September 15, 2011

Vintage Suitcase & Food Storage

I have been coveting the suitcase decor trend for awhile now. This week I finally dropped five whole dollars at the DI {thrift store} on two blue lovelies.

Check out some awesome suitcase inspiration-
This is almost a carbon copy of one of the suitcases I purchased.

Do you guys have vaulted ceilings? 
If you do, then you probably have some weird nook, where the wall stops and doesn't touch the ceiling. This creates a strange, dust collecting, ledge that's ridiculously hard to decorate.

Unfortunately, I have a major lack of storage space.
Well actually, the condo has great storage for a "normal" people. But when you are packing in a year's worth of food, hygeine products, cleaning products and 3+ months of animal food-
well, you get the idea.

This is what we have been living with. No amount of Photoshop is going to spiff up  this picture. It is what it is, dust collecting ledge "awesome" architectural feature being used as an animal food storage shelf.
{Yup, there's a grill up there too.}

I almost mentioned this ledge way back when I first started blogging, in my post about small space food storage solutions. But then I quickly realized the post was intended to be about food storing SOLUTIONS, not eye sores in your living room!
Enter the suitcases.

They'll be working double duty. On the one hand I needed some older items to temper all the modern pieces I've been buying or refurbishing.
On the other, they'll be creating some {always} needed storage. The suitcases are large enough to each fit a 20lb of cat/dog food, with room to spare! Yay! Totally awesome news because we believe in food storage and don't want our furry family to starve, but I cannot look at cat food bags even one more day!

 Pretty much these sweet little babies are saving the day!
The dark blue one had a name written on it in black sharpie. I used a Magic Eraser and it took it right off. Actually, the Magic Eraser took off like 40 years of grime off of each of them. Uh, gross. Next I cleaned the exterior with my homemade all purpose cleaner.

I used my carpet cleaner on the inside fabric and scrubbed the heck out of it!
Where the fabric was gaping, I used some spray adhesive and just shot it right into the hole! Then smoothed the fabric back down and it worked like a charm.
This is what things are looking like these days. For now I'll be keeping the color. I have so many projects planned that involve this side of the room, that it just doesn't make sense to change them yet.


 I am thinking about painting them. Mostly I'm playing around with the idea of a light gray or a white with gray undertones. Don't these look beautiful? I like that the hardware is painted, as well.
I have some more to add on this side of the suitcases, a few more vintage items.
But was actually thinking about getting one more suitcase. That would be one more bag of food out of sight or out of my guest room closet.

What about you guys? Have some hard to decorate area of you home? How about storage problems? Or storage solutions?!

Looking for places to link up your projects? Check out my Party page.
I'm also linked up here.


  1. I love this! I am totally coveting them used as bedside tables, those are so pretty. We love food storage too so it is great to see new ideas for ways to hide the not-so-pretty #10 cans and such ;) I sure wish we had D.I. out here in Boston!

  2. Very cute. I love the idea of using them as nightstands.
    Thanks for sharing your party page...I have been looking at a lot of the links on there!
    ~Kelly @ Corner of Main

  3. I have been pinning these pics for a while now... and looking for some cheap suitcases on ebay...
    I just need to do it already.
    Looks awesome.
    I am inspired!

    ~ Meredith From A Mother Seeking A Mother Seeking...

    My City Backyard Garden

  4. Incredibly clever. I'd never thought of using suitcases for food storage!

  5. I love this... Those nooks are seriously the worst! Way cuter than the usual greenery you see at Grandma's house. Thanks for the inspiration!

  6. I love those two shades of blue, absolutely gorgeous. Genius idea for hiding the food too! x

  7. Great idea and perfect for food storage!

  8. Great idea for some extra storage!

    Thanks for linking to a Round Tuit! Remember the voting is now open – if you want to head over and vote for your project! The most voted link will get a full post feature/promotion next week!
    Hope you have a great week!
    Jill @ Creating my way to Success
    Round Tuit 67 voting

  9. Great storage idea for the ledge! It's giving me inspiration. We have a couple of walls that don't go all the way to the ceiling that are connected to a loft. The loft either has to be closed in for a storage area, or we have to raise the roof. To save money for now we intend to close in the loft and use the ledge for decor/storage, etc. Thanks for sharing! I've become your new follower and look forward to come back to visit.

  10. Vintage suitcases are the best. I used to have my grandmother's suitcases. I kept my Barbies in them. Wish I still had them...

  11. Hi Bec,
    The suitcase and globes idea came to fruition and looks great!!!! That light blue suitcase is identical to the one I had back in the 70's. So funny. You have such a good eye for decorating! xoxxoSue

  12. Brilliant! Stopping by from I Heart Naptime. I'll definately have to remember this!

  13. So cute!! Would love it if you would link this post up at my turquoise lovin' party going on right now!!

  14. I've pinned a few of these suitcase images too! I love decorating with old suitcases and have used a couple for storage myself.

    I would love it if you could link up this Pinterest inspired post to my weekly Pinterest party-this post is great!

    Hope you have a fabulous week.

    Best wishes and happy pinning!

  15. Great idea on storage, seems like on can never have enough. The suitcases on the high ledge remind me of my aunt's guest room.

  16. I love that shot with the white. I think that would look beautiful.

  17. This turned out beautifully!


  18. What a splendid idea! The suitcases look great up there and I love the globes too! :)


  19. I really enjoy your site. I have the same Z Gal rhino on my mantel, only I have 2!

    The mantel's not quite finished as of yet, and I'm not sure that I'm not going to move them to the dining room, but I like them where they are at for now:)

  20. holy cow. is it possible for your blog to get any cooler?
    i love your suitcase/storage solution. tres clever.
    where did you find the rhino and deer? i've been looking for one for my christmas decorations and have come up short!


  21. I just bought a vintage suitcase at a yard sale. I'm going to make a guest room kit with it.

  22. This is a great use of your space! Looks great! Visiting from The Creative Spark

  23. Loving the color of those suitcases! I have a bunch of painted ones about the house - mostly white but I'd love to try a blue hue too. Happy new year!


  24. I have been trying to store 4+ months food for us and pets. It is hard to keep pet food safe from humidity and bugs so I put mine in a metal trash can inside a sealed plastic trash can. Not pretty, but works in garage. However, after reading your blog to make storage pretty, I' m looking at boxes/bins in my house with a fresh eye. Thanks for idea.

  25. Very clever. I do love suitcase storage ideas! :D

  26. Look st all the open space you have, I love it! Good idea! I'm a new follower. Hays, if I pick up tips from time to time maybe all the stuff I bring home I can find somewhere to put ;D and that makes the boyfriend happy.

  27. I love the suitcases and the globes look really awesome up there! Plant shelves are so hard to decorate!


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