Sometimes it’s the smallest things that are the hardest to organize. What are you supposed to do with all of this clutter – those extra pencils, paper clips, sewing needles, screwdrivers, or whatever else you have on hand – besides sweeping it into a drawer and trying to forget about it?
Shira Gill, a home organizer based in Berkeley, California, has an answer: try a caddy or tool box.
“I’ve found them to be remarkably helpful,” said Ms. Gill, whose book Minimalista will be published by Ten Speed Press in October. “It’s a versatile, portable, and practical solution.”
Ms. Gill uses caddies to hold home office supplies, electronics chargers, and art and school supplies for her children. But they’re just as handy for collecting tools, toiletries, and cleaning supplies, she said, and even create a “wellness station” on the doorstep to store face masks and hand sanitizer during the pandemic.
Make sure you choose one that you find visually appealing as it will be on display frequently.
“They are utensils,” said Ms. Gill. “But there’s no reason they can’t be stylish too.”
Should a caddy have many compartments? A container with lots of small compartments is good for small items like craft supplies, Ms. Gill said, but “in general, I like a handful of larger compartments” to allow flexibility.
What is the best material? “I prefer caddies that are not made of plastic, both for aesthetics and sustainability,” says Ms. Gill, who prefers boxes made of metal or wood.
Should a caddy have a lid that closes? It depends on whether. A lid makes things look cleaner and prevents things from falling out, but it also makes the contents less accessible.
Yamazaki bathtub shelf with wooden handle
Caddy made of powder-coated steel in two sizes
From $ 25 at West Elm: 888-922-4119 or westelm.com
Toyo ST-350 tool box
Japanese metal tool box with fold-out trays
$ 95 at the MoMA Design Store: 800-851-4509 or store.moma.org
Terrazzo storage box
Resin caddy with rubber wood handle in two sizes
From $ 39 at Urban Outfitters: 800-282-2200 or urbanoutfitters.com
Koppa handmade tool box made of wood
Birch tool box from Verso Design of Finland
$ 120 at KonMari: shop.konmari.com
Powder-coated tool box made of galvanized iron with a perforated bottom
$ 95 at Ferm Living: 011-45-7022-7523 or fermliving.us
Sign up here to receive weekly email updates on residential property news. Follow us on Twitter: @nytrealestate.