Boot storage is a must all year round. In the offseason, we could store boots in a bin in the attic. But in the winter, it’s helpful to store boots in a closet.
Several other storage methods combine utility and practicality. The boot storage option you choose will depend on your specific needs.
Before you just toss your boot collection in a basket, take the time to store them properly. The last thing you want is for your expensive shoes to lose their shape, become damaged, or collect unwanted odors.
Do you need help figuring out where to put bulky and awkward boots? We’ve compiled tons of tips and ideas on how to store boots that are worth browsing.
1. Line tall boots up in a row on the floor.
Boot organization is essential when using up valuable floor space. Resist the urge to toss boots into a pile next to the door. This type of shoe is expensive and sees a lot of wear, so do your part to take care of them when they’re not in use.
To keep everyday boots in good condition, follow these steps:
- Map out floor space in the entryway or closet for your most worn boots.
- Place boot mats on the ground to protect the floors from any salt, dirt or moisture from the boots.
- Line the boots up neatly in one or two rows.
- Fill the boots with a paper towel roll or another quick insert to keep them standing upright.
Boot Storage Tip: If you are storing boots long-term, keep them off the floor. Floors are prone to moisture, dirt and unwanted pests. Raise your boots up using a shoe rack or gather them inside an air-tight tote if storing in an area that isn’t climate controlled.
2. Clean boots before putting them into storage.
There are two types of boot storage: long term and short term. In the short term, it’s alright if you take your dirty boots off and place them in their spot until you wear them again in a day or two.
If you are putting the boots away and don’t plan to wear them for a few weeks or more, make sure they are clean first.
Depending on the fabric and durability, different cleaning methods will apply. To make cleaning easier, use a protectant spray before you wear your boots for the first time.
3. Hang boots using boot or pant hangers.
Hanging is an excellent option for storing boots of any height that you don’t wear as often. Hanging boots can maximize closet space for ankle, mid-calf, to the knee or even over-the-knee boots.
Below are a few inexpensive methods to consider:
- Boot Hangers: Boot hangers give spaces a clean and polished look. They are often used to display boots in retail stores, especially in the winter months when boots are abundant. When about to buy a pair, ask the retailer if they will provide the boot hanger the boots were displayed on for free. If not, stocking up is easy. At 40 cents a hanger, it’s a no-brainer organizational investment.
- Pant Hangers: Pant hangers are the sister to boot hangers. They mostly can perform the same function with just a little bit of improvising and are an ideal option when in a time or money crunch. Just take the adjustable clip pant hangers and clip the top of each boot onto the hanger at opposite ends.
Boot Storage Tip: Add a washcloth in between the boot and boot hanger clip to prevent indent marks from forming on the shoes.
4. Use an over the door shoe hanger for kid boots.
Over the door shoe hangers are a classic shoe storage staple, and they work well for shorter boots and kid’s boots. Try to find ones with deeper pockets as well. This way, more different sized boots are likely to fit inside.
5. Stuff tall boots to maintain their shape.
Stuffing boots to keep their shape is important when storing knee-high or over-the-knee boots on a closet floor. The fabric of taller boots doesn’t have much structure and causes them to fall side to side.
Here are a few household products that combat boot fabric fold:
- Magazines: Grab a stack of magazines and curl one into each tall boot. Magazines will help your shoes stand tall, creating space for more boots on the floor.
- Wrapping Paper Roll: Wrapping paper rolls work well as a tall boot stuffer. Depending on the height of your roll, cut them to the appropriate length and stuff each section into the boot to help them stand tall.
- Floaty Noodles: Considering throwing away any old floaty noodles from the pool after the summer? Keep those as well! Similar to wrapping paper rolls, take the floaty noodles and cut them into appropriate length sections to fit each boot.
- Wine Bottles: Save empty wine bottles from all the summer gatherings. Clean them out. These work great as tall boot stuffers as well.
Boot Storage Tip: Be cautious with wine bottle boot stuffers. They work best for carpeted closet floors. In case they were to fall over, hard closet surfaces may cause the glass from the wine bottle to shatter.
6. Store short boots inside a bin for everyday storage.
Storage bins help to keep spaces organized, plus they come in all sorts of colors and sizes. For shorter boots, bins can be placed on the closet floor. Just neatly toss a few pairs in, and the space will immediately start to feel more tidy and accomplished.
We hope these ideas inspire you to organize your boot collection and help you master how to properly store boots!
This post originally appeared on the Life Storage blog on 8/31/16 and was revised on 4/5/19 to provide new information.