/ June 8, 2022/ Board Games/ 0 comments

In 2022, my family sold almost everything, including our house and farm, and moved into a school bus.  We went with a full 40’, but we have a separate driving compartment at the front which cuts into our living space in the back.  All that to say, we don’t have a lot of room, so we’ve had to get creative with game storage.

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Make sure all games are worth the space on your shelf

Game storage cabinet
We have these awesome cabinets all along the top of our bus; many of them are filled with games! Below the cabinet, you can see where some are hung.

The first step is being really careful with what we bring on our bus.  Some games are just not worth it, and several games we sold after recording a gaming session.  As my kids outgrow games, I pass them along, to make room for more new games.  Although, my kids are getting to the point where that won’t really be possible, as they’re able to play more and more “adult” games.

Some people store multiple games inside one game box.  I haven’t really tried this, but I know I’d be thrown when I try to get out Catan Jr., and find 3 decks of cards in the box (there are no cards used in Catan Jr.).  I also know we’d never play the games that are in other game boxes because I wouldn’t be able to keep track of where different games were.

We have these nifty stools my husband made for the kids. They fit under our table, and we can store small games and puzzles inside them!

Repackaging games into bags can save a lot of space!

Game boards stored separately
We have a couple of different stacks of game boards that are stored separately. We also have two storage baskets of small and card games.

Many games have really large boxes to accommodate a large board but have a lot of wasted space inside the box.  These are the games that I’m most eager to unbox and bag up.  Some people use plastic Ziploc bags, some use more expensive plastic mesh or poly fabric zipper bags.  But not only am I cheap, but my family also tends to be really hard on things, and I didn’t think any of those options would last long for us.

So I made bags out of old sheets.  My sewing skills are pretty basic, but they’re robust enough to sew a bag with a drawstring.  I use ribbon for the drawstring (I was gifted a ton of satin ribbon years ago, and am still working my way through it!), and then hang them using shower curtain rings.  Since I’m making the bags, I’m able to make them exactly the size needed for the game, which helps to save a bit of space.  Game boards are stored in a separate stack.

To the right, you can see how we have games hanging from the overhead cabinets. The shower curtain rings work well (don’t mind our bag of onions that is also hanging here).

hanging bags

Downsides of bagging games

Hanging game storage
Here you can see the eye bolts we drilled into the bottom of the cabinets, and the shower curtain rings that are hanging from the eye bolts. For the game Villainous, we have a separate bag for each character; these are the bags on the left.

The biggest downside is we don’t play the bagged games as much.  We try, but we just don’t see a lot of our games.  This could be alleviated by better labeling; some of our games I used part of the box as the tag, and that seems to work better than when I got lazy (or some of the boxes were just too thick to laminate) and just printed out the labels on the printer.  Villainous is our most obvious game, but I’m obviously not going through that much work for many other games.

My kids don’t put games away.  The few times they try, they leave a few pieces out, plus the directions.  I put the games away.  I know that I’m the one who cares the most, I know them doing a sub-par job will drive me nuts, and it’s just better this way.  So I can’t really speak to if having them bagged makes it easier or harder for my kids.

I love having games in bags!

Overall, though, I love bagging the games and will continue bagging even more in the future.  And yes, especially those games that have a giant board, a die, some pawns, and maybe a deck of cards, and have a huge, mostly empty box to accommodate the giant board (I’m looking at you, Totally Gross!).  Storing the boards in a separate stack has worked great.  Labeling the edge of the board makes finding the correct one easier.

We can have a lot more games when we repackage!

My favorite part though?  We’re easily able to have at least 4 times the number of games we’d be able to have otherwise!

What do you think?  Are you ready to try bagging some of your games?  Some game boxes are just really pretty, and those are hard to unbox. When you get a game and the box is already falling apart, bagging can make a world of difference in game storage.

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