I have a friend who recently paid big bucks to have an organizational specialist come to her home. For about $50 an hour the specialist recommended various storage solutions to help her live a more organized life.

Well, that just isn’t in my budget right now (plus I wouldn’t want ANYONE to see the pile of dishes I have chilling out in the kitchen sink), so I decided to take matters into my own hands and discover some storage solutions of my own.

Typically, getting organized would require a trip to the store where I would stock up on plastic totes and dividers running me on average $10.00–$20.00 each. But this time I tapped into my free creativity and found some great storage solutions using items I already have around the home! Take a peek at some of these simple and unexpected storage solutions that you can whip up for free or mere pennies!

Easy, Low-Cost Storage Solutions

  1. Ice Cube Trays: These can be found at most dollar stores for a mere buck, or perhaps you already have a few lying around the house. These fit perfectly into kitchen or bathroom drawers and are ideal for storing small items such as screws, pins, even earrings! When not in use, they can easily be stacked and shelved, and they’ll take up minimal space.
  2. S-Hook Magic: Grandma used these to hang her crocheted hot pads, but we can use them for so much more. These hooks can be purchased for only a few pennies each (or are possibly already available and stashed in the tool chest). Simply screw these little hooks into book shelves, cabinets, or walls to organize scissors, tape, gloves, or anything hangable. If something is unable to be hung, tie a piece of ribbon to it!
  3. Condiment Convenience: Relish trays and condiment servers can be great organizational tools. Use them to sort small objects such as buttons, safety pins, jewelry, and more. Some of these caddies are quite decorative and would even look nice sitting out on a dresser or counter. Why not put one on the vanity with some jewelry in it? It will keep it organized and look attractive at the same time.
  4. Egg Cartons: Don’t toss those egg cartons! Like ice cube trays, their slender shape and multiple compartments make them great for organizing small items such as nails, push pins, earrings, coins, and more. If you have fragile holiday ornaments, why not see if they fit it an egg carton for safe storage? I have small glass bulbs that fit into egg cartons perfectly, so each year that is what I use to keep them safe. I have yet to lose one! The best part? These are free!
  5. Muffin Tin Magic: Muffin tins are great for storage because of their deep cups and sturdy construction. Organize crafting supplies such as beads, pins, spools, or thread inside the tins. They can be found at most dollar stores for a buck or often at thrift stores. I also use muffin tins when my children are doing crafts to organize the glue and paint. The metal washes clean and can withstand some heavy wear and tear from the kids.
  6. Bread Baskets: Walk into any dollar store, thrift store, or yard sale, and there’s a good chance you’ll see oodles of baskets. They’re worth another look. Baskets are inexpensive and ideal for practical and attractive storage. They look nice sitting out with books or magazines, and can hold everyday items such as toilet paper, paper towel rolls, kitchen tools, and so much more. I placed one in our bathroom to hold toilet paper should an extra roll be needed. My husband decided to throw some of his reading materials in there as well. Not exactly what I had intended it for, but hey, it works!

Next time you are in need of some organizing, hold off on hiring the professional organizer or buying expensive organizational tools. These little tricks will help you stretch your organizational dollar to the max!

Now if only an egg carton could wash dishes….

DIY: Unexpected Storage Solutions