Org Challenge – Week Two: Containerizing

Container Goodness!

Oh how I love to containerize. Out of all the organizing steps this is by far my favorite! There is just something so rewarding about making more fit into a space by using a few carefully selected containers. To me it is similar to doing a puzzle trying to fit all the pieces together.

Containers do NOT need to cost much money, they can, but they don’t need to. You can find containers out there for ANY budget…believe me. My budget is on the low side (otherwise I would surely have this in my home by now) so my favorite place to shop for containers and baskets is the dollar store and the grocery store. Every once and awhile the grocery store will have dollar bins loaded with these types of plastic containers and baskets. When this happens, I stock up! Many of you will remember this picture….yes I have a container for my containers! I don’t mind the cheap plastic containers because I mostly use them in drawers, cupboards and closets so they don’t necessarily need to look nice they just need to be functional. Here is a picture of the various sizes of baskets I like to use regularly:

All of them were a $1.00 or less!

There is a size here for any space I have…big or small. For spaces that are more visible and therefore part of my decor I will spend a little more money and buy something like wicker for instance. Canadian Tire usually has sets of three that go on sale quite often for about $9.99. Right now I am using a wicker basket to hold my most frequently listened to CD’s, I have one by the front door as my kids “catchall basket” and one in my office for my “papers to be filed” basket.

You can read an old post of mine here where I talked about my love of containers and how to know which ones to buy.

So what’s the big deal about containers?

Containers establish boundaries and limits.

They allow you to divide a space and contain “like with like” and consolidate beautifully enabling you to fit more into your space. Take my picture below. I have used four baskets to divide my pull out drawer. I have one for bottles, one for sippy cups, one for small bowls and one for even smaller type containers. I wouldn’t say that each basket is as tidy as I would like it but I have little helpers so as long as they are putting the stuff away into the right basket I’m happy.

If I didn’t use the baskets everything would be just thrown into one big jumbled mess and I’d never be able to find anything.

By now in the challenge you will hopefully have gone through your area and sorted your stuff into piles. You can now assess your “keep” pile and your available space and see what you may need in order to maximize your space. 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 too. 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.

Take a look at your space with fresh eyes and let me know what you discover!

Filed under: Containerizing, Organizational Challenge


23 Responses to Org Challenge – Week Two: Containerizing

  1. 1
    Katrina says

    I’m approaching my “project” slightly differently (working top to bottom), but I will tell you that I spent time this week “containerizing” the top portion of the computer armoire. It looks awesome – even hubby commented on it. Containerizing rocks.

    I love how you used containers in that drawer too. And how you said that containers establish boundaries – that’s a very helpful way for me to think about it.

    Thanks for all your encouragement and tips! I’m really enjoying this challenge.

  2. 2
    Tiany says

    I have sorted out the closet and we have 4 HUGE piles! Tomorrow we go through the piles then we are almost done! (With that closet) Your idea for using the baskets is a great one. I have decided to get some baskets to better organize the closet I am working on. Thanks for the tip!

  3. 3
    Andrea says

    I too love containers. I’ll have to keep an eye out for cdn tire sales. thanks for the tip. we are also putting an extra shelf in each closet to use the space.

  4. 4
    Susanne says

    I’m off to the dollar store to find some of these. I know these will really fit the bill for both my spaces that I’m organizing.

  5. 5
    Too Blessed to be Stressed says

    I found you from a link somewhere – you would HATE my house – not only is it a construction zone – if you opened my cabinets WATCH OUT as everything hits ya. We open quickly around here!! That’s really sad did I just type that? Well when the construction is over and my bedroom is not in the family room – I’m going to take some tips and get this place organized =)

    Help meet to James for 9 Years
    Home School Mommy to 3
    Hoping to adopt #4

  6. 6
    Anonymous says

    Oooh, I love containerizing 😀 Now I just need containers! LOL. So far my project is all over my downstairs family room, with stuff in piles that are kind of organized. Next we need to go through all the junk and figure out what’s stay and go. We did move a bunch of boxes up to the attic tonight.

  7. 7
    Proverbs31 says

    I love containers! I just last week discovered The Dollar Tree. I had heard of it’s greatness but I had never been there before. Let me tell you…. I was in CONTAINER HEAVEN. I turned away and walked down another isle as quickly as I could knowing full well that to shop for containers without a specific list is a dangerous thing for me to do. ESPECIALLY when they are only a dollar! I’ll have to wait to go back until I have specific needs and sizes to shop for. 🙂

  8. 8
    Becky says

    I like to stand at the “container” aisle at Dollar Tree and look at all the new ones that have come in. They are getting so classy! And, they come in so many pretty colors.

    I have all sizes of containers on the shelves over the washer/dryer. I use them for batteries, extension cords, glue/tape, lightbulbs, markers, and candles. I use them in my cosmetic cabinet for everything!

  9. 9
    Sissy B. says

    I’m not sure how I ended up on your site but it is wonderful to meet another container junkie…yes, in my garage, I too admit that I have a container for my containers ;)Hope you don’t mind if I link you on my side bar…your blog is alot of fun for an “organized junkie” as myself!!

  10. 10
    Beck says

    I’m making a note to watch for sales on nice baskets at Canadian Tire. And God bless the $ store!

  11. 11
    Jaime says

    I just containerized alot of my kitchen at the dear old Dollar Tree this week. I have to get back and get a few more, but the ones I took a chance on fit perfectly! I think part of my issue that I just plain have too much food in my kitchen! We’re all about storing a year’s supply, but I need to get cans and put some of it down in the basement so it’s not taking up space in my pantry.

  12. 12
    Anonymous says

    Lol I’m basket mad too, if I see baskets (especially wicker ones) in the shop I itch to buy them so I can organise something into them, it’s an addiction :o)

    I love the way you’ve used the baskets as dividers.

  13. 13
    Mommy Dearest says

    I contacted a professional organizer today about speaking to our homeschool group in January. I heard her a couple of years ago and she was great. She mentioned using those plastic food storage containers for organizing, since most of us have too many of them anyway.

  14. 14
    Domestic Goddess says

    I am in love with containers too. I even put them as one of my Thankful Thursday Thirteen thingies.

  15. 15
    Rachel Anne says

    Just the inspiration I needed to create boundaries for my loose things! Wish I had a Canadian Tire in Texas! The Dollar Store will have to do!

  16. 16
    Anonymous says

    Your tupperward looks like mine without containers…Miller loves to pull them ALL out onto the floor and play in them…I however let him so I can get dinner cooked.

  17. 17
    Anonymous says

    I’m such a container person too! My container of choice is baskets…just can’t get enough.

  18. 18
    Erna says

    I’m enjoying perusing your site using your categories. How wonderful! I too LOVE containers! I was thinking of doing an entry on my blog about my containers. I have quite a few around here . . . don’t know how many though. 🙂 A great post!

  19. 19
    Photo Buffet says

    What a refreshing blog! Clutter is an ongoing problem, and like cobwebs, it will return if you don’t get a handle on it. I’m working on mine–lots of trips to Goodwill–but have a long way to go. (Being sentimental is part of the problem.)

    Thanks for such a well-organized site! I’m looking forward to exploring your tips.

  20. 20
    Heather says

    I need to go to the 99 cents store badly to check out the baskets, I had no idea!

  21. 21
    Donna Ruark says

    Yes, I’m finding that containers limit

    How Much of something I want.

    When I moved my cookie cutters from a Paper shoe box to a Plastic shoe box (Labeled it).

    Wouldn’t fit – – so I desided which to give away or sell.

    Simplfy life, Deciding how much is enough. I love seeing the pictures. They really help.

    I also love my label maker.

  22. 22
    Lita says

    I’m desperate to become more organized. I downsized from a big house and a husband to a much smaller house without the husband, and I’m still struggling to organize and declutter. My girls are awesome at this and they sure didn’t learn it from their mama. I am appreciating all that I’m reading and the visuals really help. That drawer up above looks just like the drawers at my daughters house. I think the neat gene skipped my generation! Is there any hope for me?
    Buried in Washington State

    • 22.1
      Laura Wittmann says

      There’s always hope Lita, never give up!!


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