Oh how I love to containerize. It’s my most favorite step of the organizing PROCESS! There is just something so rewarding about making more fit into a space by using a few carefully selected containers. I could do it for hours. Okay I have done it for hours and it never gets old to me :) There are just so many possibilities and configurations and the best part is no one way is right or wrong. If I’m able to find what I need right when I need it, if I’m able to maximize the space available to me, if everything has a home and I stick to what I can afford then I am on the right track.
One of the most important things about containers and other storage solutions is this:
Containers establish boundaries and limits.
So often people don’t pay attention to the space they really have available to them. They figure that if their space is full they must then just need more space. When rather what we should be thinking and what would be painfully clear if we had established limits and boundaries is that we just need less stuff.
Let’s take my cookbooks for instance. I have a designated space for them on one shelf in one of my bookcases. That is the space I have set aside for them based on the space I have available in my home. I have established that to be the boundary and limit to my cookbooks. When that gets full I don’t then start piling the books up on the floor as I get more. I’ve exceeded my limit and therefore need to reign in my over consumption by purging out the excess or making some tough choices about what else I could part with in order to make room for them. And because all of that takes work it definitely makes me think twice about what I buy in the first place.
Those in place boundaries and limits keep me in check.
They allow me to divide a space and contain “like with like”, consolidating items to fit more into my space.
Containers do NOT need to cost much money. They certainly can, but they don’t need to. You can find containers for ANY budget. My favorite place to shop for containers and baskets is the dollar store. Since I mostly use these bins in drawers, cupboards and closets they don’t necessarily need to look pretty they just need to be functional. In fact cardboard boxes such as tea boxes and tissue boxes work amazingly well in drawers just by cutting the tops off. If I didn’t use these baskets in my drawers everything would be just thrown into one big jumbled mess and I’d never be able to find anything.
Some of my favorite baskets that I use regularly:
Each of them were a $1.00 or less!
There are baskets and bins and containers for any space…big or small. Keep your eyes open at the thrift stores as well because you can find all sorts of things that can be re-purposed to use as clever storage solutions for next to nothing.
Containers divide and conquer.
Once you have sorted your stuff into piles and purged anything you no longer love or is useful than it’s time to think about how you want to containerize the stuff remaining in your “keep” pile. Be creative. Look for unused nooks and crannys that could double as storage. For instance, it drives me crazy that there is so much wasted space above the top shelf in a closet. In our old house I had my husband add an additional shelf at the top of each of the closets, then with the use of some baskets I had storage for items I didn’t necessarily need daily access to. So often people think they don’t have enough room but with some realistic purging and a little creativity you will be surprised at the storage you can find.
How are you all doing on your challenge? What are you learning, finding most challenging, discouraged by, purging, etc.. Feel free to discuss, give an update and/or ask questions in the comments. Would love to hear how it’s going!
Participating in this month’s challenge means you’ll be eligible to win many amazing prizes including: