Storage Bin Options {for Kallax/Expedit}

I mentioned on facebook that I was crushing on the 16 cube Kallax system from Ikea:

My goal is to get something to replace a small bookshelf {that is overloaded with books} & changing table/storage unit in my kids’ room. I’m also realizing that I need more clothes storage for my boys – simply because as they grow, so do their clothes. funny how that works.

When I saw this option from Ikea with door inserts, I started thinking about the possibility of using this gargantuan storage unit for a mixture of toys, clothes, and books. Ambitious, no?

kallax birch

I toyed around with the idea for several days and thought perhaps I could sell some things (such as the changing table, bookshelf, etc.) via Craigslist to make room in both the home & budget for this large thing.

Then, on Monday, as I was scrolling through my facebook feed, I came across this picture:kallax-shelving-unit-white

At first, I really didn’t pay attention because I assumed it was just a sponsored ad. Thankfully, I took a second look at it and noticed it was from a yard sale group I joined. I contacted them, they said it was available, and we’re scheduled to pick it up from them this week.

And as a little sidenote, I would just like to point out once again how good God is to provide in things that really aren’t important compared to the grand scale of the world. And yet He shows His goodness even in things like storage systems.

I’m faced with a slight quandary, however, considering that the bins from my changing table don’t fit in this shelf unit. I need some bins for toy storage – and pretty soon I’m going to need some for my boys’ clothing.

I had so much fun looking at all the available options! Here are 13 lovely storage solutions I found:

13 storage options under 15

Row 1
// option 1 //
Row 2
// option 1 // option 2 // option 3 // option 4 //
Row 3
// option 1 // option 2 // option 3 // option 4 //
Row 4
// option 1 // option 2 // option 3 // option 4 //

Right now, I’m definitely wanting to get some of the last option (row 4, option 4) for clothes storage. I envision it would be much easier to just open a door to get shirts than to pull out a whole bin. And I love these options for toy storage:


I’ve used 4 sturdy canvas bins (purchased from Target on clearance 5 years ago) for the kids’ toys and they have held up remarkably well with the daily wear and tear. I really like the middle option above – gray and white stripes, canvas, and rope pulls. What’s not to love?
But the other 2 are cheaper – and that’s almost always a good thing, right?

My current vote is to scour around craigslist, yard sales, and thrift stores to see what I can dig up. I’ll keep ya posted and probably spazz out about it on facebook, if you want to join me. Thanks. I’m always glad for spazzing company.

UPDATE: I shared my pick here! spoiler alert…I actually chose a different option than is mentioned above.

How about you? Any thrifting or home decorating/organizing going on at your place?
Let me hear it! I love stories.


  1. Emily Freeman says:

    Oh, I’ve been eyeing a smaller version for either the nursery or my son’s new room after #2 arrives. Thanks for the bin ideas! I don’t love the idea of the foldable IKEA baskets because it seems that they wouldn’t hold up to rough kids? Let us know if you try them out 🙂

  2. Christa says:

    sure thing, Emily! I have 2 of the foldable Ikea baskets in my master bedroom and they are super durable for our purposes, but I think I’ll stick with canvas for my kids. I’ll letcha know what I pick. 😀

  3. I love the gray and white totes too- adorable. I have some lined wicker milk crate baskets that I snatched up during a sale at Target. My only beef with those is the wear and tear on the shelf that they are sitting on. I may need to put felt “feet” on the corners to prevent the grudgy shelf look that my shelves are now sporting. The softer, canvas options would certainly avoid this problem. Do you think that a soft bin holds its shape just as well as a more solid bin like a basket ?

    I might add that I love “lined” baskets over just plain baskets to prevent the fibers from snagging my girls clothing (tights and such) that we store in them. Plus I just like the added detail that the liner brings. 😉

    God is good to provide our every need. Happy about your find.

  4. Christa says:

    oh, those are really great tips I didn’t even consider. thanks, Heather!
    the 4 canvas bins we’ve used have held up AMAZINGLY well considering all the torture they’ve been put through. They still have their original shape and hold boatloads of toys. But I’m not sure if the canvas bins from Ikea/walmart would be the same quality as my beloved Target bins. 😉 clearly I’m partial. 😀

  5. Sarah says:

    Hurray! Super cute! Yeah, I was just struck by the mystery that is growing clothes of our growing boys. I think they try to help me out by keeping as many clothes out of the drawers and in the laundry basket as possible, hahaha!

    Glad to see what you go with, great ideas!

  6. can’t wait to see which ones you choose! An Expedit/Kallax unit is on my to-find list too. Can’t believe you found one in a yard sale group.

    I do have on 2×3 Expedit already and have some fabric/mesh baskets in it that came from Aldi and those have held up really well. I love those 2/$12 ones you posted from Walmart – I would probably get those or baskets.

  7. Robyn says:

    I’m buying the bookshelf and I wanted to get the bins to go in them. What size is each individual cubbie??

  8. Cheryl says:

    I wish they made clear bins that would fit into the Kallax. Have you found any on any other site/store that are compatible with the Kallax?

  9. Kristi says:

    @Cheryl, there is a sterilite plastic bin that fits. The 27 quart size fits in one space of the Kallax shelf. And 2 of the 15 quart size bins fit stacked together. I bought the Drona boxes from Ikea when I first got my shelf, but they have not held up to kids (mostly other people’s kids) taking them out, dumping the toys, and sitting inside the boxes. The Drona boxes are only made of thin cardboard covered in fabric. I’m going to switch to the Sterilite option. I’ve had a few for almost a year and they’ve worked well. Time to switch the whole shelf to that.

  10. Kelly says:

    Hello, was wondering if anyone has confirmed the wood storage crate from Walmart fits the Kallax unit for sure? It appears to be 13.5 wide… I believe the ikea unit is 13 wide. Anyone????

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