Everyone needs a room in their home that serves as their sanctuary, and it’s a well-known fact that the choice of bed and paint colours sets the tone for the room. However, the secondary furnishings and decor are equally vital, and this is especially true for the wardrobe. Your first and most significant decision when shopping for a wardrobe is determining whether you prefer a freestanding or a fitted wardrobe. Here’s your guide on how to decide which type of wardrobe is right for you.

What is a Freestanding Wardrobe?

A freestanding wardrobe, often referred to as a stand-alone wardrobe, is precisely as it sounds. This wardrobe style is a portable piece of furniture that operates independently within a room. It is not affixed to the walls, floors, or other furniture items in the room. Freestanding sliding wardrobes can be either pre-assembled or require assembly upon delivery.

What is a Fitted Wardrobe?

fitted wardrobe       

Fitted wardrobe (Image credit: Anna Stathaki)

A fitted wardrobe is the polar opposite of a freestanding wardrobe. Once installed, this style becomes a permanent fixture in your room. Fitted wardrobes are custom-made to precisely fit the designated space in your bedroom. They are typically built-in and permanently attached to the floor, walls, and ceiling.

Benefits of Freestanding Wardrobes

Purchasing a freestanding wardrobe will offer a myriad of benefits.  


One of the most appealing advantages of a freestanding wardrobe is its portability. If you decide to rearrange your room, it’s not a problem. With the help of some assistance, you can effortlessly relocate a freestanding wardrobe to a different spot in your bedroom, another room within your home, or even to a different residence if you decide to move in the future. Investing in a freestanding wardrobe offers long-term flexibility, ensuring that your wardrobe can adapt to your changing life and living spaces.

Resale Value

On the other hand, if you decide the freestanding wardrobe you purchased no longer fits your needs or your tastes have changed, you can determine resale price and sell it. Since it is mobile and not considered a permanent part of your home, you can move it out of your home and make a little extra money. 

Perfectly Match the Furniture in Your Room

Matching your wardrobe with the other pieces of furniture in your room is important for a cohesive look. Choosing a freestanding wardrobe increases the likelihood of coordinating it with other furniture pieces. In fact, you can find bedroom furniture sets that include freestanding wardrobes. Buying furniture as a set not only saves you time but can also be more cost-effective.

More Variation

There is a wide variety of freestanding wardrobes to choose from. You can select the color, door style, and size that suits your preferences and requirements. With the numerous options available, you can undoubtedly find a freestanding wardrobe that perfectly matches your desires and needs for your bedroom.


Freestanding wardrobes are typically more budget-friendly compared to custom-built wardrobes. You can further reduce costs by choosing a wardrobe that requires assembly. Assembly instructions are typically provided and are straightforward, making it a cost-effective and practical choice for those with budget constraints.

Quicker Delivery

Since freestanding wardrobes are not custom, you can receive the piece of furniture much quicker. In fact, you may be able to get same-day delivery or receive it same-day in the store.

Benefits of Fitted Wardrobes

While different from freestanding wardrobes, fitted wardrobes also come with their unique set of advantages. The primary benefits stem from the fact that this style of wardrobe is custom-built to meet your specific needs and space requirements.

Take Advantage of Unique Spaces

Sloping ceilings and awkward nooks can pose challenges when fitting a freestanding wardrobe. However, fitted wardrobes can be custom-designed to accommodate non-standard ceilings and wall angles. This is an excellent solution for making the most of unique spaces in your bedroom that might otherwise go unused. A fitted wardrobe can cleverly conceal an otherwise unattractive layout and create a more functional and aesthetically pleasing storage solution.

Customise Storage Space

Fitted wardrobes provide you with the flexibility to customize your storage space. You can incorporate as much or as little hanging space, drawers, and shoe racks as you require, tailoring your wardrobe to your specific needs. For instance, if you have a limited shoe collection but many clothes, you can prioritize hanging and drawer space. This level of customization allows you to maximize the efficiency of your wardrobe.

As an added benefit, it enables you to better organize your clothing to suit your lifestyle. With a fitted wardrobe, you won’t have to spend every morning searching for specific clothing items because everything will have its designated place, making your daily routine more streamlined and efficient. 

Maximise Space

In many cases, freestanding wardrobes do not extend from the floor to the ceiling. This can create a gap between the top of the wardrobe and the ceiling, which can be great if you intend to use it for decorative purposes. However, if you have no plans for decorating that space, it is essentially considered wasted. Fitted wardrobes can be custom-built to go from the floor to the ceiling, maximizing the available space inside your closet and eliminating any wasted space in your bedroom.

The Illusion of a Bigger Room

Fitted wardrobes, as they are integrated into the room, have the potential to create an illusion of a larger bedroom space. This not only enhances the overall aesthetics but can also positively impact the resale value of your home. As mentioned earlier, fitted wardrobes can also make an awkward layout more functional, which is a valuable selling point when putting your home on the market.

Cons of Freestanding Wardrobes

As with any item, there are potential drawbacks to consider, and freestanding wardrobes are no exception. Let’s explore some of the disadvantages of buying a stand-alone wardrobe.

Standard Sizes

It’s more challenging to find freestanding wardrobes in non-standard or oddball sizes. However, since wardrobes are typically available in a range of standard sizes, you have a good chance of finding one that suits your space. It’s essential to carefully consider the ideal wardrobe measurements before making a purchase to ensure it fits your room and storage needs.

Potential for Wasted Space

One potential drawback of freestanding wardrobes is that they often do not extend from the floor to the ceiling, which can leave a gap of unused space at the top. However, this space can be utilized effectively by adding decor or installing shelving to make the most of it.

Cons of Fitted Wardrobes

creative fitted wardrobe interior

Creative use of built-in wardrobe by Chris Snook

At a glance, custom-fitted wardrobes may seem like the obvious choice. However, it’s crucial to be aware of the significant downsides that come with this option before making a commitment.

Inability to Relocate

Once a fitted wardrobe is installed, it becomes a permanent fixture. Rearranging your bedroom or moving the wardrobe to another room or a different home is typically not feasible. Fitted wardrobes are custom-built for the specific space, making it challenging to relocate them. Even if you were able to move it, it might not fit properly in a new bedroom due to its customized design.

Resale is Not an Option

When it comes to changing your wardrobe or moving, selling a fitted wardrobe is generally not an option. However, with a freestanding wardrobe, you have the potential to recoup some of your investment if you decide to change it. This flexibility is not typically available with a custom-fitted wardrobe.


Custom products, including fitted wardrobes, tend to come at a higher price point compared to standard, off-the-shelf options. A fitted wardrobe will typically cost more than a freestanding one because it’s custom-built to your specific requirements. It’s important to view this as a long-term investment, considering the customization and quality that come with it.

More Time Consuming

Building a custom wardrobe does require time, and as a result, you won’t receive your wardrobe immediately. This can be a potential issue if you are on a tight schedule. The timeline for the build and installation of a custom wardrobe is contingent on factors such as the contractor’s availability and the project’s size and complexity. It’s essential to plan accordingly if you have specific timing requirements.

Hurt Your Home’s Resale Value

If there’s a possibility that you might sell your home in the future, installing a fitted wardrobe can be a risk. Since it’s a permanent fixture, potential homebuyers would need to appreciate your specific choice in wardrobes, and the layout must align with their style and preferences. This can significantly limit the pool of potential buyers, and it could even become a deal-breaker if the wardrobe doesn’t align with the tastes of those interested in the home.

A Freestanding Wardrobe Might Be Right for You If


  • You are on a budget
  • May move in the future
  • Like to rearrange and redecorate spaces
  • Like the idea of having the option to resale the piece of furniture down the road
  • Need a wardrobe sooner rather than later

Choosing a freestanding wardrobe doesn’t necessitate compromising on style or quality. You can find stand-alone wardrobes in a wide range of colours and layouts to suit your preferences and needs. This provides you with ample options to select a freestanding wardrobe that matches your desired style and offers the quality you seek.

A Fitted Wardrobe Might Be Right for You If

  • You have a large budget
  • You plan on staying in your home long-term 
  • You never rearrange furniture or incorporate new décor
  • The resale value of the piece of furniture does not matter to you
  • You have an awkward space to work with or a unique layout needs

Final Thoughts

When considering wardrobe options, there is no one-size-fits-all answer. The ideal solution depends on your specific needs, budget, and personal preferences. Freestanding wardrobes provide the most versatility, while fitted wardrobes offer the highest level of customization. Choose the option that aligns best with your lifestyle, and you’ll make a choice that suits your needs and preferences. wrong!

Main Menu