Rookie Mistake: Over-the-door Hangers & Mirrors

Rookie Mistakes: a series of common decor mistakes made by rookies… aka US. And no we are not judging because, we have made (and continue to make) these mistakes too!

Rookie Mistake – Over-the-door hooks & mirrors

So today let’s dive into our feelings about over-the-door hooks and mirrors. Don’t get us wrong, there is definitely a time and a place for these genius inventions.

The time? Your College Days OR Renting Days
The place? Your College Dorm Room OR Rental Apartment

If you’re in one of these stages of your life then you are NOT currently making a rookie mistake by using an over-the-door hook or mirror. Actually, you’re doing everything right because no one wants lose their security deposit for damage to the walls! But if you’re not in one of those stages of life, we think there is a better, more stylish alternative for each of these very practical pieces.

Over-the-door Hook Replacements


Image + Door Hook via The Container Store 

Anyone who has lived with an over-the-door product knows how ANNOYING they become when you’re trying to close the door, not to mention the scratches they can make on the door or to the door frame.

We don’t want to be dramatic because we realize that this problem isn’t the worst case scenario, but we do think that ditching the over-the-door hooks for a permanent, more stylish solution is well worth it.Wooden_door_hook-outfit

Swapping out the over-the-door piece for a permanent hook, or hooks, will be far less annoying, yet just as functional.

door-hookI (Bridget) recently did this in my office. I chose this handmade hook because of its simplicity and shallow depth (plus the Etsy seller was awesome to work with). Finding a hook that is shallow enough and won’t make contact with the wall behind it is important to keep it from causing other issues.

I installed the hook into the hollow door using this method, which is very similar to hanging a picture frame on a wall by using anchors and screws.

Shirt_tie_hanging-hookMatt actually picks out his outfit and hangs it up behind the office door each night. This tiny hook works so hard each day, yet no one ever knows it’s back there because it’s hidden by the door! Plus whenever I want to close the office door for a conference call, I can easily do so without fighting an over-the-door hook. Clothes_hanging_on_doorjpg

I only added one hook to this door but if you have small kids or a couple of kids sharing a room, we think adding two hooks at varying levels could also work well. How cool would it be to get hooks that have each child’s initial on them so they know where to hang their outfit, or school bag, or even bath towel?!

View More: of towels, both of us have hooks just like this for towels in our bathrooms and Casey even has one in her guest room. For such an affordable piece that’s so easy to install, it seems silly not to add them into each room for a bit of extra storage. Although it may be small, these secret weapons can really make a difference!

gender_neutral_nursery_happy_camper_reveal-51Rookie Tip: For those of you who may be a little nervous to drill the door, adding a hook to the wall behind the door can work just as well! We did that in B’s sister’s nursery last year and she still loves the function it offers. She usually hangs her little guy’s mini towel on it after bath time.

Over-the-door Mirror Replacements

over-the-door-mirrorImage + Over-the-door Mirror via The Container Store

Just like over-the-door hooks, over-the-door mirrors are perfect for college students/renters, but we think that creating a more permanent solution for homeowners offers a practical yet still stylish choice.

Don’t get us wrong, the over-the-door mirrors have come a long way in the style department since we lived in dorms.  But we don’t love the hooks you see while standing on the other side of the door. And like we mentioned before, we don’t enjoy the struggle to try to close the door when these items are attached.

behind-the-door-mirror-bedroom-4Our solution? Hang a mirror on the wall behind the door! It still provides the function of having access to a full length mirror, it’s still hidden, and it doesn’t mess with the function of the door. <— sounds like a win, win, win to us!

I’ve always wanted a full-length mirror in my house but couldn’t figure out a place to make it happen. I was tight on space and living without one for four years! That’s when it dawned on me to add this very functional piece to the back of my bedroom door.

behind-the-door-mirror-bedroom-3And that’s exactly what I did! I bought this one from IKEA for $49 and hung it behind the door. It adds a TON of function, yet it’s not taking up any valuable space, actually… no one even knows it’s back there! behind-the-door-mirror-bedroom

The one thing I would note is that it’s important to find a mirror that isn’t too deep. This one is a bit thick for the job, so you need to make sure it don’t line up with the door knob because this could damage the mirror overtime. If you choose a very thin mirror, that won’t be a problem at all.

Like the door hook, we think this secret solution can make such a difference in your everyday life without interrupting the door’s function or having hooks poking out on the other side of the door.

If you’re an owner looking to upgrade your over-the-door hooks or mirrors, we hope you consider these easy, affordable options! Fighting with the door in order to close it is enough motivation to make the switch! Now we’d love to hear from you guys… what do you hide behind your doors?! Any other secret storage solutions you’d like to share with the group?



  • Alysia @ Slim Sanity

    I need to do this with our long mirror! It’s been leaning against the side of the wall ever since we moved in our house….three years ago….but our master bedroom is FINALLY coming together so its time to do something with it. It’s kind of funny because I was thinking about this and how I wanted to avoid the over the door hanger at all costs, and I thought to myself, ‘What would Bridget and Casey do?. I’m not kidding. HA!

    • That is crazy, Alysia! It’s like we hopped in your brain and decided to post about it. Love that! So exciting that your master is shaping up. Hope you get your mirror and door hangers all up and running soon!

  • Erin

    so 2 places we actually do have over the door storage. One is in our guest room which is more of his studio, catch all space. But i have plans to make it more guest room friendly. Anyway that room has a walk in closet which we store all kinds of stuff. I was getting frustrated with not being able to just walk in. so I got one of those over the door shoe storage. this allows me to store toilet paper and paper towels!!! It is AMAZING. a little annoying with being able to see the hooks, but i can WALK INTO the closet and get anything I need!

    the other is in my closet — it’s basically a series of mesh baskets — I decided to try it so i could see whether it was working for me or not before i went ahead and added actual baskets to the door! otherwise — we have no issues with putting hooks on our doors! We actually have 2 rows of hooks in our entrance closet — the top is for scarves/bags, etc and the bottom is all for the dog collars/leashes. you;d be amazed at how many collars and leashes one dog accumulates!

    • Erin, sounds like you’ve got this organization thing down pat! Wow, you’ve got a place for everything. Bravo lady!

    • Erin

      When you live in a condo, everything must have its place!

  • Trang

    I’m currently obsessed with full length mirrors! I’m specifically looking for one place on the floor to put against the wall at the end of my hallway. I don’t have any windows or much light showing through this hallway so I’m hoping that a floor mirror will help to brighten it up. Plus, I don’t have space in the bedrooms (not even behind a door like yours – my house is tiny!) so it would also serve has the mirror to ‘check’ myself out before heading out the door. There are so many options; it’s overwhelming.

    • Good idea to add it to your hallway for more light! And you’re right…lots of options! Hopefully you find something amazing, Trang!

  • Connie

    I was looking for somewhere to hang the full length mirror that would give everyone easy access. Our linen closet is in the middle of the hallway where the bedrooms and bathroom are – so I hung the mirror on the inside of the linen closet door 🙂

    • Sounds the perfect way to maximize space in your home — great job!

  • Moulya Somasundar

    which glue have you used to stick the door? I have tried every possible tape and glue such as gorilla double sided duct tape, Loctite PL Premium Polyurethane Construction Adhesive. It slowly starts gliding from the door.

    • I used an anchor and a screw to hang the hooks on the doors instead of glue. Sorry I couldn’t help more!