That space under the stairs – who hasn’t wondered how it could be better utilised? And who hasn’t, at some point, stuffed it with mismatched boxes full of things that don’t seem to have a home elsewhere? 

Time to make the most of  that cupboard under the stairs with our comprehensive guide to under stair storage ideas. From practical, affordable shelving options to lavish wine rooms, you’ll never underestimate the potential of this part of the house again. 

Completely re-designing your hallway? Check out our expert guide for more practical advice too. 

1. Build under stair storage closets 

Even modest sized homes have decent under stair storage space. Make the most of yours by putting in a central door to create a spacious cupboard for large items (or lots of small ones); a door beneath the bottom steps for seldom used items; and use leftover space for a shelved-out niche, like the one below. 

This bespoke under stair storage closet is by De Rosee Sa Architects.

De Rosee Sa Caithness House under stairs storage

This bespoke under stair storage was designed by De Rosee Sa Architects

(Image: © De Rosee Sa/Alex James Photography)

2. Fit a downstairs cloakroom

A downstairs cloakroom great use of under stair storage is a must-have for many potential house buyers, and a valuable asset in a family home. If you’re tight on space, it makes most sense to put the loo beneath the sloping ceiling (like the one below), and to fit a sliding door rather than one that opens out into an already squeezed hallway. 

Hope you’ve all had a lovely day- we had such a great time at my parents’, but we’re absolutely shattered now! I haven’t shared a before and after of my downstairs loo for a long time, so have a swipe to see how I gave it a lift with my own fair hands 👐🏽!! This was part of a paid promotion of @grahamandbrown ‘s wallpaper and I used their gloss paint on the pipes to make a feature of them- sometimes getting something ugly to stand out works better than trying to hide it IMO! The quirky art and mirror are also from @grahamandbrown 🖤. Talking of which, I’m a bit confused about the ‘new’ rules around ads, gifts etc. I have always made it really clear when something has been gifted or if I’m being paid to promote a brand 👍🏽. I guess we now need to give credit and make it explicit if products are being shown on non-promotional, day to day pics too 🤷🏽‍♀️?! If that’s the case, then every single pic I, and a lot of you, put on here from now on will be an ad of some sort, as I have been very lucky to have been gifted some beautiful things since my IG journey started. That seems a bit extra to me, but whatevs, we’ve all got to play the ‘Gram game… let me know what you think about this, and if I’ve understood it correctly!! Have a good one! . . Wallpaper, wall art, mirror from @grahamandbrown | Tile from @britishceramictile leftover as part of a paid promo | faux foliage and vase from @homesense_ukie as part of a paid promo | everything else bought with my cash-monies 😐. . . . . . #cloakroom #downstairsloo #solebich #monochromehome #wallart #eclectichome #quirkydecor #moreismoredecor #homestyling #homemakeover #roommakeover #fixerupperstyle #hmhome #modernrustic #rustichomedecor #whiteinterior #smallspacesquad #smallroom #grahamandbrown #wallpaperdecor #fauxplants #interior_magasinet #boligpluss #housebeautiful #countryhome #toiletdecor #howyouhome #atmine #cornersofmyhome #decordailydose Lucinda Mitra

A photo posted by @nest_twenty_eight on Jan 27, 2019 at 11:38am PST

3. Keep everything to hand with open storage

If you want to create an impression of space in a small hallway, keeping the cavity under the stairs open is a good option. Then, it’s just a case of fitting shelves and investing in stackable storage to fill the space in a bespoke way. Choose a simple colour scheme for the boxes to make the space look as neat as possible. 

Take inspiration from Ikea’s clever de-cluttering with the Sortera range.

Find more small hallway design ideas in our inspiring gallery. 

Ikea Sortera system used under the stairs

Sortera system from Ikea is ideal for under stair storage 

(Image: © Ikea)

4. Shoe storage needed? Put it under the stairs

The under stair area is just asking for shoe storage! After all, most staircases are usually close to the front door, so it makes sense to buy clever hallway shoe storage to keep the space neat. 

The Argos Understair Shoe Storage Unit is perfectly shaped to slide easily under the stairs. 

Argos under stair shoe rack

Under stair shoe rack from Argos

(Image: © Argos)

If you like more of a rustic vibe in your hallway, a welly box needn’t just be used for your Hunters. This shoe unit from Cox & Cox has a combination of tall and short compartments means there’s room for wellies and knee-high boots as well as shoes. 

We have a load more hallway shoe storage ideas if you are after more inspiration. 

Large Shoe & Welly Box Unit

Rustic hallway shoe storage from Cox & Cox

(Image: © Cox and Cox)

5. Add a stylish sideboard under the stairs

Not all under stair storage has to be fitted. If you can squeeze a free standing side board under your stairs, then this will add a bit of extra storage, plus a surface area for you to decorate to your hearts content. The Ikea Hemnes side board/shoe cabinet, is a fave amongst small hallway owners as it’s super slimline being only 30cm deep, so it’s sure to slide under most staircases. 

hallway with stair case and storage solutions

Shoe storage unit by Ikea

(Image: © Ikea)

6. Fit an under stair book case

Inject the under stair area with a bit of class by turning it into a library. Good at DIY? You can fit the shelves yourself, or choose modular, ready-made shelving to fit the space.