Saturday, March 14, 2015

Lotsa Ways to Find More Space for Food Storage

Note from Becky: I spent hours on this post and then it deleted itself. Sad face. My intention was to give credit to many of the bloggers whose ideas I am sharing below. But since the document got lost, I must thank them anonymously. I'm just using the Power Point slides from my presentation at a preparedness expo. I also had a zillion random ideas for making more space for food storage that I was sorting through to remove the duplicates. Because that got deleted, instead of giving you a zillion ideas, I'll just include the 20 that are on a handout I've given out for years. That list is below the pictures. 

20 More ideas to make more storage room in small spaces.

This handout was created to help make room for food storage, but the ideas apply to any storage. 

1. Use hidden space behind closet and cupboard doors. Attach wire shelving racks behind any door.  Large ones can store movies or lightweight pantry items.  Small ones inside cupboard doors can hold curling irons, Kleenex, spices, or drinking cups.  Pocket shoe holders can store shoes, toys, bathroom items, or craft supplies.  This can clear space in drawers, cupboards, or shelves for food storage. 

2. Small wire shelving racks can also be hung underneath any shelf to hold items like a phone book, paper plates, napkins, microwave popcorn, or sleeves of crackers, makeup, jewelry.

3. Use hooks in the house to hold items like towels, robes, coats, hats, backpacks, purses, belts, slips, neckties, keys, aprons, necklaces, curling iron, hair dryer, swim suits, exercise clothes, umbrellas, pet leashes, broom, mop, duster.  Hooks in the garage hold yard tools, lawn chairs, “Grandma bags” (items to return to Grandma), bike helmets, bikes and strollers. You can drill holes or use sticky hooks.

4. Think "up." Use the ceiling of an unfinished room to hang water or dry foods stored in plastic soda bottles. Using a double length of twine, tie the necks of two bottles together. Attach sturdy screws to the ceiling rafters, and hang the twine over the nail. This saves floor and shelf space. If you’re concerned about weight, a waterbed weighs much more than these do.  This is also a great way to hang seasonal items like Easter baskets, Christmas wreaths (stored in a trash bag to avoid dust) and Halloween buckets.

5. If small items often get lost, attach them with a string or ribbon:  fingernail clippers, tweezers, scissors, tape, hair brush, lip balm, a pen by the phone.

6. Use closet hanging containers for jewelry, neckties, scarves, wrapping paper.

7. Getting rid of unused clutter creates extra storage space! 

8. Double your shelf space in closets and pantries by doubling the depth of your current shelves. Or attach extra shelves between existing shelves. Turn a coat closet or bedroom closet into a mini storage room by adding a set of shelving. 

9. Create hidden storage space in the bottom of a coat or bedroom closet by placing rows of uniform items like cannery cans on the floor, then placing plywood or laminate board on top, creating a higher floor. 

10. Clear several shelves of your linen closet for food storage by using these tricks: Store a spare set of sheets between the mattress and box spring of each bed by folding it in a long strip. Give away the rest, or store in an airtight bucket to have dry, clean cloth during an emergency. Store spare blankets laid flat under the fitted sheet of each bed. Hang a hook for each person’s bath towel, then only keep a few extra guest towels. Swimming towels can be stored in a summer box under a bed. 

11. Tuck items under or behind furniture. Hunt for storage space under beds, desks, cribs, and sofas. You can store a lot of grains or beans in plastic soda or juice bottles lying under a sofa.  To store dry food in these bottles, hand wash by shaking hard with a little soapy water, rinse thoroughly, and air dry for five days upright to ensure no moisture remains.   

12. Raise your bed onto cinder blocks or buckets of wheat. Sew a longer dust ruffle to conceal the items, or use a bedspread a size bigger than your bed.

13. Make an end table by stacking two buckets and placing a round board with a tablecloth over it. These can be used on both sides of every bed, couch, or chair...that’s a lot of food!

14. Use space under sinks with plastic drawers, bins, shelves.

15. Use the garage to store more items, so food storage can be stored inside where it's cooler. If your garage is tight on space, build a shelf or two up high along all three walls, a bit higher than your heads. Hang shelves from the ceiling to hold seldom-used items, like totes of holiday decorations, life jackets, skis, etc. 

16. Purchase an enclosed pantry.  Taller is better to use less floor space. A unit like this can hold lots of food, and because it's enclosed it looks fine in any room. Just place a plant on top to create a decorative feel. I found my brown laminate pantry on sale for $40.

17. Use every square foot of your food storage room you can. Place shelves or stacks of buckets against all four walls. (It's been said buckets should be stacked only three high, unless on shelving.) If you have a wide space in the middle of the room, make an isle or two down the middle, just like a grocery store. Leave the isles just wide enough to walk and retrieve food. Use a spare bedroom as a storage room.

18. If preparing to finish your basement, draw the floor plan out on paper, then prayerfully work to pencil in as many areas as you can think of for these four types of storage:
1) a 3 month supply of everyday foods; water storage  
2) a year supply of food storage
3) a year supply of non-food items like toilet paper and detergents
4) seldom-used items like holiday decorations, clothes you're keeping for the next child, baby equipment, camping gear, and luggage. 
So design in as many storage areas as you can, even if it means having less basement rooms, or smaller rooms. 

19. If you can't design in an extra storage room or two, build in extra closets along walls of a family room, hall, bedrooms, or even a bathroom. Design bedroom closets longer than they need to be, then use the extra space for food storage, ideally with two sets of doors, so you can separate the closet into two. Window seats in bedrooms or a family room can hold extra blankets or sleeping bags, or even food storage.

20. Reevaluate your priorities. Does every child need their own bedroom? Do you need a room just for watching television? Many homes today have a tiny food storage room, yet a large toy or theater room. Which will you be glad you had when hard times come? When people complain they can't afford food storage, then they buy a big screen TV, buy DVD's every month, and eat out regularly, are their actions in line with following the prophets? 

     Here are quick links for the topics from my presentation "Eight Tips for Organizing Your Food Storage":

  1. Overcoming excuses with the word of God.
  2. Create a simple meal plan to build and rotate your year supply. 
  3. Finding more storage space in your home. 
  4. Finding more money for food storage and preparedness gear. 
  5. A master inventory of what you have, what you need/want, and where it is stored. 
  6. Prioritizing where to start, and what to do next. 
  7. Seven Ideas to organize your food storage. 
  8. Why I believe spiritual preparedness matters most. 

1 comment:

Deanna said...

I love this! I've been asked to teach a 45 minute class for our Stake's Preparedness Fair on "Creative Storage Ideas". May I use some of your pictures (crediting you, of course!) and your basic outline? I kindof feel like most people can go to Pinterest and find these ideas, but you have it laid out so perfectly! Let me know if I have your permission, please. my email is rdpoulsen at gmail dot com. Thanks! Deanna