How to Use Plastic Storage Containers

Plastic Storage Containers: Great Storage & Organization Option

Plastic storage containers are the best way to store and organize out-of-season or specialty clothing items. (Think: Halloween costumes or your unfortunate but just-can't-quit-them collection of Christmas sweaters).


  • Versatile: Plastic shields clothing from the elements, like a damp basement or a dusty attic.
  • Functional: Square and uniformly-sized, they can be stacked in corners or on high shelves utilizing every inch of your storage space.
  • Easy-to-Use: Clear plastic means you can...MORE easily retrieve items from the correct storage container without rummaging around.
  • 01 of 10
    Woman placing folded clothes into storage containers
    Ruth Jenkinson/Dorling Kindersley/Getty Images

    Not only for clothes storage, these locking lid containers are useful in the attic, basement, garage or in the kitchen. Just make sure you don't store plastic near anything too hot--like a furnace or stove. The 15 qt. size makes them very flexible for small odds and ends.

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    A plastic rolling cart to help you store odds and ends. This three drawer rolling cart is mobile because it's on wheels and can be quickly use din different spaces. 

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     Use these more heavy-duty plastic containers in your garage, on your patio, in the shed and any other outdoor storage space you have. Use these for:

    • Sports equipment
    • Tools
    • Cleaning supplies


  • 04 of 10
    File tote for paper files and documents
    File tote for paper files and documents. Getty

    This extra large file tote box should be large enough to fit files for a household of 2 or less. Once you begin adding in new people, you probably need to graduate to an actual file cabinet. 

    Continue to 5 of 10 below.
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    Accessory Box - Plastic Storage Container
    Accessory Box - Plastic Storage Container. Photo / The Container Store

    My 3rd most useful pick is the Container Store's sturdy accessory box. Yes, you can use these to store scarves, gloves, hats, chunky jewelery, and hosiery, but I would encourage you think think outside the box (pun intended). Here are some other ideas for the smaller accessory box:

    • Desk accessories
    • Tools
    • Cables and wires
    • Travel toiletries
    • Toys

    The list could go on and on.


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    For holiday decor, outdoor entertaining and large kitchen items

    Plastic Storage Container 17 Gallon - The Container Store
    Plastic Storage Container 17 Gallon - The Container Store. Photo / The Container Store

    The 22 gallon plastic storage container is my number 1 pick. A great, multi-use option:

    1. Roomy enough to fit more than a hat; while being,
    2. Small enough for a woman to easily carry (I know from my own experience, some boxes are too big for my arm span, and therefore too awkward to carry comfortably).

    The size also guarantees you won't be weighing the container down to the point where it's unsafe to ease it off a high shelf.

    TIP: Buy in bulk to ensure you'll be able to stack these...MORE containers neatly. They are designed to "fit" together.

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    Perfect for storing papers, documents and crafting materials, this flat, shorted boxes will fit in any closet or storage space. Use these for:

    • Gift wrapping materials
    • Craft materials
    • Files
    • Accessories like scarves, gloves and hats
    • School supplies


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    Sweater and bulky clothing items

    Plastic Storage Containers - Sweater Box
    Plastic Storage Containers - Sweater Box. Photo / The Container Store

    Sweater storage is a delicate art. Sweaters, typically made of cotton, wool or cashmere, aren't content to just sit around in any old box during the hot summer months. They need to breathe and they need protection from the elements. These deep, plastic storage boxes ensure you won't cram them on top of each other to fit them, and the plastic will protect fabric from dust and humidity.

    TIP: Since these boxes are on the large size, do not store them higher than...MORE your torso. Pulling them down off of a high shelf could be dangerous.

    Continue to 9 of 10 below.
  • 09 of 10

    These open-top boxes are extremely useful for items you need to put in storage but need to access often. Here's what to store in these boxes:

    • Holiday decor
    • Craft supplies
    • Out-of-season clothing 
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    For very large items and collections

    Sterlite 66 Quart Storage Container
    Sterlite 66 Quart Storage Container. Photo / Sterlite

    Due to the size of this box, you'll want to store light-weight items like clothes and accessories--no books or kitchen pots and pans. Also, store a box this large on a lower-shelf to spare your back.

    • Dimensions: Length: 24.4 "; Width: 17.0 "; Height: 25.6 "
    • You can buy this in a pack of 6 or as 1 at a time.