Best of … home organization tips
Written by: Catalogs.com Editorial Staff
Contributed by Info Guru Aurora LaJambre
Organization is a fine talent that eludes many good people, but you wouldn’t know it from peeking in their homes.
Applying a few of the best home organization tips can turn your Castle of Clutter to a beautiful, comfortable place you won’t want to leave. It takes a little time and effort, but the benefits far outweigh any excuse to procrastinate.
Home organization is a work in progress. The sooner you get started the sooner things will fall into place.
Clutter is not your friend
Removing the most obvious clutter is the quickest way to dig into Mission to Organize. Start with the piles that drive you crazy. Go through one pile at a time and file any papers you can’t recycle, including receipts, warranties and manuals. Look for file cabinets that are functional enough for the office, and beautiful enough for your home.
One area at a time
Perhaps the most useful home organization tip is to address one area at a time. The sense of accomplishment you’ll feel after working on the linen closet will motivate you to move on to the pantry and so forth. This keeps you from feeling overwhelmed and makes the entire process more enjoyable. The bathroom is often a good place to start because it’s small and holds fewer items that you’re emotionally attached to. Toss any expired items and use decorative bathroom holders from Miles Kimball to store loose items like cotton balls and swabs.
90 minutes in the closet
Closets aren’t physically difficult to organize, but they’re tricksters so set the timer for 90 minutes then call it a day. Getting rid of the clothes that don’t fit is the easy part so do that first. Then go to the back corners and hard-to-reach shelves that likely have articles you haven’t seen in months. Keep in mind that the 80/20 rule applies to most of us – 80% of the time we wear 20% of our clothes. Avoid keeping things just because they fit. Purging out the things you don’t wear will make it easier for you to find garments you love, and may even leave a little space for some new contemporary clothing. You can shop at Appleseeds to start building an attractive, practical wardrobe that doesn’t just take up space — because you will really wear everything.
Hook the kitchen up
Leave the counters open
The kitchen is a place where you have to make some organizational decisions. Take at gander at the appliances, spices and other items hogging counter space, and then look for ways to store the items you use vertically. Hang pots and pans from hooks if possible. Fresh Finds has a number of storage & organization items including wooden bread boxes, spice racks, stand alone mug racks and a space-saving dish drying rack. Look for glass canisters to store flours, dried beans and pastas on shelves, using food to add to the kitchen’s natural décor.
Re-focus the bedroom
The bedroom should be a place of rest, relaxation, rejuvenation and just about every other good ‘R’ word. Yet many of us use it as a storage bin for family heirlooms. Have your partner go through these items with you and help you decide which ones to keep out, and which ones to put in storage. Going forward, make the bed daily, use jewelry boxes, keep lotions and makeup in assigned drawers and keep bedroom accent tables clear. Choose from the great selection at Bellacor so they add to décor rather than detract.
The beauty of baskets and shelves
As you go through each room, you’ll find a place for items that you don’t need within arm’s reach, and keep out the things you want handy. This doesn’t mean they go back on the shelf as they were. Purchase yourself some lovely woven baskets of different sizes to store everything from knitting projects and magazines, to remotes. American Country Home Store’s entertainment centers and other shelving offer the perfect storage solution for bins and baskets while adding a warm, handmade feel to a room.
Make it clear
Label it, sort it, see it
The goal is to only organize a room once. All of the thought you put into new organized systems is for nothing if the people you live with don’t know the new rules. Use fun labels your print yourself with a label maker so it’s clear where things go, and review the new system with your family. Make each person responsible for their own stuff. Set a basket by the staircase to drop clutter in throughout the week and when it’s full, have everyone grab their belongings and put them where they belong.