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Our current shoe organizational system

When the girls were little, we’d just keep their few pairs of shoes at the top of their dresser. It worked well for a few years.

But last year I realized that this set-up was no longer working: the girls have gotten older and their shoe collection has grown, too. Instead of a few pairs neatly lined up in the top dresser drawer, it had turned into a bunch of shoes stuffed to overflowing in the top dresser drawer. And trying to find matching pairs in the jumbled mess of shoes was becoming increasingly more time-consuming.

I could have pared down on the shoes they have, but both of my girls aren’t quite the minimalists that I am so I don’t want to try and stuff them into a mold they were not cut out for. So instead, we tried an over-the-door shoe organizer.

Much to my delight, we discovered that it was the perfect solution right now. Not only can we see all of the shoes at a glance–making it easy to get the pair they are looking for–but we can also tell instantly whether a shoe from one pair is missing.

Best of all, the over-the-door shoe organizer utilizes dead space, frees up their top dresser drawer, and is out of sight much of the time. Plus, so long as the shoes are returned to their proper slots, we don’t have mismatched shoes strewn about the house!

The only drawback is that the girls can’t reach some of the shoes right now and will often have to ask me to help them get a pair down or put a pair away. However, it sure beats having to dig through a bunch of shoes in the top dresser drawer to find a matching pair!

How do you organize shoes at your house? I’d love to hear!

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  1. Jan says

    I keep my in-season shoes in their original boxes, sitting on each level of a tower of wire shelves on the shelf above the clothes rod in my closet. Lids get flipped underneath each box so I can pull the box out like a drawer and grab the shoes easily. Out-of-season shoes are in their covered boxes stacked on the highest wire shelves (the ones I need a stepstool to reach!). DH and DS have the shoe organizer bags, although they both tend to leave their shoes all over 😉

  2. Stephanie says

    Our children have four pair of shoes each (everyday shoes, dress shoes, boots/sandals depending on season) and my husband and I perhaps have five or six but with five people they add up fast! Currently we use a shoe bin by the door for in season and in use (my husband has two pair of sneakers but one is in the closet box since they are just for yard work) shoes and keep the out of season/ low use shoes in a box in the hall closet I really like the hanging idea though especially for hats and mittens or if we receive a windfall in shoes.

  3. says

    The picture did surprise me! I didn’t expect so many shoes at your house! (I’m glad you explained!)

    I have four girls and they each have one pair of shoes, and one pair of sandals. However, my children all have wide feet, which means expensive shoes. I make it work by buying uniform shoes, which work for church and everyday (my girls wear dresses every day).

    However, most days the children prefer to go barefoot!

      • says

        No snow here! In fact, I have a hard time getting the children to wear shoes outside in the middle of winter! It’s just not THAT cold most of the year; I’m harvesting lettuce and arugula from the garden right now :)

        But once it gets to be April or May, they have to wear sandals or something on their feet to prevent getting burned on the patio when it is so hot outside.

  4. ClareC. says

    We never wear shoes in our house and prefer to store them right near the entryway. We used to have a tall shoe rack for our shoes (there are 6 of us) but they were still “visible” and my hubby wasn’t happy with the system. Last summer, he bought a shoe cabinet. Now all of our shoes are neatly stored in there. It wasn’t cheap but is pretty well made and really helps with keeping our no foyer,no coat coat closet entry way much neater.

  5. says

    Since we bought a $9,600 fixer upper special that we took down to basically studs and rebuilt ourselves, I got to plan out my mud room area. Its small but I put a lot of thought into how to make the most of it. I finally decided on having my husband build six cubbies that fit a laundry basket each, one for each member of the house hold to fit their shoes into and one for grocery shopping bags. He made it to counter height so I use the top I have a basket for keys and other such things that land near the back door.

  6. Jerilyn says

    I love having boys! Of course, my husband breaks the mold and has way more shoes than I do. One pair of tennis shoes, one pair of church/school shoes (dress shoes per uniform requirements), 1 pair of sandles, 1 pair of rain boots, and 1 pair of snow boots. The in-season shoes go on our bench by the back door and I have a basket of socks there so I don’t have to rummage and find them. This may change as they get older :)

  7. Nina says

    We have three girls under 5 sharing a room. The shoes were getting out of control, and to top it off the littlest one loves to wear anyone’s shoes around the house. So I purchased a plastic three drawer stacking unit from Walmart. It kind of looks like a mini dressor. Each girl has their own drawer for their shoes, slippers, hat, mittens. It has been working very well, and the little one doesn’t get into everyone’s shoes quite as much :)

  8. Carrie says

    I use a shoe organizer for my son’s winter gear (hats, scarves, mittens, gloves, etc.). I had a “brainstorm” and came up with what I thought was a wonderful idea – only to see a week after I did it that it is also posted on Pinterest! Oh well, great idea, just not as original as I had thought! LOL!:)
    (I have a different organizer for his shoes – hey, I have no little girls so I have to indulge someone while I can! – much to his father’s dismay. But as long as I am the one dressing him, I can have him wear all the shoes I want! :) )

    For those asking, I know the organizers come in plastic and cloth – I got mine at Walmart and was able to choose between the two. I chose plastic though, since I wanted my son to be able to see into the pockets.

    It has to hang on our closet and I didn’t want the hooks showing on the outside, so here is what I did:
    I used 3M hooks! The removable kind that you attach with strips.
    This way there are no hooks hanging over the door AND I can choose the height that I want! (Makes it much easier for little hands to put stuff away!)
    This would also work for those of you who don’t want to hang it on a door – removable 3M hooks can hang it anywhere – at any height!

  9. chelsea says

    We are a “shoes off at the door” family so all the shoes are parked at the basement door. This can sometimes be a pain to get shoes on and off with three small children (4, 3, 1) but really does keep the crud off their shoes from getting tracked through the house. Currently we are using bookshelves that are low enough that they can reach their own shoes, but I’m always looking for a better way to organize!

  10. says

    Ah, to have a mudroom! Someday! In the meantime, our 4 kids (each with a max of 2 pr. of shoes) keep their shoes at the bottom of their closets. Two girls, two boys, makes it possible for them to each get 1/2 of a closet. This obviously wouldn’t work as well if you had more than two children sharing a room.

    (And I should say, typically with only two pairs each-church and “other” 😉 Say, hypothetically, that the five year old got a most adorable pair of Cars fuzzy slippers for Christmas, or the one year old inherited 4 pair or so of the cutest little church shoes ever, well, there’d still be room.)

    Disclaimer-we do live in Vegas and so, don’t deal in foot winter-wear, but I’ve loved all the additional ideas posted on how to manage boots, etc…

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