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41 Home Organizing Essentials

Nov 05, 2023

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Get organized with these ideas, whether you want to buy or DIY.

A new year is here and with it comes the energy to revamp and clear clutter. Spring cleaning may be nothing new, but these products and tricks are a fresh way to get organized. We've got the perfect solutions for every room in the house, from the kitchen to the laundry room to the bathroom. And if it's been a while since you've hosted guests, it's time to clear out the clutter and get your guest room organized too.

We've compiled our favorite items you can buy to help get your ducks in a row. But, if you're a crafty sort of person, there are plenty of DIY ideas here too. If you have a collection of vintage items, like tins or baskets, this is a great way to put them to work and on display. Some of these ideas won't cost you anything, except for a little time and ingenuity! And don't worry, we won't have you throwing away your beloved treasures. We'll just help you corral your favorite items and free up some space.

Buying in bulk is great until it leaves you with piles of cardboard and snacks that get pushed into the pack of cupboards. Keep everything in sight and out of space-hogging packaging by using wire baskets in your pantry.

Put your collection of tins to work. Place strong mini magnets on the inside of the tins, then fill with everyday essentials like pens, pencils, and scissors.

From medicine to cleaning supplies, few organizing essentials are more versatile for storage than acrylic bins. They're ideal to have in spaces shared by several others to keep everyone's items separate. Or find one that fits in your fridge to keep all of your condiments organized.

Hit up the antiques store for a wooden beverage crate with dividers intact, and turn it into a rustic, wall-mountable spice rack. Many prepackaged spice sets come equipped with 16 to 20 jars, which can be conveniently stashed in a standard crate.

When multiple items—cookbooks, crocks, jars—occupy shelf or counter space, the assortment can start to feel cluttered. But when you group them in another vessel, the end result is positively life-changing. Professional organizers swear by the power of a tray, but a deep pan makes for a charming country caddy. Consider corralling items by task (baking) as opposed to type.

Crack down on a fridge filled with half-used egg cartons. This hanging drawer makes the space look neater and allows you to see when you're almost out of eggs so you don't miss another morning omelet.

Forget the knife block that takes up counterspace and go for a magnetic holder instead. To make, cut a piece of 1-x-4-inch wood to 12 inches long; trim height, as necessary, so that it is just shorter than two stacked rulers. Drill holes about 1/2 inch apart into but not all the way through the wood. Glue small rare-earth magnets into each hole with E6000 craft glue. Glue rulers to the front with wood glue. Nail sawtooth hangers to the back to affix to the wall.

Keep your counters fruit-free with these hanging baskets. To make, cut a 3 1/2-inch-tall strip of caning slightly longer than the circumference of a wood round. Hot-glue the bottom edge of the strip around the outside edge of the wood to create the sides of the basket. Thread twine through caning (three or four lengths, evenly spaced), and attach with hot-glue, leaving plenty of length to thread through a second basket, if desired. Hot-glue lengths of flat reed around the top and bottom of the basket. Tie twine together at the top to hang.

Diving into your makeup bag and coming out with an eyeshadow-stained hand and the wrong tool is never welcome, particularly during busy mornings. Save time using a rotating beauty display and be held more accountable for throwing away those almost-empty tubes and expired products.

This is ain't your college dorm caddy. Instead of having products slipping and sliding onto the floor, this caddy keeps everything held in place. If you share your shower with others, it's great for separating shampoos and conditioners from soaps and scrubs.

Corral your wine bottles in style with a space-saving wine rack. Go the store-bought route, or make your own out of croquet mallets. Remove handles from two mallets. Cut handles into four 13 1/2-inch-long lengths. Drill two 1-inch holes (1 1/2 inches from top and 2 inches from bottom) into two mallets to the right of the original center holes so that the center hole and top and bottom holes are perpendicular to one another; repeat with two more mallets, drilling holes to the left of the original hole. Cut the handles of two additional mallets to about 5 3/4 inches long. Fit handle lengths into holes, and glue in place.

It's family fajita night, and you reach for the cayenne only to add cinnamon instead. While the recipe might get you points for creativity, it's a mistake easily avoided using a spice rack. Keeping every spice in line also helps you realize when you're low on one before it's too late.

Rethink your exit strategy! Hung from bright yellow hooks and personalized with wooden letters, these wicker baskets (a mix of picnic and fishing) transform mudroom chaos into calm. Each family member has a station for dropping off essentials when they walk in the door.

Kids and clutter go together like the South and spring storms—you've got to learn and prepare for it. Hanging these baskets on the wall is an easier way for them to toss toys, sports gear, and school supplies in while also adding new decor to your home.

We all need a spot for those invitations, bills, and cards. Purchase a ready-made wall pocket, attach an eye-catching license plate, and mount it to the wall. Add in some pens and pencils and clothes pins for an all-in-one mail station.

If you have a metal drying rack for airing out coffee cups or mason jars, turn it into a family shoe caddy with farmhouse charm. (Note: To free up more floor space, seek out one that can be mounted to the wall.)

Keep your prettiest bottles on display with a simple wine rack. This wood version is inexpensive and holds up to 10 bottles.

For a crafty solution to the boot problem, make this stand. Boots will dry off while holding their shape. Cut a 2-by-6-inch piece of wood 31 inches long. Drill six 1-inch holes in the wood, spacing evenly. Paint white or desired color. Remove heads from croquet mallets, and insert handles into holes; glue and nail in place.

How many half-full paper plate packages have ended up scattered on the floors of cupboards or smashed in the back of pantries? Using a dispenser is a handy way to avoid disorganization and slips unnoticed under countertops and shelves.

This home office is packed with organizing ideas, from the archival boxes for storage to the giant "to-do list" roll. But we're partial to the pegboard that has a spot for all of the crafting and gift-wrapping supplies you could need.

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