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5 Tips for Making the Most of Dorm Storage Space

        Home & Garden | Dorms

4
Get Some Air -- Go Vertical
Think of those painted cinderblock walls not as whitewashed wastelands, but rather, blank canvasses.
Think of those painted cinderblock walls not as whitewashed wastelands, but rather, blank canvasses.
Len Rubenstein/Photolibrary/Getty Images

By now you should be getting the idea that volume is highly valued in a dorm room. And you may be coming around to the notion that you need to be strategic about your storage. But where, exactly do you store your stuff, other than in those dreadfully shallow closets?

The answer is simple: Look up.

Think of those painted cinderblock walls not as whitewashed wastelands, but rather, blank canvasses. All of that beautiful, vertical space is screaming to be put to work as a backstop for modular shelving, stackable storage cubes and the ever-popular adhesive hooks.

And for the love of Platinum-Level alumni donors, don't let the back of that dorm-room door go to waste -- it's prime territory for hanging hoodies, jackets and even heavy coats right where they're most convenient. It's also a favorite place for students to hang shoe caddies.

For the closet, consider one or more hanging closet organizers, which let you multiply your usable closet space and keep less clutter out in the open.

The bane of dorm dwellers since anyone can remember has been the restrictions on the use of wall surface area. Hole-producing nails and thumbtacks, and even tape that mars surfaces are usually prime suspects on the resident life banned items list. Consider this challenge one of your first college lessons in analytic thinking and creative problem solving.

You could come up with a formula for a super-strong chemical adhesive that binds things to walls without leaving a mark when removed. But considering the geniuses at 3M already did so with their Command line of products, why trouble yourself? The material (rated to hold as much as eight pounds) has proven magical for affixing hooks, hangers, picture and poster frames, whiteboards, cork boards and lots more to what would otherwise be idle wall space.

Shallow-depth bookshelves and shelves that fit on top of a desk help you to squeeze even more utility out of that vertical space.