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What to Look For in a Walk-In Closet Island

Inspired Closet September 2023 Blog Island White

On the seemingly endless quest to tame the chaos in your closet, there are so many storage solutions along the way that it can be hard to know which ones will truly improve your space. At Inspired Closets, we have a favorite, high-quality option for walk-in closets: closet islands. Islands are not only a beautiful focal point for any closet, but they’re also a practical and accessible storage solution that adds value to your home.

Continue reading to learn what exactly closet islands are, how big your closet needs to be to accommodate one, and the different ways design experts can customize an island to meet your exact needs and conquer the closet chaos once and for all.

Inspired Closet September 2023 Blog Closet Island
Inspired Closet September 2023 Blog Closet Island
Inspired Closet September 2023 Blog Closet Island
Inspired Closet September 2023 Blog Closet Island

What is a Closet Island?

Think of the common kitchen island, but a closet island is, you guessed it, in your closet instead. Closet islands aren’t used for food prep of course–they’re a place for extra storage, folding clothes, laying out the next day’s outfit, a place to pack for a trip, set shopping bags before clothes are put away, and the list goes on.

While they’re generally not as big as islands found in the kitchen, walk-in closet islands are still a large addition to your closet that require extra room to properly function. If you have the available space to add a custom island to your closet, they’re more than worth it. Closet islands add storage, functionality, and value to your home, and a custom-designed space will create seamless ease in your day-to-day routines.

How Big Does a Closet Need to Be For an Island?

According to the installation standards at Inspired Closets, a closet needs to be about 11 x 11 feet to accommodate a floating island with drawers. Our standard closet islands with drawers start at about 2 ⅔ feet (32 inches) long to account for a side-by-side set of drawers and the top of the island. Then, you need 2 feet (24 inches) to hang clothes plus an additional 2 feet of clear walkway between the island and hanging clothes on either side. In total, this adds up to about 10 ⅔ feet (11 feet rounded up) needed to accommodate standard walk-in closet island requirements.

If you don’t have quite this amount of available space in your closet, there are different ways your designer can play around with the space you do have to make a closet island work. For example, if you have a wall of drawers on one side of your closet as opposed to hanging clothes, this will create a little extra floor space on that side of the closet with which to work. Additionally, remember that these numbers are minimums. It’s important to consider how far the island’s drawers will stick out into the 2 feet of walkway, as well as whether or not 2 feet is enough for everyone who will be using the closet to comfortably move throughout the space.

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All of these numbers and the variations different closet styles and design features can create is a lot to remember, but don’t worry!

Our designers are experts in the custom closet industry. They’re fluent in all of these details and more, and they’ll ask the right questions to ensure you have a closet island that fits perfectly into your space and suits your needs.

Getting Started

Questions to Ask When Selecting or Designing a Closet Island

As we’ve learned, there’s a lot to think about when creating a custom walk-in closet island. Below are additional key points to consider before the creation process starts. When you work with a professional designer, they’ll ask you the following questions, and more, so your custom solution completely serves your needs and seamlessly fits in with the rest of your closet.


How do you want your closet island to function?

  • What do you plan to use it for?
  • Do you mostly need extra storage, or a built-in bench that you can sit on when you put on your shoes?
  • Do you want a large surface for folding laundry and packing your suitcase before trips, or a surface that has plenty of room for jewelry and accessory storage?


How big do you need your island to be?

Knowing what you plan to use your closet island for will help determine how big it should be to meet your needs. A professional closet designer will also consider the amount of available space you have in your closet to fit an island.


Does the island need to be mounted to the floor?

Whether or not your island has to be mounted to the floor depends on its use, any sort of additional features connected to it (like outlets, for example), and its size. The bigger the island, the more likely you’re going to want it mounted to the floor for safety. Your personal preference will be taken into account as well, and your designer will help determine whether or not you can have and would benefit from an island that can move around as needed vs. one that always stays in place.


What features do you need?

Thinking back to how you want your island to function and what you intend to use it for, there are a range of closet accessories and features you can incorporate into the system. Once again, your designer will share all possible closet island ideas with you, as well as make suggestions based on their experience and expert opinion.

What to Include

Types of Closet Island Features

  • Bench Seating
  • Drawers
  • Open Storage Shelving
  • Jewelry Drawers
  • Ironing Board
  • Hamper
  • LED Lighting (along the sides or in drawers)
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Custom Solutions vs. Out-of-the-Box Solutions

A question that’s important to ask yourself as you’re going through the walk-in closet island process is, what is the quality of the island? Is it a mass-produced, boxed product, or something custom-built by an expert? Was it designed with you in mind? Pay attention to what the materials are, where they come from, and how they’re assembled.

When it comes to how you should go about designing and installing an island for your closet, we always recommend going with a custom solution. There can sometimes be a higher cost associated with custom closet designs, but the cost ensures the island will function the way you need it to, properly fit into your space, and the quality will hold up over time.

Custom Closet Islands

Out-of-the-Box Closet Islands

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Designed and built specifically for you, your needs, and your existing space
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Work with a design expert who knows how to create the best possible storage solutions
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Pick and choose from a long list of design features
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Made with high-quality material that holds up to wear and tear
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Professional installation ensures that the island is installed correctly and safely
Generically made, one-size-fits-all solution
Available in a range of prices that vary in quality
You get what you get–homeowners have to make their space work around the island
You are responsible for taking the correct measurements to be sure that the island fits into your closet
You have to tackle the installation yourself or hire an outside party to do the job

Never settle when it comes to your closet. There are endless creative storage solutions out there, and a closet island is a high-end option that not only adds value to your home, but truly adds value to each and every day. With additional storage, hand-selected design features, and a dedicated surface to tackle household tasks, a custom walk-in closet island replaces day-to-day stress with calm and ease.

If you’re looking for thoughtful design, real functionality, the highest quality, and a truly seamless addition to your space, Inspired Closets is here to help. Working with our experts is the easiest way to design and install your walk-in closet island and to guarantee you’re getting the best possible product that will enhance your routine for years to come.

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