Some people really struggle with keeping their homes clean and tidy. I'm one of them! It seems like no matter how often I clean my house, I still end up with cluttered cupboards, drawers, and...OK, everything else, too.
I think a big part of the challenge of keeping the home tidy has to do with the way we store things. Too often, we find ourselves exhausting whatever storage is in our home and looking for the next clever tool that will solve all of our problems. Unfortunately, such a tool does not exist. But that doesn't mean we can't store things in a more efficient manner!
Rather than dumping everything into one giant drawer or cupboard, there's usually at least one clever trick that will make your life tidier. Here are some of the best storage "hacks" I found on the Internet. Best of all, none of them require spending hundreds of dollars at The Container Store!
1. Cut holes in a piece of plywood to make a Ziploc bag hanger.
2. Turn a wheeled AV cart into a wheeled kitchen container.The problem with kitchen storage is that you only need some utensils when you're cooking, and every other time, they get in the way. But if you can easily push your cooking stuff off to a side, or even into a closet? You will soon be known as The Kitchen God.
3. Pop those long whisks and spoons into a pitcher!
4. Take advantage of the space between the rafters.
5. Use a bike to hang a bike.
6. Glue a slinky onto a lazy susan to store Tupperware lids.
via: TwitterWithout question, the worst thing about being in a kitchen is the overflowing cabinet with loose Tupperware lids. Tell me you wouldn't trade one slinky to solve that problem. Tell me you wouldn't trade a thousand slinkies to solve that problem.
7. This next one involves cutting up a cereal box.
via: TwitterSlice open that old box of Frosted Mini Wheats, and cut the front and back sides in half. Then, fold your one-time cereal box into a ramp.
Put a couple of those ramps in a drawer...
via: TwitterYou'll need about three of these ramps to take advantage of all the space in the drawer. Trust us, though, it'll be worth it.
... and baby, you've got yourself a spice rack!
via: TwitterNow you can fill that drawer with tons and tons of spices, all angled up at a pleasing angle for you to look at. Isn't that so much better than letting them all roll around in a drawer?
8. Running out of shelf space in your pantry?
via: TwitterWe've got a hack for that. First, pull the pin out of the front of the shelf and move it down a notch or two.
Then stick a tension rod in front of it.
via: TwitterNow all your cans can pleasingly roll to the front of your newly-angled shelf. You're welcome.
9. Do you have trapper keepers as much as we do?
via: TwitterOkay, this hack isn't really about destroying trapper keepers, but if you spent as much time fumbling with their inadequate three-rings in high school as I did, this might feel cathartic.
Anyhow, rip out that ring plate and adhere it to your pantry door.
via: TwitterMaybe you want to screw it in, or maybe you want to use those adhesive strips. Whatever you do, make sure it's fastened to that closet door nice and tight.
Then hang your commonly used items from the rings!
via: TwitterHow easy is it to grab your measuring cups and whisk when they're hanging at eye level whenever you reach in to grab your wheat flour and sugar? Now, just hope those G-D rings cooperate...
10. Here's another pantry hack.
via: TwitterIt involves a tension rod and a bunch of clips to slide onto it. We're talking, I don't know, eight or nine clips? Make sure you're stocked up on clips.
Put that tension rod in the pantry.
via: TwitterOnce you've got enough clips properly attached, pop your tension rod inside any cabinet space you want to de-clutter. (It'll probably be the shelf where you keep all the snacks.)
Now you can hang those chips in the air.
via: TwitterAny lighter snack (that won't pull down the tension rod) can now be clipped and dangled in the air. That leaves all that cabinet floor space for, well, more snacks.
11. Are you dropping tinfoil-covered bowls into other tinfoil-covered bowls?
via: TwitterListen, your fridge isn't enormous — sometimes you've got to stack bowls on top of bowls. Unfortunately, that tinfoil isn't always super sturdy.
Well, we'll tell you how to fix it.
via: TwitterFirst step? Re-tinfoil that bowl. (This doesn't have a ton to do with the hack, but you don't want the food in the bottom bowl going bad.)
Next, add chopsticks.
via: TwitterThat's right, chopsticks. Grab any you have sitting around from last week's takeout order and place them across the tinfoiled bowl.
Now you have some sturdy protection for the food in your bottom bowl.
via: TwitterRest that first bowl on the second to your heart's content — that bad boy isn't ripping through chopsticks like it did tinfoil. And now you have a ton of fridge space for more Chinese food takeout.
12. Maybe you have a "plastic bag" cabinet.
via: TwitterI know that whenever I'm unloading groceries, I just take the plastic bags and shove them in with the other plastic bags, wasting a ton of cabinet space on plastic bags I may never again use. Well, now I know how to fix that.
Use a tissue box for plastic bag storage.
via: TwitterIf you empty out a tissue box (not hard to do these days, what with all the crying), start popping your plastic bags inside. You can even make a loop when you put the bags inside and thread the next bag inside so that pulling up one automatically pulls up the next bag.
13. Freezers full of big frozen bags of stuff?
via: TwitterMan, just think about how much space that bag of pea soup is going to take up in your freezer. But it's not like you're going to not freeze your pea soup, right? What are you supposed to do when you inevitably get a sudden craving for pea soup?
It's time to get out your rolling pin.
via: TwitterStep one of this freezer space-saving hack is rolling your plastic bag nice and flat.
Then, grab yourself a magazine holder.
via: TwitterYou can find these for about .79 cents at home and office stores, and there is maybe nothing more useful when you try to maximize your storage space. Buy magazine holders, and buy them often.
And slide those flat bags of pea soup right inside.
via: TwitterI mean, if you want to take advantage of this hack, you can flatten whatever you want in freezer-safe bags. But like, we're all doing this for our pea soup, right? My roommate will not get off my case about how much pea soup I have clogging up the freezer!
14. Fruit drawer looking unorganized?
via: TwitterWhere else in your fridge are you supposed to put your fresh produce? I mean, there is literally a drawer labeled "fresh produce." But it always gets messy. We're going to fix that.
Step one: get an empty milk jug.
via: TwitterIf you want it to fit in your produce drawer — and believe me, you do — make sure you get that one gallon size milk size.
Next, slice off the top and one side.
via: TwitterJust one of the four sides of the milk carton has to go. You'll also want to take a small notch out of one of the three walls you've created.
Now put your produce inside!
via: TwitterLook at that, you've got perfect dividers for all your different fruits and vegetables. Never will you grab a broccoli thinking it's an apple ever again!
15. Let's get to that junk drawer, huh?
via: TwitterWe all need a junk drawer — a place to toss whatever weird things come across your path that you might need one day but absolutely don't need right now. But why waste an entire drawer on it?
But we're not going to clean it up, oh no.
via: TwitterThe point of a junk drawer is that it's always a mess. We're just going to cover up that mess a bit. The first step is to get a drawer organizer and a piece of plywood as wide as the drawer.
Glue that bad boy down.
via: TwitterYou can't just drop the plywood on top of the junk — what if you actually need an old HDMI cord or Star Wars band-aide? With the drawer organizer glued to the wood, you have an easy handle to pull it back up so as to access your junk.
Now put that plywood right on top of everything.
via: TwitterAnyone would open your junk drawer and think its just a normal knife and fork drawer. They'll never know all the playing cards and post-it notes you have hidden under there.
16. Let's save those peas.
via: TwitterHow are you supposed to make split pea soup — the best out of the soups — if your peas are all disgustingly frozen together? Well, as you may have guessed, we have a hack for that.
You first have to open that bag.
via: TwitterWe might advise using scissors ere, if only because cutting a long, even strip off the top is important to the hack (and that is much easier to do with scissors than your fingernails/teeth).
Now tie that little strip around the top!
via: TwitterVoila — you've turned that cut-off strip into the bag's own twist tie. Next time you make split pea soup, your peas will be good and individually frozen.
17. Now here's a display jar hack.
via: TwitterFirst off, you're going to take an empty juice carton. And make sure it's empty. I forgot to check once and I got Minute Maid orange all over my finest white tuxedo, which I was wearing for whatever reason.
Now, cut a circle out of the top.
via: TwitterMake sure that little spout is included in your circle. It doesn't much matter where specifically, just that it's there. You'll be using that spout as a handle.
Next, cut out the sides of the juice carton.
via: TwitterYou're going to want to put a slit halfway down the middle of the short side.
And then, do it again.
via: TwitterTwo sides used for flat panels with the slits, one side that get cut up when removing the spout, and finally, one side for if you screw anything up.
Combine the two cut-out sides.
via: TwitterSimply slid the two pieces of cardboard together like so.
Now you've got a divided jar just to store different kinds of snacks and garnishes.
via: TwitterAnd the circle with the spout you made doubles as a lid for the storage container. The reason you save that little spot in your cut-out circle is so you'd have a handle to grab when it's time to open it up.
18. Use PVC pipe to store your weights.
via: RedditAs you're about to find out, there is nothing more useful for finding new ways to store your stuff than PVC pipes. Well, maybe tension rods. But that's it.
19. Put your earrings up on a corkboard.
via: RedditIf your vanity is chock full of jewelry boxes, why not pop a small corkboard up on the wall and stick all your pointy little pieces of glamour up there?
20. Pushpins and shoe boxes can make some nice, simple shelves.
via: RedditFirst of all, maybe try to use pretty shoe boxes instead of your old Nike boxes. And second, make sure to put pushpins in the corners too! The person taking their photo didn't do this, so those shelves are definitely going to spin.
21. Use magnets to keep your collectibles in one place.
via: RedditThis hack might be specific to those who paint steel miniatures, but clamping a long sheet of metal into a plastic storage container will keep you from having to buy individual cases for each miniature.
22. And speaking of magnets...
via: RedditHanging a sheet of magnetic material on the back of a pantry door can give you an incredible place to store your metal tins of spice and the like. Also, it will make you feel like a wizard.
23. One last magnetic tip.
via: ImgurIf your garage is full of lug-nuts and you can never find the right one, consider bolting magnetic strips to a piece of plywood and labeling their size in Sharpie.
24. Make a sliding bookshelf.
25. A hack for the snacking enthusiast.
26. Hide a chalkboard on the backside of the cabinet door.How much wall space are you using on chalk/whiteboards? For me, it is too much. There's even chalk-paint you can buy that makes whatever surface you paint into a chalkboard. How handy is that?
27. Hang your dish dryer over the sink.
28. Grab a second shower rod.
29. What can't be stored in PVC pipe?
30. Use S-hooks to hang your jeans.Since your jeans have belt loops, you can simply hook one of those and hang them from the bar in your closet. Although, now that I think about it... does this save any space? Is it better than a clothes hanger? Honestly, I'm not sure. Anyhow, it looks cool and kind of minimal, right?
31. A sliced-down-the-middle soda box is perfect for storing VHSes.
via: RedditCut your old 12-pack box down the middle, fold it open, and BAM — you've got a spot to store all your old VHS tapes! Although, who has VHS tapes anymore? Maybe this is more a hack for your cinephile grandparents.
32. Store makeup in this specific ice tray.
via: RedditEach hole in this arrow ice tray is the exact size of a Mac lipstick. If you've got a counter covered in loose lipsticks, this could be a space-saving game-changer.
33. Wire squares can become Favorite racks.
via: RedditWhile they don't offer a ton of space, how cool would it be to hang your favorite hats and mittens — the ones you wear every snowy morning — from the back of your door? Then you can store the rest of your less-desired gloves and hats in the back of the closet like it was April 1st and they were ready to be retired for another season.