A Complete Guide To Walk-In Closet Dimensions And Layouts

Posted in Closet
05/02/2021 closet

A Complete Guide To Walk-In Closet Dimensions And Layouts

Closet and Beyond Woman Organizing Walk in Closet

Walk-in closets rule the world of storage solutions. Although much more common currently, they still remain highly desirable and perceptibly luxurious.

But just like almost every other major element that goes into designing a home, walk-in closets rely heavily on the accuracy of their design. If designed properly, walk-in closets are truly the belle of the ball. We wouldn’t go into WHY you should design those — the abundant storage is reason enough to go for a well-designed walk-in, not to mention the private space it affords the user. Instead, we will talk about how you can design one that is perfect for your master bedroom.

What Do You Need to Know Before You Start?


You have been warned: Designing is not an easy job. You will need time to plan the layout and its interiors, but if you follow through this guide, you should enough to start.


A walk-in closet design will mainly depend on three factors:


  • Your budget
  • The space at your disposal
  • Your storage requirements


Before stepping into any project, you should know exactly what you need and want — for that will determine the final product you end up with. For example, for low/minimum storage requirements, a walk-in can be an overkill.  Similarly, if you don’t have the space, then cramming a walk-in closet in your bedroom will severely distort the layout of your house. Before you even begin, ask yourself the purpose of your walk-in closet and work from there. That will determine the layout, which in turn will determine the design.


Different Types of Walk-in Closet Layouts


First of all, let us talk about common designs and layouts in the walk-in world. Depending on individual needs, walk-ins can come in various designs. Some of them, however, are more common than others:


  • Single-Sided Walk-In Closet:  An extension of reach-in, this is the smallest and of all and is a pretty common design.The storage is placed on the opposite wall of the entrance and there’s clearance space for access.
  • Double-Sided Walk-in Closet:  For this design, storage units are placed on the opposing walls as you enter the closet, with a clear pathway down the middle. Small to medium in size.
  • Island Walk-In Closet:  Basically a double-sided walk-in closet with an island in the middle. Storage can be housed on all three walls or one side can be reserved as a dresser unit. They do require a lot of space and can be classed into luxury products.
  • Wrap Around Walk-In Closet:  This design maximizes the storage space available, with storage units placed on all three walls. Medium to large in size.

The designs mentioned above are based on the placement of storage units. Talking specifically about size, walk-in closets can be broadly broken down into three categories — small & square, long & narrow, and large.

Once you have figured out your storage needs, your space constraints, and the functionality you want to extract from a walk-in closet — you can mix and match these styles to come up with the most efficient  for you.

For example, if you have ample space but minimal storage needs, you can incorporate a dresser inside the walk-in to take care of hair and make-up. Any leftover space can be utilized for an island or even an ironing board.


Determining the Measurements for Your Walk-in Closet


A standard full-size walk-in closet for two people should measure a minimum of 7 by 10 feet. It should preferably have an area of 100 sq. ft as this allows you to have storage units on all three walls with even a sitting area in the middle. In case you want a smaller one, small walk-ins can be built in as low as 25 sq. ft. of space.


Below are some standard measurements for various types of walk-ins as mentioned above:


  • Single-Sided:  Being the smallest, they are little more than a hybrid between a reach-in closet and a walk-in. On average, the closet is about four to five feet deep and occupies about 24 inches of the total depth. This leaves about 36 inches as clearance.
  • Double-Sided:  The depth of a double-sided walk-in can be flexible, ranging from four to six feet. It is wider than a single-sided closet, incorporating two 24 inches each storage space on opposite walls. With a 36 inch clearance in the middle, the total width comes out to be anywhere from six to seven feet.
  • Island Walk-In:  If you have an island in the middle of your closet, chances are you’re not worried about space. But in case you have been trying to ‘cram’ the island into the design, make sure that there is a three feet clearance on all sides of the island.


Tips to Follow While Designing Your Own Walk-in Closet


  • Double rods are a common and efficiency-focused element of a closet. They are typically placed 40 inches and 80 inches from the ground.
  • If you are using single rods, 72 inches is a good height.  Add shelves above the road to maximize the storage space.
  • Have a separate rack dedicated to shoes, or else it’ll take no time before the entire floor is covered with all sorts of footwear.
  • As a rule of thumb, a four-feet wide area will accommodate storage space on one side. A six feet wide walk-in can make room for storage on all three walls.  And a 10 feet wide room can sport an island.


Apart from this, if you want your walk-in closet to be compliant with the Americans with Disability Act (ADA), you need to have a minimum clear space of 30 inches wide by 48 inches deep. It is not mandatory but is a great gesture, especially if you have space to spare. It’ll greatly help in increasing the resale value of your house if you ever decided to go down that path.

© 2023 Closet & Beyond.
All Rights Reserved.

Closet & Beyond Showroom Hours

Mon-Fri: 9 am to 6 pm
Saturday: 10 am to 4 pm
Sunday: Closed