This is second installment of my extensive, two-part series on organizing my CDs and DVDs. Today I’ll be sharing my organizing process for my DVDs.

For me, one of the keys to a successful organizing project is first understanding how you use/interact with whatever you’re trying to organize.  Once I’ve got a clear picture of this, then I move on to how I’m actually going to do the organizing!  Starting with the WHY, rather than the HOW or WHAT for the project.  <I try to be selective when it comes to actually adopting what I call “business-speak”.  This  idea, though, is a keeper>

On to the DVDs! Those discs won’t organize themselves, will they?

The DVDs

A big difference between my CDs and my DVDs is how often I need access to them.  With my CDs pretty much never.  With my DVDs, I  still need the physical disc whenever I want to watch the tv show or movie.  I am a repeat watcher of both tv shows and movies.  Don’t even make me admit how many times I’ve watched Sex and the City or Clueless or 10 Things I Hate About You.  Or Greys Anatomy for that matter.  Actually, I stand by my Clueless viewings.  It allowed me to do super well on this quiz.

Oh, we were talking about organizing?  Okay, back to that.

On the one hand, using a CD binder for my DVDs would have worked – it holds round shiny discs just fine.  On the other hand, I don’t think looking at one of those on my shelf all the time is much of an improvement over the DVD cases themselves.  So, I decided to search for a different solution.  This lead to a lot of clicking on Amazon.

The (many many) Product Choices

To save you some precious time, here’s a summary of what I found.

  1. Regular Binders – I already mentioned these, but there are special inserts for DVDs so that you can store your DVD cover or booklet along with the DVD.  Why DVD cases aren’t the same as CDs I do not know.
  2. Nicer looking bindersThese are designed to not look like they’re holding discs at all.  They look like traditional hard cover book or photo albums from the side.  These just weren’t my style.  Also, they were going to be a bit pricier than I wanted to spend on this project.
  3. Photo box – With these boxes, you can keep the DVDs in their original cases.  The original purpose of this project was to downsize, so this wasn’t going to work for me.  However, if you’re attached to the cases but not how they look on your shelf, this is a good option.  Be prepared to need lots of boxes though!
  4. Photo box with individual sleeves – There’s lots of options in this category.  I have some of these boxes from IKEA that I store actual photos in.  Here is one option and one box I was seriously considering.  This second box, I love the look of!  However, in order for this system to work, I would also need to choose a sleeve style for the discs (yes, there were many options of these as well!).  That’s the main reason I didn’t go with this system.  Also, I thought if all of the discs were in the one box, I might get annoyed about flipping through the discs to find the one I wanted.  I could see this system working well to store computer-related discs.  For example, backups of your OS and digital photos.
  5. Mini bindersThis is the product I ultimately went with.  They look good, they hold a lot of discs and the price was right.  Additionally, there are four separate books which can help you order and ultimately find a particular disc quickly.  The small colored ovals on the spine of each binder is actually a piece of paper, so you can label what is in each binder.

The Process


My DVDs before; In the process of loading the cases and trimming some DVD covers; the final product (From left to right)

Filling up the mini binders was super quick.  I grouped movies together, followed by tv shows. Most of the discs were labeled with the movie/show name, so I discarded the entire case – doing my best to separate anything recyclable from the rest.  There were just a few movies that only had their name in very very small print around the center of the disc.  For these I saved the paper cover of the movie, trimmed it to CD case size (again, why this isn’t the default size, I do not know) and slid it in behind the disc.  A little extra work, but I’m glad I did this extra step.

I ended up having to order a second case.  Greys Anatomy sure does take up a lot of those sleeves!! There is plenty of room in the second set.  I could definitely fit all of Buffy the Vampire Slayer in there if one day I decide I need to watch the series AGAIN.  Another added feature that I discovered is that the cases of the mini binders are stackable.  There are little grooves on the tops and bottoms to help keep the cases in place on your shelf.

The End Result

Again, I’m super happy with the end result!  The DVDs take up so much less space in our living room, but the discs are just as easy to access as they were before.  In the case of Mad Men, they’re even easier to access.  (Please let me know if you know what I’m talking about!) I did need to spend a lot of time searching for the right container for the discs.  That is pretty typical for me, so I hope by sharing my work with you, I’ll save you some time in the future!

Also, if there’s any organizing projects you’re thinking of doing (or have been avoiding doing), please share them in the comments!  I’ll use these for future organizing posts.


2 Thoughts on “The CD and DVD Project: Part Two

  1. I love the one you chose! I like that you could label them if you want to. We went with just the big black binders, but just labeling which was TV and which was movies helped so much!

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