Easy Home Makeovers 

3 Life-Changing Room Makeovers

Moved by reader stories of cluttered spaces causing family fights, Real Simple extends the olive branch—tackling an overrun basement, an overstuffed closet, and a chaotic teen’s room. And proving once and for all that in the right surroundings, everyone really can get along. 

Larry Smith and Piper Kerman's closet after the makeover
Jonny Valiant

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The Smith Closet: After

Life isn’t fair, so Piper wins two-thirds of the closet to accommodate her much larger wardrobe. Color-coding (she’s gray; he’s orange) helps remind partners not to overstep. Because the top and bottom spaces are now thought-out (and maxed-out), the formerly bloated midsection has the breathing room to work efficiently.

A Mini Attic for Long-Term Storage
Accessible with a flat-folding step stool (tucked next to Larry’s clothes), the upper space holds neatly labeled winter accessories, camera equipment, and sentimentals.

Doubled-Down Rod Space
Larry’s no-girl-stuff-allowed zone includes a low rod for pants.

Secret Hangout
A valet rod telescopes out to catch Piper’s currently-in-use bag.

Shoes Shooed Away
A cubby makes use of depth—this grid holds 12 pairs. Special-occasion shoes live up top in clear bins.

To buy: Basics boxes in gray, $13 each, organize.com. Stockholm boxes in orange, $10 each, containerstore.com. Style Selections adjustable closet rod, $7, lowes.com. Joy Mangano Huggable Hangers, $20 for a set (in black), target.com. Schulte Shoe Cubby O-Box, $123, organize.com. Extendable closet valet rod, $27, organizeit.com.

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