A brand new year means it's time to reorganize and reprioritize
the spaces around your house. The good news is, there are simple ways to gain
more storage in the most important rooms in your house without remodeling. Here
are seven ways to welcome the new year with less clutter and chaos.
1. Maximize closet space
For economy and quick installation, you can't beat wire shelving
systems; you can outfit a typical closet in an afternoon for less than $200. Home centers have everything you need. But before you go
shopping, go online to check out the options, accessories and installation
steps. Two good sites to browse are closetmaid.com
and rubbermaid.com. For a more elegant
"furniture grade" look, be prepared to spend hundreds more—or build your own closet organizer.
2. Add more
The trouble with those shower caddies that hang from the showerhead
pipe is that you only have one showerhead. To get more space for your bath
potions, hang another caddy on a cabinet knob mounted inside the shower. Choose
a knob that won't be damaged by water, and drill a ¼-in. hole in the tile and
insert a plastic anchor. Then screw in a No. 8-32 hanger screw and twist on the
3. Mount mini bins
Electrical junction boxes can hold a lot more than wiring.
You can nail or screw them to just about anything anywhere. In the shop,
they're great for those tools that can't hang on hooks—tape measures, markers,
chisels, etc. Plastic boxes come in various sizes and shapes and cost 75¢ to $3
4. Optimize cabinet space
Lower cabinets offer the biggest storage spaces in your
kitchen. But the back half of cabinets is usually wasted—it's filled with
forgotten stuff or left empty because it's out of sight and out of reach. Rollout
shelves reclaim that space. You can buy rollouts or build your own. See how
to build rollout shelves here.
To buy rollouts (starting at about $45 each),
visit a home center or search online for "cabinet rollout."
5. Corral your
Hate the messy look of curling irons lying on the vanity or
the toilet tank? Use hook-and-loop tape to attach 5-in. lengths of 2-in.-diameter PVC pipe to the vanity door to hold the curling irons. Do the same
thing with 3-in. pieces of 1-1/2-in.-diameter pipe to hold the cords. Just
measure your curling irons to see how long your "holsters" need to be. Let your
curling irons cool before you stow them away.
6. Fill those cavities
An unfinished wall or ceiling isn't an eyesore; it's a
storage opportunity. With 15 bucks' worth of shelf hardware and 1x4s, you can
pack 8 ft. or more of storage into one wall stud cavity. For about $2 per ft.,
you can turn ceiling joist space into storage space with wire shelving.
7. Store tools and equipment on closet rod brackets
Shelf brackets designed to support clothes hanger rods
aren't just for closets. The rod-holding hook on these brackets comes in handy
in the garage and workshop, too. You can bend the hook to suit long tools or
cords. Closet brackets cost about $3 each at home centers and hardware stores.
— Elisa Bernick, Associate Editor