Home is where you hang your hat. – Proverb
(That is, if you can find your hat and if there’s room for it on the hat rack.)
You’re walking through your local home goods store and you see the most attractive fabric storage totes that would be just perfect for finally organizing your bulging linen closet and you just have to buy them. When you go to set them up the next day, you realize that not only are they too small to hold the contents of your closet but they are also too tall to fit on your shelves!
It can be so frustrating to spend time picking out a lovely basket or interesting storage piece only to bring it home and find that it is barely big enough to store half of what you had in mind. It could be baskets to organize your pantry or plastic bins for sports equipment in the garage. Whatever the intent, there are a few things worth considering prior to running out to buy organizing supplies.
Size: It’s hard to choose the right sized storage piece(s) when you don’t know how much you have to store! Before picking out the container
- Figure out what amount you will be containing by gathering all related items together, discarding anything that is broken, expired or simply unwanted. Make sure that what is left fits into the area that it will be stored.
- Measure the space so that you can select a container that will fit – whether it’s a drawer, cabinet or simply an open area, write down the measurements or store a note or text in your cell phone. This way you will have them handy when that “perfect” product or sale catches your eye!
Function: The type of items and frequency of their usage should be taken into account when deciding what type of container to choose
- Items, such as outdoor toys and sports equipment that will be frequently used are best kept in open containers that make for quick access and encourage easy clean-up.
- Colored bins with lids may be best for seasonal storage, while clear plastic or wire baskets might be better for back-up supplies that you don’t want to forget you’ve purchased.
- Items like nail polish that you may want to use in the den watching TV one time and at the kitchen table another, might be best kept in a handled tote.
- Fabric baskets can help manage a linen closet while adding charm.
Placement: Decide whether or not your container will be in public view
- If you are looking for a storage solution that will help you organize items under a sink or in desk drawers, metal or plastic may be a perfectly acceptable solution.
- On the other hand, do you have a lot of office supplies in your den that you need to keep handy? A plastic rolling cart might fit the need but may not be something you really want on display. Consider a small nightstand or cabinet that can offer storage while still complementing your décor.
Cost: Your need for function or fashion will have some affect on the amount you will spend on storage.
- Picking up some drawer inserts in the dollar section of your office-supply store is an appropriate and affordable solution
- On the other hand, choosing a filing cabinet that is well rated and designed may cost more now, but will save you money in the long run – both monetarily and in your frustration.
Now that you have considered size, function, placement and cost, you can stroll confidently among aisles of home organizing tools, sizing up all the latest, greatest products with an eye for just the right one that fits your need.