This Under-$20 Renter-Friendly TikTok Hack Will Help You Squeeze More Storage into a Sneaky Spot

published Jan 18, 2023
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Credit: Lauren Kolyn

If one of your goals in 2023 is to get more organized, you’ll need to do two things. The first? Declutter, which is the hardest piece of the puzzle for many (this author included).

The second piece of becoming an organized person: having a spot for everything, which means creating enough functional storage in your home to fit all of the essentials. That requires some clever thinking for small spaces. You’ll have to take advantage of areas that are otherwise unused, like the spaces over doorways or the square footage under the bed. If you own your home, you can think a little more permanently and install functional built-ins. But if you rent, you might have to get even more creative yet. One unexpected space to create some storage opportunity comes courtesy of TikToker and DIYer Sarahli of @hauz.and.co. (You might recognize Sarahli from her charming Halloween “Broomba” DIY or her adorable knitwear-themed Christmas tree decorations.)

In this project, Sarahli creates storage seemingly out of thin air by turning her framed artwork into slim cabinets. To pull it off, she needed just a few supplies: wood (1×3 boards are a great pick for this), wood stain to match her frames, cabinet hinges, a magnetic door catch, and picture hangers, all of which you can grab for under $20 total.

Sarahli started by assembling her cabinet frame from wood; you can get fancy with miter cuts for this, but you can also just make straight cuts as Sarahli did here. You can do this with a handsaw, or you can save even more time by picking asking for a hardware store employee to cut the wood board down to your desired measurements. Then, glue the box together before using nails to secure. (Sarahli used a brad nailer here, but you can also do this by hand if you don’t have one at home.)

Once the box is assembled, with shelves installed to your liking, you can stain or paint it to match the picture frame you’re using as the door. (Another option: Paint it to match the wall you’ll be hanging it on.) Once dry, install the hinges. As Sarahli notes, you’ll need to make sure to choose short screws for the side of the hinge that attaches to the picture frame, since it’s made of much thinner wood than your cabinet box. Finally, add the magnetic door catch and picture hangers to the back of the piece.

Once it’s hung on the wall, your artwork can serve as a secret place to stash toiletries (in your bedroom or bathroom), small electronics or office supplies (in your living room or office), spices (in your kitchen)… the options abound. When the door is shut, no one will be the wiser — and when it’s time to move out of your rental, you can simply pull the art of the wall and take it with you.