pretty office & craft supplies organization

I was chatting with a new friend the other day who mentioned she had seen my blog and now she wants to come see my house, since it must be awesome. I was flattered by her comment, but I giggled a bit because my house is by no means awesome. Sure, I like my kitchen since the budget redo last summer, and my front room has a cool photo wall, but it also houses my husband’s bike most of the time along with bunches of other stuff, including a fairly thrashed, super cheap bookshelf that I stole from my sister when we lived together in COLLEGE. That would be about 15 years ago. (Dear Shelby, I also have your ironing board from college. And I still use it. Dad would be proud.) Add to all that the fact that there’s seven peoples’ worth of stuff crammed our relatively small home and no, it’s not actually awesome.

However, I’m working on it. If you’re a regular here you’ve already heard me talk about my current mission to transform my downstairs family room (on a budget, of course). I started with paint, changing out the dark red for light grey, and that alone made a huge difference. Then we added a row of desks for computers & homework (along with matching desk chairs) and a couple IKEA Expedit units (along with fabric covered bins – seen below). Then I actually staged one of the Expedit units. You know, I found things that looked cool together and stuck to a color scheme and everything. And since I’d already spent money on the bins, I figured out ways to cover some of the office organizers I already had to add more color. Here’s how it looks:

I kind of like it. The fabric bins on the very bottom are Target ITSO brand, then the chevron ones are cheap sterilite bins covered in fabric. Then I filled up the other spaces with 12×12 size paper/magazine holders (flowered), two sets of sterilite plastic drawers, favorite books, old photos, and some insta-fied flower prints.

Transforming the office organizers was easy. The first thing I made over were my 12×12 paper/magazine holders. All it took was a pretty piece of patterned scrapbook paper and some Mod Podge:

Next came the small plastic drawers, which were also covered with scrapbook paper. This time I used spray adhesive, just to see if both Mod Podge or spray adhesive would work, and they do. FYI – the pretty paper I used was from Fancy Pants’ Park Bench line.

Finally, I pulled the larger drawers out of the unit and spray painted them. I used white and gold spray paint to get an ombre effect, just adding a thin layer of white, then a little gold, then more of whichever color I needed to get the shades I wanted. I was pleased that the spray paint grabbed really nicely, even without primer for plastic, but they do need a topcoat of some sort to keep them from getting scratched. (I haven’t done this yet but I’m thinking I may just paint over them with modpodge to seal.)

I think it’s really pretty now (when my daughter hasn’t pulled all the books and bins off – luckily she leaves this stuff alone most of the time). So no, my house isn’t awesome, but maybe this little part of it is. Thanks!

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  1. 3

    Eva says

    I really liked the idea of the plastic drawers . Though it seems a little bit awkward but still it works. We can have many color options and this would be really a great thing to the geek like me.

  2. 4

    Mel says

    Oh my goodness, GORGEOUS. I like your sense of pattern and symmetry (something I am sorely lacking myself, LOL).
    Those would definitely make me *want* to come to work…

    • 6

      autumn says

      Hi Ronnie! I found a gold spray paint that I liked, which is the color of the darkest drawer. For the other two drawers I spray painted them white first, then went over them with the gold, trying to just “dust” the spray paint on. I think for the lightest drawer I actually ended up adding a little more white paint to get it very light. HTH!

  3. 7

    Lori says

    Very CLEVER ways to cover our beloved plastic storage containers!!! I used to do a lot of crafts when my sons were little and with working full time I got away from it. Thank you for giving me a jump start! I love your ideas!!!

  4. 8


    I love these ideas! I almost gave my plastic bins to the goodwill because they were so old. Now I’m going to keep them and give them a new look! Thanks for the amazing ideas!


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