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Turning a Spare Room into a Walk-in Closet or Dressing Room

Updated on August 3, 2011

Get the Dressing Room of Your Dreams

Most households struggle for storage space, whereas many homes often have a spare bedroom which is simply going to waste. Yes it's handy when guests arrive once in a blue moon, but unless you're running a bed and breakfast, it lies empty for probably well over ninety percent of the year.

Many of us see images of huge walk in closets, dressing rooms and wardrobes in magazines or on TV and long for one of our very own. Why not make it a reality by turning that unused space into your very own closet.

Choosing a Room

Which room to choose to convert?

If you’re lucky enough to have more than one spare room, choosing the right one to be converted will be your first task. The best room to pick will usually be the one closest to your master bedroom and if you own the house, you should think about installing a door between the two rooms for ease of access from bedroom to dressing room without having to walk around the house naked.

Evaluating the Room

Pick a style of décor

Look around your chosen space. Before we can start the conversion, you need to decide what style of room you want.

Are you looking simply for a lot of extra storage space and nothing else or do you want more from your room? Do you want an opulently decorated dressing room, completely furnished with dressing table, wardrobes, chest of drawers and suchlike? More often than not, a combination of the two is a great choice with the convenience of having your own dressing space with plenty of storage fused nicely with the opulence of nice fabrics and wall coverings. After all, isn't having your own dressing room a lavish enough prospect in the first place?

Measure the Room

Plan what will fit in your space

Whichever way you want to style your room, you will need to measure the room carefully using a tape measure to get accurate sizing in order to best understand how much storage space or furniture you can fit in.

Drawing a scale diagram of your room on some squared paper can make choosing and positioning furnishings a whole lot easier. Once you have a scale diagram, you can draw scale versions of any furniture you like the look of, cut them out and play around with positioning to your heart's content.

Storage Closet Ideas

Furnish your closet space

For a storage closet, all you are looking for is to make the room as functional as possible. Look especially at purchasing modular furnishings such as shelf units, cupboards and hanging rails.

Many companies nowadays make modular wardrobe furnishings especially made for walk in closets. These are a great idea and can be combined in so many different ways, giving you the perfect layout for your storage needs.

For low cost shelving units, take a trip to your local hardware store. They have plenty of different types of unit to suit even the tightest of budgets.

Hanging storage can also be created on a small budget. While you're at the hardware store, look for bathroom shower curtain rails. These can be easily fixed between two walls or between shelf and cupboard units to create simple hanging storage.

If you would like to hide away your shelving and hanging storage, a simple method is to hang curtains from the ceiling in front of the storage units to keep them hidden from view. Again, look for ceiling mounted shower curtain rails for an easy way to hang large tab-top curtains around your room.

Dressing Room Ideas

Furnishing a dressing room

A dedicated dressing room is perhaps the most fun room to have in a home. It screams indulgence and you will find yourself spending more time in there than anywhere else in the home.

You are creating a dressing room for only one person... you. Let your imagination run wild and create the best possible room that is not only practical but suits your personality perfectly. If you want a big mirror with lights all around, then why not have one? Choose solid wood furnishings for an over-indulgent look and even think about adding some really fancy pieces such as a chaise longue, leather sofa or a really big bean bag chair for somewhere to relax while getting dressed or putting on makeup.

The key to creating the perfect dressing room is good organisation. A well organised dressing room will make getting ready a much calmer and more fun prospect. Make sure everything has its own place from jewellery boxes and shoe cupboards, to somewhere to keep hair straighteners, hair dryer and makeup. Clothes need to be organised so that if you simply have to wear a certain dress, skirt or top, you know exactly where to find it. Look for top quality bedroom furniture companies for some great storage options.

Of course, no dressing room would be complete without a dressing table and accompanying chair. Choose a dressing table with drawers for the added ease of keeping life's necessities to hand and don't forget the obligatory mirror.

Favourite Products

Below are some of our favourite dressing room furnishing products. If you have a favourite that's not on the list, feel free to add it.

Got a tip to add?

Add a comment to the guestbook below explaining your very own dressing room tip. If we like your tip a lot, we'll add a section about it to the main article and also provide a link to the lens of your choice for your troubles.

Decorating your Dressing Room

Some decorating tips

A dressing room or closet can often feel dark or cramped by the sheer volume of furniture. It is important therefore to choose a light, neutral colour scheme to stop the room from feeling like a dungeon (unless you like that sort of thing).

Add splashes of your favourite colours with smart accent pieces or soft furnishings to really make the room a haven.

We hope you’ve enjoyed this lens and that it has provided good inspiration and tips for converting your spare room into a walk in closet or dressing room.

A luxury such as having your own personal dressing room really is something worth having in life and if that means that guests will have to sleep on the sofa, who cares? You’re worth it.

If you've got any additional tips for us, please feel free to comment and if we like your suggestion we'll add a section about it (and a link to your lens for your troubles too).

Enjoy your Dressing Room - Say hi if you enjoyed this lens

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    • lucille12 profile image

      lucille12 3 years ago

      Closet organizing systems come in various styles and materials.

    • sandyjunep lm profile image

      sandyjunep lm 6 years ago

      Man I loved this lens, I was just thinking about this for our home and then I read your lens and got more ideas

    • profile image

      anonymous 7 years ago

      I want my spare bedroom to not just look like a dressing room, but to look a little spa-like "boutiquey". I really want atmosphere. I saw a beautiful contemporary Asian salon in NYC and it is my inspiration. I'm looking for pictures but I guess I'll be the first one to do this (I don't really believe that.)

    • Niki Goddard profile image

      Niki Goddard 7 years ago

      Great ideas, you've really made me wish I had my own house with a spare room just so I can implement these suggestions!

    • Cherry-Ambition profile image

      Cherry-Ambition 7 years ago from U.S.

      You know, I never even thought about having a dressing room. Got so focused on wanting a walk-in closet that fits most of the clothes I own, lol. Can't do either since I don't have my own place yet, but I'll keep this lens in mind if/when the day comes.

    • hayleylou lm profile image

      hayleylou lm 7 years ago

      Good idea, if only I had a spare room, thumbs up :)

    • SquidooFanatic profile image

      SquidooFanatic 7 years ago

      nice idea for a spare room