Katie’s Note: I’m so happy to have Lisa Woodruff from Organize 365 to help you organize with shoe boxes in your kitchen and the rest of your house! Her shoe box organization ideas were a game changer for me! There’s so many options when you organize with shoe boxes.
Shoe Boxes for Organization: Quick and Easy Organizing
You don’t need fancy organizers, new cabinets, or a professional organizer to make a big difference in your kitchen. Often, simple organizers that you already have around your house will do the job just fine.
You can easily organize with shoe boxes from recent purchases or a plastic shoe box that you can get at dollar stores or for two dollars in any hardware store.
10 Ways to Organize With Shoe Boxes in the Kitchen
1. No More Lost Lids Floating Around Your Cupboards
A plastic shoe box will contain all of the various sized lids that you have for your plastic, glass, or stainless steel containers.
Or remember that other containers might work too that take up just the right amount of space – a circular cottage cheese tub for certain lids, a quart-sized clamshell from strawberries for another, etc. And think free! If it doesn’t have to be see-through, a regular cardboard shoebox will do (that’s how I just reorganized my <title=”kitchen stewardship<sup=””>® – Lunch Packing Supplies” href=”https://www.kitchenstewardship.com/bento-style-lunch-box-review/”>lunch packing supplies), and the 1-pound clamshells from spinach are great too.) – Katie</title=”kitchen>
RELATED: In this excellent interview with organizer Susan Santoro, we talk all about using containers that already come into your home for free for organization!
2. Free up Space in Your Utensil Drawer
Extra kitchen utensils that you use on a rare basis can be put in a plastic shoe box and stored on the top shelf in one of your cabinets. This will give you more dedicated space in your drawer for more frequently used items. The other items are still within reach, but not in the way.
3. Organize Snacks for Easy Reach
Plastic shoe boxes are a great way to divide the drawer or shelf and corral snack size chips (or individual bags of trail mix ready to go and small containers of homemade snacks, easy to grab).
4. Corral On-the-Go Snacks
Have a dedicated box for cereal bars or other on-the-go snacks. You could even grab the whole box if you’re going on vacation or camping. (Try <title=”healthy snacks=”” to=”” go”=”” href=”https://www.kitchenstewardship.com/ebooks-at-kitchen-stewardship/healthy-snacks-to-go/”>Healthy Snacks to Go for lots of ideas to take on the run!).</title=”healthy>
5. Categorize Small Kitchen Supplies
Plastic shoe boxes are a great way to organize decorative sprinkles and toppings, or the supplies you use for natural food coloring…or of course, herbs, essential oils, or supplements, right KSers?” 😉 Any small bottles or containers that fit in the same category.
6. Gather Mail
Plastic shoe boxes can be used to hold your mail pile until you are ready to sort it so you don’t misplace or lose it.
7. Create Easy To Grab Toy Kits
A plastic shoe box of toys like Play-doh is the perfect distraction for a child while you are making dinner. (I’ve got an excellent recipe for playdough here! -Katie)
8. Store Bulk Purchases in Easy to See Bins
Opening bulk purchases like boxes of instant oatmeal packets and putting them into a shoe box will allow those packages to take up less space. It will also give you a visual reminder of when you need to buy more oatmeal. Mini boxes of raisins or other field trip treats are easy to stow away like this as well.
9. Organize By Category
10. Give Each Family Member A Shoe Box
I like to have a plastic shoe box with each child’s name on it in your kitchen. Then, when the area gets too cluttered, I grab the shoe boxes and divide the clutter that I see among the children that I have. Each child can then be given their shoe box and sent to put their items away.
A stack of shoe boxes is also great for mom. By laying the shoe boxes out on the kitchen counter, you can divide overwhelming tasks into smaller piles.
For example, if you need to make cookies for the kids’ bake sale, put everything that you bought to make the cookies in one shoe box. In the next shoe box, you might have mail. The following shoe box might have a birthday party gift, the card, and the wrapping that you need to have for your child’s birthday party this weekend that they’ve been invited to. And the last shoe box might be full of mail that you need to take to the post office and copies that you need to make on your next errand day.
By taking the time to break all of these activities into shoe boxes, you can grab one at a time, complete the task, and put the shoe box away.
Organize With Shoe Boxes
I love shoe boxes because they are economical, they stack and they are easy to use!
You can even reuse actual cardboard shoe boxes in lieu of the plastic bins.
From Katie – My favorite tip was number two by far. See more tips on organizing with reused containers to save the earth and your budget!