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7 Ways to maximize shoe storage without a shoe rack

We tend to invest a decent amount of money in shoes so, it makes sense to treat that investment with respect and ensure their longevity with proper storage. For those without built-in shoe shelves, purchasing a shoe rack is a simple solution for footwear storage. But there are situations when shoe racks aren’t possible or practical. Perhaps your closet is too narrow or the shelving is too low to fit a shoe rack. Maybe you only have space for one rack but it doesn’t hold all your shoes. Or maybe you don’t have enough space in general. Sometimes you have to get creative and “think outside the rack" in order to come up with a solution to suit your needs.


Here’s a few ideas you can try:

Alternative alignment

If you have the space to line up your shoes in a row on the floor or bottom shelf of your wardrobe try these tricks to fit in more pairs.


  • Alternate shoes in a pair with one facing forward & the other facing backward for a closer fit. Tip: ensure the same side (left or right) is facing forward for all pairs.


(photo: styleanthropy.com

  • If the space is deep enough, you can get even more space by placing one directly in front of the other.

  • Use shoe space savers to stack pairs one on top of the other without crushing the bottom shoe.

(photo source: amazon)

Vertical storage

If you’re limited on floor or shelving space, consider storing flat-bottomed shoes vertically.


  • Over the door hanging storage pockets


(photo: Homesmiths)

  • If rack space allows, hanging shelves

(photo: Macys)


  • Arranging shoes vertically in a basket keeps them tidy without crushing.




DIY mock rack

If you just prefer the look of a shoe rack, use a few short tension rods to create your own customized & adjustable racking system.


(photo: made2style)