Category Archives: Plastic Bin of the Week

Stackable Plastic for Space-Efficient Dorm Storage

Get ready for the dorm move ahead of time with shopping ideas from our blog. You know your dorm is not going to have enough storage room (I can guarantee it having been there). Here are a few ideas for storage and you might also enjoy some of the dorm organizing blog posts at the Organize-It Blog.

iris stacking bins


Iris stacking bins are great for food, socks, odds-and-ends, whatever you want to store in them. The beauty is that you can use as many, or as few as you need. The semi-clear plastic lets you easy see what’s inside and the open front makes your goods accessible. They come in two different widths – 4.25 and 5.5 inches and range in price from $1.99-$3.99 (with quantity discounts).

stackable drawer bin

This clear acrylic stackable drawer bin is perfect for storing shoes or other items on a closet shelf, dresser or desk. At only $8.99, you can buy as many as you need, and when you move out of the dorms, you can repurpose them for something else.

stackable storage basket


The stackable plastic storage basket is great for toiletries, makeup, digital devices, and anything else you need to store. It comes in 9.25 or 14-inch sizes, and in green, pink, frosted white or light blue colors. The movable handle makes it easy to carry, but folds down when not in use. Prices range from $6.99 to $9.99.

stackable makeup box


This stackable makeup box will keep your beauty kit organized and accessible and having the capability to stack additional drawers is just dreamy. It’s not just for cosmetics, either, you could put jewelry, i.d.s or a variety of small items inside for safe keeping. It’s 13.5 inches wide and 2.65 inches high for compact storage and the drawer includes a thick handle. Price: $25.99.

K-Cup Storage


Okay, this isn’t really stackable, but it’s hard for me to think about dorms and studying without interjecting coffee into the picture (so I’m adding this in as a bonus). If you’re a coffee addict like me, you might need a little Keurig brewer on your dorm desk. And here’s the bin to store your K-cups. It’s 5 inches wide and holds up to 40 K-Cups for your favorite Keurig morning cuppa and costs only $29.99.

Refrigerator Storage Bins

refrigerator storage bins

If I could use only one product to organize my fridge, it would be refrigerator storage bins.

If you’ve ever been down on your knees, cleaning up the mess from the mushrooms you forgot, the meat that thawed and leaked through the cellophane, or the Buffalo Wing sauce you inadvertently tipped as you rummaged for a midnight snack, you know exactly what I’m referring to. Messes. Icky, sticky messes. Unidentified, mystery messes. Messes made glaringly apparent by the stark contrast against your cold white refrigerator interior.

When I started working at Organize-It, I quickly discovered tons of ways to organize my home. The refrigerator bins by Dial were probably the most glorious discovery. I quickly purchased enough to fill my refrigerator. Now you might be thinking you can get some dollar store plastic and use that, but I don’t recommend it. Here’s why, some plastics are safe for food, and some aren’t. Also, plastics not engineered for cold temperatures quickly crack when the temperature exceeds their tolerances.

Dial refrigerator storage bins are food and refrigerator safe. There are numerous other reasons they are great:

  • Clear plastic lets you see the contents.
  • Recessed handles let you pull them out for easy access.
  • Spills are cleaned by removing and washing the fridge bins only.
  • Easily access hard-to-reach items by removing the bin.
  • Easily organize food by consolidating like foods into individual bins.
  • Reduce refrigerator maintenance by tending to bins as they get soiled.
  • Refrigerator bins come in a variety of sizes including narrow bins for fruit.
  • Bins are stackable for efficient vertical storage of smaller food items.

Refrigerator storage bins help me keep my refrigerator organized and I seem to have less food waste, as the food is visible and accessible. The stackable design lets me add more as needed and I was able to combine units to fill most of my shelf space, with a little left over for small liquid cartons, such as milk. I highly recommend these, as they are my favorite food organization product.

refrigerator bins stacking


organize-it sidewalk sale

Storage Dispenser Works For You

Plastic bins come in all shapes and sizes, and our newest featured product is a great example of that versatility. Storage dispensers are an excellent way to store bulk items you use around the home regularly. 

Specifically, the heavy duty garage storage container and dispenser from Organization-Store is a multi-use product that can accommodate many of you daily chores.

This storage dispenser has lots of helpful details. A sturdy side integrated handle makes it easy for all ages and sizes to handle this piece. The flip-up spout allows for clean, easy pouring, too.

Overall, this storage dispenser is crafted from high impact plastic, so it can survive the busy environment of any home, garage or basement. Pieces are designed to stack too, to you can utilize multiple dispensers and store them together with little effort.

What’s more, the large eight gallon capacity is sure to accommodate your needs, whether it’s storing pet food, litter, charcoal or other bulk items. This dispenser is safe to use with food because it is crafted from 100% BPA-free materials.

We love this piece for it’s durability, capacity and over ease of use.

More ideas for uses:

  • Sidewalk salt
  • Grass seed/mulch
  • Pet food
  • Cat litter
  • Charcoal
  • Bird seed

plastic dispenser


organize-it sidewalk sale

Protect your belongings with a plastic utility tote

Winter means storage; whether it’s holiday decorations, summer patio furniture, seasonal clothing or more. Some jobs call for a professional and in the plastic bin world, the utility tote is that equivalent. 

When you have heavy duty storage needs you need heavy duty bins. This utility tote from Iris is available in either 3 or 17 gallon sizes. Made from durable polypropylene plastic, this bin features a locking lid, reinforced corners and a grid bottom. This piece can survive the elements, indoors or out. Stack in the garage, shed, basement — the reinforced designed will keep your belongings safe.

As an added bonus, all of Iris’ products are made in the U.S.A.


  • Lid includes snap-down buckles that lock down to keep your items safe.
  • Polypropylene construction ensures long-lasting storage use.
  • Reinforced grid bottom provides structural integrity.
  • Opaque design lets you hid away clutter.
  • Available in 3 or 17.5 gallon sizes.
  • Inset handles make moving this box a breeze.
  • Sleek black, gray and red colors.
  • Stackable design accommodates any storage system.
  • Made in the U.S.A.

Save money on DIY ornament storage and have more for gifts

Plastic bins are a never ending invite to DIY splendor. They’re great for every occasion, every season and every room of the house. The holidays are an especially great time to take advantage of these inexpensive, convenient home organizers.

For this weeks tip, you’re gonna have to gather a few supplies and get to work to transform your plastic bin into DIY ornament storage.

Now, I know you can just throw all your decorations into a plastic tub and call it day, but doing this can put your delicate decor in danger of breaking. Fragile glass ornaments or precious keepsakes require the right storage, but buying organizers can add up quickly.

To create your own ornament storage bin all you need is a plastic tote, cardboard, plastic cocktail cups and a hot glue gun. Take a large cardboard box and cut the sides to fit horizontally in your plastic bin. Next, get your hot glue got and attached plastic ups in rows across the cardboard. Glue the cup on the bottom, creating perfect little cubbies for ornaments. The short cocktail style cups work best because they allow you conserve space and add more layers of cups in the bin.

Once the glue cools and sets, you can add ornaments. Make as many layers as will comfortably fit in your bin without compromising the integrity of ornament protection.

Photo courtesy

Painting plastic bins for chic storage alternatives

Photo courtesy IHeartOrganizing.BlogSpot.Com.

I use plastic bins throughout my entire house. They’re great storage and they’re always helpful to have on hand for projects, moving and so much more. But sometimes they can be an eyesore when you have to keep them out in the open. Plastic bins can be re-purposed to create fun and fabulous storage pieces.

  • Stencils: Simple modifications can make the most drab pieces exciting. Small storage pieces like counter top drawer sets are instantly classed up with some simple stencils or decals. Create your own stencil or purchase one from your favorite craft store, tape it in place and fill it in with spray paint, brush or even paint pens.
  • Chalkboard paint: Sometimes modifications are for efficiency. Have a lot of the same plastic bins stacked up in your basement? I do and I’m constantly rummaging through all of them until I find what I’m looking for. It’s frustrating. Adding labels with the use of chalkboard paint makes it super simple to
  • Jute: Ok, so it’s not paint, but covering plastic bins in hemp, jute or even fabric is a quick fix too. I love this cute tutorial from To do it, get yourself a large plastic tote, some casters and your choice of material.

How to make a compost bin with a simple plastic tote

“Compost is an organic matter that has been decomposed and recycled as a fertilizer or soil amendment.”

Thanks, Wiki. But how do you make a compost bin? A quick Pinterest search can lead to premature exhaustion and overwhelming apathy. Do not fret, you do not need to go all out to create a simple home compost bin. Thankfully, there is an easy and inexpensive way.

I’m always trying to find new, unique ways to use those plastic totes that line my basement walls. As I watched the slowly changing leaves this weekend, it hit me: compost bin.

Here is a simple step by step process on how to make a compost bin:

Take your pick

Find a plastic bin fit for the job. Whether you have on laying around or must purchase one, make sure it is tall. At least two feet. And it must have a very secure, latching lid to keep our any curious critters.

Once you have a bin picked out, grab a drill or a hammer and nail to create air holes. Put at least eight hols in the bottom of the bin and in the lid. This will allow for proper air circulation and therefore even composting.

Fill it up

Back to those leaves. If you have them, collect some dry leaves from the yard and fill a quarter of the  bin with them. You can also use newspaper for this, but I really recommend the dry leaves for a more pure compost.

Next is dirt. You can buy some for a hardware store or just dig it out of the ground at home. Either way, fill the bin with dirt until it is half full.


Next, just add you food waste.  Every time you add waste to the bin, make sure to stir it gently with a shovel or hand spade. Then spray it lightly with water until it is moist — you do not want to make it too wet. Be gentle!

Finally, just place the DIY compost bin somewhere outside in the shade so it doesn’t dry out. Come spring, you will have the best fertilizer for your gardens. And the cycle continues!

Find products for this project and more at




Plastic Bins to Keep In Your Car

Collapsible CrateWe all sing the praises of how useful plastic bins are for storage around the home, but what about in the car?  Turns out they can help with so many things outside of the home as well!

Here is a run down of how to pick and what to use for different types of plastic bins in your car:

  • Collapsible Crate – These fold flat and can be used for everything from keeping grocery bags upright to eliminating your use of grocery bags all together!
  • Lidded Plastic Box –  A small, file size lidded plastic box is a wonderful thing in the trunk of a car.  There are a million plus uses for it.  Here, just a few that I can think of:
  • Extra Shoes – after a day in the mud (or after an unfortunate step in doggie waste), you can rest assured that your carpet and upholstery will remain stain (and stink) free thanks to extra shoes and a container in which to put the dirty ones.
  • Hiking/Nature Kit:  If you find yourself spending more and more time outdoors these days, why not stock your car with essential tools for enjoying nature such as a frisbee, binoculars and sunblock.
  • Emergency Kit – This goes without saying, every car should keep a fully stocked emergency kit for both roadside emergencies and weather emergencies.  Toss a first aid kit in there as well for last minute injuries and illness.
  • Kids Kit – Not just for the trunk, plastic bins find uses all over the car.  In the front passenger seat, moms and dads can set up a kids kit for unexpected delays in the car.  Stock it with items such as snacks, water, coloring supplies, toys, and a few good kids music CDs.  Next time you find yourself in traffic, you will be thankful to have all of this stuff on hand to avoid messy tantrums that are caused by bored, tired or hungry little ones.

Now that you have your home storage under control, get a grip on that car where we spend more and more time these days with some handy, compact plastic bins!

Plastic Bins WITHOUT their Lids…what to do with them?

reg-44212Maybe you have an old plastic storage box lying around but are missing the lid.  Or maybe  you have an old keg bucket with rope handles that you don’t need anymore for its original use.  Or perhaps you stumbled upon an old plastic garbage can in the garage that you don’t use anymore.  If you find any of these treasures lying around the house, inside or out, and want to do the responsible thing and reuse them, instead of throwing them away, you are in luck.  A beat up old plastic bin can serve many purposes around the home.  Here are a few of my favorites:

1.   Collect Rain Water – On the west coast, we are living with extreme drought conditions.  So whenever we get a chance of rain, I line up a few of these old plastic bins (ones that do not have holes in them) outside to collect precious drops of water, which I can then use a few weeks down the road for watering my veggies when the ground turns dry.

2.  Yardwork – If you live with  lots of weeds, as do I, you know that they do not pack down into a small footprint.  Weeds, as their name suggests, are wild by nature, and when you try to fit them into a small container, they simply bounce right out.  Save yourself some trouble by putting that large old garbage bin to work.  Roll it over to your weeding site and back up to the yard waste bins when you are done to avoid too many trips.

3.  Garage Sorting – These big bins, although not great for longterm storage anymore, can be used effectively as sorting stations in the garage.  For example, you might have three of them lined up at the side of the garage.  One says “Dump”, one says “Give Away”, and the other says “Sell”.  This allows you to keep the garage somewhat neat and tidy!


Plastic File Boxes for Tax Time

reg-1250203058-17740It’s almost that time of year again when those W-2s start rolling in!  Be prepared for taxes every year by using a special box designed just to hold tax information.  One of the best uses of  plastic bin is as a file box, and never fear, there are, of course, plastic file boxes designed to hold hanging files, so you don’t have to worry about simply shoving all of your important tax related documents into one big plastic box (although you can if you want to, it is not recommended for obvious reasons).  There are many different types of plastic file systems, here is a run down to get you started, mentioning all types that are readily available on the market:

1.  Plastic Drawer Systems:  Oftentimes, the bottom drawer of a three drawer plastic drawer system will be equipped with tracks built in to hold hanging files.  If you choose these, they are a great storage option in the home office, but be sure to find one with a caster that rolls with the file drawer (so the whole unit should have five casters total).  This ensures the drawer will roll smoothly under the weight of all those documents!

2.  Large Plastic File Boxes – For the average home, you will need 3-4 of these file boxes but they are much more affordable than a traditional metal file cabinet and, best of all, they are portable.  What I love about this is that you are not tied down to the office when it’s time to tackle that filing pile – simply take the appropriate box with you into the living room and file away while enjoying some television!

3.  Portable file boxes – Like the Iris Flip Lid Letter File Box, you can take it with you down to the accountant’s office for help with your taxes or down to the office – wherever you need it most!