Would You Rather?

Would you rather have a blank-slate closet, or one that's been customized?

Share this Article

Spring cleaning time is upon us, and all that sorting, rearranging and purging may be  leading you to daydream about the perfect closet.  We asked five New Yorkers: Would you rather have the endless possibilities of a blank canvas closet or a perfectly polished California Closet-style closet with built-in shelving?

  • Anything but ordinary I would want a blank space. There are so many DIY designs now for a closet, especially a large closet. Perhaps if the space is smaller I would want to place a desk inside for an office. Or if its a wide enough closet and a small bedroom room, I can push the bed inside the closet to create a headboard type feel. I wouldn’t do that if there were built-ins already, of course. But closets have so much potential as long as you think outside the box (or closet!) -Andrea, Hamilton Heights
  • What a girl wants What girl would not love a gorgeously outfitted California Closet? They do fantastic work: I’ve seen it when I’ve snuck into open houses for apartments I’ll never be able to afford! The style and quality is just on another level from, say, a Container Store closet. Although, of course, I wouldn’t say no to that either. The important thing for me would be to have drawers and compartments for certain things. It would make finding things in the morning easier, and also putting things away after laundry would go faster. I do think there is some untapped potential in my  closet right now. I have a pretty basic shelf with one hanging rod situation. I have bins on the floor and shelf for everything else. But my hamper is also part of “storage” since I technically can’t fit all my clothes in the closet at once. -Sarah, Upper West Side
  • California dreamin’ I have an actual walk-in closet, can you believe it? I love it. It’s huge so that I even used to fit a single bed in it. But now somehow I have too much stuff to fit the bed and now it’s just a closet. But a large one! I would love to have the closet professionally organized and built out! It would be the perfect California Closet. With designated space for everything like all my linen, all my shoes and my jewelry! Do you know how expensive it would be to have that done? More than a few times my monthly rent. So for now I have the wire racks and rods. One day, maybe a professional carpenter can help realize my dream. -Heather, Bed-Stuy, Brooklyn
  • Pipe dreams I’d kind of want to do the job myself, to be honest. I’m pretty handy and there are all sorts of ideas I’d want to implement to make the space work for me.  When I was living at home, I had these plastic basket ball hoops lined up on the wall with the nets knotted up at the bottom. I threw my rolled up sock in there. I think it’s time to bring that idea back, actually. I really like an industrial look, too, and there are these awesome shelves people are making with plumbing pipe and nice wood. I like the open storage concept better than a bunch of stuffy drawers for my socks. -Mark, Washington Heights
  • Default to Ikea I would love a California Closet, for sure. I actually have a good size closet for the amount of clothes I have.  I had a blank canvas to do with as I wanted  andI went to ikea to buy their Algot system and built it all in myself. I think it looks great. But then, it’s wire mesh drawers and while they do function very well, they feel flimsy. I know it’s hardly something I should complain about, but I can only imagine what joy I would have opening up my same closet and having built in drawers, and lighting compartments that were done and polished! -Sam, Harlem

Verdict: California knows how to party! Or at least make closets: California Closets win 3 to 2!


Everything you ever wanted to know about banishing closet clutter

Whip your closet into shape for under $20

No walk-in closet? No problem--make your own

Eke out closet space you didn't know you had

How to spend  your last winter weekend indoors productively


Also Around the Web