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Organizing dvds takes no magic

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Quality time is easier to come by when the dvds are well organized
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Any organizing effort with dvds as the focus entails planning but few materials

Bubble, bubble, toil and trouble. Do you recognize the words as dialogue spoken by three witches huddled around a boiling cauldron in an eerie scene from the play—Macbeth? Good for you.

If the mantra, however, is one you find yourself mumbling while trying to deal with the clutter caused by a DVD collection gone wild, that’s not so good. Organizing DVDs does not have to be a hellish experience. All it takes is a plan. And an assortment of adhesive-backed labels used for categorizing DVDs and compact discs, too.

A plan to make sense of your video collection takes little in the way of materials. You need no eye of newt or toe of frog or wool of bat or tongue of dog. All you need is a method for categorizing the collection, a way of dividing one genre from another and a way to keep track of the contents of the collection. It’s not magic—black magic, white magic or otherwise. Organizing DVDs takes a plan based on common sense. But convenience is the key to preventing lapses into chaos.

Start with labels

If any of your DVDs don’t have labels on the discs, or if they have those micro-super-teeny-tiny words around the center (why DO they do that???) , start your project by creating labels. Most office supply stores have sheets of media labels you can print and stick quickly.

It’s also a good idea to label any crystal cases you’re using, if they don’t have the original inserts. If you’re planning on using a CD case, you can skip that step – for now. You will need to return to the printer later on!

Organizing by favorites

Bring order to your media can entail a preliminary period of doing nothing but observing. An example is a help. Long ago, officials at a popular university undertook a plan for landscaping the campus and installing a network of new sidewalks. What was the first thing they did when it came to determining the locations for the new sidewalks? They did nothing—nothing but plant grass.

Instead, they waited and watched as students cut across the newly green quadrangle. Eventually, the travels wore a path into the newly planted grass. That is where the sidewalks were poured.

You can start with the same strategy when you’re sorting your videos.

Determine what’s important

What DVDs are viewed often? What DVDs rarely see action? How many DVDs contain occasionally used reference materials pertaining to things like gardening or wiring a lamp? You will want to keep favorites at eye level—or in an easily accessible spot on the shelves or in the book case used for your collection.

Arranging your collection in a way that will keep frequently used choices available and within easy reach is one way to tame the clutter.

You can sort the rest of the collection using one of the other methods mentioned below.

Organizing strategies

Just like with books, there are several ways you can arrange your media. Consider putting them on the shelves or in case according to:

  • Alphabetical order

  • Genre (great if you want to keep kids’ DVDs separate from those you’d rather they didn’t see!)

  • Family members (doesn’t work if you have lots of shared videos!)

  • Year of production (yeah, this is WAY too anal for me. But somebody out there might like it!)

  • Favorite actors

  • Language (great for multi-lingual households!)

  • Ratings (G, PG-13, R, etc.)

You can also use a couple of these methods together, by sorting your films by genre, then by rating. Or Ratings, and then genre. The choice is up to you. When it comes to how to organize DVDs, there is no one right way.

Now back to those labels

Remember when I said we’d be coming back to the labels if you use CD or DVD binders? Okay, here it is. It would be so easy for all your hard work in sorting to go out the window if DVDs aren’t put back in the right sleeve after someone watches them.

So printing out simple, small labels with the film name and sticking those onto the sleeves will remind people that Bourne Identity does NOT go in the Barney’s Picnic Sing-along sleeve!  Could save you some major “oh heck” moments down the road! 

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