Garage shoe organizer

Garage shoe organizer DEFAULT

After spending more than 30 hours researching shoe racks, interviewing professional organizers, and assembling 15 racks by hand, we think the Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack is the best choice for most people who need extra shoe storage in a closet or entryway. Other shoe racks may save you a few bucks, but the Seville Classics is worth the extra cost. It’s the strongest—yet the easiest to assemble—rack we found.

The Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack stacks vertically or connects horizontally to make the best use of your available space, and also allows you to remove or reposition shelves to accommodate tall shoes and boots that don’t fit on other designs. Tiny toddler sneakers, tall heels, and men’s size 12 shoes stay on this rack equally well, and it offers three generously sized shelves whereas most racks in its price range include only two.

If you’re looking for a modern style, the Oceanstar 2-Tier Bamboo Shoe Rack is a great choice. Easy to assemble (although not as effortless as our main pick), this model is lighter and easier to move around than our top pick. Like the Seville Classics model, this rack stacks vertically to increase storage, but the shelves don’t adjust or configure in any other ways.

Also great

IKEA Bissa

IKEA Bissa

The best way to hide shoes

Cabinets are the only style we tested that store shoes out of sight, and this one costs a fraction of the price of similar models. It’s slimmer and fits a narrow entryway better than any other we tried.

Buying Options

$30* from IKEA

*At the time of publishing, the price was $25.

Unlike most shoe cabinets, which are many times the price, the IKEA Bissa offers hidden shoe storage for a bargain. It was smaller and slimmer than the other cabinet we tested, and it wasted less space on thick cabinet walls. It was also far, far easier for us to assemble. This cabinet will help your shoe storage area look neater than our other picks, but it still takes up more space and stores fewer shoes than most freestanding styles.

If you don’t have the floor space to use freestanding or cabinet-style shoe storage, the Whitmor 36 Pair Over the Door Shoe Rack stores lots of shoes in a small, unused spot. Its unusual design allows you to configure its shelves to fit different-size shoes, and its nonadjustable rubber-lined hooks are more secure than competitors’ hardware. This rack is more visible and looks messier than our other picks, and like most door racks, it can be cumbersome (especially if you need to use the door frequently). But in a category that generally isn't the greatest shoe storage option, the Whitmor model is the best hanging rack we tested.

Everything we recommend

Also great

IKEA Bissa

IKEA Bissa

The best way to hide shoes

Cabinets are the only style we tested that store shoes out of sight, and this one costs a fraction of the price of similar models. It’s slimmer and fits a narrow entryway better than any other we tried.

Buying Options

$30* from IKEA

*At the time of publishing, the price was $25.

Why you should trust us

For this guide I interviewed three professional organizers to help me understand the biggest difficulties most people face when it comes to shoe storage: Beth Penn, author of The Little Book of Tidying and founder of Bneato Bar; Abbey Claire Keusch, owner of Abbey Claire Professional Organizing; and Barbara Reich of Resourceful Consultants and author of Secrets of an Organized Mom. I also spoke to sales associate Bonnie Williams about her nearly 20 years of experience in the shoe department at Prada in New York City.

I’m the home editor for Wirecutter, and I’ve spent the past nine years writing about decor, home organization, and furniture for media companies such as NBC and Apartment Therapy. I also happen to have a large shoe collection, which I’ve had to wrangle into some very small apartments in both Los Angeles and New York City. In other words, I’ve owned a lot of shoe racks.

How to pick the best rack for your home

According to our experts, you probably have more shoes than you need. Professional organizer Barbara Reich laid it out: “People have too many shoes, and they have shoes they don’t wear.” Before beginning your shoe rack search, it’s a good idea to spend some time sorting through your shoe collection and weeding out the excess. You may have fewer shoes to store than you originally thought.

Even if you don’t manage to get rid of a single pair, it’s still smart to take stock. Organizer Abbey Claire Keusch told us, “Count before you buy something! See what type of storage will hold as many [shoes] as possible in your space.”

Before beginning your shoe rack search, it’s a good idea to spend some time sorting through your shoe collection and weeding out the excess. You may have fewer shoes to store than you originally thought.

The right shoe rack will help you store more shoes in less space, and it will keep them visible, easily accessible, and protected from dust, dirt, and interested kids or pets. A shoe rack in the entry or mudroom will keep things organized and eliminate the “shoe parking lot,” as Reich put it.

Every household is different, but when you're beginning your search, consider the following general guidelines regarding rack styles:

A freestanding wooden shoe rack with two shelves.

Freestanding racks are portable and somewhat customizable; most of the models we tested could stack or change in some way. They work best to maximize floor space inside a small closet—most fit under hanging clothes—or by the front door to keep shoes organized.

A white shoe rack with twelve cubbies.

Cubbies are sturdy, and their individual compartments make them a good option if you want each pair of your shoes to have a separate home. Because your shoes must fit within specific dimensions, cubbies are less versatile than other types of storage we considered. You’ll still see your shoes, however, so cubbies let you show off pretty pairs. This style works especially well in a dressing area or a walk-in closet; it tends to take up more space than freestanding racks but also provides a top surface you can use for other storage.

A white shoe cabinet with its door open, revealing four pairs of neatly stacked shoes.

Shoe cabinets keep footwear hidden, so they work well in an open space. They’re usually taller and bigger than other racks and designed with deep drawers that pivot open and closed. A cabinet is perfect for an entryway or if you’d like to store shoes out of sight in the bedroom (but don’t have space in the closet).

A white over-the-door shoe rack holding five pairs of shoes.

Over-the-door racks can be problematic, but if you have limited floor space, a hanging rack may be your best bet. Our experts strongly disliked the flimsiness of over-the-door racks and their tendency to make it difficult to use the door, but we also spoke to several Wirecutter staffers with kids, who praised these racks as a great way to keep shoes up and away from small hands. These racks also tend to be very inexpensive, so if you need a temporary, disposable storage option, a door rack could work just fine.

If you have limited closet space, split up your shoe collection and use extra space where you find it.

You can find lots of other shoe-storage styles, including shoe trees, rolling racks, and under-the-bed storage, but after much research and many conversations with our experts, we concluded that none of those options made sense for our purposes. We also considered adding a section on installed shelving systems, such as the Elfa line at The Container Store or Closetmaid Impressions, but we opted to focus on more portable, flexible shoe-storage options in this guide.

Keep in mind that shoe storage isn’t an all-or-nothing exercise, and the most successful organizers are the ones who realize that shoes don’t all need to be stored in the same place. Organizer Beth Penn told us, “Most people are trying to maximize every inch of storage in their regular closet, so if they do have room elsewhere for fancier shoes or out-of-season shoes—under the bed or in a guest closet—they should take advantage.” This concept came up over and over during conversations with our pros: If you have limited closet space, split up your shoe collection and use extra space where you find it.

This could also mean that you need to buy more than one shoe rack. If you’re planning to store the bulk of your shoes in your closet but want to keep everyday pairs near the front door, you will probably require a rack for each space.

How we picked and tested

Our four picks for best shoe rack.

You can find hundreds of nearly identical shoe racks out there; our goal was to choose a rack that was not only sturdy and simple to assemble but also useful for a wide range of storage needs.

As anyone who has owned a crappy shoe rack can attest, certain factors will quickly turn any rack into more trouble than it’s worth, so we carefully considered the following criteria:

Stability: We wanted to find storage options that could handle the commotion of a regular household and hold up when jostled or bumped. When we scoured reviews, the number one owner complaint we noticed had to do with flimsy, wobbly racks that dumped shoes on the floor.

Capacity: We were looking for a rack that would easily hold a variety of shoe types and provide enough storage space to make it worth the purchase. We learned from reviews that people were often frustrated that a rack they bought online didn’t hold as many shoes as it promised, or that it didn’t hold the specific kind of shoes they needed to store. For men’s shoes, things are a little easier, as those are usually similar in shape, but women’s high heels and boots (even ankle boots) are often too tall or unwieldy for certain racks.

A person placing a pair of shoes into a partially full shoe cabinet.

Ease of assembly: It was important to us that a shoe rack be easy to put together, so we aimed to find models that came with clear directions, needed few or no extra tools to assemble, and included good-quality, well-labeled parts. During testing we especially appreciated extra touches like predrilled guide holes to help us easily find the right place for a screw, and racks that came with the tools we needed for assembly.

Ability to customize: Because everyone owns a different combination of shoe types and not all types fit perfectly on every rack, you’re unlikely to find the perfect, maximize-your-space rack without a little tweaking. That’s why we were especially interested in racks that allowed for some customization. They could be stackable (allowing you to add another unit to increase capacity), modular, or designed with shelves that are adjustable by height. Our experts warned us to avoid “expandable” racks consisting of bars that slide horizontally to create longer shelves. These models usually trade stability for length, and the adjusted shelves often wobble, sag in the center, or pull apart.

Two people examining an instruction manual for assembling a shoe rack. They are surrounded by various disassembled shoe racks, two potted plants, and a large screen TV.

Style: While style wasn’t our top concern, each rack’s styling and finishes did factor into our decision. We think most people use a shoe rack inside a closet, where style isn’t of the utmost importance, but some people also want storage that will look nice out in the open. Even in a closet, racks that were too bulky seemed like they would just waste valuable storage space, and racks without clean lines seemed like they would be difficult to maneuver around in a small area.

We looked at a variety of rack styles and read hundreds of reviews on the sites of Amazon, The Container Store, Home Depot, Overstock, and many others. We then researched more than 50 promising shoe racks before narrowing the field to our testing group of 15.

With a team of two, we began each test by setting a timer to track how long the shoe rack took to assemble. Because of the wide variety in rack styles, that number ranged from three minutes to nearly two hours! We also noted how clear the instructions were, how well the parts were labeled, and what additional tools (or knowledge) we needed. When a rack had the ability to adjust or change, we tested that, too—stacking multiple units, moving shelves, and adding extensions to make sure that when used at full capacity, the rack would still perform.

A person placing a burgundy suede high heel into a clear plastic shoe drawer.

After we set up each rack, I filled it with my own shoes in a variety of styles and heel heights, as well as a range of other sizes—from tiny toddler shoes to a men’s size 12. I noted how many shoes each rack held. I also checked for other variables such as the space between tiers, the height of the first tier (to see if a bonus row of shoes could fit underneath), and where each rack would work best in a home.

Finally, it was time for the “jiggle test,” during which I bumped, shook, and generally put each rack through its paces to see how stable and useful it was.

Our pick: Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack

Four pairs of shoes sitting on our pick for best shoe rack.

We recommend the Seville Classics 3-Tier Resin Slat Utility Shoe Rack for its winning combination of stability, easy assembly, and versatility. The steel frame is stronger and feels more stable than the structure of any other model we considered, and it’s one of the fastest and easiest racks to set up. This model was the most customizable rack we found, and it can hold a wide variety of shoe sizes and styles.

Right out of the box, the Seville Classics is clearly a good-quality shoe rack. The frame is weighty and substantial, yet its steel bars are slim—about half an inch wide. It’s a combination that we didn’t find in any other rack we tested: Racks with thin frames were wobbly, while racks that were solid and heavy took up more space. We also like the wide, rubber-tipped feet, which allow for leveling on uneven surfaces. This rack will stay steady even on warped floors or lumpy carpet.

Most freestanding racks consist of metal or wood shelving attached to separate vertical leg pieces—the shelves are the only source of horizontal strength. The Seville Classics, however, includes a complete cagelike outer frame in addition to the metal-framed shelves. The combination of those two layers of steel gives this rack much more stability than in any other rack we tried. During our jiggle test, most freestanding racks wobbled enough to let some shoes fall to the floor, but the Seville Classics rack didn’t drop a single shoe.

This model was the only rack we found with a fold-open frame. It doesn’t require screws, extra parts, or tools, in contrast to many of the racks we assembled. Instead, the frame opens like a book and the shelves snap easily and securely in place. And even though the shelves install very securely, they are also easy to adjust or remove. Many shoe racks require you to attach the shelves to the frame with screws—which of course means that any adjustments you want to make later force you to undo that work. The shelves on the Seville Classics model easily snap off the frame for repositioning.

The Seville Classics also offers more customizable storage than other freestanding racks we tried. It comes with three resin slat shelves, but the frame has four levels. We suspect that the very top level is meant to function as a carrying handle, but if you want a little extra room for storing high heels or ankle boots, installing a shelf on that top tier will give you the space for it. If you need even more distance (say, if you want to store tall boots), you also have the option to leave out a shelf altogether.

Several Seville Classics shoe racks stacked on top of one another to create a shoe rack that is six shelves high.

If you need a lot of storage, you can easily stack multiple units vertically with nary a wobble. Other racks we tested grew exponentially precarious as their height increased, whereas the Seville Classics rack was still very solid when it was two units and six shelves high. The shelves are also strong enough on their own to serve as a bridge, connecting the frames of two units if you want to attach several together side by side. Any of the shelves can do this, but if you need extras, Seville Classics sells what it calls an Extra Knock Down Shoe Rack Shelf, which costs about $8 as of this writing and appears to be available only on the company’s website. If you have a lot of shoes to store, this add-on will give you some extra shelf space without your having to buy another complete unit. It also creates a handy space for tall boots, which are notoriously tricky to store.

Several different Seville Classics shoe racks connected together to make a long rack with multiple compartments of different sizes.

We tried many different sizes and styles of shoes on this rack, and it performed well with each one. Depending on the shoe size, the three shelves of the Seville Classics rack hold between nine and 12 pairs of shoes. The shelves are 12 inches deep—roomy enough to accommodate a men’s size 12. In contrast, we found that large shoes often hung over the edge of slimmer shelves. The slats of the Seville Classics model’s shelves were also thick enough to allow our high heels to sit flat, while some competitors let narrow heels fall right through the surface.

As of this writing, this rack has close to 7,000 reviews on Amazon, and nearly all of them are raves. Amazon customer Shawkins sums it up: “You really do get what you pay for. There are a lot of cheap options for shoe racks out there and the cheaper ones are flimsy.… These shoe racks are so incredibly sturdy, easy to assemble (don't require any tools), and if you buy more than one there are a multitude of ways to put them together to make custom shelving.”

If something does go wrong, Seville Classics offers a one-year warranty, one of the only warranties we found among our test group. We always appreciate a warranty, not just because it would replace or refund a damaged rack, but also because we think a company that offers a warranty has real incentive to make something that won’t break in the first place. We tested the Seville Classics warranty by calling customer service to inquire about returning a defective rack, and the representative was receptive and helpful. We don’t doubt that the company would follow through and take care of any problems.

If all this sounds great to you, but you want a slightly different option, we also tested the 2-Tier Iron Stackable Shoe Storage Rack from Bed Bath & Beyond. This rack was a surprise because, until it arrived in a Seville Classics box, we didn’t realize it was made by that company. The steel frame is nearly identical to that of our main pick, and we found it just as solid and easy to assemble. The shelf surface is slightly different, with a teak-colored finish (the teak looks nice from a distance but feels more like plastic), and the frame is missing the top “handle” row that we thought was so versatile on the three-tier version. But if you like the look of lighter wood and don’t mind getting two shelves instead of three (for the same price), this rack is a great option.

Long-term test notes

Several Wirecutter staffers use the Seville Classics in their own homes, and the feedback is overwhelmingly positive. Lead editor Kimber Streams, who has owned this rack since 2016, told us, “It's held up great and it's easy to clean, which is useful for winters in Buffalo when it gets all salty. We bought another one this year because we ran out of room on the first.”

I’ve been using two of these racks since we published this review, and they look brand-new despite my moving them to a new house (which was being renovated) where I used them for all kinds of storage (think belt sanders and heavy moving boxes) before giving them their current place in my closet.

Flaws but not dealbreakers

The Seville Classics rack isn’t the most stylish or the sleekest shoe rack in our test group, but neither is it noticeably ugly. It’s simply a plain, nondescript rack that will blend into the background, which, for a shoe rack, may in fact be a perk. If you love high design, other racks looked more stylish in our opinion—we thought The Container Store’s Silver Mesh Stackable Shoe Shelf looked the best overall—but we think a great-looking rack that doesn’t perform is just not worth the hassle.

This model probably isn’t the best rack if you want to move your storage frequently. The units are a bit heavy, and they don’t latch together when stacked. To add a second unit, you simply insert the bottom prongs (where you’d otherwise screw on the rubber feet) into corresponding holes on the other frame. The two frames sit very securely together, but if you pick up the rack by its top handle, the units will separate. Sliding them back together is easy enough, but it can be annoying. We think most people set up a shoe rack and never think about it again, so you probably won’t even notice.

Runner-up: Oceanstar 2-Tier Bamboo Shoe Rack

Four pairs of shoes sitting on our runner-up pick for best shoe rack, the Oceanstar 2-Tier Bamboo Shoe Rack.

If the Seville Classics 3-Tier Shoe Rack isn’t available or you prefer a solid-bamboo option, the Oceanstar 2-Tier Bamboo Shoe Rack is a great alternative. The wood construction makes this rack lighter than the steel-frame Seville Classics, but it’s still very stable. The Oceanstar has less storage—two shelves instead of three—but it still holds many types of shoes well. It stacks easily but is less customizable overall than our main pick.

The Oceanstar model’s lighter weight and built-in handles make it much easier to move around than the Seville Classics rack, especially when loaded up with shoes. If you want to move your shoe storage frequently, you may be better off choosing this model. And despite the lighter frame, this rack was stronger than most of the other freestanding racks we tested, as it resisted wobbling when we bumped it; our shoes, even the heels, stayed put.

Seven pairs of shoes placed across four shelves on our runner-up pick for best shoe rack.

Like the Seville Classics, the Oceanstar can stack vertically, and it does so well—wooden dowels secure the units together, and they don’t easily pull apart. The shelves don’t adjust, but they do have a generous 8 inches of space between them, so most high heels and ankle boots will fit. This rack’s two shelves won’t hold as many pairs as our main pick, but it also costs a little less.

The Oceanstar requires a bit more assembly than our winner. You must attach the two shelves to the end pieces using the included screws and hex key (we appreciated that one comes in the package). Overall, assembly was easy enough and it took us only about eight minutes to get this rack ready to roll, but that hardly compared to the simplicity of unfolding and snapping together the Seville Classics rack.

A close up of the dowels the Oceanstar shoe rack uses to stack vertically.

It’s also not the most elegant design we encountered. On our test unit, the bamboo was sanded smooth, but the squared-off handles had sharp edges that would have been nicer had they been rounded. And since the rack has no stabilizing feet, we imagine it could get rickety on rough terrain. This is a great rack and it definitely does its job well, but in the end it just isn’t quite as impressive as the Seville Classics.

Also great: IKEA Bissa

Our pick for best shoe cabinet, the IKEA Bissa.

Also great

IKEA Bissa

IKEA Bissa

The best way to hide shoes

Cabinets are the only style we tested that store shoes out of sight, and this one costs a fraction of the price of similar models. It’s slimmer and fits a narrow entryway better than any other we tried.

Buying Options

$30* from IKEA

*At the time of publishing, the price was $25.

The shoe cabinet we like best is the IKEA Bissa. It’s just as useful as shoe cabinets more than three times the price, and miles easier to assemble. It doesn’t come with the customization options of our main pick, and it won’t fit as wide a range of shoes, but we think this model is an excellent option for an entryway, or anywhere else you want to store your shoes out of sight.

The Bissa comes with either two or three drawers, and each one holds about four pairs of shoes, fewer than larger cabinets we considered because, at 20 inches wide, the Bissa is one of the narrowest models we found. It can also accommodate taller shoes if you remove the drawer’s adjustable center divider—a feature common to most cabinet styles. The Bissa is also slim, only 11 inches deep, so it’s great for small hallways.

A close up of a laptop displaying a YouTube tutorial for assembling the IKEA Bissa, with two people assembling shoe racks out of focus in the background.

In true IKEA fashion, the instructions consisted of a series of pictures, which were clear and (for the most part) easy to follow. The parts were well-labeled and the technique was mostly intuitive. We ran into a snag when it came time to insert the shoe drawers into our assembled cabinet, as that step was somewhat unclear in the instructions; it took a helpful YouTube video to get us back on track. We finished the entire project in about 45 minutes, which seemed like a miracle after we spent two hours assembling our other shoe-cabinet contender, the Baxton Studio Simms.

A close up of the interior of the IKEA Bissa's shelves.

The Bissa doesn’t have a closed back panel, as it’s meant to stand up against a wall. IKEA recommends attaching it to the wall to make sure it won’t tip over. Although we found the Bissa to be plenty stable, we agree that a heavy cabinet should always be safely secured (particularly if you have kids).

We especially love the bargain price of the Bissa, which was the only shoe cabinet we found in the same price range as freestanding shoe racks. Most cabinets cost many times more. Sitting side by side with the other, more expensive cabinet-style model we tested in person, the Bissa did look cheaper—the cabinet was smaller and the walls were thinner—but in this case we think that’s a pro rather than a con. In addition to being a nightmare to put together, the more expensive Baxton Studio cabinet was just too big and bulky. It wasted so much space. Since the goal with a shoe rack is to save space, it makes sense to use all the available area to actually store shoes rather than sacrifice space to thick cabinet walls.

Because the Bissa’s drawers pivot open and closed, your shoes will move around more than they would if you simply set them on a freestanding rack like our main pick. This could mean that, in order to prevent nicer pairs from touching or scuffing, you may want to give them some breathing room, which in turn could reduce capacity. If you’re worried about your shoes shifting, you may prefer another rack style. However, if you want the ability to pile a drawer full of sneakers and then hide them away, one Wirecutter editor who owns this rack told us this is the perfect way to do it.

Also great: Whitmor 36 Pair Over the Door Shoe Rack

Our pick for best over the door shoe rack hanging over a door holding four pairs of shoes.

In a notoriously bad category, the Whitmor 36 Pair Over the Door Shoe Rack manages to shine. It avoids many of the usual pitfalls that people hate about hanging racks, and it holds more shoes than any of our other picks.

Most over-the-door hanging racks are made from a length of fabric with pockets to hold your shoes. The Whitmor model consists of two end pieces connected by horizontal bars that form shelves. In our tests, assembly was quick (about 10 minutes) and intuitive, but we did need to use some extra muscle when inserting the bars—they were a bit wobbly in the frame until we pounded them together (we used the heel of a boot on the fly, but you can use a mallet).

Other shoe racks we tried had slippery bars that let our shoes fall through the center, but the bars on this rack were textured and gripped our shoes’ soles well. This rack held most of our shoes (even when I slammed the door), but because of the shelf style, it wasn’t as successful with very small or very large sizes. Short toddler shoes reached both bars but felt less stable than larger sizes, and very long soles (men’s size 12) stuck too far off the back of the shelf.

The Whitmor rack is surprisingly stable, thanks to its rigid curved frame and its hooks, which attach securely to the top of a door. Other hanging racks in our test group have loose hooks that cause sag, but the Whitmor’s hooks are constructed of flat, wide, J-shaped molded metal strips. The hooks are strong and lined with rubber so they grip the top of the door well, and they sit flat enough that they should allow you to open and close the door normally. The hooks slip perfectly over a 1⅔-inch-thick door, but they might be too loose on thinner doors and won’t fit over thicker doors.

Finally, we love the ability to customize a shoe rack, and this model was the only hanging rack we tested that let us modify it. It can adjust in two key ways. First, the frame’s three separate sections clip together so you can alter the length of the rack based on the number of shoes you have to store. Second, if you need more clearance than the 5 inches between the shelves, you can fold alternating shelves flat to get them out of the way and make room for taller shoes.

There’s no escaping the fact that having shoes on your door isn’t ideal—the extra weight on the door can stress its hinges, and the hardware may prevent the door from shutting properly, damaging the door trim and making locks and latches too tight. Plus, the racks themselves are bulky and can look messy. But if you need to keep your shoes off the floor, the Whitmor rack is the best way we’ve found to do that.

The competition

Two wooden crates being used as shoe racks.

If you want a very customizable yet unconventional shoe-storage system, the Crates & Pallet Large Wood Crate is a solid, if rustic, option. The divided version is handy for creating more space, but these crates don't stack securely, and they're a bit bulky for the amount of storage they give you. We can see these working well if you want to store outdoor shoes on a porch or in a mudroom, but we don’t think they’re ideal for more delicate styles.

We really liked The Container Store's Silver Mesh Stackable Shoe Shelf, and we came close to making it a pick. This model is a great-looking freestanding rack with a sleek metallic mesh design. Each level is sold individually, but they stack together easily and ingeniously. This rack would be ideal if you have only a few pairs of shoes to store (each tier easily holds four). In our tests, however, as we added more levels, we found the stack to be too wobbly to win our recommendation.

The Langria 5-Tier Metal Shoe Rack Organizer sounds good on paper, as it’s almost endlessly adjustable (you can position the shelves at any height you choose), but in reality the quality just isn’t there. The plastic clips that were meant to keep the shelves secure didn’t install correctly for us, and the rack wasn’t marked with any guidelines, so we were left to guess at where to install them in order to keep the shelves level. The entire frame was a wobbly mess and almost immediately dumped all our shoes on the floor.

The sleek design and narrow width of the Whitmor 20 Pair Shoe Rack make it great for small spaces, but in our tests its shelves—which were slick and consisted of only two horizontal bars—let our shoes slip through the middle and fall.

The Container Store’s 8-Pair Shoe Organizer was the best cubby-style option we found, but it wasn’t good enough to make our final list. The spaces fit a pair of shoes side by side but are too short for heels or ankle boots. In our tests, the white shelving boards seemed to attract dust and lint; this model kept picking up fibers from the carpet in our office, something that didn’t happen with any other rack. Another minor, yet very noticeable, flaw: The body is constructed with black screws that stick out terribly against the all-white surface (this is the same on both Container Store cubby styles we tried). The rack comes with a small bag of white plastic pieces meant to cover up this problem, but it took only about two minutes for them to fall off.

The Container Store’s 12-Pair Shoe Organizer has the same outer dimensions (and proclivity for dust) as the 8-Pair Shoe Organizer but divides the interior area into more, smaller cubbies. This design makes its compartments too small to fit anything except very small and narrow flats or kids shoes.

We had high hopes for the Real Simple Shoe Organizer because it appeared to be a rare cubby-style rack that was also adjustable—removable slats let you customize the height of the cubbies. It’s a great idea, but in our tests the width of the cubbies (which was not adjustable) turned out to be far too narrow to fit a pair of adult shoes side by side. Only one shoe fits per slot, which is a terrible waste of space.

We thought The Container Store's Clear Stackable Shoe Drawers might be a good way to both protect and display beautiful and delicate shoes, and they are. The drawers are made from good-quality plastic, and they stack well, but they also show every fingerprint and wind up looking dingy quickly. We found the women's-size box way too small to store any pair except sandals or flats. The more expensive men's-size box fit some of our heels (on their sides only, which isn’t ideal for display) but not our ankle boots. Overall we concluded that these boxes weren’t a practical option for storing many pairs.

The Baxton Studio Simms Shoe Cabinet was the most expensive model we tested, and we were hoping to find a gem, but this cabinet-style rack was a nightmare to assemble. The directions were unclear, the parts weren't well-labeled, and we had to backtrack and undo work in order to complete certain steps. It took our team of two people nearly two hours to complete the job. The finished product looks very nice and the drawers pivot smoothly, but we expect the flimsy plastic hinges to break quickly.

The Honey-Can-Do 24-Pocket Over-The-Door Closet Organizer had all the problems inherent to the over-the-door style, but it was the best fabric hanging rack we found. The bamboo panel looks nice and helps a bit to keep the panel flat against the door, the hooks fit a standard door securely, and the canvas is good quality. As with most hanging racks, the pockets fit only one shoe each and tend to sag, but if you have lots of kids shoes to get up off the floor (each pocket fits a pair of toddler-sized shoes), this model would be a good budget option.

If you’ve found that most over-the-door racks don’t fit your thicker-than-average door, consider the Misslo Hanging Over the Door Shoe Organizer. The hooks are wider (1¾ inches) than on most other styles. However, if you have a standard door (1⅜ inches), you should skip this model, as loose hooks only increase the sag factor. The pockets are large but still fit only one adult shoe per slot.

More about organizing from our editors


  1. Abbey Claire Keusch, owner, Abbey Claire Professional Organizing, phone interview, August 17, 2017

  2. Beth Penn, founder, Bneato Bar, phone interview, August 15, 2017

  3. Barbara Reich, owner, Resourceful Consultants, phone interview, August 15, 2017

  4. Bonnie Williams, sales associate, Prada, phone interview, August 16, 2017

  5. Lauren Schwartzberg, A Shoe Organizer That Takes Up Practically Zero Space, New York, April 3, 2017

  6. The Invisible, Closet Storage Systems: Elfa vs. Rubbermaid vs. Closetmaid, Real Mod, May 13, 2014

  7. Michelle Ullman, The best shoe racks you can buy, Business Insider, July 18, 2017

  8. Choosing the best closet system, Consumer Reports, January 1, 2014

About your guide

Jennifer Hunter

Jennifer Hunter is a senior editor covering apparel, accessories, and pets, and she was previously editor of Wirecutter’s home-goods coverage. She spent a decade writing and editing for lifestyle brands such as Architectural Digest and Apartment Therapy, which has come in handy for her latest project: restoring her untouched mid-century Los Angeles home.


Building a Garage Shoe Organizer: Part 1

Posted by John on October 9th, 2012

***UPDATE:  The woodworking plans for this Shoe Organizer have just been uploaded to our Plans page.  To get access, just subscribe to our free newsletter using the sign-up form in the sidebar or following this post.  Immediately after you subscribe, you’ll get an email with a link to the Plans page.***

Ahh, back to my wheelhouse.  Carpentry.  It’s been a while since I worked on anything substantial.  We’ve been talking for sometime now about adding some sort of shoe organization system to the garage to get all of our shoes off the floor.  I’ve had a basic idea of what I thought the shoe rack would look like and what works for our space.  We looked around some stores to see if there was anything that would work and we didn’t find anything.  I thought this would be a great, somewhat quick project to keep us busy and would go a long way to straightening out the garage.

Garage Shoe Organizer: Part 1 (Click here for Part 2, and Click here for Part 3)

I started with one 4’x8′ sheet of 3/4″ thick Birch plywood.  Since I’m going to paint this project and not stain it, Birch is an ideal wood choice.  MDF is also a good paint grade material, but it’s heavy as hell.  Can you use solid wood instead of plywood?  Yes, but, solid wood is a lot more expensive and is much more subject to expansion and contraction from changes in temperature and humidity.  Since this is going in the garage, which is not a heated space, solid wood is a bad idea.

The first thing I did is cut a couple 9″ wide and 75″ long pieces from the sheet.

Then I took a speed square and used it’s angle markers to mark one of the boards with lines where the shelves will go.

Once the board was marked, it was time to dress up the edges.  Plywood edges aren’t ideal for painting.

To hide the edges, I use some wood glue and nail a strip of poplar hard wood to cover the edge.

It looks a little goofy now, but once it’s sanded and painted, it’ll look good.

Now it’s time to add the shelves.  I measured the shelves to be big enough to accommodate my sneakers, since those will be the biggest shoes on the shelf.  They’re also plywood.  To attach the shelves to the rest of the assembly, I’m using pocket screws on the back of the shelf.

This was the most monotonous part of the job so far.  We’re adding ten shelves, with two pocket holes each.  That’s a good 30 minutes of clamping, drilling and un-clamping.

Once the shelves are all attached to the first side, I can attach them to the other.  More on that next time.  Here’s what it looks like now.

Feels good to be building again.  Any projects you’re currently working on?  Need to clean up your shoes?What do you do to organize your shoes?

Find the next post here: Shoe Organizer Part 2

Did you enjoy this article?

Posted in Carpentry,Garage and Tools. Tagged in ,carpentry, Garage and Tools, shoe organization, shoe rack

  1. 2014 beats studio
  2. Goodwin restaurant group
  3. Fixit app satisfactory

20 Outrageously Simple DIY Shoe Racks And Organizers You’ll Want To Make Today

How many pairs of shoes do you own? Me? I have way more than I can count on one hand, which means that I need tons of shoe storage. I can’t help my shoe obsession. Honestly, I just see a cute pair of shoes and I just have to buy them! So, I realized recently that my closet just really does not offer enough shoe storage, so I started looking for ways to increase my shoe storage space. What I found are 20 outrageously simple DIY shoe racks and organizers that you can make today.

20 Outrageously Simple DIY Shoe Racks And Organizers You’ll Want To Make TodayAll of these offer you enough space for multiple pairs of shoes. Whether you need something in the master closet for your own shoes or you want something to put in the mudroom for keeping your kids’ shoes organized and easy to find, you will find the perfect DIY shoe organizer and storage solution here. These are all super simple to make and many of them use reclaimed wood and other upcycled materials. You know how much I love my upcycling projects! And, if you’re looking for a really great post on organization, check out these 50 genius command center ideas to really get your household organized.

I do love a good organizing project and these are certainly ones to consider. If you have tons of shoes like me, you really do need to create some additional organization space and these DIY shoe racks and organizers will definitely do that for you. If you’re ready to get your closet organized, you definitely want to take a look at these. And, also check out how to make a decorative hanging DIY jewelry organizer. You can get your closet and your dresser organized and do it all in just one day!

1. DIY Bench And Basket Storage

DIY Bench And Basket StorageI love this DIY bench that allows you to store your shoes in baskets underneath. This is great for the entryway or mudroom or you could just as easily build it for a bedroom. Imagine having a window seat with shoe storage underneath! You just build the bench (and you can use reclaimed wood if you have any) and then add wicker baskets – or other storage totes of your choice – to hold your shoes. Add a DIY coat rack and you have the perfect mudroom organizer!

Tutorial/Source: treyandlucy

2. Reclaimed Wood Shoe Cubby Organizer

Reclaimed Wood Shoe Cubby OrganizerHow great is this shoe organizer that you make from reclaimed wood? Not only is the wood reclaimed, you use piping to build the base. If you have the materials available from other projects, you can do this one for nothing. And, there is room for every pair of shoes you could possibly own. This would be such an easy DIY build or you can take a look at the one that I found on Etsy for less than $200.


3. DIY Industrial Style Built In Shoe Rack

DIY Industrial Style Built In Shoe RackBuild your own rustic looking industrial style shoe rack with some wooden boards and pipes. This builds directly into the closet or you could build it on a bedroom wall or even behind a door. It’s pretty versatile and really easy to DIY and you can make it as big as you want to hold all of your shoes. If you love the industrial décor look, this is a great DIY shoe rack to build.

Tutorial/Source: home-dzine

4. Cheap Repurposed Crown Molding Shoe Rack

Cheap Repurposed Crown Molding Shoe RackThis shoe rack is made from crown molding, and you can do the entire thing for less than $20. If you happen to be remodeling and are redoing your molding, you can get this one built for free. You put it close to the ceiling so it doesn’t take up any floor or wall space and if you go all of the way around your closet, you will have room for all of your shoes!

Tutorial/Source: alittlecleverandcatchy

5. Easy DIY Sandal And Flip Flop Hangers

Easy DIY Sandal And Flip Flop HangersThose old metal hangers that you have on hand are perfect for hanging up and organizing those flip flops and sandals. This is a great repurposing idea for metal hangers and it gives you so much room to organize those summer shoes. You need metal hangers and if you don’t have any on hand that you can use, they’re really cheap at the Dollar Store. This is the perfect storage system for your DIY flip flops and sandals!

Tutorial/Source: heywanderer

6. DIY Wooden Peg Shoe Organizer

DIY Wooden Peg Shoe OrganizerWooden boards and pegs are great for hanging your shoes and keeping them organized. You could do this one in the closet or in the mudroom or entryway if you need a place to keep your family’s shoes. You just build the racks and then hang them wherever you need. This is a great one to hang inside closet doors for the kids – they will never have trouble finding their shoes again!

Tutorial/Source: sawdustgirl

7. Wooden Spinning Shoe Carousel

Wooden Spinning Shoe CarouselHave you ever seen one of those luxurious closets with spinning shoe carousels? They’re great, aren’t they? You can get your own shoe spinner with a bit of wood and a few hours of time. These spinning shoe carousels are sure to help you to keep those shoes organized and they don’t take up much floor space since the storage goes up as opposed to out. You can build this one yourself or just grab this one on Etsy.


8. DIY Space Saving Repurposed Cardboard Shoe Rack

DIY Space Saving Repurposed Cardboard Shoe RackYou can make this DIY shoe rack from empty cardboard boxes – it’s cheap and easy and you can do it to hold all of your shoes. It helps to save space, too because you stack the shoe cubbies on top of each other. This is a really unique and creative look and it’s perfect for smaller closets or bedrooms. And, it’s also a great way to upcycle empty cardboard boxes.

Tutorial/Source: apieceofrainbow

9. Repurposed Wooden Crate Shoe Rack

Repurposed Wooden Crate Shoe RackThose old empty wooden crates can be put to really good use as a DIY shoe rack. If you don’t have any wooden crates, you can build them yourself or check your local thrift stores. They often have them for just a dollar or so each. Once you have a few, you just put them together to build this amazing shoe rack that will hold all of your shoes – and do it in rustic farmhouse style.

Tutorial/Source: livefromjulieshouse

10. DIY Hallway Command Center And Shoe Organizer

DIY Hallway Command Center And Shoe OrganizerNot only is this a great idea for a DIY shoe organizer, it’s a wonderful command center, too. Command centers are a must for busy families and this one has the added bonus of hanging baskets to keep all of those shoes organized. If your kids play sports, this is a great shoe organizer to keep their sneakers and cleats separated and it works perfectly for those galoshes during the colder months, too.

Tutorial/Source: ourhousenowahome

11. Horseshoe Boot Organizer

Horseshoe Boot OrganizerI love this idea of storing your cowboy boots on horseshoes! This is a wonderful shoe organizer for any type of shoes but it looks especially great with cowboy boots. The horseshoes are welded together and they hold your boots and other shoes perfectly in place. You can easily make this one yourself – although you will need to get someone to weld for you – or you can just look at this one on Etsy. You can pick it up for less than $50.


12. DIY Ladder Shoe Rack

DIY Ladder Shoe RackThis DIY ladder shoe rack is super easy to make and is perfect for storing several pairs of shoes without taking up too much space. You can do this with an old wooden ladder if you have one or just build the ladder yourself. If you’re looking for some DIY farmhouse décor, this is a great one to build. It’s really easy and you can get so many shoes on this thing!

Tutorial/Source: scraphacker

13. DIY Floating Entryway Shoe Rack

DIY Floating Entryway Shoe RackIf you need a space near the front door – or back door – for shoes, these floating DIY shoe racks are great. They are really easy to build and they don’t take up a lot of space. Build as many as you need depending on the size of your family so that you have room for everyone’s shoes. Your shoes will stay perfectly in place – up off of the floor.

Tutorial/Source: notmartha

14. Repurposed Paint Bucket Shoe Holders

Repurposed Paint Bucket Shoe HoldersI love this idea of taking empty paint buckets and turning them into neat little holders for your shoes. You can attach them directly on the wall and put up as many as you need to hold your shoes. You can get several pairs of flip flops or flats into one can. These would be perfect for kids’ rooms – just paint them colorful colors and hang them in the closet or even right there on their wall.

Tutorial/Source: craftynester

15. Repurposed Pallet Shoe Rack

Repurposed Pallet Shoe RackDo you know what’s great about using an old pallet as a shoe rack? You don’t have to do anything except for stand the pallet up against the wall! Your shoes will fit perfectly in between the slats and stay right there where you put them. You could hang pallets on the wall of your closet. In fact, you could cover the entire inside of your closet with DIY pallet shoe racks and have space for every pair of shoes you own. I do love DIY pallet projects for indoors and out!

Tutorial/Source: palletfurniturediy

16. DIY Scaffold Shoe Bench

DIY Scaffold Shoe BenchThis DIY scaffold shoe bench is great. It would be perfect for a kid’s room. Not only does it have room for so many pairs of shoes, it has a great tabletop that is perfect for doing crafts or homework. You can get the plans for this one over on Etsy and they are less than $10. Once you have the plans, you just need some wood and other materials and you can build this shoe bench in just a few hours.


17. Repurposed PVC Pipe Shoe Holders

Repurposed PVC Pipe Shoe HoldersSome large PVC pipe is great for storing and organizing your shoes. You just have to cut the pipe to size and then attach it to the wall of your closet. If you don’t really have closet space, you could also do this in the bedroom. It makes really unique décor. If you’re using them in kids’ rooms, you could paint them different colors before you hang them. Or, leave them white for a crisp, clean look in the master bedroom.

Tutorial/Source: apartmenttherapy

18. Simple DIY Tension Rod Shoe Rack

Simple DIY Tension Rod Shoe RackYou can pick up tension rods at the Dollar Store pretty cheap. Grab a few smaller ones and then when you get home, use them to make a quick and easy shoe rack for the closet. You just hang the tension rod pretty close to the wall and then use it to slip your shoes in. This works really great for those high heels. The heels will fit right between the tension rod and the wall and hold your shoes perfectly in place.

19. Huge Built In Shoe Shrine

Huge Built In Shoe ShrineThis shoe rack is huge. It literally has a space for all of your shoes and then some. And, it won’t take you nearly as long to make this one as you may think. If you have a pretty big closet, this is the perfect DIY shoe rack, but you could do this one even if you don’t have a huge closet. Just build it right onto your bedroom wall. It also makes a wonderful mudroom shoe rack and really does have room for everything.

Tutorial/Source: ana-white

20. Repurposed Plastic Suctioned Shoe Holders

I found these great little plastic suctioned shoe holders on Etsy, although they look simple enough for you to DIY. Just use some upcycled plastic bottles, like laundry detergent bottles, to make the actual holders and attach them to some of those cheap suction hooks that you can get at the Dollar Store for around a dollar per pack. If you prefer, you can pick these up on Etsy for around $14 and you get four shoe holders in different colors.


Garage Landing and Shoe Rack


Organizer garage shoe


Build [a NOT SO FANCY] Shoe Rack for Work Shoes.


You will also like:


2623 2624 2625 2626 2627