The $30 Instagram-Popular Book Storage Solution That’s Perfect for Small Spaces

published Mar 12, 2022
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Credit: Lay Baby Lay

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As an avid book-lover, I’ve gotten lots of inspiration from Bookstagram (the bookish corner of IG), from what to read next all the way down to how to display my books for optimal word-count accumulation. So when I began to see these candy-colored 3-tier carts, filled to the brim with books, popping up on my feed, I knew I had to pay attention. They reminded me of library carts, and some get super-personalized with fun decals or paint colors. And they seemed to hold way more books than seemed possible. Added to cart.

Turns out: these bookstagramers are really onto something.

We have lots and lots of books around our house, but the organization is … well, not-so-orderly, to be honest. My daughter’s early chapter books are wedged in between my books and finding the copy of her choice book is a venture akin to one of the impossible quests she reads about. The shelves we have never seem to be sufficient for holding them all, either. 

This 3-tier cart is an unexpectedly brilliant solution to my book storage woes. First of all, it holds much more than you’d think it would. It could hold the entire contents of a bookshelf that takes up nearly three times the floor space as the cart. Its slim profile tucks perfectly in corners or near beds in kids’ rooms — even closets, if you don’t mind hiding the book away. And because it has a relatively low height, you can use the space above the cart for shelving or other hanging storage. The 3-tier cart works perfectly in my daughter’s small room, and she was thrilled to be able to access her books more easily. (We even used one of the tiers for blank paper and pens, in case inspiration struck her to create her own stories.) 

But one of the best features of the cart is that it’s on wheels, so it’s easy to move around if you need to clear out a living room for, say, a random game of Twister or a Cosmic Kids yoga session. Because it’s so portable and accessible, I like to dedicate the cart for books we’re currently very into, such as the Mighty Meg chapter book series, or an un-put-downable romance novel for adults, or seasonal books to make the best of the holidays. That way, the lesser-read books stay on the shelves. Similar to how you’d rotate toys throughout the year, placing some in storage to be rediscovered, this book cart gives you that same flexibility in what you choose to display within reach.

I’ve seen parents decorate their carts according to their kids’ interests, adding stickers and trim to match their room decor. (The carts come in tons of colors, too, so you can pick a different color for each kiddo!) Some families even turn their carts into pretend-play library stations, which is the ultimate in multi-functional decor. 

And, should a time come when we’re done with our mobile library? It converts easily to art supply storage, a bathroom organization tool, and tons of other useful applications. That’s $30 well spent in our household.

Buy it now: Rolling 3-Tier Cart, from The Container Store