Bulk shoppers and anyone with more stuff than storage, rejoice: You can reclaim your home from clutter with hanging shoe organizers. Sure, they’re amazing tools for wrangling homeless sneakers and ballet flats. But there’s another reason pro organizers adore them: Their numerous cubbies are perfect for containing odds and ends that drive homeowners mad. You know, that mass of knotted cords, your messy cabinet full of cleaning goods, that one disappearing mitten.
Pick up a few of these genius inventions and let your inner neat freak take over. Here are six shoe organizer ideas to get you started.
#1 Keep Bulk Buys in Check
Instead of piling up towers of paper towels or toilet paper, hang a cloth shoe organizer from your basement or bathroom closet rod and store each roll in its own individual cubby to free up floor space. As a bonus, you won’t have to fumble around trying to extract a roll from its plastic covering — just open the closet, grab, and go. (This tip applies to all kinds of bulk purchases, from canned goods to seltzer water.)
#2 Corral Gift Wrap
Not sure where to tuck away your collection of festive wrapping paper? Don’t waste precious floor space by stuffing those awkward tubes in a box. Homeowner Angie Holden used a standard over-the-door organizer to keep her gift wrap in order after her under-the-bed storage system grew “too cumbersome to get out when I need it.”
Reserve three rows of the organizer’s slots for the long wrapping paper tubes. The rolls will sit in the lowest one. To keep those puppies upright, attach elastic bands to the organizer, between the upper two rows of slots, and slide the tubes down through the elastic before they reach their resting place in the lower row. Make it a complete gift station by sewing a catchall bag to the bottom of the organizer for ribbon, tape, and bows.
#3 Cut the Cord on Clutter
Don’t let tangled tablet chargers and extra iPhone cords rule your home. Instead, use a shoe organizer to keep your electronic accessories out of sight and ready when you need them. Organization blogger Stefanie Sliger divided her various cables by type, stuffed each set into its own pocket, and labeled accordingly. (Think “iCables,” “outlet adapters,” and “HDMI.”) “It’s definitely easier to see, grab, and store cords using the shoe organizer,” Sliger says. If you have extra space, those additional pockets are perfect for batteries and lightbulbs.
#4 Feed Your Kids
Tired of your little ones leaving a trail of displaced soup cans and sideways pasta boxes as they dig through the pantry in search of something to snack on? Using a shoe organizer to sort your snacks “makes it easy for kids to snag grab-and-go snacks,” like granola bars, applesauce, raisins, and juice boxes, says personal organizer MaryJo Monroe. Hang it over the pantry door for easy access.
#5 Tame Winter Garb
As fall becomes winter, figuring out how to keep your endless collection of mittens, gloves, and extra fluffy socks organized and accessible can be a nightmare. After a basket storage system failed to keep her family’s winter accessories under control, blogger Jamie Rannila turned to a shoe organizer — a solution that has been particularly popular with her triplets. “This way of organizing makes it so easy for them to reach and put their items in their own compartment,” Rannila says.
#6 Create a One-Stop Cleaning Station
Is your under-sink space cluttered with myriad sponges and half-empty spray bottles that needed to be pitched months ago? Stop digging through the dark to find the glass cleaner. A hanging shoe organizer in your pantry can make life so much easier — just stick each product and cleaning accessory in its own pocket. Voila! No more hunching and hunting.
Related: Why Being Organized Saves You Money