Clothes Storage Ideas with No Dresser
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Originally published August 16, 2021 and updated September 12, 2022.
More than 70 clothes storage ideas with no dresser for every situation. Whether you’re in college, your first apartment or a small home, these clothes storage ideas and products will keep everything neat and tidy.
I’ve lived in over 25 different homes thanks to the military. I’ve lived in all types of homes and situations. There are many reasons you may not have a dresser for your clothes. But whatever the reason, these clothes storage ideas will work for you when you don’t have a dresser.
What Can I Use Instead of a Dresser?
Whatever the situation, there are reasonable alternatives you can use for clothes storage when you don’t have a dresser.
- Shelving unit
- Cube shelf unit
- Under bed bins
- Suitcases, vintage or even your current ones
- Shoe racks can be used for clothes, too
- Command hooks
- Over-the-door hooks
- Over-the-door baskets
- Rolling Garment Rack
- More ideas explained below
Clothes Storage Ideas with no Dresser
Often when you don’t have a dresser, it’s because you’re living in a small space. Whether you have closet space or not, these tips are useful for a small bedroom or studio apartment.
Expert Tips for clothes storage not using a dresser
- Declutter so you only have to find space for clothing you actually wear and enjoy.
- Organizing and storing fewer clothes allows you to access your items more easily and gives you more peace in the morning when you’re getting dressed.
- Look for flexible solutions you can repurpose if and when you do add a dresser to your home.
- Look for a solution that works for you and your lifestyle. There’s not one right answer. The right answer is what you will find useful.
- Take advantage of all available space for creating dresser alternatives and that often means being creative.
- Look for otherwise unused areas to add storage
- Under the bed
- Back of door or on wall behind the door
- Pull your bed or other furniture 2-3 feet away from the wall and store shelves or tubs there.
- Shelf added over the door for out of season clothing.
- Because you can’t change the amount of floor space you have, take advantage of the vertical space on walls to add shelves or floor-to-ceiling shelving units. Always choose the tallest shelving unit you can to maximize and create usable space.
- Fold clothing items and stack them neatly to make the most of space.
- Hang items you’d usually store in a regular dresser drawer.
- Tank tops
- Rotate seasonal clothing so that only the current season’s clothing is in your prime real estate storage, which is the easiest to reach areas.
- Fully utilize the closet shelf you already have. Use shelf risers and shelf dividers to give you plenty of space to use as a clothes storage area.
All images below are clickable Amazon product links.
Shelving units are the obvious choice because it’s a flexible clothing storage option that is cost effective and can be moved when you relocate. You can fold and stack larger clothing items on the shelves. Place smaller items in bins or baskets on the shelf to keep them neatly contained.
Open shelves or a small closet unit with a door are both a perfect storage solution.
A storage unit, such as locker style units, are a great option, too.
You can often stack shorter shelving units on top of each other to utilize more of the vertical space, create more shelf space and create extra storage space.
Take advantage of the vertical space in your room or closet. Look for extra tall shelves or shelving units designed to go all the way to the ceiling.
If you’re even a little bit handy, you can create the middle shelving unit yourself with plumbing parts and wood shelves.
If you have enough room and simply prefer not to use a dresser, you can take advantage of different styles of clothes racks. They come in both rolling garment racks and stationary versions.
You can also add an additional clothes rod to your closet to double the hanging space.
Closet hanging shelves
These hanging shelves are made to hang from the closet rod, but can also be hung from coat hooks or attached to a wall. They work well for both bulky sweaters and also small items like baby clothes or underwear.
Under-the-bed clothes storage products
The space under the bed is perfect for storing clothes. I prefer an option with a lid to keep clothing from getting dusty, but if you’re accessing the clothing each day, an open rolling drawer can work well.
If your bedframe is not tall enough to accommodate bed storage containers, you can raise the bed height with simple bed risers.
You can store any clothing that can be folded, shoes and even bedding and towels under the bed.
Back-of-the-Door Storage Solutions
Hang items on the back of the door or on the wall behind the door. In some cases you can do both, if there’s enough space for shallow shelves or hooks hung at different levels, so they can clear each other when the door is open. Consider using both the closet door and the door into the room. This is a great place to add additional clothing storage.
DIY Clothes Storage Hacks
A quick trip to the thrift store or checking your local yard sales or online resale groups will often result in great solutions to replace a traditional dresser.
- Bookshelf – use a book shelf you already have or a thrifted one.
- Add wall shelves from the floor to the ceiling. You can customize the space to meet your exact needs.
- Repurpose old trunks and old suitcases (or even your current suitcases). These can be stacked with the out of season clothes on the bottom and the in season clothes in the container on top where it’s easily accessed.
- Repurpose clean sturdy boxes. These can also be stacked or placed under the bed for storage. Cover the box with wrapping paper or adhesive shelf paper for a DIY clothes storage box that matches your décor.
- Hook a hanger over the top frame of a window or door and hang folded clothing, scarves or belts over the hanger.
- Hang an inexpensive peg board on the wall and hang jewelry and scarves as decorative wall art and for storage.
- Frame corkboard and hang jewelry.
- Stack free wood wine crates, inexpensive wood crates or wooden boxes to create floor to ceiling shelves.
- Add towel rods or thick molding to the wall to hang hangers holding folded shirts, sweatshirts and sweaters. It’s important to know how to fold and hang sweaters so they don’t stretch out on the hanger.
- Place wood shelves on steps of an A frame ladder to create a shelving unit.
- Hang a wood ladder on the wall and add wood cut to fit the space between the steps to create shelves.
- Use hanging wire baskets, the type for fruit or root vegetables, hung from the ceiling for small items.
- Use rope and a standard shelf from a big box store to create a hanging shelf. You can hang it from the wall or ceiling.
- Place a shelf unit or trunk at the foot of your bed for additional storage.
Looking for more clothes storage ideas?
- How Many Clothes Do You Really Need? – The purpose of the How Many Clothes Do You Really Need checklist and this process is for you to rationally and purposefully decide how many clothes in each clothing category you need for your specific and unique lifestyle and situation.
- Clothes Storage Ideas – Knowing these 5+ tips and options for clothes storage makes all the difference in a small space with limited closet and storage space.
- How to Fold Clothes – 37 pages of clear and simple steps for folding 22 articles of clothing from a professional organizer. Plus, 2 pages of clothing care information.
- Best Sweater Storage Ideas and Solutions – Everything you need to know in 30+ tips for the best sweater storage ideas and products from a professional organizer.
- 145 Creative Hat Storage Ideas – More than 145 hat storage ideas, products and tips for all styles of hats, budgets, needs, spaces and décor styles.
Other storage ideas you might have missed
- Storage for Small Spaces – Whether you’re down-sizing or just starting out, living in a small home can be cozy & organized with these tips & products for storage for small spaces.
- Colored Pencil Storage Ideas – More than 25 colored pencil storage ideas and tips for children, adults and artists. Includes both DIY ideas and a wide variety of products.
- Playroom Storage Ideas – 100 playroom storage ideas, tips, products & DIYs for all situations and budgets from a mom of 3, parent educator and professional organizer
- Clever Thread Storage Ideas – 55+ tips for organizing threads, flosses and bobbins with thread storage ideas, including products and budget-friendly hacks.
Be sure to pin for later so you can always find these clothes storages for no dresser.See my favorite clothes organizing tips, hacks, favorite products and more in the table below. You can scroll through the table and click on an idea that interests you or use the magnifying glass in the upper right corner to search for a specific topic.
I’m a mom of 3, a veteran and military spouse. I’ve moved into 20+ homes all around the world. My passion is helping busy people make the space and time for what’s really important to them.
Those hanging fabric shelves work so well if you have a lot of rod space. We got some for my daughter and she keeps sweaters inside. They are perfect because sweaters are large, and don’t stack particularly well1
Those shelves can be a life saver, especially for renters. Using them for sweaters is a great tip, Seana!
These are all excellent tips. Cabinets can also go in the closet to provide a storage option that will keep clothing and other items dust-free and behind closed doors.