Warehouse stores are great until you have nowhere to stash that giant pack of toilet paper you bought. Luckily, we have storage ideas that any bulk-buyer will appreciate. We'll show you how to store more, store smarter, and put your available space to work.
That 5-pound bag of quinoa looks a lot less daunting once it's out of its original packaging. Don't keep bulk buys in the boxes that they come in. Instead, stock up on large glass or plastic containers. They're perfect for storing grains, cereals, nuts, and other dry goods. For items that need to be cooked, simply cut off the instructions and tape to the back of the canister.
2. Stash Out of Sight
Warehouses are notorious for their cheap prices on paper goods. Plus, their giant packages mean you only need to stock up a few times a year. But with this convenience comes a need for creative storage solutions. Look to unused spots -- such as above the toilet or under the sink -- for storage space. For example, we love the look of these wall cabinets that could easily split a jumbo pack of toilet paper, facial tissues, and other bulk-bought bath products.
3. Put Buckets to Work
Buckets are versatile storage tools. They're sleek, sturdy, and protect their contents with ease. Use them to split up bulk-bought items that you don't plan to use all at once. Fido, for example, won't go through that 40-pound bag of chow in one day. Pour a portion of pet food into a bucket, then place the rest of the bag out of the way. Refill the bucket as needed. This trick also works well for individually wrapped snacks and bottled drinks.
4. Use the Top Shelf
It doesn't make sense to store items you use daily -- or even weekly -- on the top shelf. They become difficult to reach, and getting them down is a hassle. Instead, reserve this spot for items you use monthly (or less!), such as paper towels. You'll only need to dig out the step stool when it's time to replace a roll, but you'll still reap the cost-saving benefits of buying in bulk.
5. Turn Storage into Art
Storage doesn't have to be unsightly. In fact, when you're storing items in plain sight, they become an integral part of your decor. Make the most of bulk buys by arranging them in an appealing way. Wine and other bottled goods obviously work well, but you can get a similar effect by arranging like-color items together.
6. Divide Between Fridge and Freezer
Let's be honest, you likely won't be able to finish that 3-pound bucket of strawberries before they go bad. Instead of overwhelming your fridge (and stomach), split warehouse finds between the fridge and freezer. Just divide the contents when you get home from the store, and you'll have plenty to use now as well as later. Plus, by splitting the items, you're making each portion smaller, and thus easier to store. This trick works well for meat, fruit, fresh pasta, and even cheese.
7. Maximize Location
You use trash bags in multiple rooms -- so why are they only ever stored in the kitchen? Dividing a giant package makes it a lot easier to store, so consider splitting up the item and storing a section in each room it's used in. Consider using this hack for paper towels, trash bags, sponges, and hand soap. As an added bonus, this trick makes it more convenient to replace the items when they run out.
8. Go to the Garage
There are some items you never should store in the garage. And then there are others that can deal with the unstable environment. Just make sure you're smart with your storage. Keep items as close to the door as possible, out of direct sunlight, and away from any moisture. Also make sure you store items off the ground to avoid pests. Garage storage is best for paper products and other home needs -- food and drink spoil too easily.