This is a guest post from FLATS® on how to disguise storage.

Interior design blogs often leave people wondering, “where is all their stuff?”

As much as we’d like our apartment to look like a perfectly curated oasis, we still need our ugly yet necessary things. I’m talking toiletries, office supplies, electronic cables, you name it. Getting these items out of plain sight is especially challenging when you live in a small space. 

Whether you’re a lifetime hoarder or a master minimalist it can be challenging to find places to disguise storage when square footage is limited.

Take a walk around your apartment — are you using your space as efficiently as possible? Do you have empty gaps in your kitchen you can fit shelving into? Is there dead space under your bed where pull-out drawers could easily house the miscellaneous items floating around your room?

These are the questions experts in hacking small spaces ask themselves and their clients. Get ready to unlock hidden storage potential because you don’t even have to be a DIY wizard to freshen up and organize your space.


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Multifunctional Furniture

multifunctional furniture

FLATS at The Draper

Hiding storage isn’t hard when it’s built into the furniture you’re already using.

The easiest place to start is a coffee table that also stores the clutter you don’t want visible. There are all sorts of sneaky ways to turn your coffee table into storage. Vintage trunks can house extra linens and look perfect in an eclectic space.

For a modern style, use glass fold-up topped tables to show off your visually appealing tchotchkes. Large wooden or fabric storage boxes easily double as end tables or ottomans, guests will never know!

ikea bed storage


Another underutilized space that’s a no-brainer to stow away items is underneath your bed. Retailers like Ikea have created multifunctional disguise storage systems that are designed specifically to maximize storage potential.

If you’re already set with a bed there are boxes and drawers you can buy or have made custom to fit your needs so you don’t up shoving things down there and hoping to find them one day. 


Dual Bookshelf 

Storage capacity, bold statement piece, easy to hack? Check, check, and check.

If you have the room and a platform bed, you can create a striking configuration by putting a wide bookcase behind your bed.

Combine form with function: storage boxes made from wood, metal, wool will store what you don’t want to display while leaving room to exhibit art, photos, antiques, etc. on empty shelves. 

You can’t always find space to hide everything away in a small apartment, so think of curating your things into art pieces. Storage enthusiasts often talk about how organizing and paring down your belongings often go hand-in-hand.

While you’re re-thinking the storage of your apartment you should also think about doing an audit of what you really need & love. 

High Shelving

high shelving

FLATS at The Bush Temple

We tend to neglect what we can’t reach but vertical space is open real estate for your storage needs.

Instead of looking at your limited floor space, focus on all the wall space — an open canvas for storage solutions!

High shelving around the perimeter of your room is a great way to create the extra space you desire. A library ladder not only looks cool but will help you reach all your possessions when you need them. Use the color and texture of containers to match your room’s overall aesthetic (and disguise storage, too). 

Looking for inspiration?

Apartment Therapy will be one-stop-shop for ideas on how to utilize your space from floor to ceiling. Creative minds have come up with all sorts of ways to save floor space like hanging extra chairs on the walls or building multi-use pegboards to house all your kitchen necessities. Anything wall-mounted is going to be your new best friend. 

Ignored Doors

For those wary of getting into a construction project, there’s actually a very easy starting place.

You can double your storage and keep it out of sight by using your doors.

From kitchen cabinet doors to closet doors, there are quick hacks that don’t require tools of any kind. Simple solutions, like over-the-door organizers and command hooks, can minimize counter and desk clutter instantly.

If you’re up for more of a challenge, you can install hanging rods on the instead of doors as well to get things like kitchen utensils out of sight.

Small Bathroom? Over-the-door organizers are true lifesavers for hiding all your toiletries and other essentials you don’t want on display. 

Making the Most of Nooks    

One of the most neglected real estates can be found in the kitchen.

Many of us overlook the odd gap between an appliance and the wall or the forgotten corner part of the counter.

There are a variety of clever tiered shelving solutions designed to fit these unconventional spaces and disguise storage in vertical space. A corner shelf is a handy way to store spices, sauces, and all other things you’d usually stow in a drawer or pantry.

Utility carts come in all different depths and heights, making them a useful asset in a tight space because they’re easy to roll out and move around.

Countertops don’t meet at the corner? Affix a shelf to fill in the gap to double your “counter” space. The same can be applied to small spaces. Being precise with measurements will allow you to find the perfect fitting furniture. 

FLATS at The Draper

Author Bio

FLATS® Chicago’s mission is to bring big style in smart spaces by delivering high quality, amenity-rich, and authentic environments at approachable rents. FLATS has received national acclaim with media outlets such as Bloomberg, Bravo TV, Crain’s Business, Chicago Sun-Times, Chicago Home & Garden, and Renovation Style. Co-branding synergies with national retailers such as CB2 and others have further propagated the FLATS brand. By offering a visible, packaged, and consistently high-quality product and management, FLATS has become a trusted name. Residents know they get a consistently high-quality rental unit and a professionally managed building regardless of which FLATS community they live in.