Nightstands are a staple in most standard bedrooms. After all, you need some space beside your bed to place items like your alarm clock, phone, bedside lamp, or a book. However, if you’re dealing with space constraints for your nightstand, it’s time to get creative!
If you’re looking for a storage solution that isn’t a nightstand, wall-mounted solutions are the best alternatives in bedrooms with limited space. They don’t require any floor space, provide ample room for placing essential bedside items, and improve the aesthetics of your bedroom.
Many space-efficient options do the same job as nightstands. In this article, I’ll discuss many out-of-the-box ideas to help you decide which nightstand alternative sounds best for your bedroom. Let’s begin!
Do You Need a Nightstand?
Before we discuss ways to replace a nightstand, let’s establish whether you need one in the first place. Does it take up space for no reason? Is it important enough to read an article about it?
Most people do need a nightstand for practical reasons. If you have medicines, devices, or even a habit of taking your morning coffee in the bed — you’ll need a nightstand to place these essentials. It also adds aesthetic value to your bedroom.
Aesthetically, nothing in your house is a must-have. It’s all subjective, and it’s entirely up to you.
However, the practicality of nightstands is pretty undeniable. It serves as a platform next to your bed that can act as a storage solution for anything that you need to access easily right before you sleep or right after you wake up.
Uses of Nightstands
If you’re not too sure about whether you need a nightstand, I’ll list a few of their key uses to help you decide.
It Keeps Your Medicines Handy
People who regularly take their daily pills can find a lot of value in nightstands. No matter whether it’s your daily vitamins or prescription drugs, you’re more likely to take them on time if they’re right by you and you can access them easily.
It Has Cabinets and Drawers for Storage
Nightstands can help you tidy up your bedroom. Most of them come with drawers and cabinets that provide ample storage to stash all of your bedroom items. These are suitable for people with extensive storage needs, such as stashing a laptop, iPad, medicines, books — all at once.
It Enables Bedtime Reading
Reading for just 6 minutes at bedtime can help get rid of some of your daily stress buildup and prepare your body for a good night’s sleep with a clear mind.
Bedtime readers use nightstands for their reading lamps and as a spot to place their books when they fall asleep. Consider getting a nightstand if you’re an avid reader or interested in taking up the habit for better sleep quality.
It Can Be Anything
As I’ll discuss in this article, almost any platform can be used as a nightstand. Even a tiny stool could double as a bedside table if you’re short on space.
That versatility translates to more choices for you to customize your bedroom decor without breaking the bank.
A Place for Your Morning Coffee
Morning coffee in bed feels amazing if someone’s kind enough to make it for you. But do you know what doesn’t feel amazing? Having to place it on the bed and being extra careful about it. A nightstand provides a convenient little space right beside you—so, no more stained sheets!
On top of all of those benefits, nightstands can add tons of decorative value to your bedroom.
Well, now that we’ve hyped up nightstands so much, let’s go over some worthy alternatives if you don’t have much floor space to work with.
10 Space-Efficient Alternatives to Nightstands
If you don’t have space to incorporate a nightstand into your bedroom, some options available to you instead include a floating bedside table, a bookshelf, a bedside caddy, and a storage headboard. You can even use a bar cart and a stool, among other options.
In this section of the article, I’ll go into further detail about the options available to you.
1. Floating Bedside Table
Floating bedside tables are legless nightstands that mount onto your wall. They’re a suitable option for tight spaces as all you need is a platform to place your items, and it doesn’t have to be grounded. Floating nightstands come in all shapes, designs, and sizes to perfectly fit your bedroom’s corner.
It’s even better if it has inside storage with a rectangle or hexagon-shaped floating shelf design.
Some floating bedside shelves also come with a drawer. So, keep your storage needs in mind when you go shopping.
2. Bookshelves As Nightstands
As we’ve touched upon above, bedtime reading is one of the best habits you can acquire for your sleep quality.
According to research, blue light exposure within two hours of bedtime can be disruptive for sleep and circadian rhythms.
Having a small bookshelf double up as your nightstand can keep you from scrolling and get you into bedtime reading. Pair that up with some relaxing tea in your night routine, and your sleep will get far more restorative.
3. Storage Headboard
If you’ve got absolutely no room to fit even a small table or bookshelf beside your bed, a storage headboard is a direct alternative.
Storage doesn’t necessarily have to be at the side of your bed. It can be above your head, too, as long as it’s within your reach. You can easily find bookcase headboards that seamlessly attach to your bed’s frame.
For instance, check out the Prepac Astrid Twin Headboard and the Bookcase Headboard from Amazon. They’re both relatively inexpensive and provide ample storage space to do everything a nightstand can. As a bonus, the stylish designs can do wonders for a small bedroom’s interior design.
Related: Can a Headboard Be Attached to Any Bed Frame?
4. Slim Bedside Table
If you’re used to swinging your arms to the side of the bed to turn your alarm clock off in the morning, having overhead storage might not cut it for you.
Luckily, there are slim bedside tables on the market that can slip into the tiniest corners next to your bed.
No matter how closed off the sides of your beds might be, there’s still enough space for you to get off and shimmy out—right? Well, if that’s the case, this Convenience Concepts Three Tier End Table is perfect for you. It’s cheap, looks great, and even has a drawer for extra storage!
Narrow tables at the side of your bed may look like they’re too slim to offer any storage value. However, most must-have bedside items like a lamp, table clock, your phone, and a bottle of water can easily fit.
5. Bedside Caddy
Let’s get a bit eclectic, shall we?
Instead of a nightstand, you should consider getting a bedside caddy if you need storage space by your bed but don’t have enough room for a table.
A bedside caddy is a storage holder that goes in between your bed’s frame and mattress and hangs off the side.
I recommend the Zafit Bedside Storage Organizer. It boasts more than enough space to store all your devices, remotes, and books.
However, it’s essential to keep in mind that the one downside to these bedside caddies is that they can’t hold your coffee cups or glasses of water.
6. Bedside Tray Shelf
A bedside tray shelf features a similar approach to the night caddy and also boasts a slightly more solid form factor. It’s a removable bedside shelf that attaches to your bed like the night caddy and can easily carry your water bottles, coffee cups, alarm clocks, and phone.
I recommend the Bamboo Bedside Bed Shelf from Amazon. Not only does it boast a ton of storage space, it even boasts a USB port to help you conveniently recharge your devices.
7. Bracket Shelves
If you need nothing more than a small platform to place your essentials, bracket shelves will suit your needs. They’re pretty narrow and don’t have a drawer or inner storage space—making it ideal for minimalists. If all you need next to your bed is a phone and some water, it’ll serve you well.
If one doesn’t quite cut it, you can always install another one below it. For max value, I recommend the Love-KANKEI Floating Shelves to cover each side of your bed. They’re super easy to install and add an elegant wooden accent to your walls.
8. Bar Cart
You probably have one of these lying around in the living or guest room. Most bar carts are narrow enough to fit into tight spaces, which means they can be a cost-free solution to your nightstand problem.
With generally two or more levels, bar carts provide more than enough space for anything you need near the bed.
Here’s another potential nightstand alternative that most homes already have. If not, you can find one for a pretty low price.
Stools probably won’t give you enough space to place large lamps, iPads, or laptops. However, they’re still big enough to accommodate essentials like your phone and an alarm clock. Most importantly, it can fit into tight corners – and that’s exactly what we’re looking for.
If the stool doesn’t look too good, you can always touch it up with an aesthetic DIY makeover to match your bedroom’s decor!
10. Slim Vertical Bookcase
Are you someone who needs everything from your laptop, iPad, medicines, books, and AC/TV remotes next to the bed? This one’s for you.
The corner space next to your bed might not be wide enough to fit a traditional bedside table with a cabinet and drawer. However, there’s still lots of vertical space. Why not capitalize on that to meet all of your storage needs?
I recommend Winsome Shelving. Though it measures just 13 inches (33.02 cm) in width, it also offers tons of storage with several blocks lined up vertically.
Choosing the Best Option for You
A floating wall-mounted bedside table would be the ideal solution for most people looking for a space-efficient nightstand. It looks fantastic, provides decent storage, and doesn’t take up any floor space.
However, like any other purchase decision in the world, the correct answer mostly depends on your specific needs and limitations.
How much floor space do you have? How much storage do you need? What type of items do you generally need by your side in the bed?
Some people might prefer not spending anything extra by making use of an item they’ve already got at home, like a bar cart or a stool.
Others might need more storage space next to their bed, in which case a slim vertical bookcase makes more sense. So, there’s no correct answer that fits everyone perfectly.
My Picks: 5 Best Wall-Mounted Shelves
Wall-mounted shelves are probably the most popular alternative to nightstands. With that in mind, I’ve listed my top-5 picks from Amazon to help you make the right decision for your bedroom.
Greenco 5 Tier Corner Shelves
Is your bed inches away from the room’s corner? Do you generally need to place lots of items near your bed? This one’s for you!
Its 5 levels of storage and incredible design offer the perfect blend of functionality and aesthetics. With numerous positive reviews, there’s no concern about its build quality and durability either.
It comes in 7 different colors to seamlessly match and add to your bedroom’s decor.
Having five tiers on a corner shelf opens up possibilities that are far beyond your bedside table needs. The bottom two or three levels are enough for all your items, while you could use the top two levels for a lamp, photo frames, or decorative pieces.
Rivet Hexagon Honeycomb Floating Shelves
This one is for the aesthetic enthusiasts out there! It’s a 3-pack of wall-mounted shelves designed elegantly, providing sufficient space for all of your bedside items.
These floating hexagons come in gold color and can easily take your bedroom’s decor to another level. The frame is made of iron, while the shelves are glass.
Their visual appeal is definitely their star feature! So if you’re looking for a nightstand alternative that also lifts your decor, these honeycomb shelves will be a stunning addition to the bedroom!
JACKCUBE DESIGN Hanging Square Shelves
Who knew that your bedside table could literally hang from the wall with vintage-style ropes?
The best part is, they look fabulous too! A lack of space can fuel creativity in mysterious ways.
If you’re looking for a unique-looking solution to your bedside storage needs, these hanging shelves might be the answer.
This product comes in a set of four that you can install as you please, allowing you to create a personalized look. You could place all of them over the bed or two on either side — whatever works best for you.
Having four of them provides enough space for your phone, indoor plant pots, alarm clocks, scented candles, and photo frames.
South Shore Floating Nightstand
If you don’t have enough floor space for a nightstand, you don’t necessarily have to look for alternatives for it. There are wall-mounted bedside tables that only lag behind real nightstands in the legs department – which is a good thing in your case.
This floating nightstand from South Shore provides a large storage compartment and three tiers for you to place items.
It comes with a complete anchoring kit for an easy wall-mounted installation. The best part; as it’s a floating solution, you get to choose its height!
With a maximum supported weight of 25 pounds (11 kilograms), it’s sturdy enough to hold all of your books, devices, water bottles, and more.
Labcosi White Floating Shelves
If you’re low on storage needs and high on minimalistic tendencies, this wall-mounted shelf is for you!
The white and gray aesthetic makes it look elegant in any bedroom. Regardless of the color theme you’ve got going on, white luckily goes with everything!
And it doesn’t just look premium – it’s made from premium materials as well. The white platform is made of Australian pine wood, with naturally unique wood grain patterns on every piece.
You can choose between two available sizes to suit your needs well.
It also comes with metal anchors and screws, so you can easily mount it to a plaster or drywall by yourself.
If there’s one thing that doesn’t need to conform to any societal standards, it’s how your bedroom looks and the furniture inside it. Your nightstand doesn’t have to be a nightstand. It can be anything from a stool, a hanging shelf, or a floating hexagon – as long as it does the job!
In this article, I’ve walked you through 10 viable alternatives for when there’s no room for a traditional nightstand. I’ve also shared my top-5 floating shelf picks to make it simpler for you.
By now, I hope you know exactly what you’re looking for.