Monday, January 10, 2011

Organizing: Putting Away In Plain Sight

So I love love love fabric bins. Like with a passion. My amazon wish list is full of them. I would have been satisfied if all I got for Christmas had been bins.

Winsome Capri Set of 6 Foldable Fabric Baskets, Beige

That being said, I refuse to buy them at full price. They can be like $10 or $12 for one bin! Ridiculous! So I always check out the clearance shelf at Target or Michaels, because sometimes you can get ugly ones for half off. I have a few mis-matched ones storing some yarn at the moment, but in my heart I really want the good ones. But until I win the lottery, I have to fake it.

Enter the cardboard box. After Christmas, my birthday, a few home-improvement purchases from Amazon, and the discovery of PetFoodDirect (a month of dog food delivered to my door, and automatic redelivery every month, so little Gipper will never again run out of supper!), I found myself with several medium-sized cardboard boxes taking up space in my living room. While they did come in handy while painting -- 1) holding all the painting stuff like tape, drop clothes, Spackle, etc., and 2) storing stuff from the shelves while said shelves were being painted -- the time has come, thank Jebus, to put that stuff back on the shelves. However, in an attempt to 1) make it look like grown-ups, and not college kids, live in our apartment, and 2) prepare of baby-proofing, I want to "store" as much as possible, i.e. have it out and available, but contained and not piled somewhere. Things like stationary, art supplies, and extra printer paper need to be somewhere, but these things can be precarious when stacked on a shelf (and all our shelves are in reach of toddler hands). Things like computer System Discs need to be stored somewhere, but our closet space inventory is better used for Christmas decorations.

So . . . Enter the Craftiness!

1) Start with your Box of Crap. In this case, computer games and system discs.

How to . . .

2) Gather materials:
  • Non-Denominational wrapping paper (i.e. non-Christmas/Birthday/Holiday, preferably a color or pattern that matches the room)
  • Tape
  • Scissors
How to . . .

  • Puppies/Kitties/Babies who will get in the way (optional)
How to . . .

3) Wrap the box as you would a present, except also wrap the flaps at the top. 

How to . . .  How to . . .

4) Print a label and tape it to the edge that will face out.

5) Place on shelf and admire.

How to . . .

6) Congratulate self on not spending $12 on a fabric bin, even though you still really want one.

Notes: cheap wrapping paper will tear, so this is not a permanent storage solution, but more of a "until I find something better" plan. Spend the $12 on good paper and cover 10 boxes.

Next week . . . the Cereal Box/Magazine File: