More Closet Layout Options (Based On Your Input!)

Y’all really gave me a whole lot to think about yesterday! I’m still going through comments and pondering different ideas, and I feel like I’ve been trying to drink from a fire hydrant over the last day. 😀 Y’all have so many ideas that it’s hard for me to keep up! But I love reading about everyone’s different ideas, differing opinions, and problem-solving solution.

So far, there are a few that have stood out to me, so I took some time last night and this morning to tweak the floor plan to see what I thought about these ideas. First, I headed over to Houzz to look at long, skinny closets to be sure that I’d even want to live with a long, skinny closet. And I think I love the idea!

There are so many walk-in closets with this configuration on Houzz and Pinterest, and some are way narrower than the 7.5 feet (not 75 feet!! :-D) than I’m allowing for ours. Some closets that I saw were only about five feet wide, with space for storage only along one wall. The ones that had storage on both sides were six feet and wider.

This closet is 6′ wide by 22′ long, according to the description. So ours would be 18 inches wider than this one.

Photo by Victory ClosetsSearch closet pictures

I didn’t see dimensions on most of them, but I would guess that his one is about 8 feet wide, with 48 inches of space between the cabinets on either side.

Photo by Kathleen Jacobson, The Couture ClosetDiscover closet design inspiration

This one looks like 7 to 7.5 feet to me, with two feet on either side for cabinets, and 36 to 42 inches of space between them.

Photo by SchoenerBrowse closet photos

And this one looks more like 7 feet wide to me, with 2 feet for cabinets on each side, and 36 inches of space between them.

So the dimensions that I’m trying to work with seem to be pretty standard for long, skinny walk-in closets. I realized that the back entry of the studio is exactly 7.5 feet wide, so I got some tape and measured off 24 inches on each side to see what that feels like…

That feels like plenty of room to me. And by moving from a wall of PAX wardrobes to a walk-in closet that’s 7.5 feet wide, I’ll literally be doubling my storage space since I could put PAX wardrobes on both sides of this walk-in closet.

So now that I’m sure I could live with a 7.5-foot-wide walk-in closet, I tried to incorporate some of your ideas into a floor plan. One of the main suggestions I heard again and again was to move the entrance to the bedroom closer to the center of the house instead of having it on the back wall of the house. That made sense to me.

Another common suggestion was to move the laundry room to the back wall of the house so that it could have a window. The only way I could figure out how to do that was to only bump out the bedroom the additional 7.5 feet, while leaving the rest of the addition in its originally planned size. And that was another suggestion that several of you had.

So when I put those ideas together, this is what I came up with…

That put the storage closet for Matt’s things on one side of the hallway leading to the bedroom, with the entrance to the laundry room on the other side of the hallway. With that configuration, I can have a window over the sink in the laundry room, and the back of the addition isn’t a perfect rectangle. But that also eliminates a potential coat closet in the family room, so once again, our guests are left without a place to hang their coat during our one-week-a-year winter. 😀

A very intriguing idea that someone had was to keep the addition as-is, and build the closet to the side of the house. This idea was really fascinating to me, so I played around with it as well.

When I did this one, I had already gotten it into my head that I wanted a window in the laundry room, but I also wanted the entrance into the laundry room to be in the new hallway to the bedroom. But then I also needed storage space for Matt’s things. So I wondered about combining the two — the laundry room and the storage space for Matt’s things — into one large room with an entrance from the bedroom and from the hallway. My concern with this layout is what the roof would look like. It’s hard for me to imagine, but I the architect could give me some input. I do love that position of the closet for one main reason. I could have a window in there, or even two! I love the look of those windows in the pictures of the long, skinny closets up above.

I’m going to keep on reading comments, and continue playing around with these ideas y’all have given me. I know I’ll find the perfect solution. The main things I want and need are (1) at least 7.5 feet of width for a walk-in closet, and (2) a dedicated storage area for Matt’s things. It’s can’t be a storage closet plus a shoe closet, or a storage closet plus storage for extra bedding. His equipment is big and bulky and a pain to move around, and I don’t want to have to move it in and out of the closet in order to get to other things that I’ve stored in there.

I love playing around with all of these ideas. And now is the time to do it, because once it’s submitted to the city for approval, I’m locked in!



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  1. My thoughts on combining the laundry room and Matt’s storage is that wouldn’t his things hamper getting to the washer and dryer? Because of that I would lean towards the first plan.

  2. Where I come from guests pile their coats on whatever bed is closest. For your house the guest room makes perfect sense to me. I like the closet on the side a lot! Would Matt’s lift go in the window side laundry room door? If the far side is “Matt’s side” of the bed that might make it easy to slide the lift in and out.

  3. I learned the problem with a window in a closet when the sun faded an expensive, favorite coat. I ended up having to cover the window as if it wasn’t even there.

    It’s fun looking at all the iterations. I really liked the larger family room, with room for a game table and a refreshment area, but that’s my thing. I’m sure you’ll come up with something you’ll be happy with.

  4. I love all of the ideas. One consideration on Matt’s equipment, we have a friend of ours that is a paraplegic, and recently had an upgrade to some of his equipment and it was larger than the previous equipment…just a cautionary tale that if you are too tight on that closet, you might be in for a surprise down the road. But I love all the designs and of course windows, one can never have enough windows in my opinion.

  5. Will any of the closest options allow Matt access as well? I don’t know how wide things would need to be for him to use the walkin closet but I also haven’t seen you mention that as a consideration and don’t k ow if it’s something you need to factor in.

    1. Maybe not a skylight. They tend to leak alot, especially when the rubber/sealant parts are exposed to extreme weather like Texas and Florida. A better option could be a Solar Tube with a built in light fixture. They seal much better with a boot to protect them like we use around plumbing vents that perforate the roof.

  6. I like the first plan with one exception: No wall across the storage area for the WC & Hoyer and other DME he needs. You could have shelving on the upper back wall for slings and other DME accessories. A ceiling track across the top with a full length curtain similar to what hospitals use. Easily accessible but yet hidden.
    I’m not sure I would put a wall/door into the utility room if you have doors in the bedroom and family room. The less walls & hallways, the better. Easier to move stuff around whether it’s laundry, Matt or anything else. Also, make your life easier and put minimum 3′ doors on both sides of the laundry/storage room. 4′ openings are even better for moving stuff around without putting dings in the house. You might consider a 4′ double door on the bedroom side and a single door to the family room.
    When you close off the bedroom and family room doors, you have a completely isolated laundry and DME storage area. Not visible to friends and family.

  7. Windows in a closet cause the things in the closet to fade. Everyone I know that had or has a window or windows in their closet end up using black out window coverings due to the effect it had on the items in the closet.

  8. My concern is Matt’s equipment being where it is most frequently used and easily accessible. Placement of the storage closet for that equipment is top priority for me. Once you have that nailed down, you can make other placement decisions.

    Windows that add natural light to a space is important, but not if the light only affects the immediate area like inside a closet where it reduces the storage space available. I know right now it looks like a huge closet with extra room, but once built and occupied, it won’t seem so huge for to adults.

  9. I find all of your ideas could work. Lol. I love that you will have complete control to get a dream closet! However, (always, lol) I wonder about havi.g Matt’s equipment storage so far from the bath. If the walkthrough closet is your choice, will you find it difficult to navigate the equipment through the hall to the bath? As a nurse I know how bulky and akeard the equipment can be. Just, looking at that design I feel it may become frustrating. But, perhaps the area is larger than it seems on paper. As always, I am sure you will create a dream space for both of you. I am so excited to watch the process!
    Sheila F.

  10. I posted this against yesterday’s blog entry in error, sorry.

    If you’re moving the laundry room why not put in a glazed door rather than a window? Then you can make an outdoor drying area and save electricity/ the planet.

  11. I like both these ideas but in option 2, I’d flip the sink to the window wall leaving place for Matt’s lift on the hallway door side.

    1. Let me correct that since I don’t think it’s clear. The sink stays on the same wall but goes in the corner on the window side.

  12. I really think yesterday plan was the best. The idea of one long closet may cause clutter- more items in the front & the back of the closet gets harder to access. Put a laundry window is a great idea.

  13. Ooh, I love the idea of the walk in closet behind your bedroom with a window! And a window in the laundry room! But I don’t like the idea of your storage sharing space with laundry, especially if it will be stored in front of the window. It may make the space feel messy.

    What if you keep the long laundry/storage space in that second layout, but push the laundry down to the window (with the entry from your bedroom) and do the storage as a separate room again (wall between laundry & storage) with the entry from the hallway. Laundry gets a window and bulky equipment is stored out of sight. Only downside is laundry is only accessible from the bedroom.

    Also, on the issue of no coat closet for guests in drawing #1; If it’s only needed for a small part of the year, is a dedicated room needed? You can put some coat hooks on the wall in either the hallway or in the laundry room.

  14. Oh boy…those closets are awesome! Never thought about fading though. Window film?
    Anyway, it is exciting to see all those ideas, and your rendition of some of them. Definitely food for thought as you analyze. What fun for all of us! I can’t wait to see what you decide.

  15. I just came to say what a few others have already: windows in a closet, especially with Texas sun, will fade the clothes, and unevenly, so the side facing out on the hanger will get faded faster than the inner side. If the windows are by, say, the shoe storage or items that are frequently worn and rotated through, it would be OK, but generally I’d just advice against them! (From someone who had some really nice but infrequently worn dinner dresses turn to half-n-half looks, sigh.)

  16. I like the first one best. I like the separate storage closet for Matt’s gear off the little hallway and the laundry room entrance in the same area. I like retaining the windows in the master bedroom and I like the open/airy feeling of the MB there. However, I do like the closed off kitchen in the second one as opposed to 2 doors right next to each other going into the family room with the kitchen side counter offering plating space for food for your guests and the family side perhaps offering space for a table for games and snacks and decor on the wall. Another thought – do you need a dog washing area for Cooper, maybe outside?

  17. I love the skinny closet ideas! I would want it right by that pretty bathroom so you could use it as a dressing area and enjoy that natural light that you probably don’t really want in your closet. I agree that doors are often not necessary. We have removed so many from our home. I can’t wait to see what you decide.

  18. I like the first option. Windows in the closet will present a problem long term. You may have a problem with clothes fading in that hot Texas sun and you will lose storage. Think of all the shoe storage you can add if there are no windows…LOL. I would also think about making the opening into the storage room large enough to make it easy to get Matt’s equipment in and out. Also make sure it can make the turn from the storage room into the bedroom; although I suspect you have thought of that. I like the long skinny closet idea, your readers come up with good ideas. Good luck deciding what to do, I know you will design it in a way that works for you and Matt.

  19. Between these two options, I like the first one. Windows in the bedroom are on two walls as opposed to just one and I like the footprint of the addition for landscaping outside. It’s not just one long wall. There’s a little “alcove” created for patio, deck, fountain, or garden area.

  20. In the olden days, my parents put their guest coats on the bed in the MBR when they had company in the winter. My mom couldn’t put the coats in the closet because it was packed with stuff. : )

  21. I love the idea of the laundry in the back…if for no other reason that you can have a window and direct venting to the outside for the dryer. My dryer is in a laundry room in the interior of my home and is vented through the roof. Dust and lint clean out is AWFUL and has to be done by climbing onto the roof. Never again…

  22. I think your first revised plan is perfect, with one addition: Use Ikea cabinets to build a coat closet into the corner of the new family room, to the left side when you enter from the music room.

    A word of caution about having windows in the closet: I had one once, and the sunlight bleached out part of a beautiful blue leather skirt that I had. It was ruined. Don’t let this happen to you! Plus, you will want that light and view from the windows every day, and in the main bedroom. You will spend much more time there than in your closet.

    Last question: Where do you leave your coats now, since you do not have a coat closet?

  23. Kristi, I am curious: about how many people do you accommodate on Wednesday? I can’t recall that you have commented on that.

    As for coats? Cover the guest room bed with something, if you must, but if that is not an ongoing need during the year that is the easiest solution.

    Ditto on the window question in the closet. Not a good idea. Fading fabric is inevitable.

    1. It’s never a set number. Has been up to 20, sometimes 17, sometimes 12. But after the addition is done, I want to host more things, specifically for the women at my church, so I need to be able to accommodate more at times.

  24. Re the window in the closet idea… I think that would depend on which direction the window would face. Will it get morning or late afternoon light? Late afternoon in Texas could be really hot and, depending on what’s across from the window it might be faded. Or, you could do clerestory windows which are higher up and direct or strong sunlight might not hit anything. I love the idea of moving the laundry room to the back so you can have a window. I have one in mine and it sure beats my old one which was just a walk through on the way to the garage! Our master has 30″ deep drawers on either side, plus hanging space and 42″ between drawers so it’s a total of 8.5 feet wide and it’s definitely large enough.

  25. If you’re considering putting the closet on the side of the house, definitely take into consideration which way your bedroom windows face, since you’d only have light coming from one direction. My bedroom only has west-facing windows, and it extremely dark for most of the day. It’s honestly a bit depressing, especially in winter.

  26. Kristi,
    Oh I love the last photo you gave us with the huge walk in closet built onto the house. With a walk in closet that roomy you would be able to have all of your clothing and accessories, plus your shoes all in one room…..out of sight for your eyes only.
    Looking at the photo of the laundry room placement….I don’t know how big or how hard it would be to get Matt’s things in and out of that end of the room. But it makes perfect sense to have the laundry room for this dual use. I wonder what you think of having the laundry area toward the back where the window is so you could enjoy your window, and, it might be easier and quicker to get Matt’s things in and out of the room into the rest of your home.
    Maybe your guest could lay their coats in your music room for the rare times they would need to.
    You do have a point about not knowing what your roof would look like. I don’t know anything about those things. But you only live once so why not go with what you want. I know you will work out the choices you choose. Keep on reading what other people say and keep us updated on your ideas. I love reading this.

  27. If you do option #1, with the 7.5′ bump-out of the bedroom, extend the roof over the leftover space behind the family room, and make a nice screened porch back there. A great amenity during mosquito season, and, y’all can sit out on that porch on a misty day, and listen to the rain, which is very relaxing! It would also be an easy way for Matt to take a little fresh air every day.

  28. I am assuming that the main beam for the roof on the addition will be perpendicular to the main home/ parallel to the roof over the parking area/work area off the workshop. For the first diagram you posted where the bedroom extends past the living area, could the area that is outside either be a covered or screened in porch? Having that area under roof may decrease the sunlight into the living room, but it would also keep the room cooler in the summer.

  29. My suggestion regarding a laundry room is to add extra insulation and sound-dampening drywall since your laundry room will be near your bedroom. You likely can’t put in too much. You can then use your laundry room any time of day or night, and still have quiet in your bedroom if you aren’t feeling well, or one of you is sleeping or watching TV. And washing machines can rock the house, especially the new front-loaders, if you haven’t purchased one that takes that into account and uses anti-vibration technology. Someone else already mentioned a direct vent to outside, but I’ll echo that suggestion. A direct vent of the dryer to the outside (not through the roof) will help the dryer and your house (less moisture within the laundry room means less humidity and less mold).

  30. Ok, from the music room walk into the family room. On the left is a small area for a 7.5’ closet to hang winter coats, both yours, Matt’s, and guests. I really like the laundry room with a window over the sink.

    Don’t care for the closet on the side of the house. That looks like you forgot to plan for a closet and just stuck it on at the end. I do like the plan with just the bedroom part bumped out. Gives the back yard more character. You definitely need space for your shoes. The small closet at the left of the bathroom door going into the bedroom could be your shoe closet!

    What ever you decide will be great for you and Matt. What is his opinion?

    1. As usual, he doesn’t have an opinion. 😃 He just wants me to do whatever I want, and he’ll be happy. Just as long as our bedroom has lots of natural light and (possibly) a fireplace, and he has a comfy recliner in the living room, that’s all he’s requested. He doesn’t have input beyond that.

  31. Not sure which way your house is oriented, but if a closet window is on a North wall, fading won’t be an issue.