How To Turn a Small Room Into A Walk In Closet

Creating a walk in closet by transforming a small unused room into a functional space.

Have you dreamed of having the perfect walk in closet? A space where you could organize all of your clothing, shoes, jewelry. No more heading to the attic to bring up your winter clothes and bring down your summer clothes. A place to sit and relax and sip a glass of wine while you're applying your makeup for a night on the town.

Turning a spare room, or unused space in your home into a dedicated walk in closet can reap huge rewards. While it can be a big decision to give up that spare room, if you do it correctly, you can keep the integrity and flexibility of the room in case you choose to use it differently in the future, and you can even add value to your home.

Here are some things to consider when creating your dream walk in closet in your home.

Think About Location

Proximity is important. While it's possible to turn unused or unusual space like an attic, into a walk in closet or a formal dressing room, your first choice should be to keep it attached to your master bedroom. In fact, almost any space can be turned into a closet, although a standard square or rectangular room is best.

Ideally, using the bedroom closest to the master is the best choice. This gives you the option of closing the doorway leading to the rest of the house and opening up the wall in the master bedroom as an entry. Creating a doorway is relatively minor construction and easily reversible if you ever decide to sell and want to convert the space back into an additional bedroom.

Walk In Closet Dimensions

While there are no hard and fast dimensions if you're converting a spare room, the standard width of a walk in closet ranges from about 5 feet to 12 feet or more. The minimum width allows for a 3 foot hallway into the closet after you hang clothing or store items along one wall. Depth can vary anywhere from 5 feet to 17 feet or more if it is a bonus room style closet.

The dimensions of the room will help determine what amenities you can include. For example if you are converting a bedroom it will most likely have windows which can reduce the hanging space available. Windows however are a bonus if your room is big enough to add dressing table. Natural light is perfect for applying makeup, or getting a real feel for color.

Some Options

Depending on the space available and your budget your walk in closet can be utilitarian, or a design statement. The simplest walk-ins use various rods for hanging clothing, shallow drawers for underwear, socks and belts, deeper drawers for sweaters and bulkier clothing. Many manufacturers make systems that you can customize to meet your needs.

Systems can range from simple collections offering a mix of hanging space and shelves, to more permanent systems that look like custom built-ins. These are a great way to maximize space with a more customized look.

One advantage of re-purposing a bedroom is that much of the infrastructure is already build in, like windows which offer light and ventilation and electricity for lighting and appliances like hair dryers or curling irons.

If you have the space, you can add some beautiful touches that can add a little glamor and elegance to your closet. Here are a few tips on elements that can make your walk in closet beautiful as well as functional!

Make Sure You Have Enough Hanging Space - The general rule of thumb is at least 48” of rod space per person.

Add A Vanity

Add drawers to your space along with a vanity top and mirror. It's a great place to store perfume and jewelry and makes getting ready in the morning a more relaxed experience

Use Proper Lighting

Lighting is important! It helps us to see the true colors of what we're about to wear. If you are converting a bedroom and it has windows you should have plenty of natural light. If the space is an interior room, or a more “traditional” closet make sure to include proper lighting.

Maximize Vertical Space

Longer dresses require a rod height of 63”. For shirts, pants, and skirts you can double up and add two rods allowing 45” for hanging.

Include a Full-Length Mirror

A mirror is important and is an easy practical addition.

Don't Be Afraid To Decorate

Closet spaces can be a reflection of your aesthetic style! A statement rug or art on the walls can create a homey feel and establish your décor.

Add Seating

If your room is large enough add a small built-in bench or chaise for relaxing between outfits! If you have the space and budget, some homeowners opt to add comforts like a coffee bar or wine bar, an island for additional storage, shoe racks to organize footwear, ambient lighting, traditional crystal chandeliers, and seating like a love seat, or chaise to complete the room.

Converting a spare bedroom into a walk in closet offers you the ability to create a “get-away” space that is uniquely yours. Whatever your creative vision, the design experts at Toulmin Cabinetry & Design can help you to create your dream walk in closet. Give us a call and let our designers turn that spare bedroom into the closet of your dreams!


About Toulmin Kitchen & Bath Design - We're West Alabama's award-winning, premier kitchen and bath showroom. We're experts who are known for a design-build process that makes the construction process stress-free. Contact us to schedule an appointment for a design consultation.