Organized Chaos

I recently moved to a larger condominium (1 bedroom and den) and I was excited that I had more storage space … wrong.

I realized my front hall coat closet was only 2/3 the size of my old closet.

In the bedroom walk-in closet I lost a whole wall which also means floor and shelf space too.

My laundry closet in the old place had space where I could fit in a floor sliding wire shelf unit on the floor and a wire shelf could be hung on the wall at the side of the stacked dryer.

My kitchen cupboards are not as deep as in my old condo.

I have an extra room (it’s called a “dining room” on the condo unit plan) with no windows.  I was excited that I could finally bring out my book and cookbook collections from storage and bought a bookcase (even though I have donated quite a few books to charity).  I made a rule that I will no longer hang on to novels or magazines (eg. Food & Drink) once I’ve read them.  Novels and magazines donated to charity (Value Village) are re-sold in their stores.

I want to share one of my kitchen storage problems that I’ve had almost everywhere I’ve lived and I’m sure you must have a cupboard like this one in your kitchen.  The under counter cupboard has a half shelf on the bottom 1/3 of the cupboard leaving a bare spot for possible storage in front of the shelf.  Almost 2/3 of storage space is lost!

Here’s my solution to one of the kitchen cupboard dilemmas.

I bought an Ikea SAMLA storage box 501.102.99 (in Canada) and put it on the cupboard floor in front of the 1/2 shelf placing only items under the shelf that didn’t reach past the shelf.  If you can see from my pictures I have an Ikea (again) spaghetti/frying set which is too big to fit in the stove drawer.  I also have a small basket holding my cake decorating supplies that I don’t necessarily use all the time (sprinkles, vanilla extract, and paste icing colours, birthday candles, etc.).  I just don’t have the shelf space for them in my new condo.

Then I purchased a plastic bin (Dollarama) which is almost the same size of the Ikea container without the lid.  You could buy the SAMLA without a lid but the dollar store bin is less costly.  In the top bin I put mostly those plastic food container that have no reasonable place to put them.  Then I put small hardly-ever used baking pans and silicone baking pans in the bottom container.  Also, awkward items like colanders can be placed on top.

If you find you have enough space you could stack two SAMLA bins with lids on the bottom and an open bin on top.

I made this change about a month ago and it seems it seems to be working out well.

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