Rubbermaid Access Really Does Make Storage Easier

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So yesterday, I told you we still had one last patio project to finish, and it was hiding behind Door No. 1:

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I’m almost ashamed to show you what was behind the door, but here goes nothing!

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Just in case the suitcases are misleading you about how horrible it was inside that closet, let me show you what was behind them.

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Seriously, this is what happens over two years of digging through the storage closet for items we needed, then just tossing them back in there all willy nilly, with no attempt to put them back in their rightful places. Add to that empty boxes from shipments and other random items we saw fit to hide away, and what you get is the mess you just witnessed.

Luckily, Walmart and Rubbermaid recently sent me a product designed to clean up my storage: Rubbermaid Access. These storage containers are just like your average plastic storage bins, but for two features that make them worlds better: They are made of much sturdier, less flexible plastic designed to stack on top of each other without warping, and they have transparent doors on the side that let you not only see what it inside, but access it while the bins are still stacked, like so:

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Where had these been all my life?

I can’t tell you how many times I’ve bought a new something-or-other because I was too lazy to take down all the storage bins in that closet to find the ONE that contained whatever I was looking for.

Before we could take advantage of these awesome features, though, we had to clean out the closet. I didn’t take a lot of photos of this part of the process, because it mostly involved throwing things away, consolidating things into a single container, putting suitcases inside bigger suitcases, etc. However, we also had to decide what to put in the Rubbermaid Access bins. As awesome as the side doors are, they do limit what you’re able to put inside. In other words, we knew we’d have to use them to store somewhat larger items that wouldn’t come tumbling down at us every time we opened the doors. So our stash of Christmas ornaments was not an option.

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What we did have though, randomly thrown around in the patio closet, the coat closet, and even the laundry room were painting supplies. Lots of painting supplies. You may remember that we’ve done a ton of painting projects over the years, and all that stuff has really accumulated. Dozes of cans of spray paint, remnants of gallons, paint thinner, extra rollers, painters tape, trays, tray liner — you name it, we’ve got it. And we kept buying more every time we had a new project because we could never find the specific items we needed when we needed them.

Well, say hello to our newly organized closet and paint supply storage system:

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Much better, no? There is one container filled with nothing but spray paint:

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Seriously. I have a problem. It would take dozens of spray painting projects to finish it all, and I probably have at least one of any color you could think of — not to mention several shades of blue alone.

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Honestly though, this system will make our lives so much easier when we can just drop down a door and grab whatever we need. The paint trays and rollers were a little too large, so we put them in an open container immediately behind the Rubbermaid Access containers.

I can imagine these things being super useful in a child’s closet for shoes or winter items they don’t use often, or in a mudroom or coat closet for outdoor toys. If you have the space, you could even put two of them next to each other with a piece of padded, upholstered plywood on top and use the setup as a bench in your entryway, so visitors can store their shoes when they take them off at the door.

All that to say they are endlessly useful, and during our next closet cleanup and purge, we’re definitely getting some more of these babies. They are available in store and at Walmart.com in small and large sizes in three colors. The price point online is $23-30 for a set of two containers. (aff)

Disclosure: As a participant in the Walmart Moms Program, I’ve received product and compensation for my time and efforts in creating this post. All thoughts and opinions are my own.

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