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Closet Islands Create Space with Pizazz

by Valerie Demetros

Close your eyes and imagine a luxurious high-end closet. Most likely it is a large room big enough to accommodate a center island and a sitting area.

Closet remakes are now just as desirable as kitchen remodels, with closet islands right up there in every wish list.

The extra storage and counter space brought by closet islands are extremely fashionable and increase resale value. When done just right, they ooze luxury and comfort while combining function and style.

First off, make sure your closet can accommodate an island. You need a minimum of 36 inches of empty space on all sides to walk around it and access storage.

For a single-sided island (drawers on just one side), you can get away with less space. If your room is small, consider a single-sided island with one wall of shelves to save space.

The height of your island is just as important. Although 40 to 45 inches is standard, make sure it is right for you. If you are taller than average or shorter, take that into account. This is your personal space.

Once you determine height, then plan drawers and shelves on each side, leaving room for the countertop and toe kick in your measurements.

Your countertop will set the tone of the room so choose wisely. It can be glass, concrete with colored glass for a modern industrial look, stone or tile for a classic look or even live-edge or inlaid wood. Consider the style of the cabinets and drawers and go from there. This is where your personality shines.

Your accessories can elevate the look of the island with drawer pulls, dividers or inserts.

If you have a collection, like jewelry or designer evening bags, put it under glass or add shelves to one side of the island to showcase it. Consider a mirror on one side; rounded shelves or hooks on one end for style and storage.

You can add a closet safe concealed behind a cabinet door or a built-in ironing board.

If you have the space, you may want to include built-in seating, usually attached at one end. The under-bench area can serve as storage for sweaters or jackets. Add a velvet or silk cushion for even more style.

Consider additional lighting so that drawers or cabinets light up when opened or backlighting the island from under the counter. If you choose a glass counter, add a soft glow from inside for an upscale look.

Not only will a closet island bring added value to your home, but it will save valuable time with everything at your fingertips in a gorgeous setting. You use it every morning and evening, and a few times throughout the day.

It’s a room that gets a lot of use, so give it the attention it deserves; you won’t regret it.

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