Thursday, July 1, 2010

Storage Dilemma

If you're a regular here, you know we almost sold our house.  You also know there are a lot of things I love about this house. 

But, like anyone, I have a few things I hate about my house too.

The biggest thing I hate is that we  have a damp basement.  We used to have a wet basement until Kelby helped Jason address drainage around the outside of our house.

I hate having a damp basement because that means we can't finish it and use it as a toy room as many families do.  Very little even gets stored in our basement because it's musty and gross.

The other thing I hate about my house is that, since it's a Cape Cod style home, there is very little storage in general.  This, coupled with the basement's dampness, makes the situation with toys and clutter especially challenging.

But I am on a mission for a solution.

I've heard of people with Cape Cod style homes using the space behind their upstairs bedroom walls as storage by building in dressers or cabinets.

On Apartment Therapy, for example, they feature how one person built drawers and bookshelves into the unused space in their upstairs bedroom in their Cape.

And, here you can read about how Michael found storage for his daugher in their 1950s Cape.

So we are hoping that we might be able to do something similar to help store Imani's toys but keep them accessible to her.  Wish us luck!

If you have found storage in a Cape, please share how! 

I also need suggestions on how you store toys if you don't have a finished basement.  Do tell!


  1. Toys are my nemesis. I feel like they multiply at night. And no we do not even have a basement. There are toys everywhere. I am currently struggling with solutions myself. And am getting no where fast... Do we really have to wait until the kids grow up before we can have a clean house?

  2. Stephenie,

    I lived in two capes and did exactly what the above photos show. There is a wealth of storage space in the eaves of those homes. Take advantage of it!
    Regarding toys; I have one solution. Each time a new toy comes in, an outgrown and unused toy needs to go out. It reduces clutter and children feeling overwhelmed by so much. It also teaches them how to make choices, prioritize and be charitable.

    Your Friend,

  3. I really don't have any solutions other than to say that I think the area under the eaves is a great idea. I've seen that done in both open shelves and closed cupboards and both are a fantastic use of the space. The other thing you could do is put the long low IKEA bookcases along under the eaves and put baskets in for toys.

  4. Hi Stephenie,

    We repurposed antique sideboards into attic storage at our old house. See image at this post:
    We cut holes in the wall, added support frame work in the attic space, cut the legs off the sideboards and set them in place. Loved the look and the function,

  5. Deborah,

    What a great idea! I have a problem with keeping stuff (especially clothes, thinking they will come back in style) so this will be a good thing to implement both for Imani and for me!

  6. High Desert Diva,

    AWESOME way to utilize the space. Thanks so much for passing along the picture. I love it. I will definitely show it to Jason.

  7. Hi Stephenie! Great blog! Found it attached to another and I'm so excited! I love finding like minded people! Please feel free to check out my blog if you want I look forward to reading/seeing some more of your creative ideas! Have a great day-Peace

  8. Hey PS-Just saw that you live in Upstate NY???? Small world-I live near Syracuse :)

  9. Hahaha! Sorry never answered your question I got so carried away with all your cool posts- We build upright storage containers ( we can build to any specification/measurment and either adhere decorative feet or wheels. The upright storage takes up less space and is great for smaller rooms, plus, we can custom decorate in any theme/color/design!

  10. If there’s a will, there’s a way, and you seem to be the type of person who really applies this in life. I think the solutions you thought of are practical, but these might not be enough to store big items that you no longer need but don’t want to get rid of just yet. If you ever need to store huge items, like unused furniture, I think your best bet will be self storage solutions. =)

    Ericka Muldowney


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