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Living Big in Tiny Spaces: What to Do When You Don't Have Drawers

City living often comes at a price -- and with many sacrifices! Many apartments (especially older ones) lack certain necessities, like storage. Small kitchens and bathrooms are often too small to accommodate lots of counter or vanity space, which means you're left without drawers. And how are you supposed to function without drawers?! We have a few ideas. 


In the Bathroom

The bathroom is one of the most unfortunate places for you to lack drawers because it's difficult to organize hair and body products without them! Let's talk about the never-ending collection of perfume, shampoo, brushes, curling irons, band-aids, makeup, and tampons that you rely on drawers and cabinets to house.


Take away the drawers, and you're pretty much left with a pile of stuff (which, in our opinion, is the worst). For makeup... Try a clear, plastic multi-drawer container that allows easy visibility and access to everything you need on a rushed mornings. Organize by eyes, lips, face, or whatever suits your routine.


If your bathroom has no floor space, think vertically. Shelves and cubbyholes work great about the toilet and are perfect for stacking up towels, toilet paper, makeup shelves, and extra shampoo, conditioner, and body wash. If you use a hair dryer or other styling tool, find a small container to keep these items and put them in a cubby as well. Wrap the cords neatly around the tool to minimize cord-clutter.


Flat-backed self-adhesive cups on the inside of the cabinet door can hold toothbrushes, combs, and makeup tools. Before pressing the cups in place, line them up between the shelves. To ensure the door can close, put thin items on the shelves in the spots where the cups will take some space.


Think of your small bathroom as a challenge -- how can you make "clutter" look organized, purposeful, and even cool? No drawers means no messy catch-alls for products you probably don't need. Keep what you need, toss what you don't, and use your small bathroom to your advantage.


Get the How-to for Organizing Your Bathroom

In the Kitchen

Drawers in your kitchen house nearly everything, from silverware to plastic bags to lunchboxes and pans. So what happens when you move into an apartment that has a few cabinets and zero drawers? Look at your space, and try to figure out what makes the most sense. Your pots and pans should be close to your stove. Perhaps you can hang a rack above or next to it. Do you have space under your sink? Try stacking your pots and pans there.


Now, what about silverware? Find a storage system that can house silverware without looking too clunky or out of place. Although it's non-traditional, storing your silverware vertically actually isn't a bad idea. It's accessible and takes up much less space! 

Get the How-to for Small Kitchen Storage Ideas
Photography by: Mike Krautter

In the Bedroom

So, your bedroom can barely fit a bed. Now what? Where do you put all of your clothes?! Underbed storage is a must for clothes that would normally be stored in drawers. Unless you can find a dresser that fits your space well, we suggest trying to go without one!


You can also stash a small drawer inside your closet but it's a whole other can of worms when you don't have a closet either!



Get More Cute Storage Ideas for a Small Bedroom