You've probably experienced this yourself: pop into Target for a water bottle, check out with $200 worth of stuff you didn't know you needed. "I love Target so much—but it's a dangerous place!" laughs Nikki Boyd of At Home with Nikki in Summerville, S.C. And among the aisles of must-haves is its extensive home organizing section, which includes everything from garage-level utilitarian plastic bins to on-trend decorative baskets you're happy to display in your living room. We surveyed four professional organizers to learn what storage products they always buy at Target. Here are their pro-approved picks.
“These are perfect to organize your pantry, but they’re also great for under the sink, kids' toys, anything,” says Boyd. The squared-off, clear canisters with neat white lids look tidy lined up on a shelf, or used individually to store, say, dishwasher tabs under the sink. Boyd particularly likes the range of sizes that the Made By Design Food Storage bins come in—to hold anything from a box of cereal to cotton swabs—and the fact that these bins are stackable. “Plus, they’re a great price point.”
“I use clear lazy Susans in the bathroom or kitchen,” says Brittany Daley of Perfect Fit Organizing in Charlotte, N.C. “They are great for corner cabinets so you don’t have to reach so far.”
The magic of this particular turntable: it’s clear, so you can see what you’re looking for, and the higher sides and internal compartments mean that whatever you’re storing, from spices to beauty products, won’t topple over when you spin it around.
“I love a utility cart,” says Katrina Green of Badass Homelife in Sacramento, Calif. “I like them for moms and dads, I like them for kids, and I like them for myself!” The genius of the utility cart is that it can hold lots of small things that can easily get messy, like arts and crafts supplies.
The Room Essentials Y-Weave bins are an old standby for professional organizers. They’re available in a range of sizes, a few ongoing colors (white, grey, black) and trendier shades that rotate through, so it’s easy to coordinate if you’re using a bunch, or updating a project a year later. Plus, they’re sturdy and easy to wipe clean. “I just bought a set of these to use to hold one of my appliances and all its attachments,” says Boyd.
For baskets that are going to be on display—say, holding shoes in your front hallway or magazines in the living room—Daley heads to Target when she knows she’ll want a matching set. “I like the affordability of Target, and unlike a dollar store or one of the discount home stores, you can go back season after season to find the same product,” says Daley. She particularly loves the metal and wicker baskets, because they come in a bunch of different finishes and price points.
“I love Target for its styled organizing, particularly the Project 62 and Threshold lines,” says Meggie Mangione of Organized Life Design in Houston. “A chic basket, or more interesting container, can add that bit of something special to a space.” For items like extra blankets, pillows, or even kids' toys, a large open-weave basket can keep things corralled, while still maintaining the style of the room.
“This is so versatile, I use it for everything!” says Green. She’s been known to use the Room Essentials 9-Cube Organizer Shelf to break up great rooms, where the living and dining areas are hard to define, or create zones within playrooms. Each compartment can either be used as a shelf, or can be outfitted with a bin to function more like a drawer. “You can use the storage cubes if you need concealed storage, or place books on the open shelves, or do a mix!” says Green.
Alongside the organizer shelf, Green likes the bins that fit inside its cube-shaped compartments, which can easily store anything from computer cords to smaller clothing items. “When I’m dealing with kids, we’ll fill [the cube organizer] with bins with picture labels when they’re young, to get them used to putting their things away, and as they get older we change the labels to words.”
These metal labels clip onto any bin, making quick work of figuring out what’s inside of concealed storage. “I snap these up whenever I see them!” says Boyd. “It’s easy to switch out the paper if you’re updating a project or changing things around.” And because they’re metal, they can be painted any color. “I like to color-code them when organizing kids’ rooms,” says Boyd, “or even just paint them to match the decorating scheme.”
“For my clients who struggle with closet space, this is a lifesaver,” says Green. Because many people have more hanging space than shelf space, a hanging closet organizer can create a spot for items like sweaters or jeans that don’t easily fit into a dresser. For smaller items (or for folks who don’t like to fold), Green also sometimes uses bins within the organizer to hold items like socks.