DIY Dollar Store Bins

Hello again!

I had major issues regarding book bins. One of many issues, was always “Why do Lakeshore bins cost so much?” As you may know, I am very involved with the design and layout of my classroom. I think it’s important that the students know that you put time into planning this comfortable space for them. Therefore, when it came to my classroom library and book bins, I felt distraught. Do I splurge and buy cute Lakeshore bins that cost $28.99 for 6? How many would I need? In reality, I would need 3o bins. Now I’m not a fan of math but if you take $28.99 x 5 sets that equals $144.95. Well, that’s a big purchase for just bins. This conundrum led to the following issue “How can I have the same library that I want to have but for less money.

My simple solution: DOLLAR STORE BOOK BINS!

Now, before I lose you because you are thinking “well yeah Rosie but at my dollar store they only sell pink bins. And I don’t like pink bins. Plus I can only find like five bins that are actually the same.”

Here’s the secret. Are you ready?


Are you sure?

Okay. Okay. The secret is that allows you to purchase book bins IN BULK. That means you get to choose the bins you want and you can get an unlimited amount of them. The bins I purchased were in a case of 36, obviously costing $36. I don’t know about you, but I love saving money and I just saved myself $108. If you have a tax exempt id number from your school, you can also enter that online at checkout. 

But then I found myself in another pickle.

reallllllllly liked these bins. I liked the size and the design. However, they only came in green, pink and blue. My classroom colors are lime green, black and purple. Hmm. The wheels started turning. That’s when I decided I was going to purchase the bins and SPRAY PAINT THEM. Since then, I have become a spray paint ADDICT! Did you know you could spray paint plastic bins? Well, now ya do! This quick tip will not only save you money but also the AGONY (am I exaggerating?) of finding the right colors in the dollar store! 


A couple of notes before you become a spray paint fanatic:

  1. Make sure you grab enough spray paint. Over estimate, so you can spend less time running to the store than I did. I used about 3 cans of black and 3 cans of purple for 24 bins.
  2. Start with the inside of the bin and allow that to dry for one full day.
  3. Spray pain the outside and allow that to dry for 30 minutes, touch up if needed.

Here is what the bins used to look like: 



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See! No sign of the pink or blue! And the process was easy and affordable!

Please note the following:

The green bins were not painted, they came that color.*

I did not create the book bin labels myself.*

 I wanted these specific bins so that I could attach the book bins as shown in the picture. There are plenty of other options on*



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