Types of shelves for closets

Wherever you live, be it a large country estate, a townhouse, or a cosy studio apartment, storage is an important tool for helping to keep your life organised and your home looking clean and tidy.

Storage comes in all shapes and sizes, though our closets are some of the most important. Whether you have a small wardrobe, some bespoke fitted furniture, or a spacious walk-in closet, they help us keep our clothes in order. Custom-built cabinets in your kitchen can also help make cooking an easier task and more pleasant experience by removing the need to rummage and hunt for everything each time.

But we all have different tastes and interests. Some of us might need lots of room to keep our ever-growing shoe collection, while others may need a place to store our hats.

Yet, while we all have our own individual uses for our closets, we often just turn to mass-produced and flat-pack furniture options and try to make it work. That isn’t necessary, as custom made kitchen and bedroom furniture can help to maximise the use of your space and help you bring order to your closets.

One way that this can be achieved is by being smart with the types of shelves you use in. While on the surface, it may seem that all shelves are the same, that could not be further from the truth.

When you engage a fitted furniture supplier, they’ll work with you to understand your needs and the space you have to work with and then create a bespoke design that uses shelves designed specifically to your needs.

Here are some of the options that you might want to consider when looking to add shelves to your closets.

Fixed Shelves

As the name suggests, fixed shelves are a shelf that is fixed in place, meaning it can’t be moved around to cater for different storage needs. If you’re buying fitted bedroom furniture in London or elsewhere, the top of the wardrobe or cupboard can act as a fixed shelf, providing space to store items you won’t need frequently so that they are out of the way.

Fixed shelves can also work well inside a closet, giving you additional space to store shoes, folded clothes like sweatshirts and T-shirts, and bags. Bespoke wardrobe interiors mean that you can have your fixed shelves in just about any size you like, though it is worth remembering that they can’t be (easily) moved once they’re installed, so think ahead as to whether your needs will change in the future.

While it is possible to have made to measure wardrobes without any internal fixed shelves, they’re usually necessary to provide structural rigidity. If you don’t want fixed shelves, then you’ll need to speak to your custom cabinet maker to find a solution that meets your needs.

Adjustable Shelves

Adjustable shelves are very similar to fixed ones as they serve many of the same purposes, however, they can be easily moved around to accommodate your changing storage requirements in the future.

The most common type of adjustable shelf looks identical to a fixed shelve in that it is installed horizontally across some or all of the structure. However, unlike a fixed option, it can be moved up or down, or removed entirely, in a matter of minutes.

This is because they are installed using a set of removable pins or screws. To change their position, it is simply a case of pulling out the pins or unscrewing the screws, and repositioning the shelf.

The standard type of adjustable shelf is one that lies flat, perpendicular to the vertical structure of the wardrobe or cabinet. But if you intend to store a lot of shoes, then your bespoke wardrobe designer may suggest that you include some slanted shelves.

These work like any other adjustable shelf but are raised slightly at the back, making it easier to see and access footwear stored on higher shelves.

Corner Shelves

Traditionally, corners have been problematic for storage as they become tricky for installing shelves, but that’s where corner options come in!

Corner shelves are a favourite among fitted furniture suppliers who are passionate about maximising the storage capacity from the space you have. They can also present a way for adding some style to your closets with a choice of either curved or straight edges.

Straight edges are usually the cheapest option, though the way they’re created means they’re best used in places where the insides aren’t likely to be seen. A curved or angled option can be a little more expensive but look better and provide a little extra capacity.

Installing a corner shelf can unlock a lot of room for storing large items, though you will want to think about how frequently you’ll need to access the contents because they can require a little extra effort to unload.

Rotating Shelves

This issue with corner shelves can be solved by adding a rotating function. By being able to spin the shelves around, you get easy access to the items located at the back, making corner shelving more practical.

However, they are not without downsides. Naturally, a rotating shelf will cost more than a static corner shelf because it has more components. Additionally, the moving parts will require some maintenance over time, reducing the overall capacity slightly. For many, these are worthwhile trade-offs to make for the practicality of a rotating shelf.

Pull-Out Shelves

Pull-out shelves work on a similar principle to rotating ones in that they move to give you easier access to their contents.

At first glance, a pull-out shelf will look just like a fixed or adjustable one, but on closer inspection, you’ll see that they have runners installed on their edges. These allow the surface of the draw to be slid out and then pushed back again.

They can work great in wardrobes where you have garments you want to keep flat, but they’re also ideal for kitchen cabinets and pantries where you might have lots of small containers, bottles, and boxes. Without the sliding function, it can be difficult to get access to the items at the back, so a pull-out shelve can help make cooking much easier.

Looking for fitted furniture suppliers in London? Get in touch with our team today to discuss how we can help maximise your space.