Whole Living Daily

Organize for Free with Zip Bags

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When you open a new sheet set or pair of window curtains do you save the clear, vinyl zipper or snap top bag it came in thinking it might come in handy one day? I do- - so when Kathy suggested this topic I knew it was time to share seven ways to re-use these bags to get and stay clutter-free.

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1 Zip bags make great garden bucket organizers.

2 Use them as a bedside organizer.

3 Or a greeting card organizer.

4 They make great storage lid organizers.

5 Never lose those instruction booklets again!

6 Zip bags keep your valuables close by in a large tote bag.

7 Use them as an entryway organizer.

8 You can re-use the product card to label the bag.

9 Your bag might have a zipper top.

10 Or a snap top.

11 It may even come with a hook on top.

12 You can use a magnet to attach a bag.

13 Glue also works.

14 You might even cut a hole in the bag.

15 Velcro is another way to attach the bags.

16 You can also use a hook to hang the bag.

17 Shower curtain rings also work well.

18 You can use a binder clip to secure the bags as well.

There are three reasons I love these versatile little bags so much:
1. They're clear so you can easily see what's inside.
2. They're easy to wipe clean.
3. They're free!

7 Ways to Organize:
Garden Bucket Organizer
No need to shell out money for a specialty garden bucket, just make your own. Use an office binder clip to secure the top flap of the bag over the rim of the bucket. Then fill the clear pockets with gardening essentials such as gloves and shears.

Storage Lid Organizer
Tired of hunting for lid to match the food storage container? Keep lids sorted by size and easy to find by storing them in a bag hanging from a hook installed on the inside of a kitchen cabinet door.

Bedside Organizer
Stop misplacing your remote or favorite novel by using the bag as a bedside catchall. Slide the top flap of the bag between the mattress and box spring so the bag hangs along side the bed then use a binder clip to secure the bag to the bed skirt.

Greeting Card Organizer
Keep blank greeting cards organized so you can find the one you need for the occasion. Use the bag to hold cards by category then tuck the bag in your desk drawer and the next time you need a card you'll know just where to find one.

Instruction Booklet Organizer
Wondering how to change the batteries in the television remote or if your digital camera is still under warranty? Instruction booklets and product warranty information are best kept in bags by room, all the kitchen information in one, all the toys in another and home office equipment in another.

Tote Bag Organizer
Add extra storage to your favorite tote bag by inserting a bag or two. Secure the top flap over the edge of the tote bag using a binder clip. Perfect for going to the pool, the gym or just running errands. My beach bag tote includes a paint brush which is perfect for brushing sand off your legs.

Entryway Organizer
Never lose the dog leash again or walk out of the house without your keys. Keep everyday essentials right by the front door in a bag either hung over the doorknob or from a nearby hook. Sunglasses, cell phone cords and shopping lists with coupons can be kept in the bag for you to grab on the way out the door.

Think outside the box or in this case the bag. There are a variety of ways to transform these bags like attaching them with Velcro, an office binder clip, a magnet, or glue. Or you can hang them from a 3M hook, a shower curtain ring or from a hole you cut yourself. And labeling is easy, most bags come with a slim interior pocket for the product information card, you can simply flip that card around and use the back as a label.

GOT ITEMS YOU HATE TOSSING? TRY ME!
What other household items do you hate throwing away but aren't sure how to put to good use? I take requests!

Until next time keep it simple and clutter-free!

Jamie Novak, The World’s Most Relatable Organizer, is author of "Stop Throwing Money Away: Turn Clutter to Cash, Trash to Treasure—And Save the Planet While You're at It." Please visit her website at JamieNovak.com.

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Comments (9)

  • I can't wait to hear how everyone uses their zip bags. Be on the lookout this is just part 1 of a 3 part series...

  • I put my shoes in the bags when I pack for a trip. This way they don't schmooze with the rest of my belongings and so I don't have to pack them separately from my clothing. And, they keep my special occassion shoes in nice condition when I put them away in the closet until the next wearing.

  • Martha what a great tip! Now you got me thinking, I bet I can slip my shoes in the bag then toss in my tote bag for days when I swap from heels to sneakers...no more dirt in my tote bag. Super smart thanks for sharing!

  • I use them for my toiletries when traveling. Much better than make-up bags because they're see through!

  • Sara I agree with you, clear bags are my favorite!

  • These are great ideas. Normally I keep them for awhile then they just sit and I end up throwing them away. I need to keep these ideas in mind. Great post.

  • Petula thanks for the comment, I'm glad you like the ideas. For the next bag you get which idea do you think you'll try first?

  • [...] with the next seven ways you can reuse them. In case you missed the first seven you can read them here, then look for part three coming next week. Back Next 1 of [...]

  • [...] can re-use those clear, vinyl zipper or snap top bags from curtains or sheet sets? If you missed part one or part two you can catch up [...]

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