Last week I was scrolling through my Facebook and I came across the Good Housekeeping article – “6 Places We’re NOT Organizing Anymore.” Naturally, it caught my attention and I, of course, quietly gasped. What areas could they be talking about? I asked myself. I immediately clicked on the article to see what over 1,000 people “liked.”
As I read the article it all made sense and I knew where the author, Lauren Piro, was coming from. The areas she confronted are a constant struggle for many of us so I completely understand sending up the white flag. And, to Lauren’s credit, leaving these areas disorganized is not going to prevent you from reaching your ultimate goals in life. However, as the person who comes in when these areas become overrun with clutter and cause daily frustration, I can attest to the fact that some level of organization is necessary. After all, organization is about making your life easier by living lighter and more efficiently.
All of this got me thinking… maybe we need to address some of these areas in a more simplistic way and just get real about the level of organization needed to make life easier and not add more work to the to-do list.
So, here’s what I have for those who would still like to have a little order to their chaos…
Nail Polish – Sorting through 10 or 15 colors every time you paint your nails can be annoying to say the least. I’ve witnessed many of my friends’ and clients’ chaotic drawers/bins and the process they go through to find the color they want. Keep the colors neat and tidy by taking a Q-tip and dabbing the color on top of the lid. This way you won’t have to pull out every single nail polish to find what you want and you’ll easily be able to keep the colors in order.
Serving & Cooking Utensils – Purging is always helpful, but even after a purge you may still be rifling through things to find what you want. Using drawer dividers, split the drawer into sections to easily organize the items you use on a regular basis (if you have more than one drawer, use one for baking utensils and one for cooking utensils). Then, put the once or twice a year items in a canister that gets stored in the pantry. After all, you don’t want to be without that turkey baster come Thanksgiving.
Tags: 3M, ABC, Back of Cabinet Doors, Bathroom, Chic Shelf Paper, ChichShelfPaper.com, Command, De-clutter, Declutter, Home Office, Katie Couric, Makeover, Shelf Paper, Springpad, Vertical Storage, Wires
This past February I had the special honor of being enlisted by the Katie Show to help the host herself face the clutter demons plaguing her home office. The project was a quick fire challenge—allowing only 7 hours to complete a full transformation-, but this is the kind of challenge I happily accept. It was a super tight turnaround, but with a lot of preparation and a fabulous, hardworking team I was able to pull it off and completely de-clutter Katie’s home office. A lot of great solutions came out of our work together, many of which can be seen on the Katie Show website, as well as some additional tips that I posted here.
The entire experience with Katie and her team was absolutely wonderful, so there was not a doubt in my mind when the show called me in August to ask if I wanted to help with another segment. The focus this time? Katie’s master bathroom. While I knew it was going to be another tight turn around, I was relieved to know that we were focusing on a smaller room. However, as you can see from the show, the size of that small room had no bearing on what was packed in there. We pulled out bag after bag of products, samples and bathroom accoutrement, spent a lot of time sorting, editing and figuring out how to make it all work for her again, only this time, better!
It has been nearly two months since we started on the journey to de-clutter Katie’s master bathroom, and today I am super excited for everyone to see the newly neatened space. I hope that America loves these tips as much as they did last time and can even put some of them into immediate action in their own homes. Since not everything could make it into the show, below are some additional tips and ideas that I thought I’d share from the transformation. Also, be sure to check out my Springpad notebook to see all of the items we used in her master bathroom as well as in her home office!
Pull-out drawers – Low-level, deep cabinets can often result in wasted money as you forget what was purchased, and either never use the item or go out and buy it again. Stop losing money and things to the depths of your under-sink cabinets and maximize the space by adding a pull-out drawer so everything stays visible and easily accessible.
Below, in one of my Springpad notebooks, are a bunch of the other items that we used for Katie’s Bathroom. Follow the link below to Springpad to click on any item to find out more info or to purchase!
This stacking cylinder system (made-up of six ceramic cylinders, six wooden bases and a wooden plinth) allows you to customize your very own configurations by removing a cylinder’s wood base and stacking the cylinders to create your perfect tabletop organizing solution. The configurations seem endless as you can use each cylinder individually to store and stack small items like pushpins, paperclips, jewelry and hair ties, or you can remove the wood bottoms and combine several cylinders to hold larger items like pencils and pens, nail files and hair brushes.
Unfortunately, this good looking organizing solution is not yet available in the US, but fingers crossed it will be here soon to help us neatly contain all our tabletop thingamabobs and doodads.
I am a huge fan of weekend projects, and I especially love projects that allow me to use old items I have around the house, or inexpensive things I can pick up at my local thrift store or craft store. I find the creative process of the project to be a rewarding and productive moment of solace from the everyday stresses that surround me.
While I wasn’t prepared to work on any projects as Hurricane Irene passed over this weekend, I did discover two great ones from Danny Seo’s new book Upcycling: Create Beautiful Things with the Stuff You Already Have.
The projects: Two great floor mats that are easy and cost-effective to build, and have great style (see below). Had I had all the supplies necessary, I would have had quite a crafty hurricane experience. Instead, I have added the ideas onto my list of fun, future projects.
Leather Belt Rug
Cork Bath Mat
Images & Ideas courtesy of www.dailydanny.com
While most men don’t have many grooming products or accessories, they do have some important items in both the bathroom and bedroom that need a home. I have often found that if men (and women too) don’t take the time to organize and designate areas for their products, they will most likely land up being placed wherever there is an open space. This ultimately leads to large amounts of clutter and disorganization. Here are some tips that I shared last week with Lesley Nagy, from Better TV, on how to prevent this and help men get a bit more organized.
Quick tips from the video: