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Adventures - Kid-Friendly Outings

DIY Packing Cubes


I’m packing up my things for my trip to Fort HopeI have to fit a ton of stuff in just my allowed carry-on bags … because I’m frugal like that ;-).

I’ve got four plane rides within one week, and I just can’t bring myself to pay for checked luggage on each of those flights.  It’s money that could be used for so many other things.

So, I’m doing my best to get everything into my 40L backpack (which just falls within the carry-on guidelines) and one stuff sack (which will be my “personal item” carry-on).

In the video below, I walk you through how I managed to get everything into my pack.  I love the idea of using packing cubes to make packing easier.  They keep things organized and they keep things compressed.  No more unfolding clothes as I root around to get something in the middle of the pack!

But, I really did not want to pay for actual packing cubes, because you know, frugality.  So I headed to one of my favourite places: the Dollar Store!  In this case, Dollarama.

I found these great mesh organizers in the stationary aisle.  I guess they’re intended for carrying papers or maybe as oversized pencil cases.  But I had other plans for them.


I sorted my clothes (rolled, not folded) into them in these categories:

  • pants (large mesh organizer #1)
  • tops (large mesh organizer #2)
  • pajamas & heavy socks (large mesh organizer #3)
  • regular socks & underwear (medium mesh organizer #1)

I also used one each for these items:

  • powdered drinks & tea, sugar & creamer (small mesh organizer #1)
  • snacks (fruit bars, granola bars, etc) (small mesh organizer #2)
  • craft supplies & tracts (give-aways for the kids) (large mesh organizer #4)

Now I know exactly where to find each item, and even if I have to pull out a few mesh bags to get to something, my clothes will still stay folded and organized!  They all fit perfectly, and I didn’t have to invest in pricey “Packing Cubes”.

My sleeping bag stuff sack still needs a little condensing (you’ll see it in the video), but at least the rest is taken care of!

Do you have any packing advice to share?  How do you maximize your suitcase or backpack space?

Article written by:

Megan is a WAHM to 3 (and then some) kids, who spends the majority of her time working as an Administrative Assistant, blogging and washing dishes. She loves to write about her adventures in parenting, running a home daycare, adoption and whatever else strikes her fancy!


  1. Jeanette

    That looks like something we can use next time we go on a trip. I try to bring just one bag for the entire family this would help a lot because if you find stuff when we get to where we are going.

  2. Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle

    I maximize my packing space by rolling everything I can. It sounds like it wouldn’t work, but rolling saves a ton of space.
    Go check out Stacie @ Divine Lifestyle’s latest post! Mix & Match @Garanimals Spring Styles #MixAndMatchValue #garanimalsMy Profile

  3. Vera Sweeney

    These look great for traveling!!! I have been traveling a lot and these would be perfect for packing my bags!
    Go check out Vera Sweeney’s latest post! Baked Strawberry Mini Doughnuts Recipe & Mother’s Day TrifleMy Profile

  4. Emerald

    That is such a great idea. This is so perfect for me. I’m always trying to keep from losing smaller items and socks.
    Go check out Emerald’s latest post! Beauty Products That I’d Love To Try!My Profile

  5. OurFamilyWorld

    These are very helpful tips. I tend to bring a lot of things that I don’t really need when traveling. I love the idea of using packing cubes.

  6. Lynndee

    I do put toiletries or other small items in bags so it would be easier to find them. Never thought of putting clothes in bags though. Brilliant idea!

  7. Kathy

    I love keeping organized like this. I don’t travel much, but when I do these really come in handy. I think they’re great for some kids toys to keep them busy too.

  8. Ann Bacciaglia

    This looks like a great idea. I will be doing a lot of travelling this year I will have to give these a try.

  9. Angie

    These look great! I have a big trip coming up and I should try this because I refuse to pay to check a bag. Carry ons only for me! Mostly because the last time I checked a bag, they destroyed it!
    Go check out Angie’s latest post! Comment on May Goals | The Monthly Goals Link-Up by Ann BacciagliaMy Profile

  10. Melissa Dixon

    Wow you look organized. I could use a little help when I travel. I have a lot of medical supplies that this would work perfectly for!

  11. Up Run For Life

    This is a great idea. Plus, they are see thru so security can easily see what is in each mesh bag. I haven’t traveled by airplane in a very long time.

  12. Jamie

    I love the dollar store for all things. I need to try this for packing. I am the worst at overpacking and I think condensing into pouches and bags might help some.

  13. Jesica H

    I hate packing bags, and then digging in them to find what I need! These packing cubes would really help, especially if they were color coordinated!

  14. Tammy Doiel

    Wow, this is a great idea! I will have to try this next time I fly.

  15. Sarh S

    These look so wonderful! We’ll be traveling as a family of five for only the second time in the past 7 years and these would be so handy!!

  16. Rose Cottrill

    It’s rediculous how passengers are being charge for luggages nowadays. These are great tips, definitely helpful for travelers!

  17. HilLesha

    This is a wonderful idea! I need to try this the next time my family and I go traveling. It will certainly help simplify things!

  18. Shaney Vijendranath (youbabyandi)

    We travelling soon to the USA and I’m really nervous about packing! I suck at it and I love being organized so I decided, this time, I’m getting a ton of glad reusable bags to package small items but this sounds even better for me and cheaper!

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