Angela Ploetz

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My goal is to help people create a space that supports them, mentally, physically, and aesthetically. When you are free from the chaos you have the capacity to create more of what you want.

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The Closet Blues: Olympic Village

by Angela On August 24, 2012

{Photo from Derby Hill}

During the Olympics did you ever wonder where all those amazing, high performing athletes lived?  Like the most decorated Olympic medalist of all time Michael Phelps?  Or 29 Grand Slam title winner and four time Olympic Gold medalist Serena Williams? Or NBA Champion and Olympic Gold medalist LeBron James?  Where do these Olympic Gods and Goddesses sleep?  You’re looking at it!  They stay in the Athletes Village which is dorm style housing for Olympic athletes.  Although it’s hard to imagine these high performance athletes staying in these tiny quarters with these tiny beds.  Of course I think about it from an organizational perspective.  Where do they put all their stuff?  I look at the space similar to how I would organize a dorm or small apartment.

{Photo from Derby Hill}

When I look at the tiny closet above and the tiny night stand each athlete gets I am a little shocked.  When you consider that from opening to closing ceremony the Olympics last 17 days and many athletes arrive early to get adjusted to the time change.  That being said athletes could be in these tiny quarters for nearly a month! With that in mind I am going to do twist on an old favorite with: The Good, The Bad, and The Possibilities.


The Good

The beds look to be designed to easily slide luggage under them.  This can be used as alternate storage for folded items since there is not a dresser. I am really hoping that athletes have some kind of locker room to house their equipment and uniforms because there is NO room here to do that!  I saw a video of a room from The Telegraph showing that the rooms also had a metal drying rack similar to the one below.  That could be helpful to store a few more hanging items and items they might have to wash.

{Photo from The Container Store}

The Bad

I’m really surprised that there is really only one wardrobe closet for the athletes.  Hopefully there are some hangers in that closet!  Wow, there are only two drawers per person and they are pretty small at that! I image the drawer with the lock would be used to lock up credit cards, iPads, etc.  So that really only leave one drawer.  That not good!  The first thing I do when I get to a hotel is unpack my bags and put everything into drawers.

The Possibilities

There are tons of inexpensive ways that the athletes could take advantage of their minimal space.  But you have to smart and think about light weight items that would not take up a lot of room in a suitcase.  In this case since these are athletes who will likely be wearing lots of t-shirts and warm ups that they may prefer to fold I would consider something like a 10 Compartment Hanging Shoe Bag from The Container Store pictured below. If will fold down to practically nothing and could be used to hold clothes, shoes, hats, sleepwear, under garments, socks, even snacks. This one product could do SO much for someone in a small space like this.

{Photo from The Container Store}

Another item I love to use are over the door hooks.  I have even taking these camping (it was an unairconditioned “cabin” with bunk beds, definitely not the Ritz!) . The hooks can slide over a door or the end of a bed frame to hang bags, cameras, towels, jackets, and more.

{Photo from The Container Store}

My last pick would be the trusty Command Hooks from 3M!  These are SO versatile and could be used on the end of the wardrobe, on a wall, the back of a door, or the side of the night stand. These hooks, pictured below, come in different sizes from tiny to hold sunglasses or a hat to large to hold a towel, sweatshirt, or backpack or purse.

{Photo from The Container Store}

So those are just a few ideas these athletes or someone in a small apartment or dorm could do to get the most our of their small space.

And just in case you are interested buying a piece of the Olympic dorm rooms it will all be going up for sale!  See this article to learn more on that.

What do you think about the athlete’s rooms and closets?  Could you live with that little closet space for a month?

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