Thursday, January 23, 2014

39 My "Go To" Organizing Supplies

Whenever I am trying to come up with organizing and storage solutions around our home, I naturally default to list of my all time favorite supplies.  There are definitely quite a few items that have just worked for us so well, that they re-appear time after time. 

When determining solutions for organizing, the main question I ask myself is, "Will I be able to use the item somewhere else should our needs change?"  Storage is an investment, therefore, I try and use items that will be able to serve us for the long haul.  Organizing needs change as life does, but I don't wish to go out and purchase new items every time that happens.  Many of the options I am showing you today, are items I selected because they can function for a variety of purposes.  Versatility is key for me.

Shall we get started?

LABEL MAKER:

What kind of organizing obsessed gal would I be if I didn't start out with my label maker?  I purchased this one, which I chatted all about here, but I just love this little thing to pieces.  Labeling is a big part of organizing by assigning belongings to a dedicated home and to ensure everyone is on the same page in getting those things back to their respective spots.  The label maker is the simple and easy way of labeling, as it prints out labels quickly on tape that sticks to anything!  It is far easier than getting crafty or printing from the computer, both of which I also love, but some days just call for easy peasy organizing.  My top areas of use are for file folders, cord labels and even travel toiletry bottles


BINDERS:


Although I may need to break down and invest in a larger filing cabinet eventually, up to this point, majority of my daily papers are filed away within discbound notebooks and binders.  I love that they are simple to maintain, can be stored without taking up a lot of space and are always easy to access.  I just personally prefer a binder over digging through file folders, and it also allows us to keep our household details and budget in convenient areas of our home.  I also use them for my daily planning and blog planning.


LABEL HOLDERS:


With all of the labeling I do, I can't help but want to pop most of them into decorative label holders.  This protects the label and also finishes off the look of any organizing project.  They come in a variety of shapes of sizes, and you have seen them used all over our home.  Catch a full recap within this post here.


MULTI-PURPOSE BINS:


I found these bins at The Container Store a few years ago, and now they are my absolutely favorite bin to use when organizing.  Although they were initially created for files and papers, I find that they are perfect for that and so much more.  They are inexpensive, they come in a few different sizes, they are light weight, easy to label, easy to clean and they can be used to store just about anything!  I personally have used them for years inside of my freezer, and also to corral cleaning supplies under our bathroom sinks.


BOOKCASES:



Bookcases win the most versatile furniture award.  I especially love making all of the different options from IKEA work hard for us around our home.  Pieced together, the BILLY bookcases work great for holding our games, movies and components in our living room.  Deeper options, like the BESTA, are combined to create our school cubby system.  In my office, the oh-so-vesatile EXPEDIT makes an appearance holding my daily supplies and equipment.  When flipped on their sides, the Expedit created a bench for our kid's playroom toy storage.  In our dressing room, a bookcase was the perfect solution for getting all of our exercise equipment off of the floor.  I have also seen these awesome pieces used as narrow shoe storage near a front door or at the end of an island in the kitche for cookbooks and small appliances.  There isn't much a bookcase can't do!


CLEAR CONTAINERS:


When it comes to organizing our dry foods, I have been a fan of using clear storage for years.  It allows us to quickly see what is left in our stock, and keeps our foods fresher for longer.  The containers I personally use are these, and they are lightweight and have held up great through multiple washings and a few years of use.  I also love how nicely they stack in our pantry, and make use of the vertical space.  These containers are also used under our sink to store dishwashing pods, and in our lunch cabinet as well. 


DRAWER ORGANIZERS:



I am the kind of gal who will just toss things in a drawer and close it without looking back.  This can lead to drawers full of nonsense and create unnecessary rummaging and confusion down the line.  I have found that the best solution for me, is to give my necessities a specific place within a drawer divider.  That way I really have to think about what I am buying for a specific drawer, if I have room to store that item, and what I am putting back where.  It really has reduced my stash and dash problem, and overall has kept the majority of the drawers around our home pretty organized.  My favorite dividers are the clear acrylic stackable options, since I love to line drawers or create labels that show through.  These are also great for areas that require more cleaning and sanitation such as makeup and kitchen utensil drawers.  For other drawers, I haven't looked back since DIY'ing my own organizers out of cereal boxes.  Those were still one of my favorite projects to this day.


DECORATIVE OFFICE BOXES:


Another type of storage that appears numerous times around our home, are decorative office boxes.  My absolutely favorites are the KASSETT boxes from IKEA and these gift boxes from Paper Source.  I use the boxes to organize our cords, organize craft supplies in my studio and my son's room and to corral our small family games and decks of cards in our living room.  They also hold greeting cards, photos and so much more! 


DRAWER UNITS:


In my quest to maximize spaces we are given, whether in our pantry, linen closet, coat closet or off-the-shelf armoire, sometimes that means adding in secondary storage.  Custom closets can cost a small fortune, so I like to add in drawer storage through a combination of bookshelves and bins, or by adding in a drawer unit.  I have personally purchased two types, the expensive and incredibly amazing Elfa system for my armoire closet, and the less expensive ALGOT for our under the stair storage.  I have loved both for different reasons, but mainly have become obsessed with them for the amount of storage I have gained in areas that once were less than functional.


MASON JARS:


I am sure this one needs little explanation, as mason jars have been used as versatile storage since the beginning of time.  However, they are used because they work!  I always have a stash on hand and use them for everything from vases to paint storage to holding sprinkles in my baking drawer.  They also make amazing craft storage and holders for cotton supplies in the bathroom.


HOOKS:



Another obvious and versatile storage solution is hooks.  I typically prefer hooks in bathrooms over towel bars, because they don't require you to take the step of folding the towel nice and neat before hanging it.  They are perfect in the entry for coats and totes and they even work great in our boy's shared bedroom for setting out clothing.  I also love using them with a rail to hang craft supplies, or on the back of cabinets for small kitchen items.


BASKETS!


I am seriously gaga over milk crate shaped baskets.  I lovity love 'em!  I use them to act as drawers and to conceal clutter in my work area and at the top of the stairs for the items we take up and down.  They can hold piles of magazines in the office, toys in the living room or blankets at the end of a couch.  They look great, are timeless and fit almost any area that requires some storage.  If I am going to have a few baskets laying around to corral random clutter, you can bet these are the ones I go to {I typically find great options at Target, and the bonus is that many fit the Expedit bookcase}.


UTENSIL CADDIES: 



I use these everywhere!  They are so great for organizing small groupings of items that are best used in a few different areas of the home.  I typically snag up these bins at Target during their picnic seasonal release and I have found them in a variety of shapes, colors and sizes.  My favorite ways to use these puppies are as caddies for art supplies, for cleaning items and for dog grooming gear.  


SHOE POCKETS:


This final one is one I haven't actually tried yet, which is surprising I know, but I have seen so many success stories that it was totally worth mentioning.  Shoe pocket organizers are inexpensive, maximize the space on the back of a door, and can be used to hold just about anything you wish.  I have seen them used for shoes, outdoor supplies like dog leashes, sunglasses, hats, mittens, sunscreen and bug spray, to hold kitchen gadgets and for organizing hair and clothing accessories in the closet.  My bloggy pal, Courtney, even uses them on the backs of her bathroom cabinets to hold bathroom supplies.  The ways they can be used truly are endless.


Sorry for the information overload, there are just so many great options that came to mind, I couldn't help but over share.  Now that I have spilled my top organizing tools and storage options, I must know yours!  What makes your organizing heart happy? 


Over the door organizer image found here.

39 comments:

  1. Love this post! I'm a long time lurker and first time poster. I'm obsessed with your blog! Anyway...I haven't been able to find those Target utensil caddies for years, ever since you first posted about them! Do they still sell those? And when is their "picnic seasonal release"? I'm dying to find them!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am guessing that one of Targets next collection of items will be their spring line, as they always seem to be a bit ahead of the game (for our area anyway). There are times they are sold where the kitchen Threshold items are released, and other times I find them in the seasonal outdoor area, with grilling tools and outdoor play items.

      They have had different options each year for the past couple of years, so fingers crossed they come back out again this year! They really are great for all sorts of organizing goodness!

      xo!

      Delete
    2. Such a bummer - I think their spring line is already here (I'm in So Cal). I'll keep looking!

      Delete
  2. Oh, I love those caddies too! I love every solution you have, but honestly sometimes I have a hard time deciding which solution is most functional vs. my favorite to use for aesthetic reasons. Thanks for rounding this up so neatly!

    ReplyDelete
  3. I want to get the utensil caddy at target! I hope they have them soon!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Brilliant as usual! Could you tell me where the gorgeous file folders in the image with the label maker are from? Thanks!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They were from Target earlier this year. :)

      xo!

      Delete
  5. hi Jenn! I love your blog and all your tips!! Thanks so much!! I feel like I've worked into a cave full of treasure!!!

    ReplyDelete
  6. Where are the hooks from? I love them!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. HI Annum! The hooks are from Home Depot: http://www.homedepot.com/p/Liberty-Acrylic-Facets-Decorative-Hook-in-Satin-Nickel-128734/202020992?MERCH=RV-_-RV_search_plp_rr-1-_-NA-_-202020992-_-N

      xo!

      Delete
  7. Looks great! Do you remember where you got the bins that are holding the produce?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. They are these from the container store: http://bit.ly/1hQsKDI

      xoxo!

      Delete
  8. We love the clear containers from Container store too. They are slowly helping me revamp my pantry!

    ReplyDelete
  9. I love following your blog! I got the same label maker as a gift, but I cannot find replacement tape anywhere... Any advice? I am no where near having my home as organized as yours but I've got to start somewhere!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I purchase this tape from Amazon: http://amzn.to/IjMJ0k. I find I only purchase one per year, it seems to last me quite awhile.

      xo!

      Delete
    2. Love this post! I just bought this label maker on online through Office Max for a steal...$25! Best price for clear tape is Amazon though at $12.95! Thanks for all the great info!!!

      Delete
  10. Ahhh I love this! Very helpful. I love that binder but didn't see where it was from.. Did I miss it?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hi Bethany!

      I typically find my binders at Target, Staples and See Jane Work. However, the one pictured is this one: http://www.russellandhazel.com/content/mini-pattern-binders

      xo!

      Delete
  11. Thanks for the review of the label maker. I had been wanting a label maker for a while, but after reading about several, I had no idea which one to get. I just bought the Epson based on your previous review (Amazon had it at a really good price one day last week!). I received it yesterday & can't wait to start using it! Love your blog & all the great ideas!

    ReplyDelete
  12. Hi Jen! I really can't tell you how much I love your blog! Oh I guess I just did... Haha. We don't have a Container Store here in Canada but I did visit one when vacationing in Las Vegas back in October. I find their prices fairly high. I find myself buying most of my supplies at the dollar store a) because it's far more affordable and b) they offer very comparable solutions. Have you found great finds at the dollar store?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I check the dollar store frequently as I only shop at the Container Store if I really am looking for something specific. The dollar store is completely hit or miss for me. But they always have small baskets and drawer organizers, that is something that seems to be pretty reliable.

      xo!

      Delete
  13. I am in an organizing spree right now! This list is incredibly helpful. I'm currently strategizing ways to utilize our Guest Room closet more efficently, right now it's piled high with junk.
    Thank you for always giving inspiration to push for orginization in the home!

    ReplyDelete
  14. LOVE this list -- and we DO use the shoe organizer on the door of our under-sized coat closet...it holds gloves/hats/headphones for working out. It has made a huge difference: http://www.lifeinyellow.com/2011/12/a-quick-bite-of-organization/

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Awesome! Thank you for sharing, it looks like it works like a charm!

      xo!

      Delete
  15. This is a great list! I love using all these items to organize as well. I wish I had a Container Store and Ikea closer to my home (both are about 2 hours away). I might have to check out your label maker you suggested. Does it do different fonts? Mine just has a fairly plain font and having that option for a script font or something fancier would be nice. :)

    ReplyDelete
  16. I hate reading your blog because it makes me lust over all these storage solutions so badly!!! Unfortunately here in Australia we don't have anywhere near the amount of choices you guys seem to have!

    Michaela // Where is my mind?

    ReplyDelete
  17. Great roundup, Jen! I totally agree on using versatile storage so they can be repurposed as your needs change. By the way, I use my hanging shoe rack as a first aid 'cabinet', with a pocket for each type of medication.

    ReplyDelete
  18. Thank you so much for all your ideas...completely life changing for this organizationally challenged person. I just organized our freezer. It is so nice to open it and not have everything falling out. I am in LOVE with the multi-use storage bins from the Container Store. Next on the list is the pantry.

    ReplyDelete
  19. Your go to list = my new shopping list hehe! I just wish we had target and container store in the UK. I am still trying to find somewhere with as many versatile items but with a decent price.

    ReplyDelete
  20. great list! I have 3 label makers already but LOVE that the epson has a ton of different fonts. I just found a great deal through officemax for $25! can't wait to re-label things in cute fonts :)

    ReplyDelete
  21. I love those Container Store bins. I use them for my scrapbooking supplies. They're great for holding 12x12 paper. The height of the bin makes it easy to flip through--unlike other paper holders i've tried.

    I'm definitely going to buy a few for cleaning supplies under my sink. Love that idea!

    ReplyDelete
  22. My favourites are definitely the mason jars and label makers!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Hi Jen, I was wondering if you have ever tried painting the Kassett boxes from Ikea?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have not, but I have seen it done. :) And I painted similar style magazine files here: http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2012/01/iheart-painted-magazine-files.html and it worked out great!

      xoxo!

      Delete
  24. I just found your site and I am in LOVE!! We are just settling in our "forever home" and I am so excited to begin putting the pieces together...But where do I start??? Im not an organizing junkie,,,but I do believe in "A place for Everyhing ...and Everything in its Place".. Just not sure how to start...any pointers??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you! Happy you found me! I just wrote a recent post on the subject of getting started, which you can find here: http://iheartorganizing.blogspot.com/2014/01/you-asked-where-do-i-begin.html

      xo!

      Delete

IHeart you taking a moment to comment! Although I absolutely appreciate, consider and read each and every comment, I will remove any comment that I believe to be inappropriate, malicious or spam like. This blog is my happy place, let's keep the drama at bay!

Don't see your comment? All comments are moderated and may take a moment to appear.

Thanks again my lovely friends! XO!

Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...