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How to Measure Custom Closet Space

byRoman can provide you with a rough estimate if you know your available space and the general configurations you want (many drawers, few drawers, etc.). Below are instructions on how to take rough measurements for your project. You may find it helpful to sketch the shape of your closet or storage area first, measuring and notating the measurements on the sketch.

Measuring Closet Walls

The back wall is the wall towards the back of the closet – the wall you are facing when you enter the closet. Measure the back wall by placing the end of the tape measure in one corner and continue to the opposite corner. Round up to the nearest inch.

Return walls are the walls located on either side of a closet door or doors. Measure from the corner of the wall to the outside of any door frame or molding to get the total amount of usable wall space.

The sidewalls are the walls that lead from the back of the closet to the return walls. Measure and write downthose wall measurements too.

Measuring Closet Ceilings

To find the height of a flat closet ceiling, place the end of the measuring tape on the floor next to an empty wall and feed the measuring tape up to the ceiling. Running the tape up the wall will help to keep the measuring tape stable and give you an accurate measurement.

You can measure the height of an angled ceiling by measuring it in different areas. If there are two or more different ceiling heights in your closet space, make sure that the lowest height is noted along with the wall it abuts. Do the same for the highest section of ceiling.

Closet Doors

If you have double doors, mark the swing of the doors if they enter the closet space. Usually double doors will swing outward. Measure the door height.
Bi-fold or accordion doors — measure your door height and the door opening with doors fully open.
Sliding doors — measure the exact door height, the full door opening, then the door opening with both doors pushed to one side.

Standard Measurements of Common Wardrobe Items

Hanging Items
Short and double hanging: Shirts, cardigans, sweaters, blouses and day wear – up to 42″ vertical hang space
Medium hanging: Longer skirts, jackets, pants if hung by the waist – 50 to 54″
Long hanging: Floor length dresses or suits – 60 to 64″
Extra long hanging: Robes, evening gowns, jumpers – 68 to 72″

Shelf and Drawer Items
Shirts, sweaters, tops: 10 to 15″ width per stack of folded items
Men’s shoes: 8 to 9″ width for each pair
Women’s shoes: Allow 7 to 8″ width per pair
Purses, bags, backpacks: Estimate quantity, size and space needed
Socks and undergarments: Best kept in drawers or baskets, one drawer or basket per type of item is standard
Jewelry: One compartment per item to avoid tangles is standard, jewelry drawers suggested
Ties and belts: Rolled in a drawer, 5″ x 5″ each, or 2-3 ties or belts per hook if on a rack
Hats: Stack as high as 5 baseball caps, may need to measure individually, consider shelves