Don’t think you need any more DIY storage hacks in your life?! Many people enjoy collecting items because the memories attached to their collections and what they represent. They may be things you treasured in your childhood or items that relate to your heritage so it’s imperative that you protect your stuff. Whether its clothes, shoes, purses, fancy soaps or even tea!
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7 DIY Storage Hacks to Protect Your Stuff So It All Keeps Its Value!
To begin the process of protecting your collectables, you have to know what you’re dealing with first. When was the last time you sorted through your collection?
It may be time to go through and organize what you consider to be collectables. Sometimes life happens, and non-collectables will get mixed in. You don’t need to worry about protecting those too. Dealing with non-collectables jumbled among your treasured items will only be a waste of time and storage space.
DIY Storage Hacks | Separate and Sort
As you separate your collectables, put them in colour-coordinated containers. Really take your time, since this could end up being their permanent storage solution.
Designate the colors of each container based on what makes the most sense to you. They might match the colors of what’s inside, or start with the same first letter of the collectables they hold.
After you determine which colored container will hold which items, caring for your collection will be a breeze. You’ll have no trouble recognizing where everything is the next time you decide to look through your treasures.
Keep Everything Inside
The first school paper you ever wrote may have had you beaming with pride back when you got your perfect grade on it, but time has worn it away, and now it’s a struggle to read. Things like paper and ink are especially sensitive to the most minor environmental factors. Are they part of your collection?
Research the materials your collectables are made out of to determine if they need temperature-controlled storage. The fluctuating temperatures of an attic, basement or shed could contribute to the destruction of your collectables.
Try to store your items inside your home or another place where you can watch the thermostat to protect them from the change in weather. The more environmental elements you can control, the safer your collection will be.
Store With a Sealed Lid
Another factor that can harm collections is humidity. It’s hard to know when a room is too humid without investing in technology that stays plugged in and ready to monitor the room, so seal your collectables up with an airtight lid.
When it comes to airtight storage your collectibles, I like to use these tubs to store my vintage brooch collection! I use glass because my husband and I are in the process of reducing the amount of plastic that we use.
Things like coin collections will go through chemical reactions if they get exposed to water vapors. Further research will gauge how dangerous water is to your collection so you can determine the right airtight containers you need.
Label the Correct Cleaners
To clean or not to clean— that is the question. Specific cleaners may have chemicals in them that could damage your collectables. Be aware of this before applying any cleaning solutions to what’s in your collection.
Look around online for cleaning guides for your specific collectables. If you’re part of any social groups, ask others who keep the same items how they clean their collection, and how often they do the chore.
You should also learn about which antiques you shouldn’t clean. Cleaning some specific materials could cause them to lose their value. Bronze and copper items excellent examples of things that get more beautiful with signs of visible ageing.
Build Storage-Specific Shelving
Some collections have items that are tiny, while others may have pieces of all different sizes. Putting everything in containers that are the same sizes may not be a realistic goal, especially if you have many collections at once.
After you have everything organized, imagine how you will store it in the space where you keep your collection. Sketch out some shelving and build it yourself. There’s no need to stick with store-bought shelving when it only takes a weekend to make something that will benefit your specific storage needs.
Get Blackout Curtains
Light is another natural element that destroys collectables over time. Storing your items in containers may keep them safe from damage, but they’ll still be subject to degrading if those containers are in rooms that get plenty of natural sunlight.
See if you can hang blackout curtains like these where you keep your collection. Even a curtain that hangs across a set of shelves will be one more needed layer of protection against the elements.
Blackout curtains will also help if you want to go back through your collection later on. You can pull the heavy curtains shut to create a perfectly dark room, then only use the lighting you deem safe.
Create an Inventory
Over time, your collection will grow, and you may forget what’s in each specific box or storage unit. It’s almost a mark of pride to have that much in a collection, but it won’t feel as good if you forget how to take care of what you have.
After you’ve sorted through everything, cleaned the collectables you can and put everything away, write down where you’ve placed each item.
This step will save you time later, when you only want to look at a certain part of your collection or clean something specific. An inventory will also guide you, since you’ll know what you already have and what you want to collect next.
Try It for Yourself
Collecting is a passion for people around the world, but what you end up collecting won’t mean much if you don’t use the correct storage techniques.
The wrong storage for a collection could damage or destroy it rapidly. Allowing things like light and humidity into your collection may make it worth nothing without you even realizing it.
Try these DIY storage hacks to transform how you keep your collection. You don’t need to send your collection to a professional to keep it safe when you can do it at home. Research the materials in your collection to learn about the right ways to store and clean them, and then the rest is up to you.
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About The Author:
Kacey Bradley is the blogger behind The Drifter Collective, an eclectic lifestyle blog that expresses various forms of style through the influence of culture and the world around us. Along with writing for her blog, she has written for sites like U.S. News, SUCCESS, Guides for Brides, Hotel-Online and more!