The Best Tips and Tricks for Organising Shoes

Shoes can turn any outfit into a fashion statement. Actress Marilyn Monroe said, “Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world.” Marilyn probably had an extensive shoe collection, and she may have used a few of these tips and tricks to organise her shoes. After all, you can only wear the right shoes if you can find them.

a smiling woman surrounded by her shoes

Because shoes are less likely to go out of style than clothes and you are also less likely to change sizes, it is easy to amass quite a collection. And, when you have many pairs of shoes, it becomes vitally important to organise them well so you can access the pair you want quickly.

Beyond the practical reasons for organising, shoes are also beautiful, and they can create a striking display when organised properly. The following tips will help you do just that.

Take Inventory of Your Shoes

Before you start organising your shoes, take this opportunity to declutter your collection. Begin by trying on each pair of shoes. See if you still enjoy the way they look and feel. If they fit and you like them, set the pair aside for cleaning and repairs. Any pairs that are uncomfortable, cause blisters, or no longer fit in your wardrobe can be sold or donated.

a suede boot with a broken heel

Shoes that need to be repaired can be sent to a cobbler. A cobbler can repair soles and heels for a fraction of the cost of a new pair of shoes.

Also wipe down every pair of shoes. Dirt and grime that remains on the shoes while in storage could stain the fabric or cause damage. Any boots or shoes made out of natural materials, like leather, should be treated with a wax or leather conditioner.

Ways to Store Shoes in a Closet

Placing shoes side-by-side on a closet shelf isn’t the only way to organise your footwear. Here are a few other ideas for organising shoes in your closet.

1. Purchase Shoe Boxes

Stackable shoe boxes have several advantages. They protect your shoes from dust and damage, they come in a variety of styles, and they often allow you to see your shoe collection all at once. Shoe boxes also make use of vertical wall space in your closet by stacking easily.

shoes stacked in transparent shoe boxes and a pair of tan pumps

2. Hang Shoes with Heels

If you prefer a more minimalist look, install a towel rods or crown moulding in your walk-in closet. The space between the rod and the wall is perfect for hanging up shoes with heels.

3. Designate a Shoe Closet

If your closet is already full with clothing and accessories, turn an underutilised closet elsewhere in your home into a shoe closet. Install vertical shelves or rods, as mentioned above, and fill them with shoes.

This solution ensures that both your clothing and your shoes have adequate space.

4. Rolling Shoe Racks

If you need added shoe storage space, but would prefer not to have a dedicated shoe closet, consider purchasing a rolling shoe rack. Most double-sided racks can fit up to 30 pairs of shoes, and they do not require a lot of space.

Whenever you need to select an outfit, pull out the rack, select your shoes, and then roll the rack back into place.

Separate Shoes Into Categories

high-heeled pumps and sandals neatly organized in a row on a low bench

To locate the pair of shoes you want to wear quickly, consider organising your shoes into the following categories:

  • Shoes you wear frequently
  • Shoes you wear occasionally
  • Seasonal pairs of shoes (snow or rain boots, beach sandals, etc.)

The most frequently worn shoes should be within reach, which usually means at eye height when stored off the floor. Place similar styles together, such as casual shoes, exercise shoes, work shoes, and formal shoes. The pairs that you use less often can be placed on a lower or higher shelf. Seasonal pairs are either on the lowest or highest shelf.

Store Shoes for Quick Access

Though shoes are best stored in the closet, that is not always convenient when you need a pair of shoes to run a quick errand or step outside for a moment. When you want shoes that are easy-to-access but still kept out of sight, these are great solutions:

Store Shoes in Baskets or Cubbies

If you have children or other family members who like to leave their shoes at the door, it may be a good idea to use baskets or cubbies for shoe storage.

Purchase a bench for the foyer or other entrance of your home, and put baskets or cubbies there. You can assign each family member a basket or cubby, and allow them to store their shoes there out of sight.

shoes stored under a storage bench

Hide Your Shoes in Storage Ottomans

Storage ottomans are another storage solution for shoes that allow them to remain out of sight.

Many storage ottomans have enough space for several pairs of shoes. These ottomans can also be used as seating then tucked away under an end table when not in use.


1. Where should shoes be stored at home?

The most ideal place to store shoes is inside a closet where they will be protected from sun exposure. If your closet is full, consider using a secondary closet or a rolling shoe rack.

2. What is the best way to store shoes in a closet?

The best way to store shoes is either on a shelf, in shoe boxes, or in an over-the-door shoe organiser. Keep your shoes somewhere dark and cool, away from prolonged sun exposure. The best place for this is the closet.

3. How do you organise 30 pairs of shoes?

If you have 30 pairs of shoes or more, finding the appropriate amount of space for all of them may be challenging. One organising trick is to place shoes heel-to-toe on the shelf, which will allow you to fit more shoes in the space. You could also use stackable shoe boxes or use a secondary closet for shoe storage.

4. Is it better to keep shoes in boxes or out?

It depends. If you plan on wearing your shoes regularly, keep them out. For short-term storage, keeping shoes in boxes will protect them from dust and damage. For long-term storage, place shoes in dust bags that allow for air circulation.

a pair of high-heeled fringed golf shoes in a shoe box

5. Do shoes deteriorate in the box?

Yes, shoes do tend to deteriorate when placed in a cardboard box. This is because the box prevents adequate air circulation. Shoes kept in a cardboard box for a long period of time may have cracks and creases. If you wish to put your shoes in a box, make sure it is made of breathable materials.

6. How long do unworn shoes last?

Shoes can last for many years when not worn. However, the material gradually changes and starts to lose durability and support. On average, unworn shoes last around 5-6 years. Some higher quality shoes may last 10 years in storage, but they will not feel the same on your feet. Leather is one of the few materials that will last for a significant amount of time, much longer than shoes made from synthetic fabrics.

Shoes can turn any outfit into a fashion statement. Actress Marilyn Monroe said, “Give a girl the right shoes, and she can conquer the world.” Marilyn probably had an extensive shoe collection, and she may have used a few of these tips and tricks to organise her shoes. After all, you can only wear the right shoes if you can find them.

a beautiful pair of tan and green high-heeled sandals matched with a sparkly tulle green evening dress
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