Organizing baby supplies


baby organizersNew parents of infants are faced with an overwhelming variety of baby supplies. From bibs and bottles to diapers and wipes, the list of essentials for babies is mind-boggling.

That’s why it’s important to have organizers designed to help you keep your baby’s stuff in order, both at home and anywhere you take your infant. Here are three different helpful tools for organizing baby supplies:

  • Diaper Bag Organizer Pouches are a set of four color-coded, zippered cotton bags, each clearly labeled to help make taking care of baby easier when you’re out and about.  Designed to let you avoid the frustration of digging through a crowded diaper bag when it’s time for a quick snack, a dose of medicine or change of baby’s clothes, the back of each pouch is nylon mesh to allow for easy recognition of contents and proper ventilation. Large lettering and colorful accents make it simple for parents or babysitters to locate supplies. The bags are sized appropriately and color-coded: blue for Clean Clothing (14 x 11 inches); brown for Dirty Clothing (14 x 11 inches); sage green for Goodies & Snacks (10 x 6 inches); and pink for Extras such as pacifiers, toiletries and medicine  (7 x 7 inches).
  • The Stroller Organizer Bag has Velcro straps that attach to your stroller handles and support a large mesh pouch (you can easily see what’s inside), a smaller pocket with Velcro closure, and two drink holders. The small pocket keeps your phone, keys and other accessories safely stored away yet within easy reach. The large mesh compartment provides ample storage for everything else you need to carry with you.
  • The birch wood laminate Hanging Diaper Storage unit is a wall-mounted organizer with multiple compartments, designed to hold dozens of diapers and other changing supplies. The convenient towel rod allows you to quickly grab a towel when you need it.  Hanging Diaper Storage Image

Packing Organizers


packing organizersPacking organizers can save time as well as sanity by making it easier to pack. Some can even help keep your packed items organized and easily accessible while you’re away.

Here are three different types of extremely effective packing organizers:

  • Packable Shelves is a compact polyester organizer consisting of two open shelves and one zippered shelf, Packable Shelves Imagedesigned to fit inside a 21-inch carry-on suitcase and also hang on a closet rod.   To pack, you simply hang the shelves in your closet or over the back of a door, then place your clothes, shoes and toiletry kit on the shelves.  Then you drop the Packable Shelves, clothes and all, into your suitcase. When you arrive at your destination, unpacking is a breeze–just lift the organizer up from the suitcase and hang it in the closet or over the door. Your clothes stay organized and ready to wear.
  • The Pack This! Checklist Notepad is a 6 x 9-inch pad of 60 pre-printed sheets, each providing a comprehensive categorized checklist that’s a thorough inventory of what to pack. It lists everything from specific items of clothing and toiletries to travel aid and documents so you won’t have to worry about forgetting anything you might need while you’re traveling. The ultimate reminder list for travelers, the notepad even has slots at the top for Destination, Days, Special Events and Local Weather, and includes ideas for necessities you might not have thought of.
  • Mesh Packing Envelopes are moisture-resistant, semi-sheer zippered cases that let you easily pack and organize all types of small items, from toiletries to receipts. The set of seven includes a variety of sizes ranging from 6 1/2 x 5 1/2 inches up to 13 x 10 inches.  The PVC mesh material makes the contents viewable so you can pass through security checkpoints with minimal inconvenience.

For more packing tips, read my post on travel toiletry organizers.


Space-saving kitchen storage helpers


jokari standup produce bagFinding more space in your kitchen isn’t impossible.  You just need the right kitchen storage helpers.

By “helpers” I mean products that make life easier yet take up virtually no room.  Here are three amazingly cost-efficient helpers that are designed to reduce messes while maximizing kitchen storage space:

  • The Countertop Storage Bag Holder provides an easy, convenient way to load soups, salsas and other potentially messy foods into storage bags– the mess. Designed to fold flat so it easily fits in drawers and cabinets when not in use, this clever device uses adjustable clips to hold open zip-lock bags of just about any size as you pour foods for storage.  It can also be used to hold bags open for washing on the top rack of your dishwasher.
  • The Collapsible Funnel lets you easily transfer liquids from one container to another without making a mess on the counter, then collapses down when not in use for space-saving storage. The plastic handle gives you a firm grip while you’re pouring. You can also rest this funnel right into a waiting bottle so you can use both hands for pouring a hot liquid. Simply swing the handle down and expand the funnel; the handle becomes a part of the funnel to provide a handy freestanding design.
  • Progressive Kitchen Scissors with Magnetic Cover makes it easy to store scissors accessibly yet safely. The magnetic sleeve allows you to efficiently attachProgressive Kitchen Scissors with Magnetic Cover Image the included kitchen scissors to any magnetic surface, such as your fridge or freezer. The comfortable, sure-grip handles reduce slipping so you can easily cut through tough materials. The serrated blade edge ensures the blade won’t slide around when cutting almost any material.  An added feature is the steel tooth inserts on the inner handles–they’re designed for opening bottles.

Cereal storage solutions


cereal storageCereal is perennially popular, not just for breakfast but also for snacking.  That’s why there are literally hundreds of different cereals (check out this list), with new ones popping up all the time.

But all cereals have two inherent problems: they lose their crunch when not stored properly, and they can be messy to dispense.  Fortunately there are now cereal storage solutions designed to solve both of these maddening issues.  Here are three cereal dispensers that will keep your cereals crunchy and tidy too:

  • The OXO Countertop Cereal Dispenser consists of a clear, BPA-free plastic 5-1/2-quart-capacity canister (it can hold the entire contents of one large cereal box) that sits atop a dispensing mechanism with a spring-loaded lever on each side.  It features one-handed dispensing–you OXO Countertop Cereal Dispenser Imagesimply press either of the levers to release the cereal down the chute, through a trap-door opening and into your waiting bowl.  Silicone seals on the canister lid and inside the dispenser work together to keep stored cereal fresh.  The chute opening won’t crush cereal while dispensing, and the removable bottom tray helps keep counters free of cereal debris.
  • The Double Food Dispensing Canister is a similar counter-top concept, but it features two canisters that each have an easy-to-use front knob for quick dispensing.  It’s available in white, black or red.
  • The Bag-In Cereal Storage Container and Dispenser is an economical option that’s more suited for keeping in a cabinet or on a pantry shelf.   The clear, BPA-free plastic container accommodates standard size cereal bags, and has an innovative bag gripper design with an airtight seal that keeps bagged cereals fresh. A flip-open pour spout on the lid provides neat dispensing. Another product, the Easy Pour Food Storage Container and Dispenser, is very similar but larger; it also has a handle which makes it easier to pour but takes up more shelf space.

More cereal storage solutions can be found here.


Answer: Butter storage


Q. Is there a tidy & hygienic way to store a stick of butter that lets you keep the wrapper on it? I’ve tried various butter dishes but those all seem to be designed for wrapper-less butter.  Also I need it to fit 5-inch by 1/4-inch sticks.

A. I think the Stick Butter Container could be exactly what you’ve been looking for, and it’s only $1.99. Perfectly sized to accommodate a 1/4- pound stick of East Coast-sized* butter (5 inches by 1-1/4 inch by 1-1/4 inch), the form-fitting design doesn’t waste any space inside the fridge. And it lets you leave the wrapping on the butter so you can easily measure out tablespoons later. Crafted from clear BPA-free plastic, it has a hinged lid that snaps closed to keep the stored butter fresh.

*  Find out why sticks of butter are long and skinny in the East but short and fat in the West–this article explains the mystery.


Nail polish organizers


nail-polish-organizerNail polish organizers can help you keep your nail polish looking good, even when it’s not on your nails.

Whether you have a collection to rival a nail salon’s inventory or just a few bottles, there’s a nail polish bottle rack or holder that will fit your needs.  Here are four different  types of nail polish organizers:

  • Wall or counter. The 3 Tier Nail Polish Holder consists of three 13-inch shelves that let you store from 33 to 66 bottles, depending on the bottle sizes.  Nail Polish Holder - 3 Tier ImageThe versatile design enables countertop storage or wall hanging; hardware is included for easy wall installation (using only a drill and screwdriver).  Ample vertical space between shelves ensures ease of access.  With scalloped wire fronts, this nail polish rack is as attractive as it is functional.  A similar rack, the Wall Nail Polish Rack (which also can be used freestanding on a counter or wall-mounted) has a slimmer design and holds up to 48 bottles.
  • Portable. The two-sided Nail Polish Organizer Case holds up to 64 bottles (32 on each side) in individual compartments, and also has a compartment on one side designed for storing emery boards, cotton pads, nail clippers and other nail care supplies. The case has a hinged door on each side, a handle for easy portability, and includes a salon professional polish remover bottle with internal pump.
  • Counter or drawer. The clear Acrylic Nail Polish Rack holds up to 40 bottles and can be kept out on a counter Acrylic Nail Polish Rack Imageor in a drawer.  Four tiered rows keep bottles visible and easily accessible.
  • Inside cabinet door.  If you only have a few bottles of nail polish, magnetic MagnaPods are a good organizing option.  The set of two clear acrylic containers is sized to hold up to six bottles (three bottles each); the strong magnetic backing is designed for securely adhering to steel-framed medicine cabinet doors.  Adhesive Nail Polish Organizers are a similar option for wood-framed cabinet doors.

Ring storage solutions


ring organizersSometimes life feels like a three-ring circus.  But if you have a lot of rings, it can feel even more chaotic–especially if you don’t have a good way to keep them in order.

Luckily, whether you have just a few rings or a sizable collection, there are ring storage solutions to fit your needs. Here are three different ways you can store your rings:

  • Ring trays.  Jewelry trays are useful for storing large numbers of rings. The stackable Rings and Hoop Earrings Jewelry Organizer is a modular jewelry tray that features Jewelry Organizer - Rings and Hoop Earrings Image20 velvety knobs to secure your rings and keep them organized.  It can be used inside a drawer or on a dresser (an optional clear plastic lid is recommended for dust-free storage).  This ring organizer is part of a family of modular trays that stack together and slide for added convenience.
  • Ring boxes. Jewelry boxes that have multiple ring-size compartments are also ideal for storage of ring collections.  The Elaine Glass Top Jewelry Box is an elegant example–it has 24 equally sized compartments hand-lined in suede fabric, and a clear lid so you can easily view the contents.
  • Ring holders.  Ring holders are handy for holding just a few rings, especially when you’re washing your hands or dishes.  They’re also nice to have on a dresser or nightstand. Elephant Ring Holder Image This type of ring storage solution comes in a variety of whimsical designs, such as the bunny-shaped or elephant-shaped Umbra Copper Ring Holder (also available in other animal shapes in chrome).

More ideas for ring storage can be found here.


Cosmetic Organizers


Cosmetic OrganizersCosmetics create clutter.  Think about it:  Lipsticks, mascaras, eye shadows, eye liners, foundations, concealers, blushers…the list seems almost endless.  Even if you only have one of each type of makeup, it’s easy to have cosmetic clutter.

Luckily there are a number of effective cosmetic organizers designed to help you conquer cosmetic clutter.  Here are three excellent examples:

  • The Extra-Large Three Piece Make Up Organizer features three separate units: an extra-large drawer as the base and a nine-compartment cosmetic tray on top, including a removable lipstick organizer with 12 slots.Extra Large Three Piece Make Up Organizer Image All items can be used together–the tray stacked on the drawer and the lipstick organizer nested inside– or they can be spread out separately to create maximum storage possibilities. When stacked, items are secure since units interlock with grooved edges.  All pieces are made of heavy duty acrylic and the clear surfaces make it extremely easy to always find any item quickly.
  • The Danielle Socialite Acrylic Organizer has seven top compartments and three large drawers in a 15-inch by 10.5-inch footprint.  One of the top compartments is a lipstick organizer designed to hold up to 12 lipsticks. The clear acrylic lets you identify and easily access all your makeup, and the steel frame ensures long-term durability.
  •  Metal mesh Makeup Carousels (available in a variety of colors) are double-decker spinning organizers  that feature six storage bins (three on each level) spinning around a center section on each side of the handle.  The center section is designed for storing long and slender supplies such as makeup brushes and nail files.

More types of cosmetic organizers can be found in my posts on Cosmetic Clutter Solutions and Makeup Drawer Organizers.


Cutting board storage solutions


Cutting Board HolderCutting boards can be awkward to store efficiently.  The variety of sizes and thicknesses makes it difficult to keep them orderly.  Effective cutting board storage also requires good air circulation so you can put the boards away when they’re not quite dry.

Here are three different types of cutting board storage solutions:

  • Cabinet door or wall mount. The steel Cutting Board Holder features a screw-mount system and pre-drilled holes for easy installation on cabinet doors, inside a pantry or on a wall.
  • Under shelfUnder-shelf storage baskets require no installation. Made of coated metal wire, these handy storage solutions are designed to slide onto a shelf and provide open storage below. They’re available in a range of sizes and finishes.
  • Roll-out.  The Roll-Out Kitchen Cabinet Tray Divider features smooth epoxy-coated roller slides, a half-inch-thick wood laminate base, and heavy-gauge steel wire tray dividers with a white finish. The unit fits in cabinet spaces with at least a 9-inch opening.

Other ideas for cutting board storage can be found here.


Car Visor Organizers


Visor OrganizersUtilizing your car visor for storage is an effective way to keep your glove compartment and front seat tidier. Car visor organizers are a simple solution for controlling common types of car clutter–especially paper clutter.

Here are three of my favorite car visor organizers:

  • The Visor Receipt Organizer features five deep pockets for efficient storage of receipts, directions, sunglasses and more.  Elastic straps make it fit neatly on most auto visors; a nylon cord also allows you to hang it from a knob. It includes a handy mileage tracker plus a pen and notepad for recording gas expenses and mileage, landmarks and other information while on the road.
  • The Visor Registration Wallet lets you keep your registration, proof of insurance and auto club card organized inside two clear plastic storage sleeves. Elastic straps allow you to attach the visor wallet to any auto visor, or you can simply fold it up and tuck it into your glove box or console. An outer mesh pocket is ideal for holding cash, toll cards and other small items.  The wallet snaps closed with powerful magnets to keep everything securely in place.
  • The Car Visor Organizer offers storage for notes, currency, sunglasses and all those little things you always need at your fingertips while on the road. It features Velcro installation, a loop for holding a tire gauge or pen, and five different pockets: a clear plastic pocket for keeping directions visible; a zippered pocket for documents; a zippered mesh pocket for currency; a padded pocket for glasses; and a side pocket for receipts, etc.

For more ideas on keeping your car organized, read my Conquer Car Clutter post.