Hallway shoe storage ideas are the savior of modern life. Having a place to take off your shoes as soon as you get home means you can start relaxing right away. And making sure shoes are stored properly means you’re not greeted by a bunch of random sneakers.
Still, taking the time to include this easily overlooked element in your hallway ideas will pay dividends. Not only in how your program looks, but also how it works – which, in turn, will make your life better.
Yes, that’s a bold claim, but hear us out. In fact, don’t take our word for it. “It’s transformed the way we exit and enter the home,” says Emily Murray, founder of The Pink House, of her super-sleek hallway shoe storage. “There’s now a lot less screaming and stress because kids know exactly where to find and put their shoes – and it’s very easy for them to do so. Plus, since the hallway is now shoe clutter-free, it looks and feels like a much nicer place.
SHOES STORAGE IDEAS IN THE HALLWAY
1. Build a banquette with drawers
Emily Murray needed shoe storage for her family of four, which includes two boys aged 12 and 9, and didn’t want all of their shoes on display.
“I was looking for a clean, uncluttered hallway, but I also needed the storage to be super easy to use for the kids to put away their shoes on the way home,” says Emily. “At first I had planned for the storage to be cupboards, but in the end it was so wide that the doors would have been awkward when opened.” Drawers therefore seemed the obvious solution.
His hallway storage ideas were also to serve as a bench. “So we had a place to sit and take them off or put them on,” Emily continues. “As a bonus, our shoes are nice and warm when we put them on, because we have extended the underfloor heating under the shoe drawers. »
2. Corner shelving in shallow spaces
If you don’t have the depth of space for drawers, shelves can work well. A perfect solution to add to narrow hallway ideas, like in this project by Caroline Milns, interior designer, at Zulufish.
“Make it as easy as possible to store your shoes – the easier it is, the more likely they are to be tucked away rather than in a pile by the front door,” says Caroline. “Determine how much shoe storage each person needs and their needs for other related items like umbrellas, scarves, hats, etc.”
Caroline warns us that we should think about heights. “For example, putting adult shoe racks above children’s racks. Slanted shoe shelves take up less depth so can often fit in shallow spaces where drawers won’t.
3. Blend into the walls
Disguising your hallway shoe storage ideas so they’re inconspicuous is a stylish option, if you’d rather not have shoes (even neatly stacked) on display.
“Spray or hand-paint the millwork the same color as the walls so it blends in with the architecture of the building,” says Caroline Milns, interior designer at Zulufish. “Panel is another good way to conceal millwork, either by matching other paneling in the hallway or by creating a paneled wall with hidden cabinets behind.” Add this to our hallway paint ideas folder.
4. Opt for freestanding furniture
It is not always necessary to have expensive custom joinery for your shoe storage. As anyone who’s thought about organizing a hallway closet knows, the simplest ideas are often the best. Although it looks smart and understated, there are attractive standalone options as well. A vintage-style bench with a coat hook above will keep shoes and jackets where you need them and bring character to a neutral space.
“If you don’t have the space for built-in storage, get a low bench with storage holes and place a seat cushion on top,” says Beth Dadswell, founder of Imperfect Interiors. “Doors hide clutter, but cubbies can be great for storing shoes and slippers. In smaller households, a few nice baskets under a narrow console table can also be a good solution.
5. Distract with bright colors
In this project by Studio Hopwood, the designer was tasked with transforming “a boring white box” into a house with a soul. Part of the process was to create a warm welcome in the hallway, introducing an uplifting golden hue. The sunny wall color and bold floor tiles are perfectly accentuated by the long bespoke shoe bench. And although it’s a big space, the solution is easy to add to your small hallway ideas.
With its gorgeous bright yellow buttoned leather seat, your eye is immediately drawn to the shoes below, easily accessible by the family who live here.
6. Install the sliding drawers
The architecture of your house will obviously have an impact on what you are able to do – unless you gut it completely.
If you have it, a space under the stairs — or in a section of a stud wall — can be a nifty place to play around with hallway shoe storage ideas. The owners of this cool Copenhagen house have found space to hide drawers.
“Shallow pull-out shoe drawers are much easier to access than a bulky closet under the stairs,” says Caroline Milns, interior designer at Zulufish. ‘Ideally allow each member of the family to have a section for their own shoes, be it a drawer, basket or cubbyhole. If there is space, create space for guest shoes as well.
7. Integrate it into the architecture
This sleek and slim console cabinet is much more spacious than it looks, as its depth extends into an alcove in the wall, which also houses the utilities. You can incorporate it into your hallway flooring ideas, taking the pattern around the storage.
“We created an extended-service wardrobe that included hidden shoe storage in the front,” says Caroline Milns, interior designer at Zulufish. “Above the wardrobe, we lined the wall with an antique mirror to create an elegant bespoke piece of furniture.”
8. Redo a buffet
All properties no longer have hallways. Some homeowners have chosen to sacrifice the traditional entryway for an open-plan lifestyle, like the owners of this stylishly remodeled modern home.
If that’s the case for you, there’s no need to rule out shoe storage ideas in the hallway or lugging a pile of sneakers by the front door. A low sideboard like this beautiful, bold blue number can provide a discreet and stylish place for shoes, while blending easily into the living space.
9. Brighten up a locker
Vintage post office sorting cabinets, or those similar, can be a great place to store shoes, as they tend to be shallow with lots of compartments.
Just make sure the compartments are large enough to be practical all year round. This won’t work if you can only store flip flops or children’s shoes, so check the dimensions of the storage holes against booties and larger winter shoes.
Painting the outside and leaving the wood inside might seem efficient, like this one in a project by Jo Berryman Studio.
Where do you store shoes in a narrow hallway?
A console table or bench with a built-in storage cupboard underneath, accessible from the front rather than the top, is often the best solution for storing shoes in a narrow hallway. You can then sit on the bench while accessing the storage below.
“When working with narrow hallways, you need to think carefully about storage during the planning stages and make sure you use every nook and cranny,” says Katie Glaister, co-founder of K&H Design.
“Shoes can also be stored on clips inside narrow cabinets, which is perfect for children’s shoes and boots,” says Caroline Milns, interior designer at Zulufish.
What’s the best way to store shoes in a small place?
“When hallway space is at a premium, it’s crucial to be smart when it comes to choosing storage. Sliding shoe shelves under the stairs that disappear into the wall are a brilliant and easy way to solve the problem,” says Arlene McIntyre, Creative Director at Ventura Design. “Most of our customers ask for storage that allows shoes to be fully concealed. Especially when space is limited, the last thing anyone wants is to trip over them or have shoes strewn all over the place when guests enter their homes.
How do I organize my family’s shoes?
“Organize your family’s shoes so they’re an integral part of your life and home design, and make sure the storage is actually used by the family,” says Emily Murray, founder of The Pink House. “Location is key – too far from where shoes are removed and unlikely to be stored.” And don’t underestimate the amount of storage space you’ll need, especially if you have kids; my sons now have feet as big as mine!
Ideally, storage should serve more than one function – a bench is ideal as it provides a place to sit while taking off shoes. We also have a separate ‘mud closet’ in the utility room for muddy shoes and football boots so we don’t have to worry about them getting dirty on clean shoes. Another thing to put on our list of dressing room ideas.