Hanging Storage Bins





Introduction: Hanging Storage Bins

About: I got an old sewing machine when I was just a kid, and I've been hooked on making stuff ever since. My name is Sam and I'm a community manager here at Instructables.

I recently made and installed some heavy-duty shelves at my house, which are covered in this instructable: Simple Heavy-Duty Shelves.

The room where I installed these shelves serves as my home office as well as my family's indoor making space.

So we have loads of craft supplies that were cluttering up a small closet, that desperately needed to be organized and kept closer at hand.

To organize all this stuff, I made some simple cleats to fasten a bunch of cheap plastic bins to the undersides of my new shelves.

The bins easily slide in and out, keeping everything within reach but nicely tucked away.

This is a very simple project to complete and incredibly useful if you have a similar shelving situation.

Step 1: A Closer Look

Here's a quick look at the details.

The cleats are made from two pieces of scrap wood which were glued together and screwed to the underside of the existing shelves.

The top lip of the bins hang on rails incorporated into the cleats. Pretty simple!

Step 2: Materials

The plastic bins I used are 6-quart Sterilite brand, which were purchased at Home Depot for $1 apiece.

The cleats upon which the bins hang were made from two pieces of wood, both of which were 8 1/2" long.

The flat pieces are 3/8" thick by 1 1/2" wide, and were cut from a 2 by 4. The other pieces are 3/4" square, cut from scrap pine boards.

I hung nine bins in groups of three, so for my purposes I needed to make 12 cleats.

Step 3: Glue Up

The wood pieces were glued together with wood glue and held with clamps until dry.

It's important to make sure the pieces are centered nicely.

Step 4: Paint

After a light sanding to remove a couple of splintery bits, I spray painted the cleats with black spray paint.

Step 5: Pre-drill Cleats

Each cleat was then pre-drilled and countersunk to prepare for installation on the shelves.

Since the shelves to which the cleats will be fastened are just soft pine, I did not drill any pilot holes into the shelves themselves.

Step 6: Attach Cleats

The cleats were screwed to the shelves with 2" screws. I was mindful to place the cleats as needed so the bins were supported as fully as possible, but not pinched at all.

Step 7: All Done

The bins are great for holding craft supplies and small tools.

I will probably try to keep the overall weight of each bin well under 5 pounds, just to be safe.

That's it!



    • Water Contest

      Water Contest
    • Stick It! Contest

      Stick It! Contest
    • Creative Misuse Contest

      Creative Misuse Contest

    30 Discussions

    Thank you. Sheer brilliance and simplicity


    2 years ago

    BRILLIANT! Thanks for the idea.

    Great idea and tutorial!! Love it and will be making some of these! Thanks.

    nicely done. What a great idea.

    Simple and elegant. Those transparent boxes are also an amazing idea, so that we can see the contents.

    Very cool! This is like a better looking and easier to reach version of what I've done for extra storage in my work shop!

    Nice Instructable. Great use of space, A very good idea to loved it. Thank you for sharing...


    2 years ago

    SO great! I have 2 sets of bins from those crappy colored kid's units with "unevenly installed supporting poles as the shelves to hold the bins". Junk!! BUT now, with some Krylon for plastics, HELLO to HANGING STORAGE BINS!! Thank you SO MUCH!!!


    2 years ago

    Great idea and cool design

    Buenísimo gracias lo estoy copiando

    Like all brilliant ideas, the simple ones are the best! Fantastic - thanks! Love your quality of work too, very neat and tidy!

    Thanks for the instructable! One really cool feature about this is that it doesn't require that you have the lids for the bins! I don't know what happens, but those lids seem to vanish over the years. This is a perfect way to use the bins without them!

    Thanks again!

    2 replies

    i have the opposite problem. my boxes break & i have a ton of lids!

    They make pretty good saucers for biggish deck planters...

    Wow; that's a lot of clamps...


    2 years ago

    I never knew one person could own so many clamps.

    1 reply

    Ha! :D

    I actually don't have that many. I need more!

    I've seen a larger scaled version of this done for larger totes/storage bins in a garage and storage shed to make use of that often under used over head space.