Small space storage hacks that are actually useful

Tried and tested small space storage hacks in real homes.

When you don’t have the luxury of space, the mind kicks into high gear to realise all sort of ingenious storage ideas. And they make the most interesting IKEA hacks.

These small space storage hacks do not cost a lot and you can adapt them to other spots all around the house. And they actually work!

Like this VARIERA shelving rack below will work just as well in the bathroom as it is in the kitchen or in the patio as a rack for small pots of succulents.

Load up on these organization hacks for almost every room in your home.

Shelving for a tiny kitchen

I LOVE my teeny-tiny kitchen. But I did have to get creative to keep it from getting too cluttered without throwing away my stuff and without drilling into the tiles.

I tried a number of different solutions. This DIY storage rack for spices and condiments is what worked best for me.

small space storage hacks - spice rack shelving unit

Inspired by this video I used 3 small IKEA VARIERA shelves and one of the top parts of the ORDNING dish-drainer left over from my previous hack. I also needed some zip-ties and 2 small nuts to hack this small, slim spice rack. It doesn’t take up too much counter space. And I made it as tall as I could to take advantage of vertical space.

Here’s how I hacked my space saving spice rack

I assembled the two top shelves with the shelf itself upside-down. For the bottom shelf I assembled the way it’s supposed to be, only I turned the whole thing around. I played a bit with the direction of the legs, to align all the holes together.

Then I used nuts to secure the screws that kept the bottom and middle shelves together. And then attached the ORDNING rack with a few zip-ties (I wanted to avoid using glue) to keep the spices from falling behind the stove.

tie the ORDNING dish drainer rack to the VARIERA shelf insert with zip ties
ORDNING dish drainer rack attached to VARIERA shelf insert

Besides functioning as a guard rail, the ORDNING rack is great for hooks and hangers to hang up my cooking utensils.

Sadly, I don’t have a “Before” picture, but it was just one VARIERA shelf, with all the spices crammed on top of it and below, and the olive oil and salt jars taking up extra space on the countertop in front of the spices.

Now it’s a lot more organized and easier to access and use.

~ by Meira

Fill-the-gap storage solution for tiny home

My hubby and I live in 300 sq. ft. home. While he walked the 200 mile Camino Primitivo in Spain, I designed and built a small space storage unit to fill a 6 x 16″ niche in our “living room”. On the far right appears a floor to ceiling custom built-in shelving unit. On the left, an efficiency kitchen and laundry room I built from a SUNNERSTA KITCHEN and CART in a 5 x 3 ft. former laundry closet).

I built and installed this in one day. It cost about $100 USD:

Supplies needed:

  • 6 DYNAN wall shelves
  • 6 deep, fat-headed screws for studs
  • 2 VARIERA shelf inserts 11” depth
IKEA DYNAN wall shelf and VARIERA shelf insert

Six DYNAN wall shelf units were stacked, bolted together following the IKEA instructions, and each unit also anchored to a stud in the back wall. Although not designed to stack this high, given it is rammed between three walls and anchored to a stud, it has already survived a 3.8 California earthquake without budging!

small space storage hacks filling a niche with ikea DYNAN storage unit

The only real hack is cantilevering the shelf out using 11″ deep VARIERA shelving insert shelves (without support legs). The VARIERA shelf piece clicks down into the bottom rear of the DYNAN base. It is secured with a protruding screw and tiny wood block. This keeps the VARIERA shelf from popping up in the back. As I only put objects whose weight is substantially supported by the DYNAN base, it is merely a comforting visual that wider objects have a deeper shelf for support.

small space storage hacks filling a niche with ikea DYNAN storage unit
small space storage hacks filling a niche with ikea DYNAN storage unit

~ by Sally Martin of zippityglobal

Small space storage hack for shoes

small space storage hack for shoes

Even in the slimmest of landing spaces, you can squeeze in a bit of storage for shoes. Farida shows us how to create a shoe rack for the tightest of places, using a few IKEA picture ledges and knobs. This shoe storage hack is perfect for the wall behind the door and doesn’t take up any floor space. See how it’s done.

Standing work desk that’ll fit in a small apartment

standing audio work table with KALLAX unit and capita legs to hold up countertop

Squeeze in a standing work table even when you think you have no space for one. Start with a KALLAX 2×2 shelving unit, then suspend a worktop above it with CAPITA legs. Add a monitor stand on top of the work desk for even more functionality. Get the tutorial.

Add countertop to pedestal sink

extra bathroom countertop space made from IKEA chopping boards

No countertop space in your small bathroom? IKEA chopping boards to the rescue. Suspend them on the wall with L brackets, next to the sink. And there you have it, a simple shelf to makeup, towels, etc. You’ll still have room under the shelf for a laundry basket or cleaning supplies. Read more on how you can add more counter space even in the smallest of bathrooms.

Over the bed storage headboard

Over the bed storage bookshelves made using IKEA HYLLIS shelving units

Mieke needed extra storage space in her small bedroom. Looking around, the space around and above the bed frame seemed the only possible spot. Her solution is a clever IKEA hack using the HYLLIS shelving units. She liked how the storage units frames her bed and each cubby is kept clutter-free with storage bins and baskets. All in, it’s a very affordable solution as HYLLIS shelf units cost only $25 each. She recommends using real, solid wood on the overhead shelving. Tutorial for the over the bed storage bookshelves.

Above the toilet storage hack

Over the toilet storage unit hacked from IKEA LERBERG shelving unit

Over the toilet storage units can be surprisingly pricey. They also didn’t meet Charlie’s needs, such as the spacing between the slats on the shelves were too large. Small items like medicines would fall through. Browsing at IKEA, he found the solution in the LERBERG shelving unit. He assembled the LERBERG unit with only the two shelves installed. Remember to keep the bolts/screws in the holes that were supposed to hold the third shelf, otherwise your over the toilet storage unit may be a little “wobbly”. Now, lots of shelf space for toiletries, etc.

However, this IKEA hack is entirely dependent on the width of your toilet, measure the width and height first then compare with product dimensions/ information on IKEA product site. See the over the toilet storage hack.

If you have complete a few small space storage hacks, send them here.