A great way to get things organized in the smallest space possible is to remove the outer packaging. Here are some great places to use this tip:
- Office Supplies. A few pens in a box? Remove them and put like with like. Add a rubber band around them to help them stay together and not fall all over the place. As a bonus, you can much more clearly see what you actually have and when you need more. Ever go to the box and found out it was empty? Exactly.
- Individual snacks. Remove those granola bars, fruit snacks, cereal bars and the like. Put them on end in a container in a place that is easy to reach for everyone in the family. “Mooooommmm, I want a snack.” “Help yourself, you know where to find them.” Ahhhhh. At least one thing in your day can go smoothly.
- Bulk foods. Huge box of Goldfish crackers only half full? Use one of those Tupperware containers taking up space. Odds are good that you have some that are stackable, and you can get a lot of snacks in a small space by removing the packaging and stacking the containers. This is useful for rice, dried beans, pasta, croutons, chips, crackers and cookies. As a bonus, things will stay fresher longer. You can add a label or picture for easy reference to what is inside.
- Medicine. You may save space by consolidating various boxes of bandages or wraps. I recently bought some over the counter allergy medicine and the box was about 3 times larger than the bottle inside. By tossing the box, I could store three times as much is the same space as one box. Consider your space – sometimes boxes stack better than bottles, so just do what works for you.
- Paper Products. Bulk purchases of toilet paper, paper towels, facial tissue and feminine products can be stored better if you break up the package. Typically the space you have to store items is not the same shape as the larger package, but by opening the package and storing the items individually to fit the space, you may be able to stow your purchase out of the way. For feminine products, I have a wire basket under my sink that holds various sizes and types, so I can have a little of everything handy when I need it, and not half-filled boxes all over the place.
And, just because I love ya, here is a bonus tip: If you have a bunch of items in a drawer, but not enough to get an organizer for, lay down some of that textured shelf liner to keep things from rolling around. In our bathrooms, this keeps the floss, toothpaste, comb and deodorant from rolling all over the place.
Oh, and don’t forget that most of the outer packaging (especially cardboard) is recyclable. And, if you have access to bulk items without packaging you can reduce your waste by not buying the packaging in the first place.
Happy Organizing! If you have other space saving tips, please share them in the comments!