Closet design tips and trends from the pros
Cape Cod has no shortage of stately, older homes, so it becomes a designer’s task to figure out how to maintain the integrity of these houses while increasing the functionality and visual appeal of a closet space. “Many older homes have limited or awkward closet spaces, but as a general trend, clients are moving away from bulky, hand-me-down dressers that take up a lot of space, and instead moving toward custom-built, floor-to-ceiling wardrobes with a smaller footprint that take advantage of vertical space,” Stafford says. “Over the years, it’s especially fun to see the product lines expand and become more in tune to design trends and specialty accents. Popular in New England are five-part shaker style doors, often in high-end kitchens and baths.” Everyone wants their closet to look amazing, but, more than that, to fit their individual needs. It is up to the designer to find that balance between functionality and personality.
“Over the past years, closets have become more important in houses and therefore more thought out in the initial design process,” says Jessica Muldoon of Lewis and Weldon. “Larger closets are always more desirable—a lot of our clients think of their closet as a sanctuary, and many of our recent designs have had elements such as islands and grand hanging chandeliers, but many renovations are also on older homes with restricted spaces. It is our job to work within that space to make it more purposeful.”
Practicality of design is key, but that doesn’t mean a closet can’t also have some flare. “Closets can create a more efficient use of space, especially with all the accessories that are available to optimize small spaces, like pull-out hampers, valet rods, velvet-lined locking drawers for jewelry, and belt and tie racks,” says Muldoon. Her favorite project was for a woman who wanted to display her expansive collection of striking handbags as if for a boutique. “The most rewarding part of my job is transforming a space to be both beautiful and useful,” she says. A closet is more than a place to throw your coat or hide your muddy boots, and designers such as Lewis and Weldon are committed to creating a space that offers buyers an escape from their busy lives—a private place to enjoy time alone or with a handbag collection.
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