The hardest part of moving in together is realizing just how much freaking stuff you have.
All of those little knick knacks you've accumulated over the years? All the half empty bottles of shampoo you swear you'll use again someday? All of the random appliances your grandparents have gifted you over the last five birthdays and Christmases? Multiply that all by two.
As I've been unpacking this week I've been getting pretty creative (I think) about how to organize out stuff in a way that still is A) functional and B) attractive. Sure I could keep the plastic set of drawers in the living room, but do I really want a home sponsored by Rubbermaid? I think I'll keep that little guy in the coat closet, thanks.
So, with a little help from Homegoods and a lot of help from Mom, I've put together a couple of cute storage solutions that help save space while still making our apartment look more like a home than a dorm room.
The Blanket Box
I am always cold so over the years I have collected a number of throw blankets and while I normally just keep them folded on the back of my couch, the pile just kept getting higher and higher. Add in EJ's throws, and it was like playing a really soft version of Jenga.
To upgrade my blanket storage game, I used a decorative little trunk from Homegoods that matched the living room. I rolled each of the blankets and arranged them in the box. It looks much neater than the blanket pile, and as an added bonus, the cats no longer sleep all over them! I put the trunk in an unused corner of the room where it adds to the colorful decor but is completely out of the way!
Bookshelves (not just for books!)
I love a well put together bookshelf...it's my interior design guilty pleasure. I am ashamed to say how much time it took me to organize my bookcases- although to be fair, a solid 20% of our boxes were solely dedicated to my books! I love mixing books with other little things, like fake flowers, picture frames, and candles. I even keep my jewelry boxes on the bookcase in my bedroom! The variety spices up an otherwise boring shelving unit and allows for a little creativity. The extra space is also nice when you decide to add to your library - just take away a candle and add a few novels!
If you're like me, your phone and laptop are pretty much always dying. I like keeping chargers downstairs in the living room, but always hated the look of all of the wires everywhere! We used an old bookcase that EJ had and turned it into a charging station and storage area for the "office corner" of the living room. I bought a decorative box for EJ to keep all of his filing in (again, much prettier than it's plastic predecessor) and we drilled a hole in the top shelf of the bookcase to run chargers through. The wires are out of the way and our laptops and phones have a shelf to sit on while they charge!
While a big walk in closet made sharing hanging space fairly easy, trying to consolidate all of our clothes into one dresser was a feat that was clearly just not happening (even after the massive Goodwill purge). I didn't want to buy another dresser that would look out of place with the rest of the bedroom set, so when I came across the cube storage at Target, a light bulb went off. I used one cube for socks, one for underwear, and one for bras - and I still have an empty one! They're the perfect size for small clothing items and add a little bit of fun to the room without looking out of place. Eventually I want to decorate the remaining shelves...but first I need to finish unpacking!