Storage Tips to Make Any Home More Minimalist
By Cora Gold, Editor-in-Chief of Revivalist
Minimalism is a great lifestyle for those with sustainable values. It prioritizes experiences over belongings, but it might be challenging to implement in your household. Some people may get carried away with throwing out extra items in their house. However, the most sustainable thing you can do is make use of items you already own.
Before you start filling garbage bags, try utilizing these storage tips to organize the items you’re not sure what to do with. They will help you achieve a minimalist home without sending too much to the landfill.
10 Tips for Minimalist Home Organization
1. Reuse Containers Whenever Possible
Recycling plants easily break down specific materials to prevent them from polluting the environment. Industry experts estimate recycling companies will make over $88.1 billion annually by 2030 due to the efficiency of modern recycling technologies.
Although you can support the planet by giving household waste to recycling centers, you can also reuse them at home. Rinse old spaghetti jars and use them as vases for flower arrangements. Turn jars of jelly into water glasses for casual meals. Repurposing these items will reduce the need to buy new ones. It’s a minimalist approach to objects you frequently replace and a positive move for the environment.
2. Store Belongings in Ottomans
Even if you plan on eventually moving into a bigger home with more closets, you can utilize new storage tips to gain more space right now. Consider investing in an ottoman for your living room, bedroom or dining room. The classy benches act as places to sit under windows or at the foot of a bed. When you open the cushioned lid, you’ll have a secret storage space for belongings that don’t currently have a home in your house.
Things like seasonal jackets and shoes easily fit inside ottomans. They’ll be out of sight until you need them. This will cut down on the visual clutter in your closet and make it easier to decide what to wear each day.
Be careful about what you put in an ottoman, however. It’s an easily accessible space at eye level with toddlers. Anything that could be dangerous for kids to access should be stored in plastic bins or locked cabinets in a garage or basement. This could include power tools, sparklers or fireworks, or chemical cleaning supplies.
3. Hang Floating Shelves
Traditional shelving has large brackets and end pieces to keep your things in place. You could upgrade your home’s design by replacing them with floating shelves during your next decor renovation.
Floating shelves don’t need brackets because they attach to studs. This saves space in your home and means your walls aren’t cluttered with bulky shelves or cabinets. You can also find floating shelves made with sustainable materials to make them match your eco-friendly lifestyle.
4. Label Cabinet Shelves
How often do you discover expired food hiding in the back of your cupboard? When you put your groceries away, it can be easy to place the new items in the front and forget about the jars that were there first. Using labels can help you organize and cut down on your food waste.
Print small labels and stick them on the front-facing parts of each cabinet’s shelf. Rather than throwing items in where they fit, designate shelves for specific types of food. You can also put labels with purchase dates or expiration dates on each item so you see right away when you need to use them.
5. Donate Old Goods
When you’re ready to switch your seasonal clothes or household decor, consider sifting through the belongings in storage. You could donate whatever you haven’t used in a while to make your lifestyle more minimalist.
Donating things like holiday dishware and clothes also prevents them from sitting in landfills. You’ll give them to people in need. If you donate a blanket you don’t use anymore, it will keep the buyer from purchasing a new blanket that utilized limited natural resources when your well-loved blanket was ready to meet their needs.
6. Find Corner Bookcases
People use traditional bookcases to cover walls and store knick-knacks, but the furniture leaves corners empty. If you research corner bookcases, you can use that leftover space in any room. Fit each bookshelf snuggly into the corner and anchor it to the wall with whatever tip-proofing kit comes with your model. The shelves will double as an interior design choice and extra storage space.
7. Raise Your Beds
It’s tempting to get more plastic bins for attic or crawl space storage when you have bulky items that don’t fit in your closets anymore. However, plastic isn’t good for the environment. Instead of immediately using a storage solution that isn’t sustainable, consider raising your beds.
Most beds can easily sit on top of risers. The miniature step stools go under each bedpost to make the bed higher. The space beneath your bed automatically multiplies. You could fit boxes, piles of books or even suitcases underneath your mattress and use a bed skirt to keep them out of sight.
8. Roll Your Clothes
There’s no denying the usefulness of seasonal clothes. You wouldn’t feel comfortable wearing a wool sweater in the summer or a pair of shorts in winter. Even the most minimalist person in the world needs to change their clothing every few months, but rolling each item could make the practice more eco-friendly.
Rolling clothes instead of folding them leaves more room in your drawers. When you store clothes in separate bins, you can sometimes forget what you have and end up buying new clothes unnecessarily. If you can fit all of your clothes in your dresser, you can see everything you own and avoid buying new items.
9. Recycle Product Packaging
When you restock things like toothpaste and bandages, the products come in boxes. The bulky packaging takes up extra space in your closets and requires natural resources like wood to make cardboard.
You could always switch to brands with sustainable or reusable packaging to avoid this issue, but it’s not your only solution. Try unpacking the restocked products and recycling the boxes. While you’re still using the last bit of toothpaste in your current tube, the new one will take up less room in your bathroom closet or shelf.
10. Schedule Compost Days
Composting is an excellent way to live more sustainably and take up minimal space in your fridge. Schedule weekly or biweekly times to take out any rotten food or food that’s beginning to go bad. Depending on the type, you could put foods like these into an outdoor compost bin:
- Coffee grounds
You’ll prevent foul odors from spreading through your home and empty the food storage containers for immediate reuse after washing. When the compost has had at least two weeks to break down, you can use it as an all-natural fertilizer for your gardening or landscaping needs.
Make Your Home More Minimalist
Revamp your household by using these storage tips to make it more minimalist. You can save space, upgrade your interior design and help the planet simultaneously. Use a few of these ideas and you’ll have a greener household that does more with less.
About the Author
Cora Gold has a passion for writing about life, happiness and sustainability. As Editor-in-Chief of women’s lifestyle magazine Revivalist, she loves to share her insights and find inspiration from others. Follow Cora on Facebook, Pinterest and Twitter.