Repurposing Luggage

Decorative Storage Containers

I was in the process of changing out my seasonal household items, going from summer to fall, and was on my way to the store to purchase those big plastic bins with lids. I got to looking at them and the cheapest ones were still between $8-$9 each! I considered what I had at home and it occurred to me that I have many pieces of large luggage that are just sitting there empty. Now I still want to use my luggage to travel with but I can certainly pick up used luggage at garage sales and thrift stores to store my seasonal decor in. My only qualm was how to clean the used luggage both inside and out before feeling safe to bring it into my home.

Samsonite says:

“To clean soft sided luggage, we recommend spot cleaning with a mild soap such as dish soap and water. If this is not successful, try a product used for spot removal on clothing such as Spray ‘n Wash, or a foam type cleaner used to clean car mats or automobile carpets. If the luggage has an odor, use a vinegar (1 part) and water (5 parts) mixture. This may take the odor out but the luggage will then need to be aired out for a few days. Also, we recommend placing charcoal in the luggage for a day or more (depending on the strength of the odor) and closing the bag. The charcoal will absorb the smell.”

Well that will help to clean my luggage but I’m still not confident that it will sanitize it, so back to Google to see what I can come up with.  One traveler recommended sanitizing the inside and outside of suitcases with a hand-held steam cleaner. Apparently the heat will be hot enough to kill any bugs and germs. I like that solution. In fact I think I’ll steam my new/old luggage using the vinegar and water solution.

I made sure to buy luggage that would fit in with my decor so that I could hide my stored items in plain site. I plan to put all of my winter items inside four suitcases and stack them beside a small sofa to use as an end table. If you don’t want to bother with having to find “pretty” luggage you can always slide them under the bed or stow them in the garage.

Game Storage

Storing some of your favorite board games in a piece of luggage makes it easy to take to game night at a friends home.

Traveling Toy Show

Store children’s toys in one of your luggage pieces. It will fit under the bed and you can grab it and go when needed.