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Wardrobes - possibly the biggest choice in the UK.

Wardrobes are not a luxury item, they are absolute essentials as anyone who has had to cope with piles of clothing dropped on the floor or draped over chairs can testify! Just like every other major purchase you need to plan your requirements very carefully in advance, bearing in mind that it is not only clothing which is stored away in a wardrobe but also stored luggage, shoes, bags, or even cameras, books and CDs are possibilities.

Once you have decided just how big your wardrobe needs to be (bearing in mind that the number of clothing items you own may well increase in the future) the next important decision is the type of wardrobe you are going to choose, whether you want to have a fitted unit, a free standing unit or a combination of both. The advantage of a fitted unit is that maximum use can be made of available space including awkward nooks and crannies and these can be an ideal solution in a characterful room of uneven proportions. The drawback of course is cost, because you have to pay a skilled tradesman to build it for you.

Free standing units have largely gone out of fashion because they can take up too much space which can be at a premium in a modern house, but they have the great benefit of often being very cheap to buy, and many are available without a completed surface finish so that you can paint them to suit your own tastes or those of your children. A third alternative is to buy units which are designed to imitate fitted furniture from companies like IKEA, and if you have good DIY skills you can often adopt these to fit into awkward spaces and so have the benefit of fitted furniture without the high costs. Another advantage of these units is that they can often be taken apart and re-assembled elsewhere if you move house.

Whilst the basics size of a wardrobe is an important consideration, please do not forget about the interior fittings; you will probably need lots of shelves or even drawers for smaller items, rails to hang trousers upon and shoe racks. Depending upon the style of your wardrobe and your budget you could have sliding doors which may save some space in front of the wardrobe, interior lighting to make it easier to find small items and even mirrored doors to make your room appear larger.

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