Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Organizing Tips & Tricks: Finding Storage in Unusual Places


A while back I started a series of Organizing Tips & Tricks.  Today is Part 2 in that series, all about finding storage in unusual places.

One of my favorite challenges as a self-proclaimed organizing addict is to find and create storage in otherwise wasted spaces. I love giving function and purpose to the inside of a cupboard door or an empty wall and am constantly trying to think outside the box when it comes to storage and organization.  I can guarantee there are lots of hidden storage spaces in your home, it's just a matter of finding them.

CABINETS & CLOSETS

I know what you're thinking: "Duh!" It's true, cabinets and closets are obvious places for storage, but even these ready-made storage spaces often have lots of wasted space. Take the cabinet under your kitchen or bathroom sink, for example. Because of the plumbing in the cabinet, there are usually not any shelves in the cupboard and instead it is just vast open space. The use of stacking storage drawers can literally triple the amount of storage inside these cabinets.


Now think about the closets in your home. Many closets have a recessed area on the right or left side (or both), which can be a great place to hang a few baskets to store various items. In our entryway coat closet, I repurposed plastic file bins into wall baskets that hold our paper and reusable grocery bags.


FLOATING SHELVES

Since floating shelves hang directly on the wall, they take up zero floor space.  With these kinds of shelves, wherever you have a wall, you can have storage.

I love this idea of installing a shelf above the door in a small bathroom as a place to store extra towels, toilet paper and soap.


Or how about above the toilet?


If you have seen pictures of my family room, you know that decorating the wall around a flat screen TV can be awkward:


A few floating shelves strategically placed can not only get rid of the awkward floating-TV-island effect, they also serve as a spot to display picture frames or hold decorative boxes for DVDs, remote controls or other small items.


DOORS

It is hard to find a closet or cabinet door in my house that doesn't have something hidden on the backside.

Wall-mounted cabinet racks can be used for storing all sorts of things: lotions, cleaning supplies, pot and pan lids, saran wrap -- the list goes on!

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Hooks also work well on the backside of doors. I used Command hooks in our pantry to store our aprons and in our hall closet to keep our backpacks. In our walk in closet, I have an over-the-door coat rack that I use to hang all my scarves and belts.


Additionally, the backside of cabinet doors in my kitchen were used to create my correspondence cupboard and my meal planning station.


RACKS

When square footage is limited, getting items up and off the floor is essential in adding storage without cluttering up a space. Nowadays, you can find hooks and racks that can hold just about anything, anywhere. In the garage, these types of ceiling mounted racks can be used to store seasonal and holiday items that only need to be accessed occasionally, as well as hanging storage for bicycles.


We use racks in our garage to keep our gardening and cleaning tools organized and off the floor.  


Bulky sports equipment can be difficult to store and can take up a lot space. Check out how Better Homes and Gardens used specialty racks to contain all kinds of equipment: tennis rackets, baseballs, gold bags, balls, even fishing rods!



Honestly, there are so many ways to add storage throughout your home and this post barely scratches the surface. Where have you found unlikely storage?