Inspired Closets

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How to Make the Most
of Your Closet
Window

Being in the custom closet business means we’re in a lot of homes, and after thousands of in-home consultations there is one thing we know for sure – no two walk-in closets are the same. From simple rectangles to L-shaped closets and angled ceilings to windows and electrical panels, we’re always curious and excited to see what’s behind the closet door. If your closet is like many we see, it just might be a walk-in closet with a window and that window has you perplexed. Removing it or covering it up means losing all the natural light you love and a construction project, the thought of which you don’t love. And keeping it leaves you with a question – What do I do with a closet window?

First, Don’t Stress

Truth be told, closet windows are quite common and can be found in homes both old and new. In fact, walk-in closet windows are as common in homes built before 1940 as they are in today’s homes with first floor primary bedroom suites that feature the walk-closet at the front of the home and a street-facing closet window inside.

Second, Consult a Designer.

Our designers are well versed in how to make the most of what you may perceive to be an obstacle.

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The value of consulting a closet designer to help you decide what to do with a window in your closet is the experience a designer has in this area. This is common for designers. We know how to work with and around windows and can offer you options you may not have thought about.

– Lori Dominey, Owner of Inspired Closets in Athens, GA.

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An experienced closet designer knows how to maximize the space giving you the storage and organization you desire, while saving the natural light that floods the space throughout the day. In fact, you may be surprised to see how your closet window can enhance the overall design of your closet. Follow along as we share benefits and design ideas that will be sure to make your closet window your new favorite feature.

Two Benefits of Designing Around a Closet Window

See your closet window in a whole new light.

Benefit 1 Natural Light Can Transform your Closets

The truth is that closets without windows are some of the most poorly lit rooms in homes. Often the only light source is a single light fixture in the center of the ceiling. When your closet has a single light source, finding what you’re looking for, getting dressed, and even putting away laundry is harder and more frustrating than it needs to be. Because of this, we’re often excited to learn a closet has an additional light source, natural light. In fact, we see the closet window as the starting point to any number of features we know you’ll love.

Natural light is also an important part of a layered lighting approach to optimal visibility. What do we mean by layered lighting? Layered lighting is an interior design technique that combines different light sources to create a well-lit, harmonious space no matter the task or time of day. Common elements of layered lighting are:

Natural Light

Natural light is just that: natural light from the sun that is brought into your closet.

Examples

Windows and Skylights

Natural Light Example Image

Task Light

Task lighting is a concentrated light source meant to shine necessary extra light for specific activities such as putting on jewelry.

Examples

Vanity Areas and Under-cabinet Lighting

Task Light Example Image

Ambient Light

Ambient lighting provides a soft, warm, uniform glow that can spread across your closet.

Examples

Chandeliers and Ceiling Lights

Ambient Light Example Image

Accent Light

Accent lights draw attention to a focal point in the room, like your shoes or handbags.

Examples

Spotlights and Track Lights

Accent Light Example Image

While a closet design with windows can seem to be a confusing architectural choice, we think it can be quite brilliant. Better lit spaces feel bigger and have an energy that poorly lit spaces do not. Leveraging the natural light from your closet window means improving the overall look and feel of your unique space.


Benefit 2 Benefit for you Physically and Mentally

The natural light from your closet window is not just a great compliment to your closet’s interior design; it also has benefits that go beyond form and function. The natural light your closet window brings can improve physical and mental health.

According to Psychology Today, having access to extra natural light while indoors can lead to:

  • Enhanced mood, leading to better relationships and less stress
  • Better sleep
  • Improved self-control
  • Lower tension levels
  • Boosted brain power and creative thinking

So, if you’re wondering whether to keep the window in your closet, our guidance is a resounding “Yes!” for all the positives it brings. “Having a window in your closet gives the room character,” said Dominey, also adding “Designers will use it to create a focal point. The space can be used to display or store your items under or around the window. We are not at all afraid of windows. We will incorporate it into the design and you’re going to love your closet.”

Design and Functionality Opportunities

Open the window to new possibilities.

Now that you’ve decided to keep the window in your closet, the natural next question is, “How do we design around it?”, and that’s where we come in. Our job is to show you closet with window ideas that maximize the space you have and leverage the window for all it can be. You might be surprised to learn that when you have a window in your closet, it gives us more opportunities in design.

“A window can enhance the overall design of a closet by offering your eyes a calming space. We use a lot of wall space in a closet. Having a window with soft fabric or shutters gives the closet a layered look. Depending on your style, it can add to or complement the chic, quaint or boutique feel you are going for in your closet,” said Dominey. Here are some ways that we can make your closet window a feature you’ll love.

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Having a window with soft fabric or shutters gives the closet a layered look. Depending on your style, it can add to or complement the chic, quaint or boutique feel you are going for in your closet.

– Lori Dominey, Owner of Inspired Closets in Athens, GA.

Closet with Window Idea No. 1

A Built-in Dresser

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The wall space below your closet window is an ideal opportunity to add a built-in dresser in your closet. A built-in dresser in your closet often eliminates the need for a stand-alone dresser in your bedroom, freeing up floorspace for a small sofa or comfy chair and side table for reading or relaxing. A built-in dresser in your closet also means that everything you need to get dressed is in one place. During the design process, your designer will help you determine drawer size. Deep drawers are ideal for bulky items or things you have a lot of, like t-shirts, leggings or sweatpants. Shallow drawers are great for smaller items like socks, bras, underwear, and swimsuits. Jewelry drawers are perfect for storing accessories like necklaces, bracelets, earrings, watches, and even sunglasses. Decorating your dresser top with things you love helps make you love your closet even more.

Photo Credit: Tyler Norman Photography

Closet with Window Idea No. 2

Show Storage and a Bench Seat

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Because shoes are organized on stationary shelves, a wall perpendicular to the closet window is an ideal spot for shoes casting light on each pair making it easy to find what you’re looking for and often allows for more shoe storage. A built-in bench or a stand-alone bench below the closet window next to your shoe wall gives you a comfortable and convenient place to sit down and put on or take off your shoes.

Photo Credit: Inspired Closets Charleston

Closet with Window Idea No. 3

A Built-in Hamper

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The wall space below a single closet window is an ideal place for a built-in hamper and jewelry drawer combination cabinet. Keeping laundry tucked away in a hamper eliminates the visual clutter created by laundry baskets or stand-alone hampers. You also gain an additional, secondary dresser top for easy access to jewelry you wear more often.

Closet with Window Idea No. 4

Desk or Makeup Vanity

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While not the traditional home office, your closet window presents an opportunity for a desk in your most personal space. Use it for work, for home work, for quiet time to journal, or simply doing the things you love most. The natural light and off-the-beaten path location might just become your favorite spot in the house. If your closet is big enough, you love getting ready by natural light, and your closet design will allow it, then a make-up vanity near your closet window might be a feature you use daily.

Photo Credit: @carlycristman

Inspired? Rethinking removing your closet window? We hope so! Consulting an expert can turn what you see as an obstacle in your way into one of the features you love the most about your new closet.

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It is so beautiful to design around a window with glass cabinets, Shoe Shrine®, and a window seat. It becomes the focal wall that our clients enjoy when they enter the room.

– Amy Popkin, Owner of Inspired Closets in Philadelphia, PA.

Closet designs with windows are often thought to be a tricky feature to work around – especially when you are tackling the problem alone. But with the help of our Inspired Closets team, your closet window doesn’t have to be a drawback; it can be a starting point for a closet you will truly love. Our expert closet designers look forward to showing you the possibilities. Truly, there is no space we can’t transform, no organization problem too big and no solution we can’t uncover. Whether you have a big or small walk-in closet with windows, our experts are ready and happy to help you transform your space into the beautiful, functional, well-lit space you need it to be. Complete the form and we will reach out to get started.

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