I LOVE my dressing room! Yep, I have one.
This is the time of year that many of us are focusing on organizing our living spaces and looking for storage ideas. Actually, I am pretty much constantly looking for new ways of storing and organizing! (Pinterest is great for this.) I’ve incorporate some helpful organizational accessories into my dressing room for shoes, jewelry, scarves, and drawers. It’s a small-ish space, so organizing has been important. Plus, it’s been fun!
Here’s a bit about my dressing room and some ideas for organizing things that you might find helpful.
How I Ended Up with a Dressing Room (You Can Have One Too!)
Before I had a dressing room, I used to wish I had one. It wasn’t so much that I was cramped in the space I shared with my husband. But my time to get ready time each morning was earlier than his, so I’d do most of it in a dimly lit bathroom vanity area and in our shared walk-in closet. I was fortunate to have a makeup space that was built-in, but I’d sit at it with a lighted makeup mirror spotlighting my face against the dark. The whole getting-ready-quietly-in-near-darkness just wasn’t working for me.
At that point, all four of our children had left home for college and post-college life in other cities. And they weren’t planning to be back except for visits. There were four empty bedrooms, and I kept eyeing them, planning my own room in the future. I told myself that we needed to keep those rooms available for our kids’ trips home for another couple of years. Then, one day, I had an epiphany! Was it really necessary to keep four bedrooms empty 99.9% of the year? All four kids were only home at the same time twice a year, for Thanksgiving and Christmas. Otherwise, it was typically no more than one or two of them home together. We really didn’t need more than one or two bedrooms available for them. I could certainly justify taking over a bedroom when I’d be using it every day. Every. Single. Day. Right?
Voila! I had a dressing room!
I was a bit wistful swapping my walk-in closet for a smaller sliding door closet. But, hey, I was gaining a whole bedroom that I could turn into a huge closet!
That was about two years ago. And I have loved having that room! It’s kind of like my inner sanctum.
I recently “redecorated” to give myself more space and more storage, so in addition to my hanging clothes, folded clothing in dressers, and the makeup space, I’ve added a small desk (I call it my blogging station).
It’s now a tiny Ikea showroom (lol!). I decided to go with Ikea because of the reasonable pricing on furniture and because I wanted a modern, clean-line style that Ikea does well. It’s not furniture to last the ages, but it’s just what I need for now.
At this time of year, many of us are looking for storage ideas and cleaning out spaces. Actually, I am pretty much constantly looking for new ways of storing things (Pinterest is great for this). I’ve incorporate some great organizational accessories into my dressing room. I’d like to share them with you; you might get some ideas that work for you!
So, c’mon in!
It’s a Girly Corner
Welcome in! This is my happy corner. I started the whole dressing room project with this Ikea makeup table. It’s been just perfect for me. Positioning it in front of the window is key because of the natural light. Also key is having a lighted makeup mirror with magnification (a similar one is linked below). I will admit, however, that I’m not always thrilled to see every tiny line and not-so-tiny line magnified! The drawer holds a lot of makeup. Drawer organizers keep it all, well, organized.
I recently added the adjustable crushed velvet stool (from Home Goods) to replace a small, padded bench I’d been using. I like the wheeled stool better – it’s handier for moving around. (Similar stools linked below.)
Note: Most of the organization and storage products as well as furniture highlighted in this post are linked at the end.
Makeup Table & Cosmetic Organization
A little makeup table close-up. This little storage shelf on the top is actually intended to be wall mounted, but I like that it sits nicely on the surface of the table and has little “walls” to keep the standing products from falling all over the place. I keep liquid products in this contained shelf and also the larger makeup brushes .
The drawer is sectioned with mesh drawer organizers (linked below). It keeps things pretty neat separated by category (e.g., eyebrow products, blushes, powders, lipsticks and glosses, etc.). They puzzled together pretty perfectly. I have a towel lining the bottom of the drawer under the mesh organizers to catch the makeup that might fall through.
Jewelry Storage – Necklaces & Bracelets
I like to wear fashion jewelry and style it to accessorize my outfits every day. Even when I’m just running errands. My necklaces and bracelets used to live in a drawer. And I NEVER wore them – out of sight, out of mind. So I turned my jewelry into art and hung the necklaces on the wall. There are many options for hanging necklaces, including using small adhesive 3M hooks. It doesn’t have to be fancy.
Bracelet storage was a little tricky for me, but I found this super inexpensive mug tree and decided to use it to see if I like organizing my bracelets in this way. I did! The $4 mug tree has worked so well, that I haven’t even considered replacing it with something more sophisticated. I’ve thought of painting it and may still do that.
Now I can see what I have and have fun deciding what will accent my outfit when I get dressed.
Jewelry Storage – Earrings & Watches
I’d been searching for a new way to store my earrings since I added the new Ikea dresser. The top two smaller drawer are pretty deep, and have the capacity to have a couple of stacked trays. I found these about a week ago on Amazon and love them! I ordered one set to try it (2 trays come in one set) and jumped back on the computer immediately after unpacking them to order another set. I’m planning to order one more since I have a little more vertical space in the drawer.
These divided trays are the perfect size to hold earrings and watches. They come in gray too, but I like the white since the dresser is white. It’s super easy to scan the earrings in the morning as I’m getting ready for the day and find the ones I want to wear. I also feel better about storing my watches than the haphazard way I was keeping them in the drawer before. The trays are linked below.
The Dresser & Drawer Organization
This is my first Ikea assembly job – a 6-drawer Malm dresser. It wasn’t hard and didn’t take that long to put together, despite the intimidating number of parts that slide out of the tightly packed box. I replaced a dresser that had fewer and smaller drawers; the space in this dresser is SO helpful.
(The weird black shadow on the left side of the photo is my new Tumi weekender bag. I love it and its lifetime guarantee! I scored it during a holiday sale at the Tumi outlet store in our area.)
Drawer Organization & Folding the KonMari Way
I’ve mentioned already that this dresser provides plenty of drawer storage space for me. I added some drawer organizers that you see in the photos (Ikea SKUBB, linked below) to help keep things in place.
The photo on the left shows camis and socks. I pretty much wear a cami every day, especially in the cold weather (sometimes two!). So I have a pretty large assortment. The socks are divided between socks for workouts and regular socks to wear with boots and shoes (mostly boots on the cold days – I don’t really wear socks with shoes other than athletic shoes).
The photo on the right is my pajama drawer. I don’t know how I’ve accumulated so many pjs, but they definitely need their own drawer.
You may have noticed that things are folded and put into the drawer on end. If you’re familiar the book The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up and its author Marie Kondo then you recognize the KonMari folding method. Check out more about the KonMari method of not only folding, but also organizing, in this post. I don’t spend as much time folding my clothes as Marie Kondo (!), but I do really like how it keeps everything visible and neat. I don’t have to rummage through a stack of clothes to find the thing I’m looking for.
Shoe Storage – In-Season Shoes
Moving around the perimeter of the dressing room (my kids call it my “closet” – I guess that’s kind of what it is), this is my shoe storage for in-season shoes. This shoe shelf (Target Room Essentials) was positioned inside my closet until about a month ago. I was really in need of more closet space and just decided to embrace the concept of the room as a closet, and the shoe shelf took up residence against this wall. It’s actually working pretty well for keeping the shoes all put away.
Shoe Storage – Off-Season & Dress Shoes
I love these shoe storage boxes (again, SKUBB from Ikea)! I used to store my off-season shoes in kind of clear plastic boxes, but this looks nicer and I can easily see the shoes through the mesh. They also come in black and a kind of aqua blue.
Desk (aka Blogging Station)
This little desk (Ikea Malm Desk) is a new addition to the dressing room. Isn’t it cute?! I had a larger desk in our downstairs office (sharing the space with my husband), but the desk had become nothing more than a storage place. So I replaced it with this little desk that I call my blogging station.
The collage is my new vision board. It’s brand new and not completed. It’s a way to focus my thoughts for what I want to accomplish – I am practicing envisioning what I want to manifest.
The standing trifold shutter sitting on the floor was an art piece that my daughter created in college. I just like the whimsy of it. And the sparkly star that hangs from it.
Scarf Storage & Organization
I have a lot of scarves. I wear them pretty much daily during the cold weather. The scarf storage system that hangs on the back of the door isn’t the most beautiful storage system, but it works and it’s easily accessed. I roll them before putting them in the pockets, which keeps them from getting too wrinkled. They look a bit messy here, but it’s just because some are larger than the pocket and some pockets are holding multiple scarves. I store my larger scarves inside the closet; they are rolled and lay in a narrow hanging shelf. You can see it below in a closet photo. (During the summer I take some of the scarves out and use the pockets to hold flip flops.)
Clothing Care Station
Here we are, at the fourth, and last, wall in the dressing room. I might call this area the clothing care station (but I really don’t ). This bamboo clothing rack (linked below) is great for all kinds of uses – hanging new clothes while deciding whether or not to keep, “staging” blog outfits for photo shoots, separating clothes in need of mending or repair (like these), and air drying laundered items. The baskets on the shelves are kind of catchalls, currently holding pre-purchased gift items, cosmetic and jewelry bags, etc. Hanging off the end hooks are my camera and tripod. I like them easy to grab since I use them frequently for blog photos.
The Conair garment steamer is great! It’s quick and easy to steam wrinkles out garments prior to wearing. It’s become a must-have for me. I also have a hand-held portable steamer that I use for travel. The travel size would also be a great option if you want a steamer that doesn’t take up the space that a standing steamer does. Both steamers are linked below.
What’s in My Closet – A Lot!
I have a small closet – especially compared to the walk-in I moved out of in our master bedroom. Since I like having all my things together where I can see and access them, I’ve done my best to organize the closet to fit pretty much everything, except winter coats and off-season tops and dresses. It’s been a DIY project – no closet makeover. But it’s working pretty well for me!
I’m still trying to find a really nice purse storage solution. In the meantime, this is how I’m doing it. I have a “Park-a-Purse” that has 10 cubbies. It works pretty well and keeps purses organized and upright. (It’s linked below.)
I’m trying a couple of other ways of organizing and storing purses, as you can see. The S hook system, as well as the hanging shelf, work. However, I could really use some additional closet rod space (as you’ll find out below). I’m trying to come up with something I like better. In the meantime, it’s working.
The scarf storage I mentioned earlier is on the left of the photo below. It’s where I store my large scarves. I roll them and slide them into one of the sections. They are easy to see and accessible.
Also in this photo is a smaller, 3-drawer Ikea Malm dresser. It gives me a few extra drawers where I keep my workout clothes, sweaters, and accessories. (The small plastic drawer sitting on top of the dresser is where my hand-held steamer lives. It’s linked below. It’s great for travel or even in place of a standing steamer if you have space restrictions.)
Hanging Clothes – There’s a System Here!
My closet is pretty small, especially for all I have in it. (You’ve heard that a few times, now!) My clothes hang together pretty tightly. But with the narrow hangers and the clothes organized by color, it still looks nice and is easy to find what I want.
I’m a bit obsessed about how clothes hang in the closet. My pants are organized by color and face the same direction (the back of each pair faces the wall). A lot of people keep jeans in a drawer; I tried it, but I really like to be able to see all of them together. It helps me decide what to wear and I don’t forget what I have.
The tops are also organized by color as well as sleeve length. I’m trying a method to keep track of what tops I actually wear, so I’ve hung the hangers on the rack backwards and when I wear a top I put it pack with the hangar hung right. At the end of the season, I’ll have clear evidence of what I’m actually wearing and what I’m not.
I love having uniform hangers in my closet. It looks neat and it’s easy to find things when they are hung in neat order. I use the velvet covered hangers by Joy Mangano (linked below). There are a lot of “knock offs” out there, but I have found that the off-brand hangers break after a while.
I have a lot of jackets. I usually wear a jacket as part of my outfit, mostly because I’m always cold. In the jacket section of the closet, my regular jackets are on the top rack and the bottom rack hold mostly workout types of jackets.
I love having things around me are uplifting and motivating. These are some great reminders to have front and center. I especially love: “Remember, happiness is a way of travel, not a destination.”
I’ve just taken everything off the walls since I rearranged my dressing room. I’m in the process of looking for the right wall hangings. I want to include a little whimsy, some serenity, and beauty.
We Can Do It!
I am proud to say that I built both dressers and the desk completely BY MYSELF! What I realized from this process: I need my own tool kit. I happened to have a simple tool kit that I’d purchased as a Christmas gift for one of my sons a couple of years ago, but it turned out that he already had one. I kept it, figuring I’d use it for a gift for someone else. It turns out that someone was me! I have found it so useful not to have to go into the garage looking for a hammer or screwdriver. I keep my tool kit in my closet. I’ve linked it and a few others below if you don’t have your own yet.
Finally . . . The End!
I hope you enjoyed this little tour and are able to take away some ideas that may be helpful. Below are links to just about everything that’s covered in this post. I always want to be transparent and let you know that if you purchase items through the links below, I may earn a small commissions, however, this does not affect the price you pay.
Thank you for your support. Please share this post with anyone you think may find it helpful.
Storage, Organization Products, & Furniture in This Post
- Ikea Malm 6-drawer dresser
- Ikea Malm 3-drawer dresser (in my closet)
- Ikea Malm Dressing Table
- Ikea Malm Desk
- Vanity stool with wheels: Faux Fur / Pink Velvet / Light Pink Velvet
Storage & Organizing
- Ikea Skubb Shoe Box (set of 4)
- Ikea Skubb Box Drawer Organizer (set of 6)
- Target Room Essentials Stackable Shelf (I use it for shoes)
- ClosetMaid Double Hang Closet Rod
- Hanging Shelf (narrow – I use for storing large scarves, rolled)Over Door Hanging Pocket Organizer (I use for storing lightweight scarves, rolled) / budget option (can be used to store shoes and other items)
- Joy Mangano Huggable Hangers
- Park-a-Purse Organizer
- S Hooks (for hanging purses – sized to fit a closet rod)
- Steel Mesh Drawer Organizer (variety of sizes for makeup table drawer)
- Necklace & Jewelry Organizer, wall mount / other jewelry organizers
- Bracelet Organizers / Mug Rack (that’s what my bracelet organizer is) / Similar (if you use a rack, the arms must be straight, not angled)
- Drawer Jewelry Organizer (love, love, love these!)
- Bamboo Clothing Rack with Shelf Storage
- Conair Upright Home Garment Steamer
- Kimryde Portable Steamer
- Two-sided makeup mirror (with scary magnification)
And, finally, the tool kit! (Seriously, you’ll wonder why you never had you own before!)