Lego Storage

Some of you may know, I used to have a blog called [just had] A Bright Idea where I focused mostly on interior design & decor and some DIY-ing. When I started Style Oyster, I wanted to incorporate those things along with my love of fashion and all things, well, stylish. Unfortunately, leaving that blog for a new url posed it’s challenges. I lost the readers I had acccumulated over the 6 months of having the blog as well as the content…but wait, that content is NOT lost! Thanks to Blogger, I was able to move it over to Style Oyster. However, it was a little outdated (the wording in some, etc.) and of course the pictures were all tagged with my JHABI logo (and a few with even older blog logos than that! I had some name change issues…) I am putting this paragraph here as a preface to these posts because even though they are from the past, they are still projects that took a long time and are dear to my heart and I didn’t want to lose them when I officially take my old blog off the Internet. So I apologize to those of you who have followed me since [just had] A Bright Idea, as you will be experiencing some deja vu, but I know some of you are new and this may all be new content to you. So bear with me, I plan on posting these once a week until they are all on Style Oyster. Thank you so much, and I do hope you enjoy. xoxo

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Tanner has been long overdue for a good Lego storage solution. The kid has been obsessed with them for the last two years and they are always a big unorganized mess – usually scattered all over the floor.

A few weeks ago, I searched “Lego Storage” on Google and was pleasantly surprised to find I wasn’t the only one who had an issue with Legos scattered all over the floor. I found some great pictures and great ideas. I decided that out of all the ideas, I liked the ones where clear plastic bins were used and they were separated by color.

I immediately went on an online search to find a cart of enough plastic bins to segregate the array of colors of Legos he has. I was a bit surprised to find what some stores are actually getting away with charging for a simple cart of plastic bins. It’s plastic, people, NOT titanium.

So I was sad and thought that this project would have to be put on hold for a little while until I could a) afford to buy the cart, or b) magically happen upon a cheaper version randomly in a store one day. Then I had an “a-ha” moment…(I love those)…and realized that I had this piece of furniture that I had never exactly made practical use from (this is actually an old pic I took when I was considering selling it on Craigslist! THANK GOD I didn’t!):

It was perfect. All I had to do was take measurements and find either two or three plastic bins that would fit perfectly across each shelf. Off to the dollar store I went. I found 12 that fit perfectly in the shelves when set three across.

Now to the organizing. This step took the longest. I enlisted Tanner’s help because I knew he’d a) be into it because he loves anything to do with Legos, and b) he’d be more likely to keep it organized if he too spent the time organizing it. (And I’m happy to announce that so far, it’s worked!)

I decided the bins definitely needed some cute color labels. I couldn’t find exactly what I wanted, so I decided to get some construction paper, freehand the letters and cut them out.

Then I used some Mod Podge to stick them onto the bins. I first did a thin layer on the front of the bin, then I stuck the letters on, and went over them with another thin layer.

I let them all dry and then put them all back into the shelving unit. And here we have the finished product:

Oh, and I kept secret the best part about this particular storage unit…which made it even so much more perfect:

The top opens so he can keep his boards in there and build on them when playing! It’s like shelves and a table in one! I can’t believe it never donned on me to use this piece for this purpose sooner!


Organizing Must-Haves

I thought it would be fun to pull together all of my favorite organizing tools and must-haves and make one big post showcasing them all (and showing off similar items that are currently available to buy!) Hopefully it will help some of you find inspiration for organization and some fun shopping list items for the next time you’re out and about.

1. A Planner. I am nothing, if not lost without my planner. In fact, I have more than one. (One for me and one for the mommy in me) My planner’s have to have months and weeks, a place for notes (I randomly get genius ideas throughout the day, and if I don’t write them down, they’re gone as fast as they came. It didn’t always used to be that way, but that’s Mommy Brain for ya.) They also need address/phone numbers. I currently use a Franklin Covey. I can’t seem to let go of it – I keep buying the refills. Here are some great planners available that I also adore:


Sarah Pinto @ http://www.seejanework.com/



Kate Spade Spiral Desktop Planner @ http://www.katespade.com/



myPlan Planner @ http://www.momagenda.com/
2012 Life Planner @ http://www.erincondren.com/

2. Bins, bins and more bins! I can’t get enough of them! All shapes, sizes and colors. You can use bins for ANYTHING, ANYWHERE. Pantry, linen closet, kids’ rooms, play rooms, kitchen storage…the list goes on and on. Here are some of my favorite bins right now:

ClosetMaid Cube-icals
ClosetMaid Nickel Wire Drawer @ http://www.target.com

3. Dry-Erase Wall Calendars & Bulletin Boards. I love having an area in my home that is sort of the “scheduling hub” for the entire family. It’s in plain sight every day in the kitchen and my husband and I can keep on track with each other and our kids’ schedules. It’s also a great place to post reminders for school or activity things, bills due, etc. These are some great wall organizers available now that I recommend:

Daily System Collection @ http://www.potterybarn.com
Board Dudes Magnetic Dry-Erase Calendar Tile (available at Target Stores) – I have this and use it for my menu planning!
Board Dudes Magnetic Dry Erase Combo Board (available at Target Stores) – I have a couple of these! Love them!

4. File boxes and accordion folders. These are great for family documents and record-keeping, coupon sorting, receipt-filing…you name it.

Greenroom Recycled File Box with Hanging Folders @ http://www.target.com

5. Large Storage Totes. These are a must-have for garage storage. I use them for holiday decor, maternity clothing, beach toys, etc. I love fancy-ing them up with my own labels so I always know what’s inside!

Sterilite 35-Gal Latch Tote

6. Labels. I love to label! Especially if those labels are sweet and pretty. I like to make everything have a place and make it easily identifiable for everyone (ahem, the hubby). I use them in the pantry, in the kitchen, in my office, in the boys’ rooms, the linen closet…I LOVE LABELS. Here are some great ones I found:

Martha Stewart Spice Labels (Image Courtesy)
Chalk Labels (Image Courtesy)

7. Personalized totes and bags. I love having personalized items, call me crazy, but it just makes me more likely to use them for anything and everything. The boys and I have personalized canvas totes from Lands’ End and I also received a wonderful Christmas gift from my sister-in-law this year – a Thirty-One Gifts market tote with “The Smith’s” embroidered on it.

Canvas Tote @ www.landsend.com – I love that their website photo had “Morgan” as the monogram!

8. And last, but certainly NOT least, my biggest organizing must-have is a husband that understands and respects my need to feel organized in this chaotic (yet wonderful) life we live. A husband that knows how wonderful I feel when I come home to a clean house; a husband that happily does his share around the house.