The Coolest Way to Show Off Your Shoe Collection at Home

Updated 05/12/17
Walk In Closet Ideas
Courtesy of Pink Peonies

As urban dwellers, we know firsthand that ample closet space, or any closet space for that matter, is a rarity. But we discovered a very happy silver lining. Indeed, when closet space is hard to come by, it simply means you get to show off your favorite pieces more often. Yes, shoes were made for walking, completing a look, and adorning your shelves at home as makeshift decorative objects. Displaying your shoes in an organized, practical, and aesthetically pleasing fashion just takes a little creativity and know how.

With this in mind, we decided to call on the style and lifestyle blogger behind Pink Peonies, Rach Parcell, to let us in our her closet-organization hacks for small spaces. Whether you're working with an open closet, exposed clothing rack, or a walk-in closet, Parcell's tips are the roadmap to a cooler closet. Peek inside her immaculate closet below, and read through her 10 tips below to make your closets look at polished as your wardrobe and shoe collection. 

Closet Commandment #1: You Need a Clean Canvas

Organization Tips
Courtesy of Pink Peonies

It's a good idea to give your closet a good cleanout every once in a while. Parcell recommends a solid deep clean bi-annually. "I wish I would do this every season," she says, but sometimes life, and our Netflix queues, get in the way. If you're not sure the last time you did this, her trick is to peek inside the closet and if you see an item you can't remember the last time you wore, "It’s probably been a while, so decide if it’s something you need and if not say goodbye." If you get attached to your belongings like we do, make sure you have a friend there for a second opinion and to help you part ways for good.

The Small-Space Shoe Hack:

Crate and Barrel Yukon Bench with Shelf $799
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Parcell reminds us, "You don’t need to have a built-in shoe closet" to make your display look awesome. Even an investment piece like a bench with a bottom shelf can work. Place it at the end of your bed, or if the bedroom is too small, slide it against the wall adjacent to the front door. A simple bookshelf works, too. 

Closet Commandment #2: Matching Hangers Are a Must

Small Closets
Courtesy of Pink Peonies

"The easiest way to get your closet looking organized is to swap out all your old mismatched hangers for a fresh hanger style that matches," Parcell points out. Even though it may seem simple, "It will be a drastic change in your closet that will instantly make everything look more organized and cohesive." This is particularly important if you don't have a closet and instead have all your belongings on an exposed clothing rack or shelving unit. 

The Small-Space Shoe Hack:

IKEA ELVARLI $455
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IKEA is a game changer when it comes to open-closet storage solutions. Opt for a simple wall unit with space to hang your clothing, drawers for your lingerie, and shelving space for your accessories and shoes.

Closet Commandment #3: Show Off Your Accessories

Courtesy of Pink Peonies

"I'm a girl who likes to be able to see my options when I'm trying to decide what to wear," says Parcell. While we can't all have a Cher Horowitz–like software system pick out our outfits, being able to see what your options are rather than staring at a pile on the floor would be a good place to start. Parcell's tips for achieving that are also perfect for small spaces since it requires everything to be displayed out in the open.

Specifically, "My go-to accessories are always sunglasses and a cute bag, so I've organized my closet so my most worn sunglasses and bags are visible and give me inspiration. I also keep my jewelry out on trays so that I can see them and quickly find them to dress up my outfit!" It's a win-win situation that makes getting ready for work or a night out a lot quicker. 

The Small-Space Shoe Hack:

Target x Room Essentials Stackable Shoe Rack $35
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This affordable, versatile shoe rack is a great option if you don't have built-in shelving. Understated and simple yet stylish with its little brass accents, it's the perfect backdrop to give your shoes the spotlight. 

 Closet Commandment #4: Categorize and Color Code

Courtesy of Pink Peonies

Organizing your wardrobe by clothing type as well as color coding will not only make it easier for you to find what you're looking for, but it'll also look less chaotic and aesthetically pleasing if you keep your belongings out in the open. "I separate my wardrobe so all my dresses are together, all my jeans are together, sweaters, tops, coats, skirts, etc." If you want to give that system a try, we recommend getting it in order during your closet cleanout so you can start from scratch.

And if you have a primarily minimal color palette, you can still create a beautiful rainbow of neutrals. Then do the same for your shoes by separating them into heels, flats, sneakers, and boots. You can also organize them by season if that makes more sense to you.

The Small-Space Shoe Hack:

Serena & Lily South Seas Side Cart $398
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Get creative by transforming a stylish bar cart like this one into a makeshift shelving unit for all your favorite shoes. Or hit up up a local flea market or go antiquing to find one that fits your personality and style. We love how Parcell turns some of her shoes to the side while others are forward-facing. This asymmetrical detail elevates it even more.

Closet Commandment #5: Be a Closet Monitor

Courtesy of Pink Peonies

To make sure everything stays as pretty as it is when you first organized it, make sure you put everything back right away rather than letting things pile up. Parcell's motto? "Everything has a place. If you live by this motto and put things back where you got them, nothing will ever be out of place or lost. I haven't always been good at this, but I'm trying to be better, and it has helped me find things that I'm looking for faster, plus my closet just looks nicer!

The Small-Space Shoe Hack:

CB2 Pyramid Brass Etagere $399
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It's time to bring it full circle. Remember that closet cleanout we mentioned? Well, there's one exception to the rule. Parcell urges you to "hang onto shoes that are sentimental to you," and make them serve a purpose. If you have a special pair of pumps that are totally worn out but still beautiful, stack them on top of your coffee table books on an etagere or console. 

Let us know how your closet makeover goes in the comment section.

Rachel Comey Woven Check Pentz Mules $470
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Charlotte Stone Bettina Sandal $275
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Zara Medium Heel Gathered Leather Shoes $90
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J.Crew Patent-Leather Pumps $220
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Maryam Nassir Zadeh White & Blue Martina Slide Sandals $440
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Sam Edelman Brandie Pointed Toe Flat $90
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