Thursday, March 22, 2007

Frugal Fridays:Creative Storage Containers

I love baskets and great storage containers, but my budget says otherwise! While I have a few nice wicker baskets around the house, I haven't been able to afford them everywhere I would like them to be. Ever since we've been married, I've stored my dishrags, kitchen towels and cloth napkins folded and rolled in stacks on the bottom shelf of my baker's rack in the dining room. (I have very few drawers and cabinets in the kitchen and these cloth items are probably a more toddler-friendly item to have out in plain sight!) One day not long ago, I was getting frustrated about how sloppy my stacks were looking and thinking how nice it would look to have perfect little wicker baskets setting there on the shelf. Then I started thinking about maybe using something that I already had-but what could that be?
These gingham-covered shoe boxes were the finished result! My husband's large shoe size finally came in handy-the boxes are exactly the right size to line the shelf. When I get another one(and I know I will eventually!:-), I'll wait until I find some yellow gingham and then cover that one to finish off the shelf. I love gingham and my colors pretty much throughout the whole house are different shades of red, blue and yellow. I had this fabric on hand. I cut the fabric large enough to fold down onto the bottom of the box. Then I cut the lid off the box and cut it to fit in the bottom of the box, then covered each "lid with fabric and glued it. I covered the boxes and folded the fabric at the edges until it looked nice to me-then I pushed the fabric-covered lid into the bottom. Not only does the extra cardboard at the bottom give more stability, but it also holds the outside fabric firmly in place so I didn't need to glue it(which means I can take the fabric off and use it somewhere else later if I want to!). These took me about 20 minutes total to complete. I love the result-it's neat-looking and cute, too!
After my shoe box success, I was pumped and began to look for other creative storage container ideas. These tea boxes (I cut the lids off) were just the right size for pudding and jell-o boxes as well as seasoning mixes.
And they fit perfectly in the white basket these boxes and packets were piled in previously. Much better!
The top of a Velveeta cheese box(a Super Bowl party treat) fits my small collection of sprinkle bottles perfectly, while my old Tupperware lunch box holds extra bottles of spices. The Velveeta lid isn't that sturdy, so I used it for something I wouldn't be using all that much.


The bottom of the Velveeta cheese box works well in my baking cupboard to organize flavorings and other bottles that just get pushed around a lot.
I held onto this IBC root beer tote(you guessed it-another Super Bowl treat!), because I was so sure I could use it for something clever. Finally, it came in handy to store odd bottles and canisters of cooking supplies in the cabinet. No more bottles falling down and hard to find! I was pretty proud of this one and so was husband-he said that I could buy more root beer anytime to get the boxes.hahaha (It's his favorite and a rare, rare treat!)

The best thing about this organizing spree was that it was absolutely free! Every container I used was either one I had or a recycled item. Hopefully, this will give you some ideas to organize different areas in your home, too!

For more great Frugal Friday posts, please visit Biblical Womanhood.

17 comments:

Alexandra said...

Great pictures of your recycled boxes! Great ideas. :)

devildogwife said...

Great job!! I love the gingham covered boxes. I cover boxes all the time with wrapping paper, but I like the fabric idea better!!

Mrs.B. said...

Wonderful!!! Thank you for the inspiration. I need to do some organizing and was lamenting that I couldn't buy boxes and baskets and such but now I see I don't really need to.

~~Thanks so much Mary Ann!

Blessings,
~Mrs.B

Mrs. Pear said...

Great tip!

When I was a teenager and needed bedroom storage I covered boxes with fabric as we could not get storage boxes in the little town I grew up in, but I have fallen out of that great habit!

I love the way you used little boxes to meet your needs, great use of tea boxes!

Tammy L said...

Wow!! Great job!! I love gingham. :) Storage containers are really expensive! I should try the fabric box idea. :)

I like the root beer box idea -- perfect for things like soy sauce, etc... I'll be remembering that one. ;) Thanks for the great tips!! :)

thehomespunheart said...

These are GREAT ideas! I love the IBC box - very creative, cute and thrifty!

Tracy said...

What great ideas! I love the gingham covered boxes...and especially that you can reuse or wash the fabric because it's not adhesed.

Thanks for sharing!

Tracy

G.L.H. said...

Great ideas! and I *love* gingham, too!

MyHeartIsAlwaysHome said...

I am a gingham fan also. It is great that you will be able to re use the fabric. Thanks for the inspiration!

Lisa Knight said...

I love fabric covered boxes! Great pics & tips! I am going to have to remeber the 6 pack idea!

Sheri said...

Great ideas! The pics were very helpful too.

DJ said...

You are so clever!

Thanks for the inspiration. I love organizing without spending additional money!

Rachel said...

Great ideas! I found your blog through the Homespun Heart and have really enjoyed all your resourceful ideas.

Mom2fur said...

Your boxes are adorable! You've inspired me. I've had this plastic box with sections that came with candy in it (a Christmas gift) that I've been wanting to repurpose. So now I'm using it for coins, picture hangers and staples!

L said...

Love the gingham boxes and your creative ideas! I am like yourself, the budget is tightly pinched and although those pretty wicker baskets are lovely - I cannot justify in my mind paying $10 and up for a basket to hold "stuff"!

Gingham never goes out of style either, so it will always look lovely. Would love to see more things that you use too, thanks for posting. :)

Kathleen said...

This is just what I need. Thanks!

Malina said...

The covered shoe boxes are such a great idea. To think that someone could also do that with left over Christmas wrapping paper to store ornaments. Way too cute!