Oh, if the back hall was really just for hats and gloves and jackets. While there is plenty of that, we can’t overlook the shoes, backpacks, camera equipment and dog leashes that we have there as well. How can we keep all of that from over-taking our lives?
1) Be judicious about paring down the gear between seasons. No need to look at your heaviest down jacket in May or your sandals in January. Keep off season garments in the basement or attic in a garment bag to avoid dust.
2) Depending on your space and personal style, there are several methods to contain shoes. Large baskets that you toss everything into are an easy fix but may not suit those who are more finicky. Shoe shelves project out 12” regardless of whether they are angled or straight. Allow 11” per pair of men’s shoes and 9” per pair of ladies shoes on a shelf. See tip #1 regarding paring down off – season shoes.
3) Hooks are obvious for backpacks but be sure they can hold the weight by installing them into studs or pre-mounting them on a board. Always choose a double hook so a jacket can hang over the backpack.
4) Locker systems are excellent long term organizers and shouldn’t be overlooked if space allows.Typically 12-16” deep for jackets and up to 24” deep with bench seating, a good custom closet company can build this for you. Find a professional at http://www.closets.org/.
When building a locker system, take advantage of your ceiling height by putting in cabinets above your head for items like camera equipment and picnic items. Lockers aren’t just for kids stuff either. They make a great landing place for mail, your purse, keys and all the other items that seem to collect at the back door.
5) A pleasant off-shoot of the locker system is the creation of an environment of accountability. It’s their space so they need to keep up with it. Loose items that are found around the house can be placed in the lockers where the kids can find it. It will help Mom with picking up every day.
6) If you have no room for lockers, then divide your wall into “lockers” by mounting a line of hooks for each member of the family. Add a shallow wall-mount basket above each row of hooks for hats and gloves. Make sure the hooks are high enough to allow something as long as snow pants to hang. Don’t worry about hanging all the hooks at the same height. Adult hooks can hang higher. The alternating heights will add visual interest.
7) Consider color coding your hook areas. A graphic that uses shapes and colors to identify zones adds visual interest.
8) Consider a mail center for the family. A mail center will turn the chaos called everyday mail into a manageable task. No more piles on the kitchen counter.
9) Consider converting an area in your basement to a coat room. Good lighting and flooring will make the space feel more inviting. Include a bench for putting boots on.
10) Consider lining the wall with a slatwall system or peg board. You can hang any array of hooks and baskets to take advantage of the entire wall. Because this items are adjustable, you can move all the hooks and baskets as your family grows. Slatwall systems have a wide array of accessory items that will organize everything that you own.