Since moving at the beginning of January and unpacking our belongings (half of which had been in storage) I realized that our stuff was really unorganized. And moving from a home back into an apartment/condo also made me realize how little storage space we had. And with 2 kids and one on the way, we’ve managed to collect a lot of stuff over the last 4 years.
We weren’t given any outdoor storage in our new condo. But there is a patio and lots of closets and shelves. So it was time to figure out where everything was going to fit.
1. Use Bins for Holiday Decorations
We had a lot of random sized cardboard boxes filled with all of our holiday decor. From moving from place to place, the boxes were getting warn out and holidays were mixed with each other. So I bought several bins from Walmart (you can get them for $5 a piece), unpacked all of the boxes, and put our holiday decor in the bins with the correct holidays. I did mix a few like Valentine’s Day and Easter because we don’t have much for either holiday. Then I made sure to label each bin with a neon sticky and wrote the holiday on it.
During each of the holidays, many stores sell colors of bins that match. My parents have black and orange ones for Halloween and green and red for Christmas. So you can “label” that way too.
Then they are much easier to stack and fit better in the closet space you have. (My daughter wanted to get in the picture too.)
2. Create Shelves Where There are None
Our patio extends a little which is perfect for some storage area. So we bought a plastic shelving unit that you can easily assemble and disassemble and put it in the space. Then we were easily able to organize things that can be outside – like camping gear, ice chests, bike gear, and gardening supplies. So now we actually have some space to be on the patio and can still use some of the area for storage.
3. Use the Space Under the Bed
This was something I learned to do in college. There’s lots of room under beds and even more room when you use bed risers. Bed risers are blocks that goes under each foot of the bed. I like having my bed a little higher and now you have some space to put things too! We have things under our bed, the twin bed, the toddler bed, and the crib!
4. Put Away Non-seasonable Clothes
When closet space is small and there isn’t much room for all of your clothes, pack away the clothes you won’t need. Living in Utah, I can easily put away my summer clothes from October to April. This frees up my closet space for all of my sweaters and jackets that take up so much room. Then when summer comes, I can put the sweaters and jackets away and make room for my skirts and cooler shirts.
I also have a collection of maternity clothes. So I put away clothes I know I can’t wear while being pregnant – they just won’t fit! And then put my maternity clothes away after I have the baby…and have lost most of the pregnancy weight. Because we all know that takes some time.
These are my girls’ old clothes that are organized by size so we know when the next kid can wear them.
5. Throw Things Away/Sell/Donate
And finally, get rid of things! Go through your rooms and see what you have. If you haven’t used something in a year (having gone through all the seasons) you’re probably not going to use it. So throw it away, donate it to a local thrift store, or my favorite – sell it and make some money! There are lots of places you can sell things. Some second hand stores by gently used items, you can sell things online on Amazon, you can sell online on local websites for your state or community, or let your family and friends know you are selling things. You never know who is in need of something and isn’t looking for something brand new.
The less things you have that you don’t use, the more room you have to store things you actually use. And your small space won’t feel so cluttered.
It definitely takes some time, but it’s worth it when you’re done! Happy organizing!
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