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Dining Room Problems (and Possible Solutions)

I’ve got issues.

Dining room issues.

The first issue is was the floor.  We have original hardwood floors.  And they were getting scratched by the chairs and dulled by foot traffic.

So, we put down a rug.  But we have two small children.  So instead of a scratched floor, we then had a disgustingly stained rug.

I finally found a solution to the floor problem, and I wrote about it today at Sawdust and Embryos (another Iowa farmhouse blog!)  Head on over to learn how to save your floors and add some style, even if you have small kids and a small budget.

Problem #2:
A couple of months ago, I showed you our dining room table, nice and shiny-clean.

dining room rug

But in reality, it usually looks like this:

messy dining room

The only reason it was so clean in the first picture (and the only reason we have room to eat on it!) is that I regularly move all the junk to the bookshelves in the background.

This is a problem.

The solution to this problem?  Less stuff.  (a never ending battle)  More storage. (another never ending battle.)

The bookshelves are vintage Drexel.  Well made, super heavy, and deep.  One has a drop-down desk.
drop down desk

Theoretically, they should make organization easy!  But I’ve looked online repeatedly, but haven’t been able to find baskets I liked that would make the most of the space.  Finally, in Target the other day, I found several options, but I need help narrowing down the options.

storage basket options

#1: $20.98 each, (Clearance), Threshhold Lidded Box

threshold storage box
I found two of these and I’m assuming these were an online order return, because I’ve never seen them in the store.  But I found them online, in more sizes, too!  I ADORE the pattern.  These are keepers for sure.

But the rest are negotiable.

storage bins

#2: $20.29 each, Threshold Global Large Milk Crate – Dark Brown

#3: $18.29 each, Threshold Paper Rope Large Crate – Dark Brown

#4: $24.99 each, Threshold Rattan Large Milk Crate Pecan

#5: $12.99 each, ITSO Large Fabric Storage Bin, Khaki

This says it’s on clearance for $5.98, but it’s not available online.  So what are the chances I’ll find more in the store?  Here’s a close up of the color/texture.  It is a pretty khaki that blends well with the rest of the room.

ITSO storage bin

I’m thinking I’ll go with the 2 big blue/gray boxes, and then 6 more that match each other.  (Two on each of the remaining 3 shelves.)  But which design?

AND, I’ve been planning to paint those bookshelves, so keep that in mind when recommending a storage basket.  But what color should I paint them?  White to match the kitchen cabinets and trim? Gray? Yellow? Dark teal? Gray blue? Red?

What do you think?

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