Paper plates and cups?

nicole93089July 31, 2007

Hi all. I'm looking for a place to store paper cups and plates. My 3 kids use them constantly and I'd like to keep them in my smallish pantry. Any ideas for something that would attach to the inside of the door and store these items (separately or together)?

thanks in advance!

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I have the Elfa door system - although we wall mounted it in our pantry. We have a small step-in pantry and wanted to use all of the vertical space, and the Elfa system has worked great. It consists of a spine (much like with adjustable shelves) and the baskets fit on the spine, wherever you place them. I use narrow baskets for spices and then toward the bottom is where I have wider baskets that hold paper plates and napkins. I remember thinking that it was a good solution, seemed very well made, and was reasonably priced. I think the Elfa "spine" can be cut so that it's not so long.

Another idea might be some sort of wall mounted magazine-type divider - plates in one slot, cups in another.

Here is a link that might be useful: Elfa Door Thing

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 12:22AM
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You'll want *tall* sides to your door-mounted baskets, so a stack of cups, and plates standing on edge, don't fall out of their container. You'll also want the one for the cups to be wider than most of the spice-rack type baskets. And the ones that hold plates need to be wide enough as well.

The bottom basket in the Elfa system looks about right, and you get two of those with the basic unit. You can also buy additional individual baskets, so if you need more than two of that side, you can get them.

I've seen other brands of door-mounted racks like that, but they aren't usually adjustable, and you're stuck w/ the height of the sides that they give you. Which is usually not high enough.

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 9:38AM
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During the summer while the kids are home we tend to use more paper products than during the school year. We keep a stack of paper plates on top of our regular dinner plates. They are light enough to lift when we want to access our everyday plates at dinner time - and it reminds the kids to use the paper, and not the dinner plates. Same for smaller ones - on top of the smaller everyday plates.

Same with paper cups. There is a stack or two in the cabinet with the glassware where they naturally tend to go for a cup. If they were elsewhere, they would likely opt for the glass. Sometimes I keep a stack on the counter next to the fridge. I'd even consider IN the fridge if counter space was an issue.

When we are out of paper cups, it drives me nuts to find the number of glasses in the sink outnumbering the number of kids (two!) I try to train them to rinse out their cup after a quick drink then put it in the dish drain. Then, the next time they want a quick drink they should use that same cup! They were much better at this when they were younger.....

    Bookmark   August 1, 2007 at 6:34PM
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Thanks for the suggestions! I had forgotten about the ELfa system. Maybe it'll be on sale soon :) I could use the extra storage in the pantry too.

And thanks maura63, I thought about keeping the paper with the regular stuff but I'm tight on space in there and the cabinets are a little high for my littlest one.

A friend of mine has some sort of basket nailed to her wall that holds everything but I can't seem to find one like it and I'm not crazy about how it looks. That would sure be cheaper than the Elfa though.

Thanks all!

    Bookmark   August 2, 2007 at 2:02PM
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I wonder if it would be possible to mount the Elfa baskets directly to the wall? You'd need a pair of U-shaped brackets or straps, but it might work. I guess there are hooks sticking out on the back, right? They might get in the way.

There are other solutions

a "garbage bag caddy" that looks both deep and wide enough for paper plates ($10) 12.25"W X 6"D X 11.75"H

a "plastic lid holder" that's 11.5" wide and 3.5" deep (how wide are most paper plates?)

a "cabinet rack" in two sizes:
12"W x 4"D x 4 1/8 "H; 9"W x4"D x 5"H ($6)
these would hold cups.

And a 13.75"l x 11.5"w x 3.25"h "wrap organizer" that l think would work

You could put cups in a fabric tube w/ an elasticized hole at the bottom, to pull the cups out from the bottom. Like those made to hold plastic bags, but be sure the hole is ALMOST as big as the top of the cups.

    Bookmark   August 2, 2007 at 6:22PM
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Wow, thank you so much for going to all the trouble to find those possibilities! I think one of them will definitely work and are sort of what I had in mind. Now I just need to go and measure the plates and cups and see what fits. thanks again!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 9:33AM
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My kids use a lot of those, too. I just have a basket on the kitchen table that holds paper plates, cups, napkins, straws and plastic spoons. It's always handy. When I tried keeping them out of sight, they were constantly being taken out anyway. So I just decided to leave them where I need to use them in a decorative basket.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 11:42AM
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There are lots of good ideas here, depending on how you want to use your space. I stack my plates vertically in drawers, so I don't have to lift anything to get to something else. Adding some paper to the mix (usually in the front of the stack) works for me.

Maura has already figured out my system for Cups! I stack them inside the freezer, so they're already cold. It's kind of like chilling a frosty mug, and they're close to the drinks that way. Coffee cups (which I bought when we had a lot of contractors around) are stacked in the cabinet next to the coffeemaker, along with the lids.

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 12:30PM
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Thanks Stephanie, I have tried them on the counter and I find that I'm always putting them away, I guess they just bug me there. My kitchen isn't that large. And I never considered keeping the cups in the freezer, but if I had the room in there, I'd do it in a heartbeat!

    Bookmark   August 3, 2007 at 7:57PM
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