I have a tendency to pick storage solutions that don’t make the most sense. Usually this happens when I find something free — on Freecycle, at a yard sale, or by the side of the road. I have to make it work, it was free.
Take this suitcase for example. I bought it an estate sale for $2 — what a steal! At a vintage store, I bet it would go for over $20. I thought it would be the perfect storage solution for the kids’ art supplies. They could easily carry it anywhere they wanted to work on projects — inside the house or out.
The problem was it got all messy and disorganized and the kids kept trying to stuff it to the gills. I was getting worried it would soon exceed its flexibility. It didn’t work.
Inspired by Laine’s post about making storage look part of your decor, I remembered a jelly cabinet I had in the basement. After sorting through its contents, I realized most of it could be purged or stored elsewhere. It was the perfect size for a new arts and crafts cabinet for the kids and I had just the place for it by the front door.
I rescued the cabinet from the basement but wasn’t a fan of its white color. Too boring. My eye was drawn to the gold color of this lamp I recently picked up at Target and the gold in the large topographic US map on the wall.
And as I was cleaning out the cabinet I found a bunch of paint chips – Benjamin Moore’s Autumn Gold was the same color as the lamp and also matched the yellow color in the map. It was meant to be.
Not that everything has to match, but I wanted some sort of continuity. I like how I’ve mixed gold, gray, blue and wood tones in the room, seems like a nice cozy fall color palette. And come on, with a name like Autumn Gold, it’s a no-brainer.
So long story short, I painted the cabinet Autumn Gold. Couldn’t be happier. The cabinet blends in with the rest of room and reminds me of those gold-colored appliances from the 60s and 70s. Maybe those will come back in style.
After painting, it was time to organize. We keep all our markers, crayons, and colored pencils in these wall-mounted buckets in the dining room, so the cabinet needed to hold paper, stickers, paint, clay, and various craft supplies. Easy peasy.
We sorted what we had, weeding out whatever we could. A few mason jars were just right for loose items that can be transformed into mixed media masterpieces.
I’ve had this cabinet for about 12 years now. It’s been shuffled around so many times and held many different things — dishes, canned goods, wine, sweaters — I’m so glad to give it a more permanent and prominent role in the house.
TBD what will happen with the suitcase. Right now I’m thinking cloth napkins and table linens. It would also be good for hats and gloves in the winter. Or even computer cables and electronic accessories. I’m sure it’ll hold several different things before I finally make up my mind.