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Simple Ways to Reuse Cardboard Boxes

written by: L.Romano•edited by: Donna Cosmato•updated: 10/5/2010

Before those cardboard boxes are tossed out or recycled, take a second look at them and think of all of the possibilities they can have, especially when it comes to creating some extra storage space.

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    After getting a cardboard box, many people toss it into the garbage or recycling bin, however there are simple ways to reuse them that are quite useful. While recycling is a good option, reusing it in the home can be an even better idea. From using them for organizing to making a pet house, consider trying one of the several ways of reusing cardboard boxes.

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    Create a makeshift filing system from a cardboard box

    Take one of your larger cardboard boxes and buy folders that fit its height and width. Simply line up the folders in the box, label them accordingly, and they can then be kept dust free and organized. Even better, if they need to be transported anywhere, they’re easy to pick up and move.

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    Keep your drawers organized

    Drawer organizers can be expensive, and it may be difficult to find the right ones that fit your drawers perfectly. Instead, chop up that cardboard box and make your own separators. They are easy to interlock as well. Take one piece that is cut to fit the height and width of the drawer and a second piece that is cut to fit the width of the drawer, but is one inch shorter in height than the first piece. Wherever you want the two pieces to interlock, make a vertical cut in the first piece from the top to an inch from the bottom. Slide the second piece into the cut and it should fit perfectly.

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    Organize your linen closet and pantry

    In the linen closet, there is probably minimal shelf space compared to all the items the closet contains. Instead of having to buy an entirely new shelving system, chop up the cardboard box and use it to create sections in between items. For example, put a piece of cardboard in between a pile of sheets and blankets. When a sheet is removed, the rest of the stack won’t come tumbling down with it. In the pantry, the cardboard pieces can be put in between cans and bags or boxes, so there is a little more space without everything being stacked unevenly.

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    Create under the bed storage

    The space under the bed can make for some useful storage so take advantage of it. Cut the cardboard box to be one inch shorter than the height of the bottom of the bed to the floor. There will be enough room for the box to slide in and out easily, it will keep the items organized, and a little extra storage was created for no extra cost. If you’re worried about your items getting dirty, put a piece of clear Contact paper over the top so you can easily pull it on and off if necessary.

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    Create a pet playhouse

    If you have a small cat or dog and an extra large cardboard box, make a play house for the animal. Cut an entryway big enough for the pet to get through and make windows all around the box. Inside the box, put a comfortable blanket, a couple of treats and some toys. Put the box in a corner where it is out of the way and the animal has privacy.