The Power of The Humble Box Is Making Tidying Up an Art Form
Boxes can bring order to chaos, and as someone who struggles with letting things go, I can tell you that they have changed how I think about what I own.
Marie Kondo is taking to Netflix to teach people how to be accountable for their stuff and everyone has starting to ask if their belongings truly spark joy. It's a valiant effort to teaching us to be tidy, one full of tips for folding jeans, storing Christmas decorations, and appreciating what we have. But there's one through-line that shows up in every episode that really deserves our attention: boxes.
Marie has had homeowners put boxes in their drawers, in their garage space, in their bathroom. It may seem counterintuitive to add more things to an already cluttered space, but when things have their own places, we tend to actually put them back. Boxes can bring order to chaos (which we could all use right now), and as someone who struggles with letting things go, I can tell you that they have changed how I think about what I own.
My first foray into boxes that stored and organized was these stackable ones from the Container Store. I used to work in the beauty industry and had amassed quite the collection of products. Even with a vast ocean of options, I usually stick to only a handful of products on a daily basis. There was no reason for me to beautifully arrange all my eyeshadows or lipsticks in a crystal clear drawer-filled monument to makeup. These minimal boxes allowed me to easily access the products I used regularly and keep what I only used occasionally hidden, but easily-accessed by sliding.
In my new apartment, I somehow lucked into having a bathroom closet. It neatly fits linens (which will be rolled and stored a la Marie) but the storage of miscellaneous things like hair spray bottles and pomade jars was severely lacking. A plastic box like the one I found at Target was the best solution for me in that it neatly fits on the in-closet shelf and stores all of the bottles and tubs. Plus, it can be easily cleaned with a damp cloth in case there's any product leakage.
With the influx of people cleaning and organizing their homes, there has never been a better time to appreciate a box. Boxes aren't just for storing unwanted goods in crawl spaces, garages, or attics. They can be stacked and arranged in a Tetris-like solution for your crowded utensil drawers and overwhelmed closets.
Kitchen: Yes, there's always the drawer inserts with designated spots for flatware, but we all have more than just forks and knives in our drawer. Getting shallow boxes that fit together like puzzle pieces lead to an organized drawer that will stay organized, even if you have to dig around for individual tools.
Bedroom: What tends to lead to dishevelment in a closet is the problem of not knowing what you have. Clear storage boxes for shoes or scarves or belts solve this by allowing you to quickly glance at your closet and know what's inside any given box, without having to open them, rummage through, and then wait a week to put things back where they were.
Bathroom: The biggest cause of mess in my bathroom is my large amount of hair ties and bobby pins. Finding small containers that I can toss all of these in, plus combs and brushes, miscellaneous skin care products, and more have been a godsend. I have a couple of these on a cart from IKEA and they have allowed my boyfriend to have his favorite comb in arms reach, and keep my favorite hair ties from being lost to the back of a drawer.
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