5 Good Ways To Use Baskets for Storage and Organization

5 Good Ways To Use Baskets for Storage and Organization

February 18, 2016

Baskets for Storage

    Using baskets for storage and organization is just so practical, but can be pretty attractive, too.  Last year, I saw a post from a lady who used an old crate to store her everyday cloth napkins and some silver in an old wooden box.  I thought that was very clever.

    As I recall, her style is more country.  Mine is really not.   Although I don’t think the old crate would be completely amiss in my home, I chose to look for a basket to achieve the same goal.  This black woven basket caught my eye at Kohl’s.  I even liked the fabric liner!  The black was perfect with the kitchen island and the other touches of black all over the kitchen and family room.

 

   Our kitchen is not overly big, but it is not small either.  Sometimes when food is being prepared, it still seems it is not big enough.  I really like the little basket with the napkins and the extra utensils in the mason jars.   We serve food on the island a lot, especially when we have the whole family here with company!

 

   Things can get pretty hectic.  It allows people to grab a napkin and a fork easily.  They don’t have to ask where the silverware drawer is.  With a stack of plates next to the basket, they can help themselves and make their way to the dining room table, the kitchen table, or retreat to the deck.

    This basket was filled with goodies and given to us by Dave’s mother.  Notice it has the black color woven into it.  It sits next to the stove on the counter.  Each week, fresh vegetables and fruits are loaded into it.  I love this!  If your vegetables and fruits are stored out of sight, don’t you forget you even have them?  This really is in my face every day, so that doesn’t happen.

 

   If you are going out the door to the garage, you have to go by this basket.  We try to keep apples and bananas in the basket for Will and the grandkids.  Will picks up an apple on his way out the door in the morning.  Aidan always finds the bananas. It’s a perfect place to encourage a good snack.

      This is my dressing area with sink and the vanity.  Although this chair was in this position for years, I never used it!  I am too short to see the mirror well.  Maybe I am not the normal person, but I stand to wash my face and put on makeup.  

 

   This space just seemed so wasted!  Dave cut a shelf to fit the space and we installed it.  That allows more storage on the shelf.  Two big woven baskets were found at TJMaxx, which both fit under the shelf perfectly.  Now extra towels and blankets are stored in them.

 

The chair is not missed at all.

 

    The basket tray on the sideboard is a perfect way to show off a little display of spring items.    The daffodils were from the garden last year.  There are a few napkins, which I made from a colorful spring printed fabric.  The pitcher was a find from North Carolina several years ago.  The little dishes are from an Asian collection I have.   The chocolate bunny is actually ceramic.  These basket trays can be functional and it is a great way to set off a little vignette like this.

    Notice the picnic basket under the sideboard?  That was a purchase from 1971. Sometimes I live in a dream world.  At the time, I had plans to take a picnic basket lunch to a boyfriend.  My plan was to use the pony and cart we had.  It did not come off exactly as planned in any way!

 

  I still love the basket and believe it or not, it stores some of the baking pans and molds that don’t fit so well in the cabinets.  It adds a little touch of red to mimic the colors in my painting.  The painting is oil on canvas, which I painted many years ago, and, of course, one of my favorite subjects, flowers.

 

   Hopefully, this has given you some inspiration for utilizing baskets for storage and organization.

 

 

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6 Little Ways You Can Easily ‘Organize Your Home’

January 5, 2016

Organize!

   On my eternal quest to better organize my home, I did come up with six little ways you can easily ‘organize your home’  that have been very successful here.

 Number 1 is creating drawer organizers for the kitchen utensils. Every time I open the kitchen drawers I appreciate the custom wooden dividers.

    Those pre-made plastic dividers never seemed to work well, and they slid all over the drawer bottom.   It seems to me that there is more room now.  Details for the custom made drawer dividers ◄here.

   Number 2 is the addition of a shelf in the cabinets.  No more tall stacks of dishes.  I can’t believe I did not think of this many years ago!  Being a petite person, this definitely makes it easier to retrieve dishes!  Dishes that are not used as often are stored on the top shelves.  (Alex laughs when she sees me open the lower cabinet and step on it to reach something on the top shelf.  She is not ‘height impaired’ and said how ‘cute’ that was as she was laughing!)  

 

 Number 3 is taming the plastic bags from the grocery.  Everyone knows that wadded up paper or plastic takes up more room than when those same items are flat or neatly folded.   Those grocery bags are no exception.  Although my family still laughs at my folding of these bags, it keeps them so neat and tidy, I love it.  

   The first time I folded all the wrinkled up bags that were stuffed in this organizer, the contents took up half the space.  This one is a winner.  For folding instructions, click here ►Bag folding.

 

 

  Number 4 is adding the rod above the washer and dryer and color coordinating hangers for each bedroom.  This has really been helpful!  A hanger of a particular color has been assigned to each person or bedroom.  When I do Dave’s   laundry, I use the black hangers.  If there aren’t any on the rod over the washer, I know to look in our closet.  It made it easy to know where the empty hangers were when all of the kids were living here. 

   Number 5 is the addition of the basket on the tank of the toilet.  It is so much easier to make sure there are spare rolls of toilet paper.  Hidden away in the cabinet, I never noticed when there was not another roll available.   It is now easy to see when one needs to be replaced, long before it is actually needed.  Spare towels, tissues and bars of soap are also in these baskets.

 

   Number 6 is this little crate filled with a couple of coffee cups, little cocktail napkins and two sizes of glasses.  The little crate was found at the fabric store marked down to five bucks.  When I picked it up I wasn’t sure what to do with it. A centerpiece was a consideration, but it just seemed like a steal.   This is a little more rustic than an item I would typically choose, but there was just something about it.

    In the end, it sits beside the coffee pot and under the cabinets where the cups and glasses are stored.  Sometimes the family uses these, but I also noticed guests picking them up and helping themselves.   Amidst the chaos that often transpires when we have company, someone might be overlooked when the drinks are passed around. This little crate has actually come in handy more than once.

 Click here to pin this post*  

             Hopefully, one or more of these 6 Little Ways You Can Easily ‘Organize Your Home’ will be useful in your own home.

   

 

 

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Taming Your Plastic Bags!

April 6, 2015

    A couple of years ago when I first found Pinterest, I found a pin on how to fold your grocery bags.  Tame your plastic bag mess?  Brilliant! 

    We recycle our grocery bags by using them as our trash can liners.  They fit perfectly in our kitchen and bathroom trash cans.  I had already bought a bag holder, which is attached to the door under the kitchen sink. 

   We all know that wadded up paper or plastic takes up more space than flattened paper or plastic.  The bag holder, which was overflowing, quickly became neat and surprisingly, there was so much more space! 

   The pin I originally found showed folding the bag into fourths, but that created an even more compact package.  I found that folding my grocery bags into thirds created the perfect size for my bag holder.  Department store bags are sometimes larger and I might need to fold those into fourths. 

   No, my family does not see the need for folding the bags and often teases me about it, but I love the order.

 

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Organize! Assign Different Colors to Each Bedroom!

February 18, 2015

    Just imagine for a moment!   You’re in the laundry room.   The dryer is full of clothes which need to be hung and there are no hangers!  Where are they?  Do you know which room all those empty hangers are dangling in at this moment?

    Don’t you hate going from bedroom to bedroom looking for hangers?  Where are all the hangers?  Never knowing who had them and chasing them down drove me nuts, so I hit upon an idea to track those bad boys.  I bought hangers in different colors and assigned each color to a person or bedroom.

    To make it even easier, I bought laundry baskets.  They each also had a laundry basket in a matching color.  No need to go from closet to closet checking to see whose empty laundry basket I have!

    That may sound rather simplistic, however, sometimes the best things are.  If I had to retrieve them, I knew where to go.  If the kids were home,  “Will, I need your hangers!” 

  “Jon-Michael bring your hangers down.”    

   When the kids were younger, you can’t imagine what a time saver this was!  

    A rod was added above the washer and dryer, where the empty hangers are placed for easy access when the clothes come out of the dryer.   I bought a wooden closet dowel and two wooden closet pole sockets at Lowe’s.  They are pretty cheap.

    It was easy to mark where I wanted the pole positioned on each of the cabinets.  Then a small hole was drilled through the side of the cabinet.  Each socket was held in place, and from the inside, a screw was screwed into the side of each cabinet, securing the socket.

    By checking the colored hangers on that rod, I know where the hangers are because there is a different color assigned to each room!  Hanger dilemma solved.  Just assign a different color to each room!

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Bathroom Organization

January 2, 2015

 
    Searching for a place to use a long narrow basket, which I had been given, I hit upon an idea.   It occurred to me that a better way of storing bathroom necessities was a great idea.  How many times have you realized there was no paper, or washcloth, or towel handy?

   The basket fit perfectly on the back of the toilet!  (Yes, I did have to purchase two more for the other bathrooms…)  Inside, I placed rolled washcloths, an extra towel, tissue paper, some sample toiletries and extra toilet paper.

   Our linen closet is in the hall on the catwalk,  so this actually works quite well for us and especially for guests in our home.  Everything is very visible, which is another plus, because I can easily see when I need to add another roll, a towel, or washcloth to the basket.  It is not so easy to see if they are hidden in a closet or cabinet.

    The powder room on the first floor seems to get a lot of traffic and the toilet paper was sometimes overlooked when it was stored underneath the cabinet.  This has worked out so well.  I easily notice if the basket is empty and a new roll needs to be placed in the basket.  Girls, you won’t believe it, but some of the male members of the family have even begun to restock the basket!  How crazy is that?

  Last year I wrote a post on the towel display in Beaufort, SC.  You can see that I did carry through with that.  Although my son does knock it off the towel bar sometimes, I think it looks just perfect. 

    Yes, I think this is such an easy way to organize and so useful!  Bathroom organization can be simple and pleasing to the eye!
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