During the holiday season wrapping paper, cards, gift boxes, and shipping material clutter homes and become instant waste. ”It’s estimated that between Thanksgiving and New Year’s Day, more than 1 million tons of additional waste is generated each week nationwide…” – CalRecycle.ca.gov
Here are simple ways you can help reduce waste. When getting organized around the house, hold back from going out to buy fancy and expensive small storage containers. Instead, reuse and repurpose gift boxes generated over the holiday season or any time of year:
a jewelry box
- in the bathroom – hair clips, hair ties, q-tips, floss wands, contacts
- in the kitchen/pantry – toothpicks, twist ties, rubber bands, tea packet display (see tea drawer)
- in the office – push pins, paper clips, sticky notes, loose stamps, business cards, ID cards, gift cards, credit cards
- in the sewing room- loose needles, stray buttons, safety pins
- in the utility room or drawer- batteries (old or new), nails & screws, miscellany
a shoe or shirt box
- in the bathroom – brushes & combs, make-up, shaving supplies, travel size toiletries, cleaning sponges/rags
- in the bedroom – undergarments, tights, socks, scarves, gloves
- in the craft room – greeting cards, ribbon storage, photo storage, the possibilities are endless in here!
- in the kids room – small toy parts and pieces, pencil and crayon box, arts & crafts
- in the kitchen/pantry – small appliance parts and pieces, snack pack storage
- in the living room – candles/tea lights, CDs or DVDs
- in the office – receipts, envelopes, printer ink packets, writing utensils
- in the utility room or drawer – light bulbs, rags, random parts and pieces
Reuse and repurpose leftover holiday, birthday, or every day store-bought packaging to get organized around the house. If you are concerned about the way repurposed gift boxes look to visitors in your home, use them inside a drawer or cabinet, so that only you see them. Do this -even if only a temporary solution- until you can upgrade to exactly what you want and need. Food for thought: “upgrading” does not have to mean “new.”
how do YOU creatively reuse and repurpose gift boxes around the house?
Feel free to share in the comments section below.
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Isabella Guajardo, also known as Girl With A Truck™, is a professional home organizer and member of the National Association of Professional Organizers (NAPO). Living in Oakland and Monterey, she travels in her truck to work with clients throughout the SF Bay Area, East Bay, South Bay, Silicon Valley, Santa Cruz and Monterey Peninsula. She shares simple and creative ways to stay organized and stylish while reducing, recycling and re-purposing. Join Bella Organizing on Facebook.