling out the power tools. Creating a functional organizing system that can adapt as your needs change is easier than you think.


Are you struggling with a closet that has plenty of hanging space but not enough storage? Before you tear it all down and start from scratch, consider a more flexible and simpler solution.

Today's project is great if ...

  • You are renting and you are not allowed to install a new closet

  • You want a DIY solution that won't break the bank

  • You do not want to use power tools

  • You need a temporary solution that can be repurposed in another space later

Target Brightroom 9 cube storage

The hall closet. For some this is used for coats, for others games and toys but for most it becomes a bottomless pit due to the lack of shelving and storage.

Today's project will only take you 1-3 hours depending on how much decluttering you need to do in preparation. As with every project you and I tackle together here on this blog, this will follow the same format:

  1. Pull everything out

  2. Create your categories

  3. While making your categories toss, donate or recycle items that no longer serve you. This means gloves, hat and shoes that kids have outgrown. Also pairing down the 27 flashlights or 18 string bags or even letting go of some of the 128 bags living inside one big bag.

  4. Pick a cube system that fits your closet space best.

In the example above our goal was to select the largest cube organizer possible while still allowing enough room on the sides for coat hanging. Considering that the closet was primarily intended for storing their child's coats and not the parents', we chose a taller 9-cube system. This way, they could maximize the available space for drop zone purposes rather than solely as a coat closet.

The cube system I am showing you here is the Brightroom from Target. More details on why I always choose this cube organizer below.

Target brightroom cube storage 9 cube floral bins

Two Brands of Target Cube Organizers

Target fabric bins Blue Monochrome Floral

Shown throughout this blog is the Target Brightroom Cube Organizer. It has a large cube opening at 13" and it is very sturdy and super easy to put together. Target also has a Room Essentials Cube Organizer which comes in only two colors and each cube section is only 11" but more importantly the quality is NOT as good as the Brightroom version. Here you can compare the 6 cube white by Room Essentials and the the same version by Brightroom.

In addition I prefer the Brightroom version because there are over 14 fabric bin colors. Shown here is the Blue Monochrome Floral but they also have some great clear options if your family does better to be able to see it all.

Pro Tip: Between the two Target options, aways go with the Brightroom version. I've worked with both and it is hands down worth the extra money.

Walmart Better Homes and Gardens Cube Organizers

Walmart Better Homes and Gardens 8 cube storage

Walmart also has a Cube Organizer made by Better Homes and Gardens which is very comparable in quality to the Target Brightroom. Here is the 6-cube in White so you can compare to the ones above. It is a little cheaper than then Target version, however, keep in mind the fabric bins from Target work best with the Target Brightroom option.

You can squeeze the Target fabric bins into a Walmart cube but it gets really snug. Just to give you an example the photo here is of the Walmart 8-cube and Target fabric bins so you could see what I'm referring to. Throughout the rest of the blog you will see that the Brightroom bins work best with the Brightroom Cube.

Moral of the story. If you go with the Walmart BHG cube get the Walmart BHG fabric bins designed for it. If you go with the Target Brightroom version get the Target Brightroom fabric bins that go with it.

Storage on the shelf

The Container Store Multipurpose Bins Hall Closet

If you don't have a need for small humans to reach the basket and bins I would recommend using the shelf above in a different way. Grab some pretty bins with labels or, if you are the type that needs to be able to see into the the container, go with a clear bin.

Spoiler alert - all the bins don't have to match. Sometimes you already have items on hand you can repurpose from other rooms.

In the example shown I used four Medium MPB* from The Container Store on the wire shelf along with a fabric bin we found on sale at Lowes.

For the fabric bin shown here and throughout are some of my favorite clip labels from Target. I just used the printer and a font which I liked to make the label.

Pro Tip: Check places like Lowes, Meijer, Kroger and other stores who are not known for home decor. Since they don't sell as well at places like this you can typically find them on sale or on clearance.

Before and after coat closet

More things to consider as you declutter and organize your hall closet:

  • Is this the best home for this particular item?

  • Is there a different spot were you are already storing similar items?

  • Do the baskets need to be at a height small humans can reach?

  • Could off season coats go into each family member's closet?

  • Again,Is this the best home for this particular item?

Bonus DIY Organization

Another great places to add storage without building shelves, in a laundry room or entry way from the garage.

Shown below is a way you can work with your natural "drop zone" and create a space that is more inviting. As you'll notice we made a "To File" bin. If you are going to do the same be sure to set up a repeating calendar event on your phone to spend 30 minutes a week going through that bin and tackling what landed in there.

Before and After Entry Way Storage Cubbies

Remember you do not have to tackle your whole home in one day. Tackling a high traffic area can be a game changer for your family. This simple fix can be done one Saturday morning leaving you all day Sunday to bask in the glory of your newly organized space.




Lexington Kentucky Professional Organizer6.jpeg

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