Bins are something I completely nerd out over and I really needed to check in with myself to tone it down a notch in order to write this blog because otherwise I would end up writing a book all about bins. I love them, they are necessary and I could talk your ear off if you really wanna open up that can of worms and yes labels are so important too!
What you may not realize is that you are probably buying the wrong ones. Which ones are the wrong ones you ask? Let me break this down for you so I can help you understand.
You know the really cute bins that you immediately fall in love with because they're cute but maybe they come in a set of 3, (with a small, medium and large size) and you only see 1 set available, but maybe you need more bins than that. Those are the wrong ones.
Or you finally find a decent size bin that can fit a lot in and they have plenty in stock, yet you bring them home and realize, they are too big for your shelf. Those are the wrong ones. We don't want bins hanging off the shelves and sitting all wonky like a game of tetris that didn't go well.
Give me all things clear right? Or wrong? Look, I am all for clear bins, but sometimes I don't want everything showing. If you watch the famous organizing show on Netflix you too will fall in love with their rainbow system. Keep in mind that they are organizing humungous houses and mansions and their clients have spaces fit for everything and plenty of rooms for whatever they want it to be. Give yourself a realistic hug. If you don't have the type of space like the people on tv do, then maybe that vision is not meant for your home. Not to say you can't have something similar, it just means that your Barbie dream house is smaller or may only have 6 total rooms instead of 15. Also, ask yourself, do I really want a rainbow everywhere in my home because the system works? Am I really going to look for a purple snack or am I going to look for chips? So maybe clear bins is the way to go, but give it some thought before you have this Pinterest worthy picture in your head of what it will look like. As for me and rainbows, a little bit of them goes a long way.
A few places I love to have clear bins are: the fridge, junk drawer and clear turntables in the bathroom. This doesn't mean you have to be like me. It just means you gotta know what you want in your home. I walk my clients through the same process. Why do you want a rainbow system? Do you want it all over? Or why do you want clear bins? I walk you through this because maybe you have this image in your head of what it will look like but then we get done, you don't like the visual aspect of it because you didn't have the rest of the aesthetic things to go with it. I don't want that for you. You deserve a gorgeous space with all the cuteness and your things in it. My job is to make that happen for you, with your things and your visions in mind.
So what type of things do you look for when buying bins?
Longevity....!!!! The bins that will last you the longest are worth it but they come with a price tag. Bamboo bins are my absolute favorite! Getting more bang for your buck should not always mean more in quantity, think of it as more years out of your buck.
Neutral colors are a must. Buying neutral colored bins allows you to change your room color, and decor without feeling like you have to change everything. This also helps you love your bins longer without getting sick of them.
Size matters! Yes, I said it and I will say it again, SIZE MATTERS! Measure, measure, measure! If you don't know how much space you have on your shelf, how do you know how many bins to get? If you don't measure the depth and height, how will you know what size bin to get? Before you get all the cute bins measure the width of your shelf, the depth and the height. This will tell you exactly how many bins to buy and what size do I need.
If you have a shelf that measures 4' wide, 12" for depth and 12" for height, you don't want to get bins that are 12" tall, because there will barely be any room to grab the bin. Instead we would look for bins that are 11-12" wide, 11-12" for depth and about 6" in height. This will allow your bins to have enough space to sit on the shelf without losing too many inches. Never scrunch your bins on the shelf. There is room for everyone, so don't overcrowd.
So when do you need a bin, you ask? Bins are the visual eye-candy of your space. They give items permission to be there but in a confined space to keep things from falling over or looking cluttered. When you open those doors, you should hear angels sing to you with a beautifully organized system that is easy to use. You should never hear the noise of the doors creaking and all your things rapidly falling on the floor. Should we try that again? When you open the doors to your space, whether it's a closet, room or cupboard, you should hear this... (insert angel's singing here.....ahhhhhhhhhhhh). I'm not a singer, so trust me, I am doing you a favor by not inserting a sound clip of me singing to you. You're welcome. Also, I will probably recommend some type of bin in every space so if you are honestly asking me, "Alesha, do you think I need a bin in....I
will fill it in for you and say, yes you probably need some bins there. Remember though, longevity, color and size matter!
Lastly, do I need labels?
The answer is always yes. Labels are the most important piece to your system. Think about it this way, if I were to organize your pantry and give you all the cute stuff to put in it but with no labels, would you know and remember where to find it or would you constantly be searching for that one thing? When you did a grocery run would you have a system for where things go or would you end up shoving them wherever they can fit because in the moment of putting groceries away you just want that to be done. When your husband asks you, "hunny where is the spaghetti sauce," would you be able to direct him on where to find it? Probably not! So yes, labels are a must in every space. My job is to make the system work for you. The labels are simple, the system is simple and in return this gives you confidence to find it on your own.
So how do you keep labels simple?
Think about it this way, how do you want to find things in your pantry? Do you want the crackers to be in a bin of snacks or do you want them to be with soups? When you think about your items so much you are probably steering more towards the micro organizing. Micro is a very detailed organizing system and often times can be overcomplicated. So instead of putting the crackers with soup cans, let's keep them separated. Let's keep canned goods together and put the crackers with the snacks. I guarantee you will still be able to find them.
Make sense? Let me give you one more example. Rather than having all your supper sides and meals together, let's separate them and give each bin a purpose. Create a bin for meal sides, like rice, biscuit mix, etc. and then in the bin for meals, you can put hamburger helper, mac & cheese or any other boxed meal kit. Simple enough?
All in all, I would love to be your partner in organizing. I would love to be the one to declutter and beautify your space. But if you are a DIY'er, I hope this blog gives you exactly what you need to put your own stamp on your space.
Did you find this blog helpful? I would love for you to share a comment, send me a message or maybe that's hiring me to do it for you. Whether you have a hodgepodge of bins on your shelf now or none, I can help you. You family and home will thank you.
You know where to find me.