It is truly amazing the things we throw away every day. Many of these simple items we think of as garbage can be used in clever ways to store all sorts of things. And the best part is you don’t have to spend a dime! Here are a few of my favorite ideas for turning trash into useful containers creating frugal ways to organize your kitchen.
Wine Boxes = Gift Wrap Storage
You can get sturdy cardboard boxes that wine and other liquor is shipped in from your local big store or liquor store for no cost; just ask. You’ll find most stores are happy to get rid of them. Otherwise, they have to break the boxes down and dispose of them, which is just more work for them.
Just cut the flaps from the top of the box and leave the dividers intact. You can decorate the box if you like or just use as is. Now your wrapping paper has a place to sit pretty and upright like it should. You can also store ribbon in the other divided sections and even store scissors and tape, too. Each divided section is heavy-duty and will stand up to a lot of wear and tear. You know the box is sturdy because it was used to hold and ship more than a few bottles of wine at a time.
Plastic Beverage Bottles = Storing Dried Beans and Rice
These containers are already food safe grade so you’re good there. The caps fit tight, so that’s a plus. Just be sure your bottle is clean and completely dry. Then use a funnel to fill the bottles up with any dried food item you like that will pour out easily. Dried beans, peas, lentils, and rice are perfect candidates for this frugal storage idea. You can also see what’s in the bottle, which makes organizing easier.
Cardboard Canister Containers = Just About Everything
We’ve all, at one time or another, probably used an oatmeal ‘canister’ to store things. They are appealing because they are sturdy, can be found in many sizes, and they usually have a nifty little cap. They are also super easy to decorate. With a little construction paper, Contac paper, wrapping paper, wallpaper, or even paint, you can turn any oatmeal or chip canister into a work of art.
There are endless ways to use this cardboard canister, decorated or not. Use it in the kitchen to store small odds and ends that otherwise get lost in the ‘junk drawer.’ Corral all those individual packets of crackers and snacks that keep finding their way into your kitchen from meals here and there. Put your ‘butcher’s twine’ in a small container, cut a hole in the lid, and thread it through, keeping your twine clean and neat. Keep your kitchen sheers put away in one. Gather up all your shish-kabob skewers and put them in one container. Put a sharpie pen and labels in one so you’re ready to label the leftovers before they go into the refrigerator or freezer.
The next time you go to throw out a container, look at it. Does the size, shape, or construction look promising? Go ahead and use it to get organized!