Saturday, October 30, 2010
Creative Bathroom Storage for Small Spaces
If your bathroom is on the small side, storage options can be limited, so you need to be creative. When we remodeled our main bathroom (the biggest project of our lives), we chose to eliminate the former closet. This meant there would no longer be a door to hide untidy shelves and a massive pile of dirty laundry. This white shelving unit now serves as primary storage, with the addition of different baskets and containers. I bought the shelf at Christmas Tree Shops when we first moved into the house. It turned out to be a great purchase for not a lot of money.
The top portion has three shelves (four if you count the very top), and the bottom has three shelves, enclosed by an opaque door. Behind the opaque door, we stash not-so-sightly toiletries.
When I was growing up, someone was always looking for tweezers. Eyebrow maintenance, sliver removal, jewelry repair - tweezers were a hot item in our house. And there was one really good pair. Anyone else run into this? I decided to put a set of grooming tools in each of our bathrooms. Scissors, tweezers, nail clippers, etc. I keep them in what used to be glass candle holders. Now they always have a home.
Did you know that you can re-use glass candles holders, like the Glade or Fabreze ones? They probably don't recommend doing this, but once the candle has burned as low as it will go, I just put it in the microwave for a few seconds. Then I loosen the remaining wax and wick with a craft stick, toothpick, or pencil, and throw the wax away. You might need to microwave it a couple of times to get everything out. Then wash it with dish soap and use it for something else! They come in handy for storing just about anything small - loose change, pens, that one earring without a mate. This one had stars on it from a Christmas scented candle, but the clear glass ones look great.
To store more unsightly items, this plastic basket fit perfectly on one shelf. It came from my husbands college days. He can just throw his razor charger, toothpaste, contacts and anything else in there.
Movin' on up...the first open shelf has items that I don't mind being out. Tissues, a candle and a small container. At first they were sitting right on the white shelf, but it looked a bit empty and clinical. So I added a shallow basket to contain them all. Such a small thing made a big difference. I think the basket looks much nicer, don't you?
The turquoise mini ceramic flower pot (found at Christmas Tree Shops) holds toothpicks, for easy access. I got this idea from my friend Morgan. She had them in a glass apothecary jar in her bathroom, and I thought it was a great idea. My husband lives for toothpicks. He had them all over the house. Now they are pretty much here whenever he needs one.
The next open shelf has another flower pot which holds Band-Aids (I know Band-Aid is the brand, not the product, but it sounds funny calling them "bandages"). For some reason, someone always needs a Band-Aid in our house. Someone who bites their nails until they bleed. I'll give you a clue: it's not me.
I found these cute little baskets at Wal-mart (a place I try to avoid at all costs, unless it's for stuff like this). They fit four Bath & Body Works bottles perfectly. "Free creams and lotions..." name that movie!
The top shelf is just wide enough to house a medium size basket with fabric lining (also from Christmas Tree Shops). This one acts as a catch-all for miscellaneous items, hair things, extra cotton balls, etc.
I put the matching larger basket on the very top of the shelving unit, because it didn't fit anywhere else. It keeps a hair dryer and the occasional curling iron.
I like how neatly tucked away everything looks.
Across from that, is another tall narrow wine-rack-turned-storage-unit, where the closet formerly was. I keep two baskets up there. I guess you could say I really like baskets.
One is for extra toilet paper (gotta have it), and the other is for over-the-counter medicines and ointments.
Does the Gold Bond, Icy Hot, and ankle bandage make us look old? Thought so.
One of the worst things that can ever happen is running out of toilet paper, so I made sure there was an extra roll stashed near le toilette, at all times. I put a roll in another one of those cute little baskets.
Along with a little bottle of room freshener spray. You know what it's for.
On the glass shelf above the toilet, sit my favorite little glass containers with silver lids, that hold cotton balls and Q-tips (again, Q-tip is a brand, but it sounds better than cotton swab!). I love these containers.
The vanity does have space behind it's double doors for stashing more stuff.
It's kind of awkward to keep fetching things from down there, so I reserve it for cleaning supplies and guest toiletries. Plus, that darn u-shaped sink drain is right in the way. I thought about putting in some type of shelf to maximize space, but decided it wasn't worth it. I did manage to fit a white plastic basket to hold spray bottles and such.
Speaking of cleaning products, my favorite bathroom cleaner is Method's Tub and Tile spray, in eucalyptus mint scent. It smells really nice and does a number on soap scum and all that gross stuff no one wants to clean.
One last storage tidbit. Tucked next to the guest towels, on the tower shelves, I placed one of my milk glass pedestal bowls. I filled it with guest shampoo, lotions and a shower cap, thanks to some nice hotel visits. I got the idea from Christy, who has one in her guest bedroom.
There you have it. Some creative bathroom storage ideas for small spaces. All you need are a few baskets, different containers, maybe some shelves and organization. Most of all, make sure it's functional and what works best for you. Don't let limited square footage stop you from making the most of your space!