luxury walk-in closets with glass top island

Today’s Luxury Walk-in Closet

Today’s luxury walk-in closet is a major status symbol, one that has evolved into a personalized space that is much more than a place to keep clothing. Now it is a personalized space as stylish as the fashion it stores. Men and woman both want a luxury walk-in closet customized to be as awesome as the rest of their home.

The walk-in closet is a feature people are willing to pay extra for. USA Today reported that the luxury walk-in closet is a major status symbol, with 60% of home buyers willing to pay extra for one. A survey by confirms this, citing walk-in closets as high on the list of amenities home buyers want most.

The Kitchen Designer and Closet Design

People today have lots of “stuff” and that “stuff” demands lots of storage. And no one is better at space planning than a kitchen designer.

Closet design is a natural addition to their skill set because whether they’re finding storage for spices or for shoes, the essential design guidelines are the same.

The Luxury Walk-in Closet “Musts

Here are the primary considerations for a new closet:

1.) Space

When it comes to the luxury walk-in closet, bigger is definitely better. Everyone wants plenty of storage. If you’ve got the space, consider a dressing area with seating, a center island with drawers and full-length mirrors for functionality combined with a sense of luxury.

If your space isn’t as big as you would like, perhaps an unused bedroom can be converted into a spacious walk-in closet and dressing area?

Take an inventory of your wardrobe items that are spread out in closets throughout your home, such as winter coats and scarves and other seasonal items. If you have a large selection of garments in places other than your bedroom closet, you’ll want to be sure to include space for them. Consequently, it will be easy to see what you have and create outfits.

Don’t stuff in as many shoes, handbags and clothing as you can. Your new closet won’t look or feel fabulous if it’s crammed. Think about high-end stores and consider how spaciousness between articles of clothing and shoes helps the store display their items to best advantage.

No matter what size space your home has, an experienced kitchen designer can make it work.

2.)  Personalization

Closets are not a one-size-fits-all. As your personal space, they deserve to be customized to you specifically. That’s why it’s important for your designer to understand how you use the space, what type of clothes you have, what you need to store, what you access most frequently, whether you’re neat and tidy (or not) with your clothing, and even what your favorite colors are.

  • Do you have a shoe collection that rivals Carrie’s in Sex And The City?
  • Is your passion for ties in every pattern imaginable?
  • Are your outfits color coordinated?
  • Or are things stored more haphazardly?
  • Is your closet packed with jeans and sweaters that can be placed in “stacked” storage?
  • Does your wardrobe have formal gowns, dresses and suits that require traditional hanging space?
  • What about accessories, like handbags, belts, jewelry?

How do you want your closet to look when you open the door? Closet design doesn’t have to be boring. Some people incorporate unique features in their closets: Washers and dryers with dedicated laundry stations, including a pull-out ironing board like this one from Hafele, the Häfele Ironfix®. It turns a drawer into a pull-out ironing board that rotates 180°.

  • Built-in espresso machines
  • mini-refrigerators with wine bar
  • desk with charging stations
  • A lounging area
  • yoga/meditation area
  • built-in dresser(s)
  • artwork

Decorated Like Rooms

Some luxury walk-in closets are decorated in the style of other rooms in the home. They can include

  • Chandeliers and/or other decorative lighting
  • Wood flooring or luxurious thick pile carpeting
  • Natural stone countertops
  • Wall treatments and ceiling treatments
  • A sitting arrangement
  • Vanity for putting on make-up or admiring jewelry
  • Bench seat for putting on and taking off shoes
  • A chaise for relaxing

4.) Functionality, Efficiency and Universal Design

Homeowners often complain about lack of adequate closet space. But designers have found that it’s not because the space itself is too small, but it’s because people can’t use the space effectively. A five-foot tall woman is probably not using the top third of the closet, simply because she can’t reach it.

Likewise, a tall person may avoid using racks placed at lower levels that require stooping or bending to use. The solution may be as simple as moving a rack up or down 6”.

Wardrobe Lifts  allow you to use higher spaces on a wall. Motorized or manual pull-down hardware fittings that bring the contents of high racks down can “give back” enough space to make a small closet seem larger.

Universal Design.

Don’t forget universal design principles when working with your kitchen designer on your new luxury walk-in closet. There’s a reason it’s called universal design. Making one’s clothing accessible is not something that is limited by age or physical ability; everyone should be able to reach their clothing easily– in the future or now, it doesn’t matter. What does matter is that the convenience is there for whenever it’s needed.

People want to stay in their homes as long as possible and access their clothing as they always have done. The motorized lift brings contents down to the person who may have limited extended reach.

4.) Lighting

Everyone wants to be able to tell if their pants, shoes, sweaters, jackets, socks – everything, in other words – are black or navy. If you’ve ever left the house wearing what you thought was a black skirt that turned out to be navy in the sunlight, or possibly you discovered too late that you were wearing two different colored socks that you saw as the same in your old closet, we know you were not happy.

The point is that lighting is critical for a great closet system.

LED lighting makes it easy to add lighting to any space, without the extra heat that created challenges in the past from halogen spots.

Drawers that automatically light when opened, or pull-downs that light up when they are pulled down – even closet rods for hanging clothes light up these days – can make it easier and more convenient to match colors. And find things, too.

Drawers that automatically light when opened, or pull-downs that light up when they are pulled down – even closet rods for hanging clothes light up these days – can make it easier and more convenient to match colors. And find things, too.

LED light strips can be applied to get light exactly where it’s needed. Plus LED lights save energy and last practically forever.

Tell your designer you want at least one of Häfele’s TAG Illuminated Glass Shelves. It’s a shelf. It’s a light. It’s both! You can show off a prized handbag, piece of jewelry, figurine or other artwork on this cleverly designed glass shelf that is lit from beneath.

5.)  Luxe Materials

Of course, the closet must be functional. However, the styling is all about fashion. The number of finish options, furniture details and custom touches that add a sense of luxury are pretty much limitless.

Quality Cabinetry.

When considering a luxury custom closet design, you will want to invest in quality cabinetry. No melamine shelves!

Many of the closet brands that are available now are not “real” cabinetry.  They are a system of shelves, drawer boxes, and rods that are designed to maximize how much stuff you can squeeze into your closet, but they are not true wood cabinetry.  As your designer for help to get the very best custom cabinetry your budget will allow.  No other aspect of your closet design is as important as this.


People love having an island in their new closet. It combines convenient drawer storage with a horizontal surface that can be used for sitting down your morning coffee, laying out clothes to see if they go together, folding laundry, packing for trips, etc. Plus, you can get a fabulous countertop material, such as marble or granite. Even leather.

The drawers in the island are the perfect place to store jewelry. Everything from necklaces, earrings and bracelets, to rings, cufflinks and watches are organized and easy to find.

The island is also a great place to stash a clothes hamper.


Every luxury walk-in closet should have a place to sit down comfortably. Besides being able to sit while putting on your shoes, a bench or window seat will also provide a space to pack a suitcase or lay out an outfit while getting dressed. A bench seat that has room for storage is especially practical, whether in your closet or in a well-designed kitchen. You can never have too much storage.

Glass Fronts in Cabinets.

Incorporating glass front cabinets is another luxurious feature. Whether it’s glass in doors, drawer fronts or shelves, it adds a special touch. Frosted glass is especially attractive and modern, and it hides any clutter that may be going on behind the doors.


Whether they are floor-to-ceiling or a part of a vanity, you’ll want mirrors to let you evaluate your appearance while selecting your ensemble for the day.

Mirrors are a must-have, especially a three-way type. A three-way mirror can make you look good coming and going. If you don’t have enough space for a three-way mirror, you can achieve the same effect by installing mirrors on doors. When they are placed strategically across from each other, the doors can be tilted at an angle to see yourself from all sides. Or, line up three mirrored doors hinged so you can see yourself in the center one and open the ones on either side to create the desired angle. Your kitchen designer will help you get the appropriate angles correct.

Shoe Storage. Shoe walls are no longer reserved for the Kardashians of this world. Shoes are the one accessory that accumulates quickly. With a shoe wall, your shoes will be properly stored and protected, and you can see your options easily when getting dressed.

Decorative Hardware.

Decorative hardware is always the “jewelry” of the kitchen and bath, and now, it can be added to luxury walk-in closets. Unique detailing such as crystals add a “wow” touch.


A custom closet can be a showcase for your style and taste, and it’s one that makes you feel good, too. You’ll discover you’re less stressed getting ready for the day when your closet is well organized.

A custom closet can be a financially smart choice in any home as it adds value by providing more space and organizing the clutter that homeowners want to do away with

An experienced kitchen designer (like one you will get from Kitchen Design Partner) who has expertise and experience can design a custom closet for you, possibly like the ones you see on HGTV.

KDP exists to offer insight and advice about all things related to kitchen remodeling. Our goal is to connect homeowners with talented, experienced kitchen designers who live and work in their communities. We are a serious resource for anyone preparing to remodel their kitchen so they can make the best possible choices about designers, contractors and products.