How to optimise storage in the Study Room


This month, IKEA challenged me to supersize our storage. No easy feat, especially when I’ve already sorted out some of my trickiest storage problems last month using IKEA’s storage solutions but, in small spaces like mine, there’s always room for storage solutions.

How I use a space is determined by:

  1. Our usual activity within that space
  2. How belongings need to be moved around for our activities
  3. Constrains imposed by the space

Supersizing a storage space means I must be able to store the same amount of items in a way that facilities their use or I must be able to store more in a way that facilitates their use. With these objectives in mind, I set out to optimise storage in my study room with a focus on storage of commonly overlooked groups of items.

Tickets, tickets, tickets!

You know your concert tickets, entrance tickets, contest tickets and what not? These are the things that I consider too miscellaneous for me to assign storage real estate to, but yet I need to know exactly where they are when I need them.

I used to keep them in my study drawer or in a tiny ziplock pouch in my go to bag of the moment, but I’ve forgotten about them more than once, and let my tickets expire. To me, that means that I need to see them, and so I now put them up on my IKEA VÄGGIS Noticeboard.

We try as much as possible not to create holes in our walls. My IKEA VÄGGIS Noticeboard works because it is so light, I attached it to my wall with adhesives that are removable when I want to.  It keeps all my tickets in view, with room to spare so, technically, that means I get to store reminders there too!

Product boxes, Small machines

I recycle all box materials from our products with the exception of the product boxes of all my cameras and lenses, as well as for our phones, because we tend to sell them off when we upgrade and you can fetch a higher price when you retain the box. I also have small machines at home, like our laminator, which is long enough to handle A3 documents and my electric sealer which is heavy but narrow in shape.

When we moved in, I was too exhausted to find a good storage space for them and they were placed in front of our rows of books on our built-in bookshelves, hidden only by our sliding doors. Fortunately, I had our carpenters build a deeper bookshelves and the solution was simple – just place the less often used boxes behind the books.

If you plan well, you can’t really tell that there are items behind the books.

We spent thousands on our built-in bookshelves but you can save by going for the IKEA GALANT Storage combination with sliding doors. It has a depth of 45cm (mine is just 43 cm) and it comes with sliding doors at the bottom levels, which I find to be most space saving. Choose the one that is 200cm in height to better utilise your room height, or the IKEA GALANT Storage combination with sliding doors that is 160cm in height, if you have plans to use the top of the cabinets.

Mailing stationary & supplies

I naturally have to have a lot of stationary & supplies for mailing. They used to be all over the place but now, I’ve grouped them together in my IKEA KVISSLE Letter Tray, such that it would be most convenient for me when sending out mails.

The IKEA KVISSLE Letter Tray is great for pots of craft paints too! It’s just that I have none of these at home.

Printing Supplies & Rough Paper

I have been using the IKEA PLUGGIS Magazine file the way it was supposed to be used (i.e. upright) for about 2 years and I was not that happy with it, because it’s thin and tall, I have to peer in and move things around to find what I want. Out of the blue, I decided to use it lying down on the longer end and, voila, I’m not looking back!

When laid on the longer end, the IKEA PLUGGIS Magazine file are like pigeon holes for some of my stationary supplies. On their sides, they take up less vertical space and presents an opening that enables me to easily access what I want. I use them to store my sticker labels, address labels and printing paper (placed directly above my printer, which I hid in the study bookshelves).

I also use it to solve one of my biggest headaches – rough / cut up paper for Joy’s use. Joy is in a phase where she regularly makes envelopes out of used paper and cuts up little bits and pieces to put in her envelopes as gifts. That is sweet but also messy. To solve this, I clip up the recycled paper and cut up paper together with a clip board and put the little bits in a zip lock bag – they go into one pigeon hole and Joy has no problems looking for what she wants. Less mess too!

Now, my only grouse about the IKEA PLUGGIS Magazine file  is that it is sold out at the Tampines branch. I need another set to store my unused plastic and paper files, plus crafting mat & A4 note pads.  I’ll be stalking the stores and grabbing these once they are available for sure.

Miscellaneous items

I have a habit of grouping items that do not quite belong anywhere together in one place so that I know where to look when I need them. However, my miscellaneous drawer in the study is the most difficult to organise ever. I choose the IKEA TILLSLUTA Dry food jar with lid (Size 23x15x6 cm) to solve this problem. They’re absolutely a joy to use in the kitchen and I didn’t hesitate to use them in the study as well.

They store really well to use up the air space in deep drawers and lets you see everything all at once!

If not for the fact that I minded the colors of the lid, I would have totally used the PRUTA Food container (set of 17) to do the organising. At $5.90 for a set of 17, these are absolutely the best value for money to use in organization. Turn the container around and have the lid face the back of your drawer and everything will be organised and easily spotted.

There you have it! Solutions for storage of 5 commonly overlooked groups of items in the study room. That was difficult, but like  I always say, its worth it if we can spend less time looking for things and more time on the important stuff!


Disclosure: This post is part of a series of posts from my collaboration with IKEA Singapore. Some products used in this post as indicated are sponsored by IKEA but all ideas, creativity and experiences are my own.

If you liked this post, you can browse through other similar home-related posts by clicking on the picture below. Have fun!

So Oddly Dreamlike : HDB Home, Renovation & Decor


You can also find me here:



Leave a Reply

CommentLuv badge