Entries Tagged 'Free Standing Shelves' ↓

Cat-Friendly Shelving


Cats have infiltrated the internet, wormed their way into our homes, and stolen our heats with their cute antics and loving personalities. What’s not to love about cats? Absolutely nothing! Our pets aren’t just like our family, they ARE our family. We wrap Christmas presents for them, give up a spot in bed, and in some cases even sit on the floor while the cat curls up on the chair!

Cats are such as part of our lives we sometimes forget they don’t like social gatherings and excitement as much as we do, and with Christmas fast approaching it’s time to think about making the holidays less stressful on the smallest member of our family. If you’ve been binge watching the latest My Cat from Hell episodes on Animal Plant, you may foresee where this is going…”Catification”!

Give your cat or kitten a place of their own in your home so they can be a part of the festivities while getting away from unruly dogs, grabby children, and adults who forget to watch where they step. First we must determine if your cat is a bush dweller or tree dweller, meaning, does your cat prefer to hide out in low places or in high places? Finding your cat’s comfort zone is the first step in making them feel comfortable during the busiest time of year.

cat-cabinetIf your cat loves to hang out on the floor – perfect! Give your cat a couple hiding places where they can watch the room and the occupants while staying out of the way. If you have a cubby bookshelf, you can turn one of the storage cubes into a nesting box filled with your cat’s favorite toys and treats. You can also purchase a litter box cabinet, and instead of hiding the litter box, fill the cupboard with a small scratching post, a few toys, and other comforts to give your cat a cozy hiding place.

Tree dwellers are even easier to accommodate around the home. Tree dweller cats love to watch the activity without getting involved themselves, so give them a spot up high where they can keep an eye on their silly humans while staying away from the chaos. Wall mounted shelves give your cat an easy way to stay up high. Simply arrange shelves in such a way so your kitten can jump from one to the other while climbing in height. You can even arrange shelves around the room so they can always find an exit without touching the floor – and getting run over by distracted humans!

cat-shelf2Please note: using shelf brackets and wooden shelves can provide more support than floating wall shelves. As you are shopping for cat-friendly shelving, remember to choose shelves that will support your cat’s weight, plus a few pounds.

You can make the wall mounted shelves more enticing to your cat by installing different textures to the top surface of wooden cat-friendly shelves. Simply staple a locker rug onto the top for a soft sleeping surface, glue a scratching pad on for a play surface, or cut-down a carpet square to cushion your cat while they laze around the house. Your cat is sure to fall in love with their new play area and they will love being a part of the holiday craziness while keeping out a watching eye.

Do you have more “catification” ideas? List them below!

How to Add New Life to Tired Furniture


Stylish furniture can come with a premium cost, and when you are starting with your first or second apartment nice furniture doesn’t always fit the budget. Hitting up the local thrift stores and yard sales is a great way to obtain sturdy furniture at a fraction of the cost of buying it new, but it may not look like new. Below are some fun ideas on how to spruce up old pieces of furniture to breathe new life into your home’s decor.

Step 1. Find pieces of furniture that you like. A good rule of thumb is to look for pieces with similar styles or color patterns to coordinate the pieces together. For example, if you have a round coffee table look for round side tables with a similar look to achieve a cohesive design.

Step 2. If your acquired furniture pieces are looking a bit tired, give them a facelift with a fresh coat (or six) of paint or stain to make them look shiny and new again. This may take some time and a lot of elbow grease, but it is well worth it in the end. You can use a bright color to make the piece stand out.

Optional: Go over your fresh paint job with a piece of sandpaper to add a modern, distressed look to the piece. People pay good money for furniture to come looking pre-worn, why pay for it when you can do it yourself?


Step 3. Decorate, Decorate, Decorate!

Here is the final step. Decorate your bookcase, office desk, or other piece of furniture to add a modern flair. The sky, your wallet, and your imagination are your only limits! Here are some ideas to get you started!


Stencils aren’t only for school children anymore! Visit your local home improvement store or hobby store to find an intricate stencil that you like. Then simply tape the stencil to the piece of furniture and paint on your design. Wait for the paint to dry, remove the tape and stencil, and you have an amazing work of art to display on the side of your furniture.


Who says you can’t add a bit of color or patterns to boring wooden furniture? Remove the shelves on your bookcase and wallpaper the back with your favorite colorful design, then put it all back together for a unique decorative look. This idea is also great for a linen closet, bedroom closet, or really anything with shelves.



Use this innovative decorative technique to create an awesome looking collage on shelves, end tables, or any other piece! The decoupage process involves taking pictures, pieces of paper, or even cut-outs of magazines or comic books and gluing them onto furniture. You then go over the paper several times with varnish to protect the paper from harm while keeping them securely in place. Go online for more details.

Word Carving or Wood Burning

If you have the skills, or know someone who does, this old-fashioned decorating idea is perfect for decorating furniture pieces, wooden picture frames, or other wooden artwork in your home. You can also hire someone to do the work for you, but that may be costly depending on the extent of the work you want done to your piece.


Stick on Tile, Brick, Wood, or Stone

Are you in love with shiny tile, sophisticated brickwork, rustic looking wood, or even modern looking stone? You can use faux veneer or stick-on tile pieces to create a textured appearance to the back of your bookcase, wine cabinet, or other surface. This idea may be a bit more costly, but may be worth it for a piece you intend to keep around for a long time.

Remember, there is no wrong way to decorate your home as long as you are happy with the end result. You can always find inexpensive shelves and small furniture pieces online for a great discount so you don’t have to worry about sprucing up your furniture, only making it your own with some decorating.

5 Unique Book Storage Ideas


“A book is a gift you can open again and again”– Garrison Keillor

Giving away books is hard, you’ve cried together, laughed together, and fought side-by-side with the hero/heroine as they navigated through a journey of hardship and personal discovery. Instead of giving away your favorite books when you are running low on space, transform your current space to keep your books prominently displayed without losing any space in your home.

Turn the page to discover new ways to store all of your favorite books you’ve collected throughout the years.

  1. Turn a wall in your living room, den, or sitting area into a mural dedicated to all of your favorite books. Use floating bookshelves or wall boxes to create a unique design right on the wall, or you can install the shelves in perfect symmetry and use the book’s colors to create a unique look to the wall.


  1. Freestanding bookshelves are the norm for book storage, but who says you can’t turn them into a spectacular work of art? This cube-style bookcase takes up minimal floor space and the unique angles are visually interesting so you won’t even notice they are bookshelves.


  1. Are you looking for a more rustic alternative to book shelving? You can stack wooden crates on top of one another to not only create more storage space, but add a vintage look to your decor. Use cedar crates to offer a pleasant aroma to the living room or bedroom space. Tip: anchor each crate to the wall to provide additional safety especially in households with pets or children.
  1.  Do you know anyone who constantly has a book in one hand? Never be caught without reading material with help from a magazine rack or holder. You can even use an over the toilet magazine rack (no I’m not kidding) to keep a book on hand so you are never forced to read the ingredients from a shampoo bottle again.


  1. If you are short on wall or floor space, there is a solution! Take a wooden magazine holder, turn it sideways, and screw it right into a corner of the room. This allows you to store books inside the makeshift shelf or on top of it, and you can also use it to store various odds and ends around your home.

Find all of these storage solutions and more at Organize-It. Do you have a unique way to showcase or store your books? Please share in the comments below!

Create more space with bookcase room dividers

There are lots of great ways to get the most out of small spaces. One of my favorite decorating tips is using bookshelves to create room dividers and separate existing spaces into multiple areas. With the addition of a sturdy shelf, a living room can become a sitting room and a home office… or a foyer… or even a breakfast nook! I love this trick because you can renovate your home without the high cost of building or re-decorating. It’s a great way to make apartments, condos and flats a little more homey, too.

The right shelf

  • Open shelves: Open bookcases are a great way to to separate a room while maintaining a constant flow throughout the space. Utilize one or two bookshelves with open backs to separate living spaces. Once you add books and decor, the space fills out without a solid separation. This is great is you have a flat or one-room apartment because you can create specific spaces without making the area feel too small.
  • Multiple shelves: Think your space is too big for one shelf to do the trick? Utilize multiple shelves to get the look — and it doesn’t have to be the same shelf! Find a style that comes in multiple models or sizes and use them together. One tall shelf and one waist-high shelf creates a great divider in larger rooms.
  • Floor to ceiling: If you want to completely divide a space for privacy, use a floor-to-ceiling shelf. This option is best for small apartments. Create a closed off bedroom, or even create a faux “walk-in” closet behind the bed with one of these large shelves.


Portable Closet Storage for the Polar Vortex

Wow it has been incredibly cold these last few weeks! With temperatures in the single digits all over the country (if you are lucky!), people have been finding new and inventive ways to keep warm. Of course, the oldest and most time honored method of staying warm in frigid temperatures is layering. This requires a lot of storage space in the home so you can store those layers efficiently and neatly. With portable closet storage, you will not have any issues finding a place to keep all of your winter wear.

One issue with layering is that it takes a whole bunch of storage space in order to keep all of that winter wear organized. That is why you will probably have a difficult time keeping all of your cold weather gear in your built-in closets. Instead, use portable closet storage to increase your bedroom or closet’s total clothing storage space.

What is great about portable closet storage is that while it provides a great deal of storage space when you need it, it folds down compactly when you do not. This is vital in the summer months when you don’t need so much storage space, but you need to have floor space to walk around (and perhaps room to air dry your laundry in the warm summer months).

A great portable closet storage option is the Honey Can Do Storage Closet. This closet is a very subtle addition to the bedroom with its clean lines and white color. The closet is really durable and long-lasting, so you can use it every year. You’re going to need portable closet storage a lot more in the future with all this climate change, so make sure you get it right the first time!

Portable Closet Storage

Full disclosure: I wrote this blog post about the polar vortex that is sweeping the nation for the comfortable confines of an office with all of the windows open and a breezy 70 degree Southern California day just outside the door. Some people have all the luck, eh?

Decorative Bedroom Shelves Add Function and Fashion

What is the best way to get a messy bedroom organized? The bedroom is one place that many people value fashion over function. The worst case bedroom-scenario involves mountains of clothing so high that you cannot find your shoes. However, the second-worst case scenario is a sterile yet organized bedroom that could double as a hospital room. The best way to give your room a dash of décor while providing an additional touch of storage is to add decorative bedroom shelves.

Decorative bedroom shelves come in all shapes and sizes- and are able to hold and organize a variety of items. Not only that, I have seen gorgeous bedroom shelves made from oak, steel, bamboo and even heavy-duty plastic! Basically what I am saying is that there are no fashion-oriented excuses for a lack of bedroom shelving. There is a match for every style and situation.

I don’t have a lot of space in my bedroom. Therefore, my shelving needs skew towards the compact and space-efficient side of things. One of the toughest organizational tasks is finding a place to store my laundry after it has been cleaned. Half the time I do my laundry and fold up the clothes, I end up with a storage space shortage. That means I leave my freshly washed and folded clothing out on a cabinet or on top of the dresser. My clothing ends up getting dusty, dirty or full of cat hair (my cat loves to sleep on my clothes).

Decorative bedroom shelves free up some space in the bedroom.

Decorative Bedroom Shelves

Instead of wasting my own time and my valuable supply of quarters, I decided to add some decorative bedroom shelves. The 3 Drawer Metal and Wicker Chest offered the perfect storage solution for the bedroom. With just a single piece of furniture I was able to increase the clothing storage space in my bedroom. Now, I don’t have to worry about hairy or dusty slacks when I am running late for work!

Outdoor Storage Shelves For Summer Recreation

With the weather getting nicer and the likelihood that my gardening will actually be successful, it is time to look at some outdoor storage shelves! Whether it is home improvement, gardening or just recreation that is on your docket, shelves for your outdoor space are a convenient storage addition.

I am lucky enough to live in a drier climate than most in the United States. There is a reason they say “it never rains in Southern California”. And that is because it does not rain here, especially in the summer. So for my outdoor shelving needs, I do not need to worry as much about rotting or moisture damage. However, I am open-minded enough to realize that the rest of the country does not really share this climate advantage.

So for those that need an outdoor storage shelves that can survive a few summer-time thunder storms, I would recommend the Montego Bay Multi-Purpose Storage Cabinet. This incredibly durable cabinet is made from Shorea wood, which is moisture and UV resistant. Additionally, this cabinet is specifically designed for optimal drainage, so you don’t get pools of water collection on the shelves.

Outdoor Storage ShelvesOutdoor Storage Shelves

An option that does not involve any outdoor storage shelves

That cabinet is a great choice for your gardening tools and other outdoor items. For those that are more recreationally-minded, there are great storage options for the yard. The Deck Box Outdoor Storage Box is a perfect choice for storing your summertime recreational accessories.

While it is not really outdoor storage shelves, this item is a must-have for anyone that wants to keep their sporting equipment and playthings in tip-top shape through the summer. Plus, it makes a great seat in the yard when the lid is closed!

There are many other outdoor storage shelves out there. For instance, a great alternative to a wood cabinet is a strongly-finished set of metal shelves, which are also very resistant to the outdoor elements. One advantage of the metal shelves is that they are much less likely to warp.

With these tips in mind, you will be able to enjoy this summer and have convenient storage right at your fingertips!

Folding Garage Shelves: The Perfect Gardening Accessory

Now that the weather is starting to cooperate a little bit more, I have been able to resume my gardening hobby, planting new flowers and ground-cover around the house. For the last few months it has just been way too cold to go out and do any gardening, plus the frigid overnight temperatures would definitely have knocked those plants out cold (pun intended).

One thing that I like to get out of the way before the gardening season commences is to pull out my old folding metal shelves so I have a convenient place to store my fertilizer, gardening tools, pots and any other equipment I need for the season. For a long time I would just use my existing garage shelves to store these things, but ran into trouble in the winter. Because I am unable to garden during the cold winter months, I would have to put all of my equipment and gardening supplies on the shelves long-term. The issue with this is that I need those shelves to be open so I can store my everyday winter items like firewood.

After my first winter of searching for storage space because everything was full of gardening supplies, I took a different approach. Once winter set in, I put all of the gardening equipment away deep in the attic, where it wouldn’t take up valuable space. In the spring, summer and autumn when I am still able to garden, I bring out the aforementioned folding shelves, which for the last few months have been sitting in a corner, flattened out and taking up very little space.

When I was searching for the perfect folding shelf, I came across some great shelves before settling on what was the perfect choice for my situation, the General Purpose Origami Folding Shelves. Some of the great features of this shelf that helped sway me were the durable metal construction, open wire shelving that is easy to clean up, and it is set on casters so it is easy to move out of the garage even when full of supplies.

General Purpose Folding Shelves

Here are a few other shelves that might be more ideal for your gardening / shelving situation:

5 Shelf Cedar Shelf

Made from Cedar Wood, this 5 shelf red cedar unit is perfect for outdoor use, as the construction materials are very resistant to the harsh elements of the outdoors.

5 Shelf Heavy Duty Steel Storage Rack

For those that are storing very heavy-duty equipment, something like the 5 Shelf Heavy Duty Steel Storage Rack is a great option. This shelving unit is great because it can hold up to 750 pounds, more than most garage shelving units.

Folding Shelves for Record Storage

I am a total music geek; I cannot get enough new bands or artists and am constantly purchasing new music to discover. My favorite format for listening to music is hands-down a vinyl record played on an old-school record player. The sounds are so warm yet crisp, making you feel as if you are in the recording room with the band as they are playing.

Unfortunately, I am not made of money (and what money I do have goes to records!) so I live in a pretty cramped one bedroom apartment. The biggest downside for records (and partially the reason for their fade from prominence for a few years) is that they are big, bulky, hard to store and you cannot listen to them in the car or on the go. This issue is magnified by my small home, to the point which I had cardboard box upon cardboard box full of records and stack up on each other.

One of the best ways to create an organized space for storing your records is using a folding shelf. What is great about this type of shelf is that not only does it provide exceptional and secure storage for your vinyl; it also can be folded down for easy transport. This makes it perfect for the transient record-collectors among us.

I would recommend using a soft wood shelf to store your records over a sturdier metal shelf, for a variety of reasons. First off, one thing every record collector has to understand is the damaging effects extreme temperatures can have on vinyl – metal has this annoying tendency to absorb the extreme heat or cold, transferring that to your records and potentially damaging them. The other reason is that metal can be very sharp or have very hard angles, which can damage the gatefold of your records.

By using a wood shelf to store my records I have been able to secure a lot more space in my living room and get my records organized so it is easy to find them right away.

Wood or Metal Outdoor Shelves?

One thing I look forward to about the end of the winter and the re-emergence of the sun is that I am able to resume a favorite pastime, gardening. I love to be in the outdoors where the air is crisp and refreshing and I can hear the lovely sounds of nature. Unfortunately winter leaves me unable to do much gardening, leaving me with plenty of time to strategize for this growing season.

When it comes to gardening, I have found that one really handy thing is having some shelves in close proximity so it is easy to store your tools, fertilizer and other garden gear.  It eliminates the need to lug heavy items back and forth to the garage or shed. Where I live, the weather can often be pretty damp and unpredictable, so the shelves that I have in my yard need to be durable enough to last through multiple rain showers if I am not there to cover them with a tarp.

When I was buying shelves for my garden, I had two options: Wood outdoor shelves or metal storage shelves? There are pros and cons for both materials, and I went through both and analyzed them to come up with the best shelves for my situation. Metal shelves are prone to rusting if they are exposed to too much moisture or if the seal on them is broken, while wood shelves are able to carry less total weight and often warp or rot when exposed to moisture.

The choice I made was very unique and perfect for my situation. I found a pair of metal racks that could stand up on their own and buried each one about a foot deep in the ground for stability. The racks had horizontal bars that ran from one side to the other, which was perfect for placing large 2” thick planks across, made from mesquite, which is a very water-resistant type of wood. The major load-bearing pieces were made from the most durable material, metal – and wood planks as shelves allowed me to save a great deal of money.

This shelf is the perfect place to rest my things at the end of a long day of gardening. The durability of the shelf has shown to be impeccable and I have been very happy with the results of my wood and metal shelf.