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Small Entry Closet Storage Ideas and Tips

Sep 27, 2022

Small Entry Closet Storage Ideas and Tips

Sep 27, 2022

This post contains affiliate links. I earn a tiny commission, at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Read my disclosure here.

This post contains affiliate links. I earn a tiny commission, at no additional cost to you. As an Amazon associate, I earn from qualifying purchases. Read my disclosure here.

If you need small entry closet storage ideas to save your sanity this fall and winter, you’re in the right place! Here are plenty of ideas to maximize your small spaces with clever storage solutions.

entry closet storage ideas

Tour Our Denver House Here!

It’s almost sweater weather, and you know what that means? Our entry closet is about to turn into a tangled mess of gloves, hats, origami stars, and god knows what else. Over the years, we’ve come up with storage solutions that help to corral the bits and bobs of winter, but nothing is perfect. How do you manage entry closet storage and organization? I would love to hear more ideas!

In This Post: Entry Closet Storage Ideas

Our System for Small Winter Items
How to Create a Similar Storage System
1. Shelving Options
2. Hanging Organizers
Storage Bins for Gloves, Hats, and Small Items
Make Use of Doors for Storage Space
More Brilliant Storage Hacks for Small Entry Closets

Our System for Small Winter Items

Do you have a Pinterest-worthy “drop zone” for backpacks, shoes, coats, and winter gear? We do not, so everything gets shoved in the hall closet, but it’s still somewhat organized. I could dress this up with 100% matching baskets and bins, but today I’m sharing the very real closet we currently use – complete with plain white IKEA bins, labeled with blue painter’s tape. Today’s post is about function over form. I even cleaned and spruced it up, just for this blog post:

entry closet storage ideas

The single, pretty element of our entry closet is this shelving unit with baskets to store our winter gear. Years ago, Wyatt built this four-box standing shelf from two IKEA EKET units and we’ve carted it from house to house as we move. It fits in a standard, shallow entry or hall closet and is an easy way to store our accessories. Each person gets a box for his/her hats and gloves.

entry closet storage ideas

Now, I realize this particular hall closet is not small, as per the title of this blog post. However! We first created this unit for use in a tiny hall closet. I promise. We’ve just continued to use it in our closets ever since because it works perfectly for us. Although the unit occupies precious hanging space, it divides up the inevitable mess that piles up on the floor. Plus, we can stick hooks on the sides to hold hats, bags, or other smaller items. As entry closet storage ideas go, this was one of our best DIY projects to date since every family member has learned where to stash his stuff. (*Ahem* That was an intentional pronoun usage.)

How to Create a Similar Storage System

Our standing boxes are constructed from two IKEA EKET sets. This unit is just two small shelves stacked and screwed together. Here’s a close-up.

You can also find similar, standing cube shelves here and here.

entry closet storage unit
storage unit | baskets

About Our Baskets…

I’ve pulled together a ton of ideas to create a similar tower storage system in your own closet. Here’s one tip I learned from our project: choose your baskets carefully.

When we built these shelves, I bought water hyacinth baskets (similar) that fit the openings and made simple cloth inserts, so my precious hand-knits wouldn’t catch on the dried grass. Or whatever plant water hyacinth actually is.

water hyacinth baskets for entry closet storage ideas

That was a bit of work. You can buy similar baskets with pre-made fabric liners, or avoid the headache and just use rope baskets or fabric boxes. Of course, IKEA sells boxes that fit, too.

If I was starting from scratch, I would buy these cloth bins.

For boxes to fit various cube shelving, jump to this section below.

Shelving Options for Organized Closet Storage

This Target shelf could be turned on one end, although it probably shouldn’t carry much weight if you stand it this way. The rope bins are also from Target and come in a variety of sizes. Pictured here are the 13″ bins.

shelving with bins
shelf unit | rope bins

This plastic drawer unit is an affordable option with a slim profile.

entry closet storage ideas drawer tower unit
drawer tower unit

Here’s a budget option for modular cube shelves that can be built to fit your space. These are likely a pretty cheap material (since the price is so low!), but the reviews are surprisingly decent.

Another bookcase option from Amazon and it’s even shown inside closets. This is a great deal on a small shelf. Notice the sizing when you order, because the configurations vary with this product. There are a lot of choices! This one is the 4-tier cube, below.

For boxes to fit various cube shelving, jump to this section below.

Hanging Closet Storage Organizers

Another simple way to maximize your entry closet space with vertical storage is to add a hanging shoe or sweater organizer. Just fill it with practical items for hall or entry closet storage. You can fit bins in the spaces to hold loose items or just stash gear that won’t roll out. Here’s an example from Target, which comes in 3-shelf and 6-shelf styles:

entry closet storage ideas hanging sweater organizer
hanging clothes shelves

Amazon has plenty of options, too. This one is highly rated and appears sturdy.

This one comes with drawers that can be used with the hanging shelves or separately.

This set is really flexible. Connect the two pieces to create a long tower, or separate them for more space underneath. Plus drawers! Click on the image for a link.

Here are my son’s cub scout accessories stored in one of the spaces of a hanging shoe organizer. I think it’s this one, from Target.

entry closet storage ideas small baskets
hanging organizer | fabric box
entry closet storage ideas with shoe organizer
hanging organizer | fabric box

We added simple cloth drawer organizer boxes, pulled from an IKEA drawer set, similar to these:

By the way, I’ve also used these sweater organizers to store board games vertically in closets. I like the longer, 6-shelf organizer for games, and it works great! (Just FYI, since board games are probably not an entry closet item for most of us.)

Storage Bins for Gloves, Hats, and Small Items

Most hall or entry closets have a similar design with a shelf or two above the coat rail. If you don’t want to build or buy a vertical storage unit like ours, you could also line the upper shelf with baskets or bins for closety-type items. As you can see, I use simple white bins from IKEA, but you could really class up your closet with pretty baskets like any of these:

These would be nice for stackable storage. The clear plastic bins come in a million shapes and sizes:

Make Use of Door Space Too

If you have regular doors, not bi-folds, there are great closet organization systems to install on the back, which might work for your small items. Use these to stash your hats, purses, scarves, or other gear that can share space with coats.

More Brilliant Storage Hacks for Small Entry Closets

Last, how about some inspiration for other creative storage? Have you already installed hooks on the side walls of the closet? You can hang bags along the side, like mine, or use this area for backpack storage. (If your kids can be trained to hang up backpacks… I hear this is a thing.) If you don’t want to drill holes into walls, just use 3M command hooks.

entry closet storage ideas hooks

You can also make better use of space with items like these shelf dividers, stands, and hooks. These fabric shelf dividers also have a little hook at the front, adding more functionality.

shelf dividers for entry closet storage ideas
shelf dividers

Here are a few more ideas:

Ball Cap Storage

How about cap racks and clever hat storage? We have a ton of baseball hats and I love this first idea for the space-saving design. Click on the pictures for links.

Purse Organization

If you’re a purse collector, you know it’s helpful to have easy storage so you can access the bag you need/want.

Similar to the ball cap idea, this door strap with hooks could work for bags, too.

Have I Missed Any Genius Entry Closet Storage Ideas?

How do you manage your entry closet? Want to share your clever ideas to maximize space and minimize headaches? We would love to know!


Hi! I’m Erin, a Colorado-based home improvement blogger and lover of all things DIY. I aim to inspire creative folks to tackle home improvement with confidence and style. READ MORE

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