We all know The Chair. The Chair where you put the clothes clean enough not to go in the laundry, but not enough to go back in the wardrobe. The Chair that looks like this:


It exists because you plan to wear those clothes again in the near future, so you want them to be easily accessible. And you don't want to mix them with the 100% clean, folded and ironed clothes in your wardrobe.

But aesthetically this is not satisfying. Is there a better-looking alternative? Where to put used, but still usable clothes to make them easily accessable and hidden, or at least not looking messy?

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    You use a chair!? Mine just go on the floor... – geometrikal Sep 23 '17 at 21:36
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    Back in the wardrobe. – djechlin Sep 24 '17 at 16:59
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    Surely no-one folds their shirts like that so they can be thrown onto the chair...? – Shadow Sep 25 '17 at 0:34
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    I don't have enough rep to answer, and it's typically for suits and British people, but how about a valet: wayfair.com/furniture/sb1/…. (I am not associated with Wayfair, btw. :) – hBrent Sep 26 '17 at 22:37
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    My wife would like to extend curses to you all for validating my clothes-storage methods.Thanks guys! – palswim Sep 28 '17 at 18:50

15 Answers 15


I use an IVAR side panel from IKEA (any similar thing, for example a small ladder, or screwing together a few wooden bars yourself will do as well). Lean it agains a wall at a slight angle and throw clothes over the horizontal bars. Done.

Stands almost entirely flat against the wall if you don't use it, comes in different sizes, is cheap and most people who have seen it in my room thought it looked kinda cool.

If you truly want to hide it, this usually fits behind a door pretty well.


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    This is great. It even somewhat makes tidiness from mess, as it's purposely set up for this function, unlike the chair. – Neinstein Sep 22 '17 at 15:20
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    @Carl if using a product that is 100% not intended to be used this way (you're supposed to build a shelf with it) isn't a life hack, I don't know what is. – Laura Sep 22 '17 at 21:59
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    "Deliver me from Swedish Furniture." – wha7ever Sep 25 '17 at 17:38
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    I find this much more useful than the accepted answer of a storage ottoman. With this bar method the clothes are allowed to hang free and air out, while stuffing them into some kind of container will trap bacteria and stew them together. – Darren Sep 26 '17 at 19:00
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    "If you don't use it..." Funny guy! – Beejamin Sep 30 '17 at 21:07

I always install a hanging rod or hook in the laundry area for just this occasion. They're great for hanging those damp towels you'd use again if the occasion arises, or that out-and-about shirt you just threw on to run to the corner grocery… but seems wasteful to throw in the laundry if you may need it again shortly.

The advantage of using the laundry area is it reminds you to wash those items if you don't need them again, and it gives you something to top off the laundry if you need to do a load but don't have quite enough items to justify running a full cycle.

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    Practical and pretty-looking idea, also a great way to fill up the space above the machines if you have any. I really like it. – Neinstein Sep 22 '17 at 18:46

You can use clothes hanging wall mount inside your wardrobe door. I do the same thing with my two wardrobe. You can use both the doors according to your need.

You can buy this kind of wall mount which is easy to remove from your wardrobe.

Easy removable wall mount 1 Easy removable wall mount 2

If you want to permanently use the wall mount then use this kind of wall mounts.

permanent wall mount

Now, the below image shows how to use the wall mount inside wardrobe. You can use both the doors according to your need.

enter image description here

If you are using Horizontal wardrobe or your wardrobe is having sliding door then you can use foldable wardrobe which consume less space. If you don't want to use then you can easily fold it and put it anywhere. Foldable wardrobe are available with different different varieties and sizes you can choose according to your need. Foldable wardrobe looks beautiful and all your clothes are hide inside it.

There are so many advantages of foldable wardrobe one of them is if guest come to your home and you have less space to put guest clothes then you just open foldable wardrobe and its done.

foldable wardrobe

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    +1, it's a really great idea. Unfortunately not the solution for me as my wardrobe is "horizontal", i.e. I keep all my clean clothes folded, laying on shelves. No room for hooked clothes on the door. – Neinstein Sep 22 '17 at 13:14
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    A folding wardrobe is a bit overkill for me as my room is rather small. mvuajua's answer is more suitable for me, but I really like your hook idea, and many people aggree based on your vote count. – Neinstein Sep 22 '17 at 15:19
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    @Neinstein The hooks could also go on the back of the bedroom door or - if you have one - the private bath. – Engineer Toast Sep 22 '17 at 16:26
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    @Carl What is exactly your problem with this (and the other) answer? It didn't "endorse" any specific product, and it provided a good answer to the question. If a lifehack makes use of any object obtainable in shops, do you automatically have a problem with it? – Neinstein Sep 22 '17 at 22:11
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    @Carl Your vote is your own of course, but did you know you can buy a blowdryer to loosen up a frozen car lock? Same concept <wink> – Robert Cartaino Sep 23 '17 at 4:07

I use a storage ottoman in my bedroom for this purpose, something like this:

enter image description here Pic credit walmart

The lid remains off most of the time and I usually don't mind it being open.
If I have guests over, I can easily cover the lid and then it's just an ottoman.
It doesn't look like laundry and functions as an extra seat if required.
I find that the size is large enough to fit my in-between clothes, but small enough to (1) not take up too much space and (2) force me to not put my entire wardrobe in there.

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    I prefer my slightly-used clothes to be able to breathe. This looks a bit too hermetic, with the potential for stinky. – Floris Sep 27 '17 at 13:26
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    @Floris I do usually leave the box open. It only gets covered while I have guests. Been using this method for years and never had any smell issues! – user22230 Sep 27 '17 at 14:10
  • This kind of defeats the purpose of the chair. As the chair allows you the ability to drape your clothes without wrinkles, plus despite how clean you think your clothes R sticking them in a box is not a good idea for worn clothes. While the chair offers an air it put situation – Himarm Oct 8 '17 at 10:45
  • @Himarm the question specified hidden as a criteria. In any case, as soon as the clothing pile becomes significant (2 shirts stacked on top of each other or more, etc) the bottom one isn't going to be aired no matter what the clothing is on . This is just for temporary storage. There are plenty of other answers to choose from to suit your clothing-air needs. – user22230 Oct 8 '17 at 12:47

I use a clothes tree in the corner of my bedroom. It might also be called a coat tree or coat rack.

I guess that it is still as ugly as "the chair", but it takes up less room.

enter image description here

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  • This is what we use. It lets you hang clothing to a better extent than a chair does, and provides some degree of organization. – MPW Sep 28 '17 at 16:26

I put worn-once-but-not-dirty back in the wardrobe but change the direction of the hanger hooks so that they can be immediately identified as "half-way." Facing forward vs. facing backward.clothes hanger positions

In addition, the left-half of the wardrobe is "reserved" for these articles. Once worn hoodies, sweaters, and folded outer-wear sits on the shelf above hanging clothes.

Fresh stuff enters the wardrobe on the right-hand side and moves leftward on its way to be cleaned.

Suits that have been worn once (or twice) are brought to be "sponged-and-pressed" between being "dry-cleaned." This is a less wear-and-tear treatment for structured outer-wear.

Confession: I also have and "use" a "chair."

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  • A picture would be nice to illustrate. – Nofel May 24 '19 at 22:09

Door hooks

I use door hooks. They are similar to the wall mounted ones, but require no drilling and can hold more weight than the sticky version.

They come in a variety of shapes and sizes ranging from the simple S-shape (left) to full hangers (right)

single door hook door hanger

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I have a laundry basket I keep next to my dirty laundry baskets specifically designated for this (the little one on the left, below). It's also a convenient place to dump clothing instead of the floor when I'm too tired to deal with putting it away when getting undressed, so outer layers often end up there for a day or two. Whenever I do laundry (or sometimes sooner if it starts to overflow and look messy), I go through it and anything left in there either gets added to the wash if it's actually dirty (field/workout/gardening clothes, etc), or hung back in the closet if it really isn't dirty enough to worry about (usually sweaters, jeans, etc).

laundry baskets

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    This is very similar to existing answers but IMO still adds a new option to the given problem. Especially the picture demonstrates nicely how your solution fits in with your clean and dirty laundry and looks good. Also it provides a lazy but tidy option to dispose of clothes quickly at the end of an exhausting day. – Flint Sep 23 '17 at 6:30
  • I used to do this, except I was using a dufflebag/sack for my worn but still good cloths, and then another for the dirty cloths. – Lyndon White Sep 28 '17 at 15:21

When I first met the guy who is now the spousal unit he didn't have a lot of furniture.

In fact in the bedroom he had a bed and a step ladder. He used the stepladder as a wardrobe till he got a real cupboard later on. In fact a stepladder is very handy. He had a torch clipped onto it as a bedside light.

And of course the stepladder doubled as a stepladder sometimes.

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This is not particularly discreet but it is neater than The Chair and offers excellent ventilation for the clothes. I used it when I was in college for Yesterday's Clothes To Throw On If There Is A Fire Alarm.

  1. Get a set of 6 wire mesh storage cubes (the kind that are assembled from flat mesh panels and plastic corner connectors, and sold to students for dorm rooms).
  2. Assemble them 2 wide by 3 high so that the topmost sections are open on top instead of in front.

This offers you four possible edges to drape items over and 6 shelves to lay smaller ones on.

(No picture of the cubes because I couldn't find one suitably licensed and I don't have any myself at the moment.)

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  • Where would you get these mesh cubes? – Trajan Espelien May 22 '18 at 16:04
  • @TrajanEspelien That's going to be regional, but I expect to see them in a big-box store particularly during “back to school” season. – Kevin Reid May 22 '18 at 18:10

The truth is that, if your clothes are not clean enough to go back in your wardrobe, they really need to go in the wash, not on your chair for wearing again.

If you've warn them and they're even slightly smelly or dirty, then you really don't want to wear them again, do you? So, wash them!

On the other hand, if they're neither of those things, they won't contaminate other things if they go back in with the clean stuff, so do that. It really is OK to put worn but clean stuff back in the 'drobe.

Similarly, if your garments are too crumpled to go back with the tidy stuff, they're too crumpled to wear, so press them again before putting them back.

Now, you might argue that some clothes will never get washed following this principle. In practice, this simply doesn't happen; you can tell when clothes need washing.

I gave up my own chair about 2 years ago, and can attest that the wash-or-wardrobe method works well in practice.

In summary, then, I'd say your challenge isn't to find a different resting place for half-worn clothes, but to see the problem differently. Clothes go back in the wardrobe or they go in the wash. There really is no middle ground.

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    I think this really depends on how active a person is. There is definitely middle ground for me, I tend to have "inside clothes" and "outside clothes". I only wear inside clothes around the house, when I am clean, so the inside clothes just don't get as dirty as quickly. The vast majority of the time, the inside clothes are the in between ones. I'd prefer to separate out the current set to wear multiple times and then wash it, rather than put it back with the other clothes and remember the state of all of them. – user22230 Sep 23 '17 at 21:21
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    And if you have some clothes that you put on intending to go and do "outside stuff" but you got distracted by your most recent Netflix binge, presumably you don't mind putting the outside clothes back on before you go mow the lawn. It's not like you need the cleanest clothes to go get dirty and sweaty in. – Wayne Werner Sep 25 '17 at 12:17

More suited to the male and more formal wardrobe, but a good alternative is a trouser press. They typically have a hanger for a jacket and shirt if you wish (though if you can reserve a section of your closet for shirts it's better to air them out). Corby is one famous maker, though there are knock-offs available I can vouch for the quality of the original (and lack of quality of at least one knock-off). There is a timer and the press delivers electric heat to the trousers so you have freshly pressed trousers in the morning.

corby trouser press

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We use over-the-door hooks.

over the door hooks

You can hang this on the inside of a bedroom door, or on a closet door (either inside or outside).

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A great life hack in this situation is to set things up so that your clothes actually have a place to go that isn't the chair already. The way I look at it is this: stained clothes I can spot wash and if the clothes are smelly in the first place I definitely don't want to wear them again until they're washed. So I spot wash anything with a stain and at this point I can't tell the difference from clean clothes, so I exploit this so the clothes can actually be put back with the clean clothes in the first place.

Wrinkles are a problem, and since an iron is too much work another great life hack is to use a hand-steamer, which is easy to store and operate and works just as well. Again at this point the clothes have reached a state where they able to go into the wardrobe without any confusion or unsightliness.

I've found this system is a really huge improvement on the state of my room and my wardrobe because it's a backdoor approach to avoiding having another category of storage that I had difficulty getting to really work out right. Plus I always have more good clothes to wear and I have to do laundry less because I've found the trick to keeping clothes ready-to-wear clean and wrinkle-free.

Hope this helps.

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I use a cloth dryer for this purpose.

  • It has lot of room and is space-efficient.
  • Clothes are ventilated.
  • You can also use it, partially or totally, to actually dry clothes
  • If you are receiving guests, it looks tidier than The Chair.

Just pick the model that best suits your needs :)

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