Organization Hacks Every Mom Should Know
In this post-Marie Kondo era, people are increasingly interested in organization hacks and minimizing clutter to maximize joy. But the pressure to have a home that looks like it could be featured on HGTV leaves many parents feeling overwhelmed. We’ve got you covered with easy and inexpensive ways to get organized.
You know what brings us joy? A tidy playroom and toys without missing pieces. We want to help you experience the joy a little organization can bring to your life which is why we’re sharing our top organizational hacks using everyday items.
We’ve got eight inexpensive or free items that will help up your organization game. We hope you find these organization tips useful, but don’t let them be another source of parent guilt. A home doesn’t have to be tidy to be loving and happy!
Check out these organization hacks for parents:
1. Tackle boxes make great storage for small items.
Not just for fishing tackle anymore! The small spaces designed for fishing lures and hooks are perfect for small cars, action figures, trains, art supplies, and more. On the road, small tackle boxes are a great way to store toys and treats for a long car ride. You can find inexpensive tackle boxes at rummage sales and big box stores.
2. Use resealable plastic bags to organize outfits.
Use quart and gallon-sized plastic bags to keep outfits organized when traveling with little ones. BabyQuip Quality Provider Lauren Swihart shares this tip, “I individually pack outfits so luggage isn’t a mess upon arrival. My 4-year-old can easily grab a bag and dress herself in the morning. I label the bags with each kid’s name and day of the week. Then I keep and reuse the bags for every trip.”
3. Hanging shoe racks are a genius toy organization hack!
Shoe organizers top the list of home organization hacks—beyond closet organization, we’ve seen them used to store everything from spray paint to pantry essentials. Hanging shoe organizers are so versatile! They should really just be called hanging organizers! BabyQuip Quality Provider Inbal Vellucci uses one to keep her kiddo’s toys neat and off the floor, “I put all the little toys—building bricks, action figures, anything with lots of little pieces—in an over-the-door shoe organizer.” Check your local dollar store for an inexpensive shoe organizer.
4. Organization hack for breast milk: Use empty soda boxes!
If only you could bury liquid gold…but you can’t. Pumping mamas know that breast milk takes up a lot of freezer space. We love this easy breast milk storage hack from Val at Lovely Lucky Life. She uses old soda boxes to organize and store her breast milk stash.
Soda boxes fit perfectly in most side-by-side fridge/freezers and upright freezers. You can easily stack, label and rotate the boxes to keep your stash organized. If you’re looking for a crafty DIY project, you can cover the soda box in cute paper.
5. Store old clothes in empty diaper boxes.
Babies quickly go through diapers AND quickly outgrow clothing. So re-purposing empty diaper boxes for clothing storage makes a lot of sense! And because diaper boxes already include size info, you don’t even need to label them.
Pack those adorable newborn bodysuits (the same ones that baby only wore once) into the empty newborn diaper box and you organization hack is quickly done. Of all the organization ideas we’ve come across, this is possibly the most simple. And we love how the boxes stack neatly because they’re all the same size.
6. Reuse fabric bedding bags for toys.
Have you been wondering what to do with those fabric bags that bedding is sold in? They include some kind of closure—Velcro, drawstring, snap, or zipper—and are just begging to be repurposed. These bags are perfect for keeping toys organized—like train sets or toy food. Infants get a kick out of opening the bag to see what’s inside. And your toy box looks a little less messy! Did we mention they’re washable?
7. Large envelopes make storage for small parts and pieces easy.
Wooden puzzles are great toys for babies and toddlers—they help develop hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills, they help teach colors and shapes, and they can survive being thrown and chewed on. But they don’t stack well. And if you’re not careful, the puzzle pieces go missing.
Envelopes exist to help you keep your puzzles intact and organized. We love the string-tie versions because they expand to accommodate puzzles of varying thickness and allow little fingers to practice tying and untying a figure eight. This is an organization hack to easily adopt today!
8. Fridge organization hack: Use labels!
We could dedicate an entire blog post to all the organization hacks that could benefit from labels, but for now we’ll just suggest one place you should label immediately—your refrigerator. Many wise people have said, “a place for everything and everything in its place.” Labels will help keep your fridge clean and organized—with leftovers that are easy to locate (so they don’t mold in the back) and important items are always where you expect them to be.
The average person opens the fridge 15–20 times each day. Multiply that by the number of fridge-opening people in our household and you begin to realize how labeling your refrigerator can help keep you sane and efficient. Aby at Simplify 101 has a great post about how she uses labels to keep her fridge organized. Her fridge is relatable and her labels are specific enough to be clear yet general enough to be flexible.
Kathy is a freelance writer, an Independent Quality Provider with BabyQuip and the mother of a very active one-year-old boy. When she’s not changing diapers, developing engaging content for clients, or helping families travel with little ones, she enjoys reading, gardening, yoga, and naps.