It’s 7 a.m. Do you know where your shoes are?
Newer homes typically have large closet and storage areas. The problem is, they seldom are utilized to their full potential. Homes built in the 1970’s and 80’s discovered the latest and greatest closet system when their builder installed ventilated wire shelving. Others continued to have trim carpenter nail up wood shelves with iron pipes, or shower curtain rods, to act as hang-rods. The emergence of custom closet companies in the 1970's has changed all that. Now custom closet designers & storage space organizers are available to maximize your space and organize your life.
The ventilated shelving system was actually designed for homes in northern climates. The sales pitch stated that the closets could ‘breathe’ and this prevented mold/mildew. In the south, walk-in closets have air conditioning vents and that is what eliminates the mold/mildew problems. The ‘vinyl coated oven racks’ in your closet also leaves an impression……right on your folded clothes. The garment at the bottom of the stack usually looks like a Ripples potato chip. Ventilated wire is a fixed system, permanently attached to the wall at fixed intervals with no adjustability. Carpenter-built systems are, likewise, fixed in place. Trim carpenters rarely interview the home owner prior to installation which leaves a lot of frustrated owners with under-utilized space. Long dress hang sections are built from front to back spanning an entire 6’ to 8’ length wall. Problem is the woman of the house only needed 3 feet for her dresses, robes and gowns. Fixed spacing between horizontal shelves does not allow maximum storage of shoes, as a 5” high heel does not need 12” of clearance.
In the 1970’s the ‘cavalry’ arrived. Closet organizing companies appeared on the housing scene and have grown to be a $4 billion/year industry with its own Association of Closet & Storage Professionals (www.closets.org). The European 32mm adjustment system was introduced to the closet and storage industry and the rest is history. Polished chrome steel continuous hang rods and durable pre-finished melamine laminate shelves are adjustable at 32mm (1-1/4”) increments and easily re-position by the homeowner with no tools required. These closet specialists will extensively interview the homeowner, determine the needs (have to accommodate 80 pairs of shoes) and their wants (always wanted the hamper inside the closet), measure the space available and propose a computer generated, three dimensional rendering.
This customization turns a ‘closet’ into a ‘dressing room’. Basic organized closets begin with the adjustable rods and shelves. As space and budget allow, many accessories are available to enhance the beauty and function of the storage space. Drawers with jewelry trays and locks, pull out hampers, slide out tie, belt and scarf racks, and beautifully designed full extension sliding baskets are among the features that extend the ‘needs’ into the ‘wants’. Additional accessories include overhead pull down retractable hang rods (to utilize the ‘air rights’ above your reach), pull out mirrors, designated ladder slots as a permanent parking place for your step stool and even small ‘touch up’ ironing boards to correct that last minute wrinkle. Savannah & Hilton Head have local closet organizing companies that offer free in-home consultation, local manufacturing (not shipped in from the left coast), and life time guarantees.
So tomorrow morning at 7 a.m.........you will know where your shoes are!