Transform your closet into a wine cellar, office or library

Closet ... the word has many connotations and meanings, but generally it refers to a small room or enclosed area adjacent to a larger inhabitable space. Enclosure is a key component of a closet so that it may conceal what is inside.

Hardly anyone I know complains about having too much storage or closet space. Usually it is the opposite, especially in older homes with comments such as "the bedrooms were the size of closets" or "you can only fit two shirts in the closets."

In newer homes, architects and builders have taken notice and designed much larger closets. From Realtors to homeowners, everyone is now familiar with the terms wall-to-wall closet, walk-in closets, his-and-hers closet, or in larger homes, the dressing room closet.

In the rare case someone has an unused hall or bedroom closet, there are many ways to outfit a closet to make it a valuable amenity to your home. Here are some ideas to make the most of your closet:

Bar/liquor closet/wine cellar

A keyed liquor closet is a great way to make use of an unused closet. It can be a safe place to store expensive bottles of liquor and alcoholic beverages from breakage or from the reach of minors.

For those who entertain frequently, a bar could be outfitted inside an empty closet. A bar cabinet can be an asset as a place from where to mix and serve cocktails, and if fitted with glass shelves, a great place to show off crystal glasses and stemware.

For wine collectors, installing climate controls to a closet can provide the best conditions to store cases of fine wines. Transforming a closet to a wine cellar can be as easy as installing accessible shelves for cases to built-in cases and elaborate metal bottle holders, special lighting and security systems. Obviously, this alternative can be costly because of the specific requirements of wine preservation.

Office and workspace

A 3-square-foot closet can easily function as a small desk office. Adding a tabletop, a small filing container, some shelves and overhead and task lighting can create just enough space for a home office. If you are lucky, your chair can tuck in so this space is sight unseen when the door is closed.

A foldable and hinged tabletop can transform your closet as a gift-wrapping or mail packing area. Attaching a hinged ironing board to a closet can become a permanent ironing station for the whole family.

Library or media center

Maybe you've always wanted a library but just had no idea where to create one. Installing shelves in your closet can give you the library you always thought about. This helps keeps the books organized and dust-free, if behind doors.

A small rolling cart with wire shelves is the perfect place for audiovisual equipment. Add a TV on the wall, and you can make your entertainment center virtually disappear when not in use.

• Joseph Pubillones is the owner of Joseph Pubillones Interiors, an award-winning interior design firm based in Palm Beach, Florida.

© 2017, Creators Syndicate

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