The 7 Best Shoe Storage Solutions

Below is a full range of shoe storage solutions. At least one of these options (and possibly, more than one) should fit your shoe collection, the size of your closet, and your budget. Choose the one that makes the most sense for your space, your shoe collection, and how you wear your shoes. I personally break mine up into three camps:

  1. Shoes I wear every day (or, almost every day), go by the door in the foyer.
  2. The shoes I wear on weekends and in my closet on the floor
  3. My special occasion shoes are on the top shelf of my closet so I can see them, but they are out of the way of the clothing I wear all the time.

Figure out what will work best for you before you buy a shoe storage solution, and make sure you measure your space before you make a purchase.

1.  Use shoe racks to move shoes off the floor.

The workhorse of shoe storage, shoe racks are available in several different incarnations: floor shoe racks, wooden shoe racks, eco-friendly hanging shoe racks and over-the-door or on-the-door shoe racks. Peruse the list of the best picks in each category.

Tips for Choosing & Buying a Shoe Rack:

  • Before you buy a shoe rack, declutter your shoe collection. There’s no use to spend extra money on shoe storage for shoes you no longer wear.
  • Measure the space three times and write it down before heading to the store.
  • Recognize you may need different types of racks for the following: very high heels, knee-high boots and hiking boots.

2.  Shoe shelves are great for high heels.

Installing custom shelving ups the glam quotient when storing your shoes. In this option, you can tailor the height and number of shelves to accommodate your collection perfectly, rather than purchasing a shoe rack that might not fit your entire collection.

A few tips:

  • The most important step is to measure your space before buying the shelves. There’s nothing more annoying than returning from your home improvement shopping trip to find your shelves are just a tad too wide for the designated shoe space.
  • Don’t be afraid to hire a professional handyman to tackle this home improvement task for you. The last time I hired someone he not only installed my kitchen shelving, but he also gave me several more tips for my apartment I happily implemented.

3.  Store your best shoes in shoe boxes.

Plastic shoe boxes are great for a serious shoe collection. They will protect your shoes from the elements and pets, and most importantly they will stack easily for storage.

If you want to get fancy and have the time and budget, here are some “celebrity” upgrades:

  • Tape a picture of the shoes to the outside of the box.
  • Label the box with the designer and name of the shoe.

4.  Custom shoe storage closets

The height of shoe storage luxury! Designate a closet for shoes and install custom shelving.  Measure carefully, and head to the local hardware or home building products store (Home Depot, Lowes, California Closets and the Container Store). They will have the materials you need and provide guidance.

What you’ll need:

  • A closet or pantry;
  • Custom shoe shelving
  • Basic tools; and,
  • 2-3 hours for shopping, installation and organizing your shoes.

This project is an excellent weekend organization project, and you can check out the Celebrity Closet Gallery for even more inspiration.

Luxury option: First Love Heels Closet from the Container Store.

5.  Under bed shoe storage

Out of sight out of mind? I would recommend under the bed shoe storage for the two following categories

  1. Super special shoes you only wear on New Year’s Eve or to your debut performance at the Metropolitan Opera House. Seriously. Since you won’t be pulling these shoes out too often, the dead space under the bed is perfect. Or,
  2. Out of season shoes.

Why? because putting shoes back under your bed is a much more involved process than putting them back into your in-closet shoe rack or in your entry way closet. Essentially, you’re putting these shoes into storage. I recommend

6.  Tower & bookcase shoe storage

A bookcase with adjustable shelving is a viable option to store and store display shoes.

Here are some ideas:

  • My friend Kristin stores her boots on a small bookcase at the back of her closet. The shelving is the perfect height for her unique collection of vintage cowboy boots.
  • I store my frequently-used shoes in a cubby in my entry way.
  • For the true fashionista, store your stylish collection out in the open where you can see them daily.

7.  Boot storage solutions

If you can believe it, boots are an even bigger challenge. They can be bulky, and if they’re made of slouchy fabric, they need a storage solution that helps them to stand upright.

This guide to the best boot storage solutions has you covered.

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