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How to Organize Shoes: 15 Creative Ideas and Tips

Cabinet for shoes.

Whether you have a small collection of shoes or a large one that makes shoe lovers envious, organizing your collection of shoes helps you save space and keep track of what you have. An organized space also ensures you maximize storage potential and have easier access to the shoes you wear most.  

We have come up with 15 creative ways to help you organize your shoes. Follow the helpful tips and clever ways to create shoe storage below, and your shoes will be easy to find and protected.

But, if you want step-by-step instructions, head straight to How to Organize Your Shoes in 8 Simple Steps and learn how to organize shoes in various configurations and spaces based on your needs.

NOTE: If you prefer to talk to an organization expert, comment below or send us an email at [email protected] and one of our editors will send you a few recommendations.

1. Install Shallow Shelving

Shallow shelving units are perfect for organizing shoes.

They are easy to install, versatile, and cost-effective.

Any unused wall space in a living room, hallway, bedroom, or office will work for shoe storage. 

2. Bench with Cubbies

Good for the entryway of your home or by the front door, a bench with cubbies is stylish yet functional.

This option is great for kids, tennis shoes, and flats.

You can also opt for a larger model for boots and heels. 

3. Glass Front Armoire

If you prefer a more decorative display, place your shoes in a cabinet or armoire.

The vintage appeal of the furniture looks lovely in any space.

However, it can be a bit more expensive than other options. You may want to check out your local flea market.

4. Bookcase with Glass Door Front

A classy bookcase with glass front doors makes an excellent shoe storage space.

A bookcase is perfect for any narrow space and easily compliments a bedroom.

5. Glass Bell Cover

The small space beneath a bell cover is ideal  for displaying your favorite shoes, particularly if they are not worn very often.

A bell cover is also a great way to showcase special shoes, like your baby’s first or your wedding shoes. 

6. Install Rows of Crown Molding for Heels

Create an entire shelf for high heels using rows of crown molding.

If you don’t want to clean your walls every time you pick a pair of shoes, use this option for lesser-worn shoes.

7. Towel Rods

Towel rods for the kitchen or bathroom can be painted and used similarly to crown molding.

Rods can be installed anywhere you like and are ideal for hanging heels of all sizes. 

8. Rows of Hooks

Hooks of all shapes and sizes make a great shoe organization tool in any closet or entryway.

They are perfect for all kinds of shoes and boots and can be configured in any way you need.

Hooks are also inexpensive and come in various quantities. 

9. Metal Garden Grid

You can hang a large number of shoes on a metal garden grid by hooking the heel over the wire.

The grid can easily be leaned against a wall in an entryway, closet, bedroom, or anywhere you have extra floor space.

Best of all, no installation is required. 

10. Magazine Racks

Wall-mounting magazine racks like shelves is a fantastic way to organize shoes.

They help you maximize vertical storage space and can be installed anywhere you happen to have extra wall space. 

11. Ladder Shelves

You can hang heels over the rungs on a ladder to facilitate ample storage space.

A ladder can be leaned against any wall with extra space and adds a unique touch to your space.

12. Stacking Crates

An inexpensive, DIY solution involves stacking crates. This option easily grows with your collection of shoes.

It also allows for an asymmetrical or more streamlined aesthetic and can be placed anywhere. 

13. Racks Behind a Door

You can also hang an organizer with pockets or a multi-tiered shelf.

Space-saving storage behind a door is perfect for versatile storage, is inexpensive, and often comes with many pockets.

The only drawback is that it may not accommodate larger heels and boots.

14. Shoe Slot Holders

If you are short on space, shoe holders allow you to stack one shoe on top of the other.

They help you achieve double the usable space in a small area and still enable good visibility. 

15. Cabinet (Covered)

A cabinet or sideboard is great for covered storage. The right piece of furniture makes an elegant display, can store many pairs of shoes, and helps to protect your collection from dust.  

How to Organize Your Shoes in 8 Simple Steps

You don’t have to be a professional organizer or buy lots of tools to organize your shoes well. Whether you have a small space or plenty of room to work with, the following steps will help you put your shoes and boots in order.  

Step 1: Take Inventory of Your Shoe Collection

To start, take all of your shoes out and go through them. This gives you a good understanding of precisely what you have. Removing and gathering also help you clear space to organize your shoes properly. When all of your shoes are in one place, take a moment to assess their condition. 

Step 2: Clean, Polish, and Repair as Needed

Clean, polish, and repair any shoes or boots that could benefit from a bit of attention. You can easily buff out scuff marks, apply waterproofing spray, and remove stains using simple products at home. You can also take quality shoes, like ones made from vegan or natural leather, to a cobbler to repair worn-out heels and soles. 

Step 3: Throw Away Old or Unwanted Shoes 

Donate pairs of shoes you do not wear or find uncomfortable to free up extra storage space. Throw out any shoes that are too worn and beyond repair. 

Step 4: Organize Your Shoes by Frequency, Season, and Type 

Next, sort your collection of shoes into categories based on the frequency of use, season, and type or style. Setting similar types together helps you locate them quickly and put them away more efficiently. 

Place special occasion shoes in one pile, shoes you regularly wear in another, and so on. Also, consider piles for seasonal shoes, dress shoes, casual shoes, sneakers, athletic shoes, sandals, tall boots, rain boots, heels, flats, flip flops, kids shoes, and work shoes. 

Depending on what types of shoes you have, groupings may vary. Just make sure to choose a system that is practical for you.

Our recommendation is to organize by frequency, then re-organize either every season or as your needs change.

Step 5: Assess Your Storage Needs 

Once you sort your shoes, take note of the categories you created and count how many pairs are in each group. Knowing how many sections and how many pairs need to be stored will help you determine the right way to configure and contain them in the following steps. 

Step 6: Consider Your Shoe Storage Space Options

While your shoe or general clothing closet is generally the first place you think of storing shoes, there are a variety of other less obvious places that help you utilize unused space. Consider the following locations to maximize storage potential and space throughout your home.

  • A closet floor is a great place for storing shoes. The space is perfect for adding tiered racks and stackable cubbies to help you utilize vertical space below your hanging clothes. We recommend open bins and shelves for frequently used shoes. Stackable boxes can often hold two pairs of shoes and help keep items protected. 
  • The top shelf of your closet is great for lesser-used shoes and taller boots. Simply place them on the shelf or in protective boxes or bins.
  • The back of a closet door can hold many shoes in an otherwise unused space. You can hang a shoe organizer over the top of most doors or install racks quickly with hardware. This solution is suitable for flip-flops, sneakers, and other smaller shoes. With a minimal heel height.
  • You can also hang a cubby organizer over a closet rod to create extra shoe organization space. Closet rod organizers are good for all kinds of shoes, including larger-sized shoes and boots, because the cubbies come in various sizes and configurations.
  • The small space under your bed is perfect for shoe storage. Place a sliding organizer made from plastic or fabric under the frame and quickly pull it out as needed. This option is great for keeping shoes protected.
  • Placing a freestanding rack in your hall or entryway is excellent for utilizing extra floor space and vertical space. These racks come in various heights, tier options, and designs, some of which have wheels for simplified maneuverability. A shoe rack can hold three pairs of shoes or more per tier and come in various materials and styles. Bamboo is an excellent material if you want something lightweight and renewable.

There are many creative ways to organize shoes that allow for tidier storage and easier access. Explore the storage potential different spaces in your home offer with different shoe storage solutions or ideas at the top of this article.

Step 7: Set Up Organizers and Space

Acquire, install, and set up all the containers and other organizing tools you choose. Configure them in a way that maximizes the vertical and horizontal spaces they take up. Always make sure the area is clean before continuing.   

Step 8: Store Shoes According to Plan 

To finish up, place shoes in storage containers, on shelves, hooks, or racks according to your plan. Remember to keep your previously grouped categories together and keep frequently used shoes in easy-to-access locations, and you should be all set! 

How Can I Organize All My Shoes?

Organizing tools like boxes, bins, and racks are a great solution for keeping your shoes neat and tidy. All your shoes can easily be contained and displayed using equipment found at the Container Store or online. Taking advantage of as many  spaces in your home as possible helps you maximize extra storage potential, especially with more extensive shoe collections. 

How Does Marie Kondo Organize Shoes?

When organizing shoes, Marie Kondo prefers to store like with like. She groups her shoes by type and color, making them easier to find and match with outfits. Her grouping system also ensures you can find the right style of shoe for the occasion quickly. 

How Do You Arrange Many Shoes In a Small Space?

Utilizing various shoe storage solutions is essential if you have a small closet space or storage capacity. Spreading out your shoe collection can give you enough extra storage space to keep what you have and potentially even buy more shoes. 

Stacking shoe boxes, installing shelves, or adding a shoe rack also increases the number of shoes stored in small spaces by utilizing vertical space. 

Placing each pair in opposite directions is another storage solution that helps you free up enough space for more shoes. 

Watch Coral Hoyt share her tips on how to organize shoes in this video:

What Is the Most Efficient Way to Store Shoes?

Efficient shoe storage depends on your specific space and how often you wear a pair of shoes. To create a super functional system, give yourself easy access to commonly worn shoes and place infrequently worn pairs in less prominent locations. 

Keeping shoes and boots in their shoe boxes or placing them in clear bins not only keeps them sorted and protected for extended periods of time but also reduces time spent on searching and rummaging for that pair of shoes you’re looking for!.  


Emily Alexander