Ultimate Storage Roundup


If you’ve followed along on Instagram Stories, I’ve gotten TONS of feedback and comments on how we’ve been organizing toys, cleaning out closets, and generally simplifying our craziness.  As October is finally here, I’ve been looking back over my goals for 2018 and I’m happy to say that I’ve definitely made major steps in getting — and keeping — our home more organized. My ultimate goal is to get the garage (aka, our Room of Shame™) totally cleaned out and while I’m nowhere near done, I’ve definitely made steady progress. But! I’m getting ahead of myself!!


Two weeks ago we wrapped up the wood floor project from last October’s One Room Challenge. If you remember from that, we got rid of almost all of our (nasty) carpet and replaced it with engineered hardwood. But due to time and sanity constraints, we held off on doing Archer’s room and the spare bedroom.  Then our floor guy underwent cardiac health issues (he’s fine, thankfully) and now nearly a year later, we’ve finally wrapped up the entire project.

And it was a massive undertaking that involved trashing the unnecessary, donating the no-longer-needed, and storing the must-haves.  I cleaned out so much junk from the spare bedroom, and then I organized all the sentimental family memorabilia into individual totes: one for Jude, Archer, my childhood, and our collective family. I feel a thousand pounds lighter now that I no longer feel like those closets burdened with thousands of things shoved in there are just waiting for me to come clean them out.  Clutter really does kill creativity, don’t you think?

Meanwhile, in my own closet, I’ve been steadily paring down to the absolute essentials. With help from the Container Store (which just opened in OKC a few weeks ago), I pulled the trigger on a custom Elfa system to fit in my newly refurbished master bedroom closet.  I love that it’s a system that can easily flex depending on what your needs are (and lord knows I love rearranging enough!).

The thing about organization is that what functions for one person might not totally function for another. And for me, that materializes in how I store my clothes. I absolutely despise hanging up my laundry, and frankly I’m in a season where I don’t have that many precious items that absolutely require it. Obviously there’s exceptions to that, BUT for the most part I prefer to fold my items.  So my hanging needs are minimal while my folding needs are great.


No matter what it is that you’re organizing, I highly recommend buying multiples of whatever container you end up needing. Repetition is soothing when it comes to design – and it’ll tone down any visual clutter if you have a consistent system. I use different bins and baskets depending on what the need is. I’ve rounded everything up below, and I’ve also added comments on why I’ve chosen them. 

organization tips / favorite organizing tools / baskets / toy baskets / lego organization / closet organization / #getorganized www.pencilshavingsstudio.com
  • AMAC BOXES: Infinitely versatile, these boxes come in a wide array of colors and sizes. They’re crazy affordable (the largest is only $3.79) and I love the idea of organizing everything according to color. I’ve used the smallest bins to hold xacto blades for years, and I use the larger ones for scissors, colored pencils, pens, etc. 
  • BEACH HOUSE STORAGE BINS: These are some of my all-time favorite baskets. They’re functional but they’re also so beautiful. I’ve used them in my closet but I think they’d be stunning 
  • STRIPED TOTES – I love these for their texture and their rope handles. Definitely get some of the metal bin labels so you can tell your stuff exactly where it should be stored.
  • RISATORP WIRE BASKET –  IKEA says these are for storing fruits and veggies(?) but I love them for Legos. And the handle makes it easy for littles to carry them around. We have them in blue (which I don’t see online) but the white are equally great. 
  • WIRE BASKET: These are so beautiful and would be perfect in the pantry for larger items and it’s pretty enough to leave out on your countertop.
  • BIN LABELS: An absolute must-have. Available in silver, gold, bamboo and white. I use them to label all my baskets and the metal finish means I can use a dry erase marker to write directly on them.
  • START A STACK: Fantastic for storing all manner of things. I use mine in the closet for jeans and pajamas. Also great for crafts. I use the individual baskets with runners in any of my cabinets that don’t have drawers. Instant function.
  • STACKABLE BOOKSHELF: Pretty and practical, these come in a variety of configurations AND they can be stacked up to 3 high. I love it for its midcentury vibe and for the sliding doors. We store toys and books in ours. Oh, and you have several color options too.
  • BRASS HOOKS: Don’t walk – RUN – and get as many of these as you think you might need. These brass hooks are insanely affordable and the brass finish is perfection. We use them in the bathroom, laundry room, coat closet and more.
  • PLASTIC STORAGE BINS: These come in a ton of different sizes and the price point makes it easy to stock up on them. I use these in my office to hold fabric samples, and in the pantry to keep the snacks organized. While they are sold individually, go ahead and buy the bundles. You’ll use ’em.  
  • LINEN PIN BOARD: I got asked about these on Instagram and I adore how clean and chic they are. I use them in my office for mood boards and the linen backdrop elevates it above your basic cork board.
  • DYMO LETTRA LABEL MAKER: The Dymo is the gold standard of label makers AND(!) you can also create labels in plastic, metallic, magnetic and iron-on label varieties. BOOM.
  • LAZY SUSAN: Why are we not singing the praises of the lazy susan more often? She’s anything BUT lazy and these instantly will transform your spice rack, first aid kit, your coffee pods, makeup collection, craft rack and more. You’re welcome
with love,

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