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Aha! Hack: The Stealth Storage Opportunity Under a Shelf

Coat Rack on Fantastic Frank

It’s incredible how much my aptitude for imagination has diminished since childhood. I was once able to turn just a few books into an imaginary house for my Barbie, and Papa Smurf into Ken (determined to keep Barbie chaste, my parents never granted my wish for a Ken doll). Others may have seen a pile of books and a funny-looking little blue dude, but I saw a stylish sunken living room and Barbie’s handsome soul mate. Today? I find it hard to tap into my imagination without some help from Netflix.

Case in point: Earlier this year, I admired an image, taken in a Shaker dwelling, of brooms hung from the underside of a plank of wood (see Annie’s excellent post, 12 Ingenious Storage Lessons from the Shakers). But it never occurred to me, not once, to reinterpret that idea for my own home. In my very literal mind, I thought, “What a great idea—for someone with a broom collection.” It wasn’t until I saw images on a Fantastic Frank apartment listing of a large wall-mounted shelf with coat hooks mounted on the underside that I made the connection.

Under-shelf hooks. What a great idea—for anyone in need of more hanging storage.

Photography courtesy of Fantastic Frank.

Coat Rack on Fantastic Frank
Above: In the entryway of this small apartment in Stockholm, a large single shelf with wooden brackets is mounted high so that its underside can be used to accommodate three rows of coat hooks.
Coat Rack on Fantastic Frank
Above: A view from the living room of the simple storage hack. The homeowners used double hooks for maximum storage opportunities.

3 Under-Shelf Double Hooks We Like

House of Antiquities Plain Cast Iron Double Wardrobe Hook
Above: The Plain Cast Iron Double Wardrobe Hook comes in two finishes—antique iron (shown) and matte black; $4.19 at House of Antique Hardware.
National Hardware Undershelf Coat Hook
Above: National Hardware’s Undershelf Coat Hook is made of zinc die-cast and available in a brass, nickel, and white finish (shown); from $6.82 on Amazon.
Grainger Screw Mount Utility Hook
Above: Grainger’s Screw Mount Utility Hook, with a satin nickel finish, has a working load limit of 35 pounds; two for $16.93.

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