Easy DIY: Trash Bags on a Roll

Jan 23

Each week I receive a lot of organization questions. However, a topic I’m questioned about most often is small space organizing. And nothing gets smaller (or tighter, darker, damper, blah-errr) than the space under your kitchen sink. Why do we always want to pack everything away into this tiny space? No matter how big or small your kitchen is, the space all of us have under our kitchen sink is pretty much the same.

Here’s the kitchen in my new house…

Yup, it’s tee-niny. I can’t wait to demo the space at some point. (read = when I win the lottery) You can count on seeing images of me, smiling, sledgehammer in hand. In the meantime, I’m making the most of this cozy little space…

Especially the space under my kitchen sink…

** Pay no attention to the fact some of my cabinet doors don’t close. That would be from re-painting the cabinets before move-in. 

This week I’m organizing this cabinet and tomorrow you’ll see the final result of my efforts. But today, I’m sharing a very easy DIY project that anyone of any skill level can tackle with success. Took me all of 60 minutes – maybe. This is one of those projects that will forever keep giving in return. It’s a game-changer, friends!

Most of us keep trash bag rolls under the kitchen sink. If you’re a Costco or big box store shopper, you know how cumbersome those oversized rolls can be. I was struggling to keep my rolls together and within reach in this tiny space. So I decided to DIY myself a little trash bag organizer. Check it…

Ack – can you even believe this?! So easy!

And the supply list couldn’t be simpler…

Materials Needed For

DIY Trash Bags on a Roll

After cutting my dowel down to size, I sanded the ends. This will keep the wood from catching on your trash bag roll…


Then I gave my dowels a shot of white spray paint. This step is optional…

While the dowels dried, I got to work hanging the brackets…

To do this, I just measured where I wanted each bracket to hang under the sink, marked my holes making sure it was level, and then drilled a little hole…

Then I screwed the brackets into place with a screwdriver…

I used 2 brackets sets because I wanted to hang both kitchen and oversized trash bags. Oh yea!…

Now that the brackets are hanging, time to insert the dowels through the trash bag rolls…

Yes, this is the one step that requires some patience…just a little. As you’re pushing the dowel through the middle, a couple bags will come out the other end. No biggie! Just pop those into the bottom of your trash can, under the bag you’re currently using. Just takes a little patience, but I promise you – the dowel will go through (as pictured) and they will hang beautifully!

Once that’s done, all you have to do is set the dowel inside the brackets…

I placed each set about 13″ apart. I wanted a little overhang to ensure the dowels wouldn’t bend. And they don’t. This is super secure and beyond easy to grab a trash bag right from the roll. Even though this space is tight, you can see there is still plenty of room under the rolls…

For just a few bucks and about an hour of time (that includes paint dry time) you have organized trash bags on a roll!

Love this!…

Tomorrow I’ll be sharing the full kitchen sink organization tour so make sure to come back!

Go DIY something and have a great day!



comments +

  1. Kelly Palmer says:

    This is awesome! We are going to Lowe's tonight so I will be picking up the materials I need to do this and installing it tomorrow. Thanks so much for sharing!!

  2. This is genius! I was planning to organize under my kitchen sink this weekend, now I have a new idea to put to use. Thank you!

  3. I love this idea!!! Storage is always a challenge in my kitchen. Pinning:)

  4. Crystal says:

    Pure Genius!!! This is awesome!! I will definitely be doing this and it will save me a lot of annoyance. Thanks so much!!

  5. April R says:

    That. is. GENIUS! is exactly what I was thinking, as I read this! Just brilliant!!! Thank you for sharing! I am definitely going to do this, as well! Thank you!!!!

  6. I just love this–shared it on 11 Magnolia Lane's Facebook page!

  7. I am assuming you had to pull a few bags from the middle of the roll? I wasn't able to insert the roll easily.

    • No, I didn't have to remove any bags from the middle of the roll. My trash bag rolls have some give in them in the center. It's those big rolls from costco. Did you get it to work? If so, I'd love to see a pic!!!

  8. Clay Delgado says:

    Nice! That is indeed a great way to store your garbage bags! I do agree with you. The space underneath the sink is always some sort of a black hole for any home as there are lots of unorganized chaos going on in there. Haha! This is a great organizing idea. Thanks for sharing!
    Clay Delgado

  9. SB says:

    Could you please let me know the brand name for these trash bags. I love the idea but mine comes folder individually.

  10. BarbaraAnn says:

    This works for so many things. You have a great mind. Good luck on the patent pending.

  11. love your creativity!! moving next wknd going to try this in my new tiny kitchen apartment. Need all the ideas I can get!

  12. Suslee says:

    Well, I have some rod holders that I removed so I could hang a different kind of rod. And I have some CPVC pipe left over from replacing pipe broken in the Vortex of last year. So, my hanger was actually free. Add your free tutorial, and my total out of pocket is $00.00. Here's my happy face: 🙂

    • Dottie Cummings says:

      YUP !!! I have the same good problem. Everything needed, I had amongst all the rest of my “useful junk” Total cost….$0.00

  13. Kathleen says:

    I love this idea and I have hung the rod holders and now I cannot get the dowel through the roll of bags. Any suggestions as I need to do this…what a space saver…I already submitted a post but don't know if you rec'd it or not.

    • Joyce Taylor says:

      That looked like the hard part to me, too. Her pictures certainly gloss over that little detail!!

    • Kathleen (and Joyce),

      Getting the dowel through the roll is easy but does take some patience. I removed a few from the center if the roll was wound too tight. Some of my Costco rolls aren't right in the middle, some are. The rod being pushed through also helps to push a few bags out through the other end, if that makes sense. I also tried to loosen the hole in the middle using my fingers, but the dowel works well to push some bags out on the other end. Maybe I should make a video! 🙂

      I'm here to help – always!


  14. Stephanie says:

    Love it!! Once you mentioned curtain rod hangers I was jumped for joy (in my head) at how clever you were, "Oh,oh, oh I know where she is going with this!!" I am not sure my undersink area is the best place in my kitchen for this, but my pantry door would be perfect. Add to it that I am training my son to be the 'trash-taker-outer' which also means putting in a new bag. This is so much better than 'large box taking up shelf space' that we currently have going on.

  15. Great Idea and space saver!!! Thank you for sharing the idea and post.

  16. Kel says:

    Because the dowels aren't held in place horizontally, do they ever come off the holders?

  17. Unknown says:

    Holy Cow! I love it! We have been getting our trash bags on a roll for the last few years from my son's fundraiser. I have looked all over for ideas to hang, always coming up with a "no fit" due to the length of the roll! PERFECT! (and I haven't even tried it yet….know it will work!) Thank you, thank you and thank you!

  18. Lily says:

    Hello. I’m curious to know if the garbage bags roll on the dowel rod when you pull or does the dowel roll on the the brackets? If its rolling on the brackets, is the paint coming off the dowel rod every time you pull a new bag off? Also, my roll of bags were really heavy. Was this an issue for you each time you put a new roll on the rod?

    • Samantha says:

      Hi! When I pull a trash bag off the roll, the dowel spins around in the brackets. The paint has not come off my dowels. Yes, the rolls are heavy which is why I opted for a sturdier dowel that could manage the weight. Let me know if you have other questions! I’d love to see your system when you’re done too!! 🙂


  19. Nancy says:

    You have no idea the time I waste searching for the black trash bags! Are they in the garage, the shed, under the sink? Now I’ll know exactly where they are! Thank you.

  20. Ahhh-brilliant DIY! Pinned this on my “Great Tips” board, and hope to get this done over the weekend.

  21. Laurie says:

    When we get our own place, I will definetley use this idea. I had a similar idea but couldn’t get the dowel thru. So for our rental I got one of those pants hanger with the cardboard center, Left about an inch or so on either end and cut the middle out. Then I just pushed the cardboard ends in as far as they go and hung it up. It actually works really good.

  22. monica rivera says:

    so Amazingly clever Loved it . !!!

  23. Bailee McSwain says:

    Where did you get the clear stackable drawers in the picture? Thank you!

  24. Megan says:

    This is SO clever! Would it be okay if I linked it my newsletter for smart cabinet DIY projects?

    • Samantha says:

      Hi Megan,

      Yes, you’re welcome to…as long as you link back to it here, that’s totally fine! Thank you for asking AND sharing!!


  25. Latrice says:

    This was a great idea! In the picture, there is an organization board on the cabinet door holding the wash gloves?. What is that?

    • Samantha says:

      Thank you! It’s the Martha Stewart Wall Manager – I hung it using Command Adhesive. It’s intended for an office space…but I like to go rogue with my organizing products and use them in all sorts of ways!


  26. Brenda says:

    I hope you win the lottery and remodel your kitchen. I’ve never seen such a phenomenal waste of space as there is at your cabinet with the attached bar top. Unless the picture is very skewed, it appears the bar top is touching the brick wall.

  27. Alma says:

    This is awesome. New to pinterest and come across this idea. I’ll have to keep this post and put it on my next project list. Thanks…

  28. Tammy says:

    These are great ideas, but for myself, i just put the entire roll of trash bags in the bottom of my empty trash can. Then, i put a fresh one in like you normally would!
    (* hint, i also put my finger theough the top of the fresh bag, right below the “draw string”.. this lets the air out of the fresh bag so its not full of air when it is first changed)
    Next time you take the trash out, the new bags are RIGHT THERE! I also do this with plastic grocery bags in the bathrooms, office, ect. No need to

    • Samantha says:

      Oh yes – this is a great idea! And something I do myself on occasion. But there are many many trash bags that end up leaking and then the entire roll sitting beneath gets dirty. I’ve seen this time and again in my client’s homes while working.

      Thank you for sharing your suggestions!!


  29. Cory Colson says:

    OMG OMG OMG OMG I had this idea in my head and you provided everything I needed! Woo hoo! Heading to Lowe’s now. THANK YOU THANK YOU THANK YOU!!!!! A++++++++++++++++++!!!!!

    • Samantha says:

      Awe, so glad I was able to help you!!! Please let me know how it turns out. I’m actually in works to develop the product so….could be something you could buy at some point. Yay!


  30. Yvette Spicer says:

    Wonderful idea, but I live in a mobile home – actually an old “Trailer House” – and there are no walls between the cabinets to hang anything on … I love the idea and my mind is now working on how I could do something similar … just not sure about it … LOL

  31. Sal says:

    This is nice and a good way to free up space on the floor of the cabinet. I went one step further. You know those bags you pushed through threading the dowel and then put under the current bag in your trash can? Well, since I only use my kitchen bags in my kitchen trash can I just threw the whole roll into the bottom of the trash can. As I take one out I just reach inside and pull the next one into place. I buy my bags at Costco so I end up with 2 giant rolls. I keep the other in the garage and if I need a spare bag I can always grab it from there. You could probably put both in the bottom of the trash can for that matter. Yes, it takes up space (especially if you put 2 down there) but my trash can is pretty tall and I don’t really lose that much space. I always know where they are and they are always at hand when I pull the used one out.

  32. Amy says:

    Hi..so I followed this to a T and while it’s all installed, I can’t seem to get my dowel in there so I still wasn’t able to enjoy this genius idea…

    • Samantha says:


      Hmmmmm, wonder why it isn’t going through for you?? Mine does go through and some bags are pushed through the middle in the process, but it does go in. Have you tried to loosen the middle of the bags just a little bit so the dowel goes in? Maybe I should share a video!


  33. I love this idea. Because of my garbage disposal and dishwasher it won’t work under my kitchen sink but I have the perfect spot for it in my laundry room. which is right off my kitchen. You have to walk right past when you come back from taking the trash out so it’s not out of the way at all. My 12 year old daughter, who takes the trash out the most besides her Dad, saw this and said, “Let’s put this on our to do list for the weekend.”

  34. Nini says:

    One thing…I would put a little ‘cap’ at each end. Keeps the rod from slipping off? Also, I would maybe use another kind of thingy that holds the rod, because the rod could pop up & out. Any of this make sense? Just thinking it thru & talking out loud!
    AWESOME idea!

  35. Wimpybags says:

    Tho I’ll be doing this this morning please share with me some other diy’s you’ve done in ur teeny tiny kitchen because I too have a teeny tiny gallery kitchen, I can’t stand it but I’d like to have new found respect for it. Have you done storage under ur cabinets yet? Waiting with baited breath.

  36. love this idea. I’ve been trying to organize my garage and was trying to come up with a way to hang my roll trashbag….This is simple and do-able! Thanks for the idea.

  37. Micro says:

    If you are in a rental , you may have to use 3M strips with large hooks instead of screwing a bracket to the cabinet and having to sparkle/paint later. I am going to try this myself ????

  38. Angel B Sandlin says:

    My roll of bags are overlapping- not perforated, so when I hung my roll, they slid off since there was nothing holding them in place. So I punched a hole through the whole box and hung the box on the dowel! It doesn’t look as nice as yours but they don’t slide off now. Are the Costco bags perforated, or are my bags just extra slippery? Thanks for a great idea!

  39. Melinda L says:

    that is a smart idea. tks so much.

  40. MADI says:

    EXCELLENT Idea; Instructions; pure and simple genius. TYFS!!

  41. Kate Johnson says:

    Hey! Just wanted to swing by and give you major kudos for the genius DIY trash bags on a roll idea. I never thought I’d be excited about trash bags, but here we are! Your simple yet effective solution is a game-changer in the world of organization.

    I’m notorious for fumbling around with individual trash bags, and your tutorial came to my rescue. The step-by-step guide is so easy to follow, and the result is pure brilliance. Having a neat roll of trash bags ready to go? It’s the little things that make a huge difference in day-to-day life.

    Your practical approach to organization is something I truly appreciate. It’s not just about making things look pretty; it’s about finding solutions that simplify our routines. Thanks for sharing this gem of an idea – my kitchen is about to get a whole lot more organized, one roll at a time! 🗑️💡✨

  42. Brianna “Bree” Antao says:

    Hi! I’m not very handy but wouldn’t a simple, mounted paper towel holder work as well? … if so, what would be the pros and cons of the paper towel holder and the DIY

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