shutterstock_329307962Out of all the clothing and accessories you own, your shoes probably work the hardest and take the most punishment throughout your day-to-day activities. If you want your shoes or boots to last, it’s important to store them properly when you are not wearing them. Stored haphazardly, creases and folds will naturally form over time and can permanently deform the structure of your footwear. Humidity, aridity and gravity all take a toll on your shoes and can lead to the materials becoming stiff as they age.

Proper shoe storage doesn’t just mean having a clever closet organization system for your shoes – it helps them last longer so you get more from your wardrobe. Knowing how to properly store your shoes will make them last for years to come, especially if you change styles with the seasons or collect vintage shoes.

Maintaining Shoe Shape

One of the dangers that shoes face in storage is losing their structure. In the short term, shoes don’t need a lot of maintenance because reshaping them by hand or hanging them on a shoe tree provides enough support to help them retain their shape. Using angled shoe shelves with shelf fences help keep your shoes where they belong when you remove them at the end of the day so they do not fall over and crease the delicate leather or fabric that covers your foot.

For long-term storage, which can be considered any time they are not being worn for a week or longer, stretches and wooden shoehorns are excellent tools for keeping your shoes in good shape. Use adjustable shoe stretchers, which let you customize the fit. If you intend to use plastic or wooden shoe frames, let your shoes rest for a day before placing the frame to let any residual moisture evaporate. This keeps your shoes dry and ready to wear the next time you need them.

Battling Moisture

Water damage from humidity and even just residual moisture is another concern when storing shoes. Stuffing shoes with paper is a method that’s been around forever, both to help retain shape and to absorb moisture. This method of water absorption is effective, but not just any paper will do. Use acid-free paper as opposed to newsprint in order to protect shoes from dirt while maintaining the proper moisture level. For heavier shoes which use materials such as felt or leather, consider using unbleached muslin fabric. In addition to wicking away residual moisture as paper does, it can also help protect embellishments like sequins and metal buckles from scratches and scuffs.

Whether you need long-term or short-term shoe storage, proper shoe storage is the best way to protect your footwear and get the most from your shoes. Boston Closet specializes in unique, custom-made closet organization systems and can help you create your dream closet with all the shoe storage space you could possibly hope for! Call us at (617) 628-1150 or contact us online today to schedule a FREE in-home design consultation!