What Is The Difference Between Wardrobe And Closet?

Let's face it: The English language can be downright crazy at times. Different people can often have varying understandings of what a word means, and it can be hard to tell the difference between two words that seem like they might mean the same thing. We get it.

Take, for example, closets and wardrobes. Ask 10 people, and half of them might say these are synonyms for the same object: an enclosed area in your home where you store clothing or other items. And they'd be halfway right.

But we're here to tell you that there's definitely a major difference between a closet and a wardrobe. And it's a distinction that you'll want to know if you're shopping for additional storage space for your current home or seeking to rent or buy a new home and looking to see what amenities it offers. So just how do these two types of storage spaces differ?

The difference comes down to structure

While wardrobes and closets are both designed to be storage spaces, they have different structures.

First, a closet is just what you think it is: A small enclosed area built into a home that provides storage space. They can be walk-in, large enough to step into, or simply reach-in, about arm's-length deep. Closets usually have folding or sliding doors to close them off, as well as shelves for hanging clothes below and stacking items above.

On the other hand, a wardrobe — also called an armoire or chifforobe — is a large piece of furniture that opens up to reveal storage, according to InfoBloom. It usually will contain shelving or a rod for hangers. This item is movable and not built into the wall, although it's usually reinforced so it doesn't tip over. Wardrobes can also be modular, as pictured in the above photo, meaning you can buy more than one piece to fit together as a single unit. Many people turn to wardrobes for extra storage when their home doesn't have enough to begin with, but they don't want to do any construction. That, and if they need to find a lion or a witch, naturally.

Now, not to throw another word into the mix, but don't confuse wardrobes and cupboards. Although they, again, are both meant for storage, wardrobes are typically used in bedrooms whereas cupboards are pieces of storage furniture utilized in kitchens or living rooms to contain household items like cutlery or dishware, per InfoBloom.