The average adult in the U.S. owns roughly 20 pairs of shoes, so most families have quite a lot of footwear that needs to be organized in their home. If you don’t already have an effective storage set-up for your family’s shoes, they’re likely ending up in a messy pile by the door, as happens in many households.
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Benefits of Storing Shoes in Your Garage
Beyond being a trip hazard, that accumulating pile of disorganized shoes brings unnecessary clutter and dirt into your home. By creating an effective shoe storage system in your garage, you’ll not only free up living space in your home, but you’ll also improve the cleanliness.
If you have space to store shoes in your garage, taking advantage of that allows you to avoid dragging in outside dirt and contaminants into your home. Additionally, there a variety of storage options that you can choose to store your shoes neatly and functionally to improve how you use them.
For example, if you have a large number of seasonal shoes, you can split up your organization between the shoes that you currently need and the ones that aren’t currently in-season. You can use plastics tubs or bins for bulk off-season storage, and then dedicate accessible storage options like garage lockers, storage racks, utility shelving, or floating shelves for the most frequently used shoes.
Having your household’s shoes well-organized will help you keep better track of what shoes you own, preventing you from misplacing them or buying duplicates you didn’t need as well as potentially reminding you to get your money’s worth and wear old shoes you’d forgotten about.
Certain types of shoes need regular maintenance, like treatments with shoe polish or leather conditioner, so having a dedicated space may also help you remember to properly take care of your shoes, making them look better and last longer.
Important Considerations for Garage Shoe Storage
While storing your shoes in the garage provides several benefits, you will also need to watch out for potential damage to your shoes from the condition of the air in your garage. In many homes, the garage is not insulated from outside weather. As a result, your garage may experience large fluctuations in humidity and temperature to which your shoes would be exposed.
If you own shoes that are potentially damaged by exposure to extreme temperatures, such as the cushion in running shoe soles stiffening after long-term exposure to cold weather, you may have to set aside important or expensive shoes for indoor storage.
If you want a tidy storage option for these select shoes, a shoe rack in your mudroom, laundry room, or other out-of-the-way location, will allow you to set aside a reasonable amount of organized space for these shoes. You can also consider a hanging shoe organizer, which can go on the inside of a hall closet door.
Besides that, fabric and leather shoes can also be sensitive to moisture or dampness in your garage. If your garage isn’t insulated and you live in a particularly humid region, consider using a dehumidifier to limit to your garage’s dampness. On the other hand, if there’s only moderate moisture in your garage, placing desiccants, or drying agents, like silica gel packets, in your shoe storage would be a simpler solution.
Type of Storage to Consider
When choosing your main shoe storage furniture, there are a lot of options on the market, but they can be divided into two main categories: enclosed vs open-air storage.
Enclosed storage options, like garage lockers or storage bins, promote the longevity of your shoes’ condition and appearance because they protect your shoes from exposure to dust and light, which can accelerate how shoes fade and wear down over time.
If you’re someone who takes pride in your shoe collection, open-air shelving might appeal to you more because it would allow you to display your shoes. Also, there’s a greater variety of options to chose from, such as shoe racks, wire baskets or shelving on a pegboard, as well as the variety of floating shelves that you can choose from.
Depending on how many shoes you need to store, as well as what height shelves you want, you might choose between simple floating shelves arranged on the wall custom to your storage needs. There are also more DIY friendly options, like Slatwall systems or shelf track systems, which can be easily modified later on if you need more storage or bigger spaces between shelves.
Also, you can combine the two types of storage to get benefits from each. While enclosed storage is best for long-term storage of shoes to slow down their wear and tear, open-air shelves are best for storing your most frequently worn shoes, as it gives damp fabric and leather time to 100% dry and avoids growing mold when placed in closed storage.
Other Ways You Can Improve to Your Garage Shoe Storage
Now that you’ll be using part of your garage as dedicated shoe storage, make full use of the advantages of having that additional space for your footwear. To keep them in good condition, specific types of shoes require more preparation for storage.
For example, to help keep their shape and avoid creasing, boots should be stored with shaper inserts. This will mean you might need relatively tall shelf heights, so if you know you have a lot of boots or are likely to buy some in the future, consider sticking with the storage options that have adjustable shelves.
There are other items you can use to help maintain your more precious pairs of shoes, such as shoe trees or acid-free tissue paper, which are used to fill and shape shoes while they sit in storage. You might also want to consider having a wood shoehorn on hand to properly remove or put on your well-cared-for shoes.
Before inserting shapers and storing your shoes, however, you should always make sure they’re clean and dry. To make it easier to store, maintain, and access your shoes, you may want to create a mudroom space around the door to your home in your garage. You can use a combination of garage lockers, shelving, cubbies, and coat hooks, as well as benches, to create a functional space to get ready to leave and re-enter your home.
These additional storage options will give you room to keep shoe storage accessories, like shoe cleaner, protective shoe storage bags, and shoe deodorizer easily on hand. Whatever shoe storage organization you plan to do, if you make sure to choose options that fit your space, budget, and shoe collection, you’ll get to enjoy a cleaner home and better-maintained shoes.