shoe rack from milk boxes for zero dollars

For two years, this is how the entrance of my apartment has looked like, and this is how the coat/shoe closet has looked like.  Mess.
shoe inside and outside the shoe closet
I had to find a solution since:
a) Alok would not let me buy things I need,
b) I cannot find reasonably-priced things I need,
c) Alok would not make the effort to keep things in place,
d) even sticking instructions everywhere does not make a difference to him anymore,
e) it is annoying to organize things around the apartment every day, and
f) because ...

... I like DIY projects, I like recycling, upcyling, reusing, repurposing, and I have so much time on my hands sometimes I do not know where to waste.  So I used these sturdy two-gallon milk boxes, cut their flaps, glued and taped them on top of one another.
reuse / upcycle / repurpose milk boxes or cartons
And made a shoe rack from thick cardboard milk cartons.  Which, actually turned out a good use of my time considering it costed me zero dollars.  I did not want to dress it up with gift wrapping paper or anything because these are just for shoes and will get dirty, after all.  And when we move out, I will not need to think twice about discarding it.
DIY shoe rack
In fact this simple DIY shoe rack may be a great idea for:
a) the college students in dorm,
b) those living in small apartments,
c) people moving often,
d) those looking for frugal ideas.

All you need are cartons or boxes like these in the picture of something you regularly purchase, glue, scotch tape, and paper cutter or scissor.  These milk boxes worked perfect for my shoes and stilettos because I have the smallest feet in the world so my footwear can easily fit into them.  You may need bigger cardboard boxes.
before: pile of shoes | after: organized shoes
The shoe racks I searched for in Macy's, JCPenney, Kohl's, IKEA, etc were either the ones with rods (which I did not want for my stilettos), or were of wood (which I do not want to ruin because of wet shoes then purchasing another rack again), or were not capable of holding more than 10 pairs of shoes (where would I keep the rest of my current and future footwear?), or were not high enough (to use the vertical space more than floor space) or were expensive (anything beyond $15 was not worth it for me).
milk cartons turned into shoe rack - cost: zero dollars
These pictures are from last month.  By now, I have added another two boxes on top and will keep going until I have a whole tower of shoes organized at one place where I can see clearly, utilizing the vertical space as well as I can, and not creating a pile of shoes on top of one another which was ruining the prettier footwear.

The thing is ... when I cannot find something that I like - I make it.
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  1. even i made the same shoe rack from the boxes i got with shoes...mine was 3x2 and kept it at the back of my almara using vertical space :)

  2. very nice idea. I love DIY too and made a few storage boxes for seeds and assorted things using darjeeling tea cartons. I covered them with old jeans fabric.

  3. Clever the recycling vibe you have going on here Nisha!

  4. LOL... I am actually more intrigued to check out your collection of heels.. If only I could wear them *Sigh*..

    Brill idea Nisha, your posts almost always leave smile on face :)

  5. I'd never think of turning milk carton boxes into shoe racks.. very smart. As soon as I read this post, I saw all my shoes neatly lined up, still think I need to get a shoe rack, just being lazy.

  6. Very nice and clever idea.. Thanks for sharing :-)

  7. Very nice! I have the rod kind of shoe racks and they are super annoying, cause the shoes tend to fall from in between.

  8. Use butterfly clips to attach the boxes instead of using tape & glue, my 2 cents.

  9. I'm going to make something like this, but covering mine in some fancy duct tape. It'll strengthen the rack and look nice :)

  10. Thanx Nisha for this wonderful idea...


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