In the family room, living room or den… (Continued From Previous Page)
21. Some wicker hampers almost look like end tables and are perfect for
serving as such while storing extra blankets and linens. Some people like
to put an appropriate size piece of wood or glass on top to make them even
sturdier for setting glasses on.
22. Wicker chests also are great for this usage and work well for storing
and keeping handy shoes.
23. Of course, those wicker chests and hampers are perfect when you're
scrambling to tidy up for impending company. Throw everything from the
floor into one and sort it out later (after your company leaves).
In my family room, I use a half
melon shaped basket that's made of multi-colored dyed rope to hold
DVD's and video tapes. When I find these items lying about, I just
scoop them up and drop them in. That keeps the movies handy for
watching, yet not in the way if I want to vacuum the floor or use
the cocktail table for holding drinks. And the DVD's look like they
naturally belong there in that pretty basket.
24. A flat oval or rectangular basket setting on a side table can be a
decorative catch-all for holding mail and other papers that accumulate.
Keep its sides only about two inches or so high. That way, when it reaches
the top, that's your signal to purge its contents.
25. Show off and store collectibles such as sea shells in a round basket
on the cocktail table.
In the bedroom…
26. A small cloth rag basket can be stored in the closet and is perfect
for holding pantyhose because they're less likely to snag on that type of
27. Use an even smaller rag basket on your dresser to hold rings, pins and
earrings since the material cushions them and prevents scratches.
28. Assign men in the family their own basket for emptying their pockets
into each night. Tightly woven Haitian rag baskets and African bowls are
ideal since their fine weave ensures nothing will fall out the bottom or
29. Put large magazine baskets in the closet to hold extra linens. You can
store guest pillows there too, even in vacuum sealed bags.
30. Fill a small, shallow rectangular basket, with or without a lid, with
your most treasured letters and cards. Keep it nearby under the bed or on
a shelf on your dresser, for sentimental or inspirational reading.
31. Or a wicker hamper with a lid in the closet can store extra pillows
and keep them dust-free. If you see openings in the wicker slats or don't
like your linens snagging on the inside of the basket, line the hamper
with a sheet or large gallon trash bag.
In my bedroom, I keep a small sewing basket that's about 8 1/2 inches long
by 8 1/2 inches high by 5 1/2 inches wide. It's big enough to hold spare
buttons, thread and needles as well as a mini sewing machine. Its lid is a
two-sided pin cushion of a decorative patchwork pattern. And it has two
swinging hinged handles. It fits perfectly on my dresser, where it's
always within quick reach for small sewing jobs.
In the children's rooms…
32. Medium-sized lined wicker hampers are not only great for storing dirty
laundry or seasonal sweaters but they hold toys---lots of them. (Just make
sure that their lids stay unlocked on hinges that easily swing open for
33. Also, put a wicker hamper or chest at the foot of the bed with an
extra blanket for self-serve on those chilly nights.
34. A medium-sized, or bigger, picnic basket with a hinged lid and
swinging handle can hold diaper supplies and is portable for carrying with
35. Keep a big round willow basket, without a lid, in the corner on the
floor for tossing in notebooks and reading materials.
36. Try a foot high round or square planter-shaped basket in the closet
for storing rolled up socks. Get an even taller one and have the kids
"shoot" their dirty laundry into it from across the room.
also own several stuffed animals. Since I don't have room to display even
the cutest ones, yet I want to keep these, I store them in a lined wicker
hamper. I keep the brown lacquered hamper in the closet. The stuffed toys
stay dust free.
37. Fill the kids' closet shelves with various size open rectangular
baskets for holding clothing or other items. The neat thing about
decorating a child's room with baskets is that the same baskets will be
just as age appropriate for them when they're teenagers or adults. You can
rearrange the baskets to vary the look but you don't have to buy new
baskets as they age (unless of course, you've stenciled something too cute
In the bathroom…
38. Some baskets are pre-shaped to hold tissues. Just insert your box of
39. Use a sturdy rectangular basket (no lid) with or without dividers on
the back of the toilet tank to hold bottles of hairspray, mousse, shaving
cream, etc. One with a handle is even better and makes it simple to remove
these items in one swipe when it's time to dust.
40. A rectangular basket on the back of the toilet tank also is ideal for
holding extra rolls of tissue paper in plain view yet discretely and
decoratively. These tank top baskets usually are sold in two sizes, a
full-size that runs the horizontal length of your tank top and a size
that's half that length (but both are the same depth and width).