25 Clever Ways to Repurpose Household Items for Organization

mason jars with laundry supplies
Photo: Jay Wilde

Find new uses for old household items. Boost storage in every room of your home with these easy DIY storage projects that upcycle items you probably already have.

01 of 25

Creative Media Storage

wooden desk with pocket storage
Jason Donnelly

On this media cabinet, a repurposed toilet roll holder serves as a handy hanger for headphones. Canvas pockets originally designated for school supplies now hold tissues and wipes to mitigate germs. Consider adding a hook to hang video game controllers when they're not in use.

02 of 25

Hang Frames for Jewelry

jewelry display
Courtesy of Pottery Barn

Preserve jewelry and prevent tangles and scratches repurposing picture frames to hold necklaces and earrings. Simple cup hooks attached to the top of the frame provide a spot for necklaces. String wire or twine across a wide frame and staple or glue into place before hanging dangly earrings.

03 of 25

Recycle Glass Candle Jars

empty candle jars holding office supplies
Carson Downing

Once your candle has burned down, remove the wax from the jar to repurpose the container. Candles with lids make good vessels for office supplies like pushpins and paperclips. Or use glass jars in the bathroom for cotton swabs, cosmetics, or hair ties.

04 of 25

Rethink Cabinet Hardware

emerald green kitchen cabinets with hanging storage
Carson Downing

Cabinet knobs can double as storage hooks with some clever rethinking. Attach them to push plates and use hanger bolts to attach them to the wall just below your cabinets. Hang frequently used kitchen tools, like utensils, cutting boards, or even dried herbs, for handy storage.

05 of 25

Utilize Mason Jars

mason jars with laundry supplies
Jay Wilde

Mason jars are a storage workhorse that can be repurposed for any room in your home. Here, a galvanized planter becomes a laundry caddy thanks to a set of jars filled with clothespins, buttons, and sewing thread. Add storage labels to your Mason jars to easily identify contents.

06 of 25

Suitcase Storage

suitcase storage entryway acrylic table
Michael Partenio

Take something as basic as antique suitcases and use them as a stylish storage option. They're especially helpful for storing small objects in a convenient, yet hidden location, or linens you only use occasionally. Stack them in order from largest to smallest under a hall table.

07 of 25

Save Scrap Wood

home office in black and white with colorful rug
Laurey Glenn

When space is at a premium, call a floating shelf into office duty. Here, butcher block serves as the surface for a DIY desk made out of a storage cabinet from IKEA and a metal sawhorse-style leg. Two floating shelves made from the scrap wood hang above, providing storage for office supplies and display space for family photos.

08 of 25

Upcycle Cardboard Boxes

drawer storage hats shoes gloves
Jay Wilde

Don't recycle those cardboard boxes just yet! This budget-friendly storage hack will help save your sock drawer. Treat shallow cardboard lids like a tray for small accessories, then put the box to use to organize socks, undergarments, hats, or other small clothing items. Up the style by spray-painting the boxes or attaching peel-and-stick wallpaper cut to size.

09 of 25

Transform Magazine Holders

kitchen cabinet storage
Jay Wilde

Sometimes simply turning items on their side can create custom storage solutions. That's the case for magazine file holders, which make the perfect containers for unruly water bottles. Stack the bottles horizontally so you can easily visualize and access them.

10 of 25

Hang Storage Crates

crate wall shelves decor
Laurie Black

Vintage produce boxes and milk crates are ideal for grouping like items. Hang them on your wall to collect books, barware, or board games. Or group multiple crates to create a DIY shelving unit.

11 of 25

Flip a Shower Caddy

under sink storage container
Jay Wilde

Attach a plastic shower caddy with suction cups to the underside of your kitchen sink to make use of the wasted space above bottles and cleaners. Fill it with frequently used items, such as sponges, pet supplies, or dish towels.

12 of 25

Stowe Art Supplies

small white drawers with paints
Jason Donnelly

A fabric organizer with drawers originally intended for jewelry finds a second life as storage for art supplies and kids' coloring books. To enhance storage, designate a drawer for each type of crafts supply and add smaller containers inside the drawers to hold easy-to-lose items.

13 of 25

Transform Tired Furniture

painted accessory hutch show storage
Jay Wilde

Paint can do wonders for dated or worn furniture pieces. Removing the cabinet door and installing a few storage-add-ons made this old hutch into a convenient entryway organizer. Fresh paint, new drawer hardware, and a few hooks complete the transformation.

14 of 25

Creative Bathroom Storage

storage metal paper file towels
Jay Wilde

A mesh file sorter makes a convenient home for rolled washcloths and bathroom hand towels. Place one in your linen closet to easily grab shower essentials. Label each section with a paper tag tied on with string.

15 of 25

Separate Linens with Binder Clips

napkin organization office clips detail
John Loecke

Snatch a few clips from your home office and use the handy helpers to hold matching napkins together. When it's time to dress the table, you can grab the color and number of napkins you need without a frantic search.

16 of 25

Create a DIY Boot Tray

shoes storage metal cooling racks
Marty Baldwin

Nix the water puddles that are inevitable with snowy and rainy weather. Dry shoes in your mudroom or entryway by resting them on metal cooling racks inside a large plastic tray.

17 of 25

Easy Organization Hub

key storage utensil organizer entryway wall
Jay Wilde

Hang a wire mesh utensil organizer near your door as a hub for keys, sunglasses, and other essentials. Use nails with small heads (that fit through the mesh of the organizer) to hang it. Let the nails stick out far enough from the wall so that you can also use them as key hooks.

18 of 25

Put Spare Hangers to Work

trouser hanger make-up bag hook
Jay Wilde

Use a trouser hanger to suspend a cosmetics bag in an easy-to-reach place. Position the hanger on a hook on the back of a vanity door and clip the bag to the hanger. Hangers can also be repurposed to display art prints or even stand in as a DIY wreath form.

19 of 25

Contain Cords

cord organization stretchable bands
Adam Albright

Secure cord bundles with stretchable bands designed to slip around baby bottles and sippy cups. Bands can be customized with any text, including information about cord length and usage.

20 of 25

Easy Kitchen Island

blue tool cart kitchen butcher block
Adam Albright

A portable tool cart works just as hard in the kitchen as it does in the garage. Add a slab of butcher block to the top of the cart for a kitchen-friendly surface. Use the cabinets, drawers, and other built-in storage for utensils, pots, pans, oven mitts, and all of your culinary tools.

21 of 25

Bundle Wires

cord organization hair clip power strip
Marty Baldwin

Minimize the chaos and clutter of power cords by clinching them together with a small hair clip. If needed, use more than one clip to keep cords under control behind a console, entertainment center, or computer.

22 of 25

Stash Bath Supplies

green metal bucket hanging hook bath supplies sink
Adam Albright

When a lack of bathroom counter space has you backed into a disorganized corner, call on your walls for storage relief. Hang a bucket from a hook mounted next to the sink to corral supplies in a bathroom lacking storage space.

23 of 25

DIY Drawer Dividers

diy organization egg crate chopsticks cupcake liners
Marty Baldwin

Fashion your own budget-friendly drawer dividers with simple items found around the kitchen. Silicone muffin cups and a repurposed egg crate organize small items such as pencils, rubber bands, tacks, paper clips, and keys.

24 of 25

Simple Shoe Storage

kraft shoe boxes labels heel pump
Scott Little

For a low-cost alternative for shoe storage, reuse original shoe boxes and cover them with decorative paper to create streamlined shoe storage. Attach a picture of the shoes to the front of the box to help you find your favorite pair.

25 of 25

Storage for Closet Accessories

ties scarf hanging hardware handles
Greg Scheidemann

Use cabinet hardware to turn tight spaces inside a closet into storage for hanging ties and scarves. Gently knot scarves after hanging to keep them from slipping to the ground.

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