The Perfect Person For The Job – A Designer Designs Her Own Entryway

“You really must have the most wonderful closets!”

As a designer at California Closets I get asked this question often. For the most part, I really do have well-organized closets.

Well, I do now…finally.

A New Beginning

Last summer I moved into a lovely new town home. Prior to moving in, I made sure my walk-in closet, my children’s closets, and my living room were beautifully designed for our needs. When we moved in, unpacking was a breeze – everything had somewhere to go!

At the time I still wasn’t sure what I wanted or needed for the entry closet so I decided to just leave it for the time being. There was a typical pole-and-shelf configuration and I added a simple shoe rack on the floor to make it a little more functional. And then, almost on cue, life got in the way.

The Snowball Effect

As a busy working Mom with two little children, there were just other priorities. The entryway closet slowly got worse and worse. Because we had moved in in the summer it wasn’t such a big deal. A few flip flops, some sandals, and the odd light coat. But, as fall came in, the closet started to get a little messier. More coats, more shoes, and boots!

I live in Vancouver and it rains a lot here. There were rain boots, rain coats, and umbrellas. The summer stuff was pushed to the corners and things started piling up.

Then winter hit! This poor pole-and-shelf closet desperately struggled to accommodate winter boots, hats, gloves, scarves, mitts, etc. It was ready to burst!

Things Get Worse

In addition to being overstuffed, the little closet had another major issue, regardless of the season. My children are little. Both of them are far too short to reach the pole. Not that it really mattered at this point. As many of us know, a two-year old hardly knows how to work a hanger. They were left with little option but to just throw their coats into the closet and hope for the best.

Every morning the three of us would have to search for shoe pairs, matching mitts, and an appropriate weather coat. Here’s what the end result looked like:

Tara Blanchet Entry Closet - Before

Designing The Perfect Solution

It’s no surprise that I finally reached the breaking point and took the time to design a far more functional space. I knew exactly what I wanted:

  • Baskets for the kids shoes so they could find them easily
  • A drawer for each of us to house our sweaters, hats, mitts, etc.
  • Hooks for the kids so they could hang their own coats up
  • Shelves for my shoes so they could be spared being squashed by muddy boots
  • Space for my bags and purses
  • Hanging space for long and short coats
  • A certain amount of miscellaneous storage space

Harmony Restored

The end result is perfect. Today it looks exactly how it did after it was installed because everything has a home and everything is easy to put away.

In fact my 2-year-old insists on showing everyone how to use it when they come over.

Tara Blanchet Entry Closet - After

How do you like the solution? Leave your opinion in the comments. And if you’ve found this article helpful or inspiring, please share it with your family and friends.


Design consultant Tara Blanchet

Design consultant Tara Blanchet


As an interior designer and design consultant at California Closets VancouverTara Blanchet has ten years of experience helping people find the perfect look for their homes. Her favorite part of her job is seeing the excitement on her clients’ faces when they see that not only can they fit everything in their custom storage system, but it looks wonderful too.

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