Metro-East Living

Storage solutions are now a lot more than just plastic bins

Store your stuff in style for 2017 at Home Goods in Fairview Heights.
Store your stuff in style for 2017 at Home Goods in Fairview Heights.

Baby, it’s cold outside! No wonder retailers put on the push to make us want to declutter our homes this time of year — it’s a good way to stay warm indoors and be productive.

I have to say that with all the innovations in the past decade, storage containers haven’t changed much. You can still go anywhere from Walmart and Target to Lowe’s and Menard’s and buy inexpensive plastic bins with lids in sizes to fit a pair of shoes or one big enough to hold every Christmas ornament you own. Clear ones are the most popular: you can see what you stuffed inside. Newer designs include wheels and dry-erase or chalkboard areas so you can write on them. I can’t imagine it wouldn’t rub off over time.

Probably the one difference in home storage that I’ve seen in the last few years is the idea that you can collect your mess and make it look good by using classy-looking baskets and boxes. (For example, I have a square basket that holds all my sunglasses. A long, low, woven plastic container hides under my dresser and holds summer flip-flops and house slippers.)

I was at Home Goods in Fairview Heights on Tuesday and noted a nice collection in different sizes, including wooden boxes ranging in price from $7.99 to $24.99. A rectangular woven container with hand slots was $6.99 while a three-piece nesting set with handles was $16.99. (No lids on any of these.)

If on your to-do list is making the kitchen a more inviting space, freshen up your garbage disposal with Plink, little marble-size, gel balls that clean and deodorize when you drop one in your disposal. I’ve been using them for a couple years now and recommend them. It’s amazing how bad a garbage disposal can smell after grinding up things like onions! Plink clears it away almost instantly. A 20-pack set in several scents is $6.99 at Bed, Bath & Beyond in Fairview Heights.

While you’re there, check the rustic Christmas tin houses and angels. They’re 70 percent off. The angels are candle holders while the houses, in three sizes, open up so you can put a candle inside. Regular prices are $14.99 to $29.99.

Old Time Pottery in Fairview Heights has tan canvas containers with lids and handles to store dishes, stemware/glasses and bowls for $8.99 to $11.99. The attractive-looking boxes have a plastic window so you can see what’s inside.

Target has a very attractive Danbury tufted storage ottoman with nailhead trim on sale for $80.99. You may find it in gray or cream fabric (black and soft ivory fabric or navy or light gray faux leather sold online) at the Belleville, Shiloh and Fairview Heights stores. It’s part of the Threshold line of home goods.

I saw a six-drawer white plastic storage cart for $16.99 at Menard’s in O’Fallon. Each clear drawer of the Bella Storage Solution cart (being discontinued) had a different color latch. The cart comes with swivel wheels and stands about 2 feet tall. Really great for organizing craft projects, with enough room inside a drawer for an 8.5-by-11-inch sheet of paper.