Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Tips for Tuesday

How you organize your shoes (or anything for that matter) in your home, depends on your individual situation.  Closet size, number of pairs, number of family members, habits, religious beliefs, etc., all play a part in how you can store your shoes.

The first step in organizing your shoes is to get all of them out in one place.  Pair them, and sort them by color and/or style (casual, dressy, work, etc.).  Once they are all laid out, you will see how many pairs of black pumps you have, how many running shoes, how many brown leather sandals, etc.  Seeing them all together will help decide what you really need to keep, and what can be donated. 

When deciding what to keep, think about use and comfort.  Just because a pair you bought five years ago is one of your favorites, if you never wear them because they are uncomfortable, then it's time to donate them.  GO through every color and style, and see where you can pare down.  Once you're done sorting, you'll see what's left to go back in your closet. 

Arrange your shoes by the way you would look for them.  For instance, would you look for a black pair of shoes when getting ready for work?  Then keep all your black shoes together.  Or do you think in terms of function?  Would you look for a pair of comfy shoes for work in the morning?  Then place all work shoes together.  Or store them according to where you would put them on.  For instance, boots and running shoes by the back door, and dressy shoes in your closet.

There are many ways to store shoes.  The first of these is on your closet floor.  That isn't to say they should all just be tossed in.  You should purchase a shoe cubby or shoe rack and pair your shoes accordingly.  Always keep pairs together.  If the shoes are small flats, you can place more than one pair in a cubby. 

If you have closets with shelving, keep your shoes on shelves in your closet.  The shelves can be spaced closer together than they would be for sweaters and pants to make the best use of the space.  This also avoids having to stack several pairs on top of each other.

If you don't have a lot of shelving, but have plenty of hanging space, use a shoe organizer that hangs from the closet rod.  You can usually get about 10 pairs of shoes in 8 inches of hanging space. 

Another place to store shoes is on the back of a door.  There are shoe racks and pockets for this use.  Pair smaller shoes together in one pocket.  Be careful with shoe racks that may stretch out the toes of your shoes. 

Under the bed is a great place for shoes also.  There are bins and bags specifically for this purpose with dividers.  Or purchase a low, long bin and arrange the shoes on their sides, toe to heel for maximum use of space.  If you are storing shoes under the bed that you use often, look for a bin or bag on rollers so it is easy to access.

Some people don't keep shoes in their closets or bedrooms, but rather prefer keeping them in the laundry room or garage.  In this case, special shelving can be installed to house the shoes, or purchase stackable shoe cubbies. 

If you have room for a bench, purchase one that has storage and keep your shoes in or under the bench. 

Whatever you decide, it is important that all family members are on board, and everyone puts their shoes away after wearing them.  Because even the best systems won't work if you don't use them.

How many pairs of shoes do you have, and how do you store them?

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