Or anized Secrets of Getting
END PAPER PILEUPS STREAMLINE YOUR PANTRY
O N A C H A L K B OA R D E N T RY WA L L
EDIT YOUR CLOSET CLEAN UP YOUR JUNK DRAWER
GENIUS PRODUCTS FOR TINY ENTRIES p. 34
SANITY-SAVING STORAGE HACKS
KITCHEN CABINETS, BATH VANITY, LINEN CLOSET, AND MORE
EARLY SPRING 2018 BHG.COM/SOGO
EARLY SPRING 2018
ENTRY + LIVING
26 QUICK & EASY SOLUTIONS: STREAMLINE YOUR ENTRYWAY Organize everyday items, starting at the door.
QUICK & EASY SOLUTIONS: CONQUER MEDIA ROOM CLUTTER Tame the mess of remotes, consoles, and cords.
30 CASE STUDY: CHILD’S PLAY See how kid-friendly storage transforms a family area.
34 PRODUCTS Discover storage ideas that put your entryway walls to work.
KITCHEN + PANTRY
38 QUICK & EASY SOLUTIONS: ORGANIZE YOUR JUNK DRAWER Find tips to bring order to a catchall drawer.
STORAGE STRATEGIES: PANTRY SMARTS Add efficient containers and labels to keep food sorted and within easy reach.
ROOM TOUR: IN THE ZONE Save steps with an activity-centered storage plan.
48 PRODUCTS These simple add-ons help you maximize your existing cabinets.
BEDROOM, BATH + CLOSET
QUICK & EASY SOLUTIONS: TIDY UP THE LINEN CLOSET Organize linens and toiletries so everything is easy to find.
60 STORAGE STRATEGIES: BUILT-IN
CLUTTER CLEANSE Tidy up your bedside area, dresser, and purse this weekend.
64 CASE STUDY: MASTER PLAN A busy couple regain control over a messy closet.
PRODUCTS Take a look at our favorite ways to corral shoes and boots.
16 SANITY SAVERS:
WORK + HOBBY
20 DESIGN SOLUTIONS:
PHOTOGR APHER ADAM ALBRIGHT PRODUCER TARI COLBY SEE PAGE 26
CHARM New wall-spanning cabinets add style and function to a master bedroom.
OUTLOOK Clever DIY tricks and repurposed items help a small loft live large. STOP PAPER PILEUPS Professional organizers share their tips.
ON THE COVER
Quick DIY projects and enhanced storage bring a dated kids’ bath into the modern age.
3 EDITORS’ LETTER 4 STORAGE DOCTOR: 10 SMALL SPACE: FRESH
54 EASY PROJECTS: ALL GROWN UP
CUSTOM CRAFTED Built-in storage adds smart style throughout a 1980s home.
90 MEET THE PROS 92 BUYING GUIDE 96 ONE MORE IDEA
74 QUICK & EASY SOLUTIONS: STRAIGHTEN UP YOUR DESK Clear items off your desktop and create space to work.
76 CASE STUDY: CREATIVE LICENSE Smart storage updates a chaotic crafts room.
82 ROOM TOUR: FIVE-STAR GARAGE The stylish makeover of this hardworking space will help you rethink what’s possible.
88 PRODUCTS Nifty accessories pack more function into a small laundry room. SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 1
BETTER HOMES & GARDENS Editor in Chief STEPHEN ORR Creative Director JENNIFER D. MADARA Executive Editor OMA BLAISE FORD Managing Editor GREGORY H. KAYKO
Editors BRIAN KRAMER, SAMANTHA S. THORPE Designer BRITTANY MUELLER Contributing Editor RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL Contributing Copy Editor ANGELA RENKOSKI Proofreader MARTHA COLOFF LONG Administrative Assistant RENAE MABIE
HOME Executive Editor KARMAN WITTRY HOTCHKISS Group Editors ANN BLEVINS, SAMANTHA HART Senior Editors BRIAN KRAMER, SAMANTHA S. THORPE Senior Associate Editor NATALIE DAYTON Design Director KIMBERLY MORGAN METZ Associate Art Director NICOLE DEAN TEUT Assistant Art Director JESSICA ENO Graphic Designer BRITTANY MUELLER Administrative Assistants RENAE MABIE, SUE MILLER FOOD Executive Editor JAN MILLER Senior Editors JESSICA SAARI CHRISTENSEN, MAGGIE GLISAN Associate Editors CARRIE BOYD, MARIA XERAKIA Design Director STEPHANIE HUNTER Assistant Art Director RAE DANNEMAN Administrative Assistant COURTNEY BUSH Test Kitchen Director LYNN BLANCHARD Culinary Specialists SARAH BREKKE, CARLA CHRISTIAN, JULI HALE, SAMMY MILA, COLLEEN WEEDEN Senior Food Stylist GREG LUNA Food Stylist KELSEY BULAT
FINANCIAL ADMINISTRATION Associate Business Director JENNA BATES Business Manager LISA CARLSON Product Sales TAMI PERKINS
GARDEN Executive Editor KARMAN WITTRY HOTCHKISS Senior Editor SUSAN APPLEGET HURST Assistant Editor RISA QUADE Design Director NICK CROW Administrative Assistant SUE MILLER Better Homes & Gardens Test Garden® Manager SANDRA GERDES EDITORIAL ADMINISTRATION Assistant Managing Editor JENNIFER SPEER RAMUNDT Copy Chief MARIA DURYEE Senior Copy Editors ERIKA BJORKLUND, MARTHA COLOFF LONG, SHEILA MAUCK Business Manager, Editorial CINDY SLOBASZEWSKI Lead Business Office Assistant GABRIELLE RENSLOW Director, Premedia Services AMY TINCHER-DURIK Director, Quality JOSEPH KOHLER Director, Photography REESE STRICKLAND Photo Studio Set Construction Manager DAVE DECARLO Photo Studio Business Manager TERRI CHARTER Photographers MARTY BALDWIN, JASON DONNELLY, CARSON DOWNING, JACOB FOX, BLAINE MOATS Prepress Desktop Specialist PATRICIA J. SAVAGE Director of Color Quality DALE TUNENDER
CONTRIBUTING FIELD EDITORS Atlanta Lisa Mowry Baltimore Eileen Deymier Birmingham, Alabama Cathy Still McGowin Charleston, South Carolina/Savannah Sandra L. Mohlmann Charlotte/San Diego Andrea Caughey Chicago Megan Chaffin, Chandra Hammond, Elaine Markoutsas Dallas/Fort Worth Donna Talley Denver Mindy Pantiel, Elaine St. Louis Detroit/Toronto Khristi S. Zimmeth Jaﬀrey Center, New Hampshire Stacy Kunstel Los Angeles Darra Baker, Laura Hull, Robin Tucker Minneapolis/St. Paul Bonnie Broten, Heidi Pearson, Alecia Stevens Nashville Anna Forkum New Orleans Kimberly Clarke, Margaret Zainey Roux Newport, Rhode Island Lynda Sutton New York City Jorge S. Arango New Paltz, New York Anna Molvik Portland, Maine Susan Salomon Portland, Oregon Shannon Quimby San Diego Karen Reinecke San Francisco Sarah Alba Seattle Linda Humphrey Washington, D.C. Jeanne Blackburn Chatham, Massachusetts Karin Lidbeck-Brent
FOR EDITORIAL QUESTIONS, E-MAIL GETORGANIZED@MEREDITH.COM OR WRITE US AT SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED, SPECIAL INTEREST PUBLICATIONS, MEREDITH CORP., 1716 LOCUST ST., DES MOINES, IA 50309-3023
MEREDITH NATIONAL MEDIA GROUP President JON WERTHER President and General Manager, Meredith Magazines DOUG OLSON President, Meredith Digital STAN PAVLOVSKY President, Consumer Products THOMAS WITSCHI Chief Revenue Officer MICHAEL BROWNSTEIN Chief Marketing and Data Officer ALYSIA BORSA Marketing and Integrated Communications NANCY WEBER SENIOR VICE PRESIDENTS Consumer Revenue ANDY WILSON Digital Sales MARC ROTHSCHILD Research Solutions BRITTA CLEVELAND Digital Video MELINDA LEE Chief Digital Officer MATT MINOFF Human Resources DINA NATHANSON
VICE PRESIDENTS Finance CHRIS SUSIL Business Planning and Analysis ROB SILVERSTONE Content Licensing LARRY SOMMERS Corporate Sales BRIAN KIGHTLINGER Digital Sales MARLA NEWMAN
Direct Media PATTI FOLLO Brand Licensing ELISE CONTARSY Strategic Sourcing, Newsstand, Production CHUCK HOWELL Consumer Marketing STEVE CROWE
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer STEPHEN M. LACY | President and Chief Operating Officer TOM HARTY President, Meredith Local Media Group PAUL KARPOWICZ | Chief Financial Officer JOSEPH CERYANEC Chief Development Officer JOHN S. ZIESER | Vice Chairman MELL MEREDITH FRAZIER For reuse and reprint requests, contact CLpermissions@meredith.com. PRINTED IN THE USA
CIRCULATION Consumer Marketing Managers LYNN BOLINGER, BLAINE ROURICK Director, Newsstand JENNIFER HAMILTON ADVERTISING AND BUSINESS DEVELOPMENT Garden Director, Sales and Marketing SARAH MILLER firstname.lastname@example.org National Account Manager ERIC MARZEN email@example.com National Account Executive HEATHER GIESEKE firstname.lastname@example.org National Account Executive TYLER SMITH email@example.com Regional Account Executive COLLIN COUGHLON firstname.lastname@example.org BRIAN KEANE email@example.com Sales Assistant DIANA WEESNER firstname.lastname@example.org Do It Yourself Vice President and Group Publisher SCOTT MORTIMER email@example.com Advertising Sales Director AMY GATES firstname.lastname@example.org Advertising Account Manager AMBER DARBY email@example.com Project Supervisor BETHANY PETERSON firstname.lastname@example.org National Account Executive DANIEL WELLS email@example.com Sales Assistant ASHLEY JACOBS firstname.lastname@example.org Luxury Home Group Publisher BETH MCDONOUGH email@example.com Brand Director, Integrated Marketing STACEY FARRAR-HERMES firstname.lastname@example.org Marketing Assistant SOPHIA THID email@example.com Home Senior Vice President and Group Publisher STEPHEN BOHLINGER firstname.lastname@example.org Associate Publisher DEIRDRE FINNEGAN deirdre.ﬁnnegan@meredith.com Food and Holiday Executive Vice President and Group Publisher CAREY WITMER email@example.com Advertising Sales Assistant MOLLY MONAGHAN firstname.lastname@example.org ADVERTISING OPERATIONS 1716 Locust St., Des Moines, IA 50309-3023 Associate Production Director APRIL BRACELIN Production Manager DEBBIE REYNOLDS DIRECT MEDIA Fax: 212/499-6757 Advertising Director GRACE CHUNG-MUI email@example.com 212/499-6719 Associate Business Development Manager SAMANTHA GIORDANO firstname.lastname@example.org 212/499-6723
E DITORS’ LET TE R
IT TAKES A TEAM SOMETIMES YOU NEED BACKUP to clear
clutter, as Senior Editors Samantha Thorpe and Brian Kramer learned firsthand during Meredith Corporation’s annual Rebuilding Together workday at East High School in Des Moines. Brian led volunteers through the process of sorting, editing, and setting up new storage systems in the sewing lab, shown here, while Samantha’s team streamlined the school’s food pantry. Next time you’re confronted with overwhelming disorganization, consider forming your own squad. Many hands truly make light work. PS: Visit rebuildingtogether.org to learn how you can help improve the safety and health of homes, parks, and schools in your community.
3 1 Cabinets were originally packed with more than three decades of fabric and
supplies, stashed in mismatched containers. 2 Team members sorted fabrics first, then edited. 3 Transparent, lidded containers that are clearly labeled store kept items. 4 Brian and the Sewing Lab Reorg Team celebrate their work.
PHOTOGR APHER DENISE KOKEMULLER
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 3
S T O R AG E D O C T O R
C LUT TE R C LEAN S E
GETTING PERSONAL B E DS I D E • DRE S S E R • PU RS E Clutter doesn’t stand a chance when you follow our no-fail, three-day plan for clearing the chaos in three messy personal spots. WRITER BRIAN KR AMER ILLUSTR ATOR BRIT TANY MUELLER
A SUCCESSFUL CLEANSE Our three-day Clutter Cleanse is all about focus. Focusing on one messy spot a day breaks the decluttering process into doable steps. The next three days are about the personal clutter you’re confronted with every day—your bedside area, your dresser, and your purse. Tackling these spots first will yield the biggest payoff for your efforts.
BE PREPARED. Dress in comfy clothes. Put on some music. Have a favorite beverage or snack close by.
Follow these tips for making your three-day Clutter Cleanse a lifechanging success:
• Boxes and bags to hold sorted items;
SCHEDULE YOUR CLEANSE. You make better decisions when you work uninterrupted, so block out 30 to 45 minutes on your schedule for each of the next three days.
• Scissors or a utility knife
MINIMIZE DISRUPTIONS. Let your family know ahead of time when you’ll be busy. A consistent daily decluttering time helps everyone. Try doing the cleanse before your family wakes up or immediately after dinner while the rest of your family cleans up.
GATHER YOUR SUPPLIES. You’ll need the following items at the ready for each cleanse session.
• Permanent markers, index cards or heavy stock paper, and clear packing tape to make labels for boxes headed to donation centers or piles as you sort trash bags for items to be disposed of or donated
TOUCH ONCE; DECIDE ONCE. The core decluttering decision is to keep or to let go. Often, simply picking up or touching an item and asking, “Should I keep this?” yields your answer. If you instantly know something needs to stay (and you have space to store it) or go, follow your gut. No need to analyze further. However, if you’re not sure, see “Four Clarifying Questions,” opposite. KNOW FOUR FINAL OPTIONS. Don’t fret about what to do with stuﬀ you’re not keeping. You have only four options:
4 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Sell it, give it away, donate it, or recycle/ dispose of it. Label four boxes or bags accordingly and keep moving. See “What to Do After the Cleanse,” page 9, for details. WORK LIKE A MACHINE. Go through any space you’re decluttering in a methodical fashion—left to right, high to low, front to back—whatever makes sense for your project. Don’t jump around the space or try to be creative or clever. KEEP MOVING. When you don’t quickly know whether to keep or get rid of an item, place it in a pile and keep working through the room. Save the last 5 to 10 minutes of the session to deal with your questionable items. DO SIMPLE TESTS FIRST. Try on articles of clothing. Operate tools and electronics to see whether they work. Verify that you have all the pieces of games, kits, and sets. Then move immediately to deciding whether the item is a keeper. DON’T TOUCH IF IT BOGS YOU DOWN. If you’re decluttering items with emotional connections (clothing, collectibles, jewelry), have a neutral person hold up the item and ask whether you want to keep it. Without a physical connection to Grandma’s teacups or your high school graduation gown, you’ll be in a better state of mind to make quick, clear-headed decisions.
CLARIFYING QUESTIONS Power through clutter by asking yourself these four questions.
ONE DO I LOVE IT? Keep anything you truly love. You’ll always remember (and probably regret) giving away something you love. But be aware that keeping a beloved item might mean you must get rid of something else in order to make room.
DO I USE IT ? AND, IF SO, HOW OFTEN? KEEP ANYTHING YOU USE— AND START STORING THE STUFF YOU USE MORE FREQUENTLY IN THE EASIEST PLACES TO ACCESS.
THREE DO I HAVE MORE THAN ONE? IF SO, EDIT DOWN TO THE BEST ONE. OF COURSE, HAVING MORE THAN ONE FLASHLIGHT MAKES SENSE IF YOU STORE THEM IN DIFFERENT, USEFUL PLACES. TWO WAFFLE IRONS, HOWEVER, MAY BE TOUGH TO JUSTIFY.
CAN I GET ANOTHER? IF YOU THINK YOU MIGHT SUDDENLY NEED AN ITEM OR IT COULD MIRACULOUSLY COME BACK IN STYLE, REMIND YOURSELF YOU CAN USUALLY BUY OR BORROW ONE.
S T O R AG E D O C T O R
ASK YOURSELF 1. HOW DO I FEEL WHEN I LOOK AT MY BEDSIDE AREA? Stand near your bed, then lie in bed. Your bedside area should make you smile and soothe your soul. If any item produces even a tinge of sadness, guilt, or anxiety, move it out of the bedroom (and perhaps your life) immediately. 2. CAN I BREAK WITH TRADITION? Matching nightstands and lamps are classic bedroom furnishings, but they don’t offer many storage options. Substitute pieces you already have—a small cabinet, a writing desk, an entry hutch, or a few bookshelves—on one or both sides of your bed.
3. WHAT’S GOING ON IN THE OPEN SPACES? Tame these often messy areas with baskets or bins that stabilize stacks of linens and clothing. Use baskets, bookends, and magazine holders to organize reading material. Incorporate an attractive waste bin. 4. WHAT AM I DOING WITH ADJACENT SPACES? Underbed space is the perfect spot for seasonal or essential but less than attractive items. Purchase a plastic underbed box for each side of the bed—some come on wheels to make access easier. 5. HOW AM I MINIMIZING TECH STRESS? If you must charge your smartphone or other devices on your bedside table, adjust the device settings to block distractions and interruptions.
6. WHAT’S ON THE FLOOR? The ideal answer is nothing. Put books on shelves and magazines in upright holders. Put dirty clothes in a hamper. Hang clothes you plan to wear again on a hook or hanger.
7. WHAT AM I READING THIS MONTH? If you love reading so much, you need to stop making book piles. Establish one shallow basket/bin to collect reading material. As soon as the basket is full, it’s time to edit. Place any remaining books on a designated shelf elsewhere. You won’t forget the titles you still plan to read.
Revise your bedside reading the first of every month and know why you want to read every book on your list. Your bedside stack should be about the best of the best that you want to read. Move aspirational or assignment reading to a work area.
AVO I D TH E B E D ROO M B LU E S
Promote better sleep by enabling Night Shift or Night Mode, which minimizes the amount of sleep-inhibiting blue light coming from your electronic devices.
“Place a small wastebasket near your bed so you can toss trash immediately. Discard used tissues, junk mail, wrappers, magazines, and papers that collect on your nightstand or the floor. Every time you vacuum your bedroom, empty the wastebasket, too.”
“Old elastic hair ties often get lost in the area around your bedside table. Buy fresh ones and store them in a bowl or tray in a drawer. Wrap the old ones around the neck of soap dispensers, which instantly limits how much soap your kids waste in the bath or kitchen.”
—DONNA SMALLIN KUPER, UNCLUTTER.COM
—KATE MARTIN, ORGANIZEDJOYLLC.COM
THE PROS DAY TWO
ASK YOURSELF 1. WHAT DO I ACTUALLY OWN? A clutter-free clothing dresser begins with a thorough inventory. Empty the entire dresser and sort it all into piles. Put like with like on the bed or floor. Avoid editing at this point, which will slow you down. 2. CAN I FURTHER SORT MY PILES? Take another look at your biggest piles and sort and subcategorize some more. Tops might be further subdivided into tanks, tees, and long-sleeved, for example. Make labels as you work.
3. WHAT DO I ACTUALLY WEAR? Now you can start editing. Apply the “Four Clarifying Questions,” page 5, to figure out what to keep and what to let go of.
4. IS A DRAWER THE BEST PLACE TO STORE THIS? You may have better storage spots for specific types of clothing—or perhaps all your clothes. Consider hangers and hooks for work clothing. Try open shelves for folded garments that stack well, such as jeans, sweaters, and sweatshirts. Undergarments may be more conveniently stashed in a bathroom. 5. WHAT IS EACH DRAWER’S DUTY? Assign one duty only to each drawer. Designate drawers for each type of garment (accessories, undergarments, tops, bottoms). Or it might make more sense to designate drawers by purpose like work, workout, casual, dress-up, or seasonal. Use sticky notes for the first few weeks to help your designations become habitual.
6. HOW MUCH CAN I SEE INSTANTLY? Do everything you can to eliminate layers in drawers. Roll or refold clothing into packets that stand on end. Use spring-loaded dividers, bookends, and boxes to keep clothing standing tall.
“Move bulky items out of your drawers. Sweaters, sweatpants, and jeans are best organized on shelves; pants store well over hangers. Dedicate drawers to smaller items like T-shirts, underwear, and socks.” —SAMANTHA PREGENZER, SIMPLYORGANIZED.ME
7. WHERE DO I CHECK MY LOOK? Consider moving finishing touches out of the bath or closet and establish a final primping station, using the topmost drawer and dresser top.
“Let go of those spare button envelopes you hide in the bottom of your dresser drawers. Give them to teachers for math counting manipulatives or donate to your dry cleaner so they truly get used, not forgotten.” —KATE MARTIN, ORGANIZEDJOYLLC.COM
WA X O N
Take a moment when your dresser is totally empty to check that every drawer is sturdy and moves smoothly. Tighten corners with wood screws and run waxed paper over drawer sides and glides.
DO I R E ALLY N E E D TO L AB E L MY PI LE S?
Yes! Although labeling piles may seem silly, knowing all your options eliminates overthinking and speeds decision making.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 7
S T O R AG E D O C T O R
THE PROS DAY THREE
ASK YOURSELF 1. HOW’S THE BAG INTERIOR LOOKING? Dump your bag. Now. Before you start sorting any of its contents, examine the bag interior. Wipe it down. Repair any holes, tears, or snags. If the interior can’t be repaired or cleaned, it’s time to get a new bag. (And don’t even think of donating a ratty bag.) 2. WHAT’S ACTUALLY IN HERE? Sort bag contents into categories that are meaningful to you. Some typical personal bag categories include: wallet stuff, hygiene, cosmetics, hair care, weather gear, pet care, kid care, and electronics. Your categories will vary. Don’t judge or edit yet; just make piles that are relevant to you. 3. DOES IT WORK? Purses are notorious for stowing broken and damaged items. If you can’t fix it NOW, you probably aren’t going to. Dispose of the item.
4. WHAT’S MY BEST OR FAVORITE? Because purse space is limited, start your editing process by eliminating duplicates and also-rans. Settle on one gum, one lipstick, one pair of sunglasses. You don’t need choices and options in your bag; you only need the best. Put extras you still like in a desk drawer in your entry area or in an over-the-door vinyl caddy that hangs inside an entry closet.
5. DO I NEED A PHYSICAL VERSION? A smartphone and strategically employed apps can eliminate lots of physical items you’re carting around in your bag. You don’t have to ditch your real-world daily planner, notebook, stack of shopper cards, or clutch of coupons, but realize that every one of these items has a digital equivalent that can get the job done just as effectively, or maybe even more efficiently.
6. WHAT IS EACH POCKET’S PURPOSE? Every built-in compartment in your bag should have one duty only. The best pocket choices hold items securely yet allow you to see or retrieve items easily. Zippered pockets take time to access, so fill them only with precious items or things you rarely need to get your hands on. 7. CAN I CHANGE BAGS IN A MINUTE— OR LESS? Even if you don’t tote multiple bags, you should be able to deconstruct and reassemble your personal bag in a minute. In order to achieve this quick change, you need a designated pouch for each important category and removable pouches that transition instantly between bags. 8. WHERE DOES MY BAG LIVE? Choose one spot in your home and stick with it. Make your solution as easy as possible. A hook or bin is doable; a drawer or cabinet is more difficult to access so you’re less likely to use this consistently.
“Gift cards and coupons take up space and add bulk to your bag. Although they are essentially cash sitting in your bag, you probably aren’t using them and may even be losing them. There are great free apps—try Slide or Gyft— to help you digitally organize and use gift cards and coupons.” —SAMANTHA PREGENZER, SIMPLYORGANIZED.ME
“Every day or once a week, remove all receipts from your purse or wallet. Verify all amounts with a quick online check of your accounts and shred receipts for ATM transactions and consumed goods. Scan receipts for your business purchases or items with value.” —DONNA SMALLIN KUPER, UNCLUTTER.COM
G ET TI N G KEYE D I N
No more digging in your bag! Choose a keychain with a shape you can identify by touch alone. Or clip your keys to your wallet. Grabbing a wallet is easier than a key ring, plus you can tuck the keys into the wallet’s coin purse.
AFTER THE CLEANSE You’ve ruthlessly assessed your stuff and separated out the items you’re keeping, and you’ve immediately returned everything that belongs to someone else. So now what do you do with the things you no longer need? Your options vary depending on where you live and the services available, but you really have only four ways to move forward.
ONE SELL IT Your first notion may be to host a garage sale or sell your stuff on Craigslist or eBay. Wait just a second! Do you truly have the time and energy to sell things in the next week? If not, move on to other options. After a successful cleanse, you don’t want a spare room filled with things you’ll sell someday.
AWAY If you know of someone specific who can use an item, contact him or her immediately.
Do not keep things because you’re sure that someone, somewhere will want the item someday. If you don’t know of a specific person now, move on to other options. Consider free exchange networks. For example, The Freecycle Network (freecycle.org) has hundreds of grassroots, nonprofit groups around the world. Each local group is moderated online by local volunteers, and membership is free. The network provides individuals and nonprofits an electronic forum to “recycle” unwanted items. Simply send an email offering an item to members of your local Freecycle group.
3 DONATE IT
Get these decluttering tools, downloads, and help at BHG.com.
Most national donation-accepting organizations and charities (such as Goodwill, Salvation Army, St. Vincent De Paul, and others) are interested only in items that are new, unused, or in excellent condition. If you don’t have any use for a beaten-up armchair or a broken stove, the charity probably won’t either. Visit CharityNavigator.org for detailed evaluations of thousands of charities in the United States and abroad. You’ll also find links to charities in your area and info on how donating affects your taxes.
TI DY U P STR ATEG I E S
BHG.com/TidyUp Go online to find smart storage tricks, cleaning tips, and easy organizing projects.
C H EC KLI ST S
BHG.com/Checklists Download and print handy checklists to help you keep on top of all your cleaning and household chores.
FAST & E ASY
You don’t even have to leave your home to declutter. Visit DonationTown.org to find local charities that will pick up your donations and supply you with all the relevant tax paperwork.
L AB E LS
BHG.com/Labels Download and print our fun labels to help you organize bins and baskets in every room of your home.
RECYCLE OR DISPOSE OF IT
If you can’t find a person, organization, or charity that can use your item, it’s time to (ideally) recycle the item or dispose of it. Visit Earth911.org to find your best options for recycling or disposing of items. Simply enter the items you’re getting rid of and your ZIP code; the site lists your options based on proximity to your home. Contact information is available for most options, so you can find out what you need to do to drop off your stuff or arrange for a pickup. SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 9
S M A L L S PAC E
FRESH OUTLOOK Custom-built furniture, reclaimed materials, and stylish bins elevate the look and function of a Portland, Oregon, couple’s compact loft. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL PRODUCER SHANNON QUIMBY PHOTOGR APHER L AURIE BL ACK
WHEN FIRE BROKE OUT in Val and Joey
Fishman’s Portland, Oregon, loft, the floor and 12 inches up the wall were ruined. Instead of letting this catastrophe get them down, the couple viewed it as an opportunity to customize the space and make the unit truly feel like their own. They also added lots of creative storage to help the 889-squarefoot unit, located in one of the city’s oldest buildings, feel much larger than its actual footprint would suggest. After replacing the floor and appliances, the couple focused on taking stock of what
items they actually needed. “Essentially, we have always been proponents of living small,” Joey says. “We tried to toss everything we don’t use on a regular basis.” What they kept, they put into containers in a pair of bookcases in the main room, sorted by category. New furniture throughout the loft creatively enhances available storage space, and reclaimed materials mix industrial chic style with vintage warmth for a mood that’s at once comfortable and contemporary. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
OPEN AND AIRY The loft is primarily one big space, so homeowners Val and Joey Fishman set up distinct zones through the use of area rugs and furniture groupings, above. A desk in a window bump-out creates a cozy office in the far corner.
FOCAL POINT A pair of bookcases at one end of the kitchen, right, holds bins and baskets to organize exercise equipment, cleaning supplies, and pet food and toys. CUSTOM CRATES Val used a chalk pen and stencils on chalkboard fronts to label matching crates, below. She painted paw prints and other dog-related designs on baskets of pet gear. HIDDEN STORAGE Joey crafted the coffee table, below right, out of two wooden pallets. Hollow inside, it offers a handy place to stash items when guests visit.
Corral reading material inside shallow baskets or trays.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 11
S M A L L S PAC E
ON DISPLAY Small kitchens can benefit from open shelving or glass-front cabinets, which lighten the overall look and help the space feel more airy. But don’t let the shelves become a jumbled mess or they might detract from the room. “All-white dishes always look nice on open shelving,” professional organizer Barbara Reich says. For a streamlined look, she suggests displaying items that are uniform in terms of size, color, or style.
RECLAIMED BEAUTY Visit BHG.com/ FleaStorageIdeas to get tips on reusing flea market finds in creative ways.
INDUSTRIAL CHIC Galvanized plumbing pipes form the base of the kitchen island Joey and Val constructed, and they double as a convenient pot rack. Red barstools add color and create a casual eating spot.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 13
WHEELS UP A post running from floor to ceiling anchors a two-tier bike rack near the loftâ€™s entry, left. The Fishmans liked the sturdiness of this type of bike rack and the fact that it takes up as little space as possible.
Look for an adjustable bike rack that can work with various ceiling heights.
HANDY BASKET A deep basket at the end of the bed, above, serves as a stylish spot for extra pillows. A lid discreetly conceals the contents.
IN THE ZONE 1
CAREFULLY DEFINED AREAS MAXIMIZE SPACE AND EFFICIENCY IN THIS OPEN LOFT.
A wall of bins forms a stylish focal point and keeps often-used items gathered in one spot.
Furniture can easily be rearranged in the living area to make room for additional guests.
Two walls create a compact but efficient cooking space, and an island on casters doubles as additional work and dining space.
The bedroom sits in one corner of the loft. Across the hall, a door leads into the bathroom, where cabinets hide the washer and dryer.
S M A L L S PAC E
PRIVACY PLEASE A floor-length curtain can close off the bedroom when desired. Built-in drawers in the bed, inset, provide space for extra sheets in the same footprint.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 15
S A N I T Y S AV E R S
STOP PAPER PILEUPS We asked a group of professional organizers about what causes paper overload and how best to reduce it. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL ILLUSTR ATOR TRINA DAL ZIEL
WHAT TYPES OF PAPER GENERALLY CAUSE THE MOST PROBLEMS FOR PEOPLE TODAY? ABY GARVEY The most challenging paper is actionable paper—those pieces we receive to remind us to perform a task. Such things as bills, invitations, appointment reminder cards, and permission slips fall into this category. J E N N I F E R FO R D B E R RY The junk mail and monthly health and fi nancial statements that people are not sure if they should keep or not. K ATHY J E N KI N S The biggest type of paper is junk mail. Credit card companies have started sending more offers in the mail, and people have to discern whether an envelope is a bill, check, etc., and ask themselves, “What do I do with these?” The other type of paper comes from school, especially elementary school. Your kids come home with a bag full of papers that you have to deal with. K ATHY VI N E S Bills that have already been paid or statements from accounts. Even though you don’t think you need to keep it for any real reason, it nags at you that maybe you should, and so you do. JAN I N E ADAM S Bills, insurance documents, catalogs, coupons, and flyers really tend to accumulate in people’s homes. I’ve been an organizer for 12 years, and I don’t think that’s changed a whole lot in that time, other than more people are going paperless with their bills. 16 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO KEEP UP WITH ALL THE MAIL YOU RECEIVE? K ATHY J E N KI N S I think it’s best if
people try to go through their mail and papers every day. On a heavy mail day, you might think, “l don’t have hours to look through this.” I like to tell people to time how long it takes to get through an average day’s mail. I guarantee it’s going to take less time than they thought it would. Once you’ve determined how long it takes, you have the information you need to make a good decision. You can say, “This is only going to take two minutes and I have 15. Let me hurry up and get through this.” The fi rst review should be to immediately remove items that don’t even need to hit the kitchen counter. Things that require quick scans and can be instantly recycled should be the fi rst things that get weeded out. Paper that needs to stay around longer can typically be K ATHY VI N E S
placed into one of three purposeful categories: To Read, To File, Needs Action. Make sure everyone knows where the purposeful piles are. Or if just one person is responsible for reviewing all the paper, they know where that person’s in-box is. JAN I N E ADAM S I encourage people to RSVP immediately to any invitation. It’s tempting to delay the decision of whether to attend an event, but if you can decide on the spot and RSVP accordingly, the task doesn’t become a burden. ABY GARVEY Visit the site dmachoice.thedma.org. It can help you gain control of your mailbox by selecting the type of mail you receive and don’t receive in four categories: credit offers, catalogs, magazine offers, and other offers, such as donation requests, bank offers, and retail promotions.
OUR EXPERTS JAN I N E ADAM S , Professional
organizer, Peace of Mind Organizing, St. Louis J E N N I F E R FO R D B E R RY,
Professional organizer, Buffalo, New York ABY GARVEY, Organizing
expert, Simplify101.com K ATHY J E N KI N S ,
Professional organizer, Come to Order, Richmond, Virginia K ATHY VI N E S , Professional
organizer, Clever Girl Organizing, Melrose, Massachusetts Please see “Meet the Pros,” page 90, for contact information.
S A N I T Y S AV E R S
WHICH PAPERS NEED TO BE FILED AND WHICH CAN BE THROWN AWAY? WHAT DOCUMENTS SHOULD BE SHREDDED? ABY GARVEY File permanent records, such as legal documents (marriage certificates, contracts, wills, etc.) and fi nancial documents (receipts of major purchases, mortgages, tax returns, and documents used to determine the numbers for your tax returns). Toss paper that contains information you can easily fi nd elsewhere, such as online with a simple search. Shred anything with identifying information (account numbers, social security numbers, etc.). K ATHY VI N E S I use some basic guidelines for shredding. If it has information on it that can be used to access information about you that you wouldn’t want published on Facebook, like how much money you make, what illnesses you have, or what medications you take, then shred it. If it can be used to steal your identity (checks, credit card information, social security numbers, etc.), shred it.
My best tip is to keep less paper. Before you decide to keep and file something, think about whether you could fi nd it online if you needed it. Just because you have a file for something, doesn’t mean you have to keep it. If you decide to keep a piece of paper, take 10 seconds and file it rather than putting it aside to file later. If you’re putting off filing because your file cabinet drawers are stuffed full, take some time to clean them out. JAN I N E ADAM S
K ATHY J E N KI N S Make decisions based on what makes you comfortable and what you have space for. If you only have space for a crate of office papers, then that’s how much you can keep. A lot of stuff you can fi nd online now. You can log into a utility or bank and get at least a year of information. If you file a document, put a note on the folder that says how long you want to keep it. Or when you are done paying a bill, you can scan it and throw it in an electronic folder or use one of the apps on page 19. 18 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
WHAT IS THE BEST WAY TO KEEP TRACK OF BILLS AND AVOID PAYING LATE FEES? JAN I N E ADAM S The fewer bills you have, the fewer payment due dates you have to remember. You can automatically pay some bills, like your cell phone bill, with a credit card. Then you have just one bill (the credit card) to remember to pay. I like to pay my credit card in full, but sometimes I may not have the cash flow to do that, so I set up an automatic payment for the minimum, just in case I forget to pay the bill on time. That way I never get a late fee. ABY GARVEY For non-recurring bills, have a single spot to collect them, such as an in-box or letter tray. If you’re a visual person, give yourself permission to keep this out in the open. Set aside a specific time once a week to pay any bills that have come in during that week. (Be sure to block out this time in your planner.)
K ATHY J E N KI N S Set up a tickler system with folders labeled 1 to 31 for every day of the month or four folders, one for each week of the month (place bills into the folders based on their due date). Or set a reminder on your phone for, say, 8 a.m. on Thursday morning to pay your car loan. J E N N I F E R FO R D B E R RY Have a system in place that you use over and over the same way each month. Mark due dates in your planner. K ATHY VI N E S Switch as many bills as possible to an autopay option and create an automatic transfer schedule for your bank account in case you need funds to be replenished into your bill-paying account. Or pay those bills as soon as they come in.
WHAT’S THE BEST WAY TO MANAGE ALL THE SCHOOL PAPERS? J E N N I F E R FO R D B E R RY Make it a rule that kids need to unload their backpacks and place papers in the same bin or basket every single day. K ATHY J E N KI N S I’m a big advocate for teaching children early on how to figure out what they should keep. If they can study from it for an exam, keep it. The busy work can easily be tossed. If they keep it, set up a folder for the math stuff, English stuff, etc. ABY GARVEY If you don’t have the heart to throw out completed papers or artwork right away, establish a container to hold papers for a period of time. This could be a month or the whole year. The more that paper stresses you out, the shorter the duration you should use.
WHAT’S THE STRANGEST PLACE YOUR CLIENTS HAVE HIDDEN PAPER PILES? JAN I N E ADAM S I’ve had clients who stuffed papers into plastic grocery bags to hide them from guests. One of those clients then stuffed the bags under furniture. Just when we thought we’d gone through all of her paper, we would fi nd another plastic bag hidden under a couch or chair. J E N N I F E R FO R D B E R RY Under their bed, in the car, and next to the toilet! K ATHY J E N KI N S I have one client who is famous for scooping paper up into a paper bag and sticking it into a side closet. I can always tell how many events she has had at her house based on how many bags I have to go through.
APPS TO HELP CUT DOWN ON PAPER CLUTTER CAMCARD Take a picture of any business cards you receive, and this app will add them to the contact list on your phone.
CAM SCANNER With this app, you can scan and save documents from anywhere, archive them, and easily search the digital files. DROPBOX Use this app to store and access photos and documents from anywhere. Choose the free option with 2GB of space or pay for a plan with additional storage. EVERNOTE Who needs to print anything out when you can just clip ideas from various websites, organize them in folders, and access them anytime on your computer or phone?
GENIUS SCAN This app creates a PDF scan or JPEG of any document you want to store electronically.
PAPER KARMA Take a photo and stop junk mail and unwanted catalogs.
SCANNER PRO Another scanning app, this one lets you scan documents, save them into folders, and upload to a cloud storage system. SHOEBOXED You can scan receipts and business cards or send them a packet of paper clutter and have them digitize it for you. Packages range from $15–$69 a month.
DE SIGN SOLUTION S
Savvy homeowners work with a designer to add smart built-in storage that enhances every room of their house.
WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL PRODUCER LINDA HUMPHREY PHOTOGR APHER JOHN GR ANEN
DINING A REA Monica and Curtis Garnerâ€™s 1980s-era house in Bellevue, Washington, was functional, but it lacked the charm they desired for their family space. They turned to JAS Design Build to help them add built-in storage and fresh character. In the casual dining area, right, this meant installing a new banquette with cabinets on both ends that hold cookbooks and serving pieces. Bright orange chairs lend a fun, youthful vibe to the neutral space.
20 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
FA MILY ROOM In the basement family room, left, a new cabinet behind the sofa offers storage and display space. Drawers hold gift wrap and supplies and holiday decorations. Open shelves for board games lighten the overall look.
LIV ING ROOM When guests gather in the adjoining kitchen, Monica can hide the television in the formal living area, right, behind punched-metal screen doors. The coffee table has a lift-up top for easy access to stored blankets, and includes drawers for magazines.
KITCHEN In the farmhouse-style kitchen, left, glass-front cabinet doors and open shelves break up walls of white cabinetry and put dishes and vintage-style glass canisters on display. The island, painted a soft blue, features open shelving on the working side to ensure the cook has easy access to pots and pans. Stools on the opposite side (not shown) create a casual eating spot.
REA DING NOOK A quiet spot on a large stair landing area just off the playroom now serves as a cozy work and reading zone. A shallow built-in cabinet stows office supplies and snacks, open shelves display reading materials, and a built-in bench sports a cushioned seat, near right. A narrow table forms a desk for the computer, far right, so one person can work while another relaxes with a favorite book. 22 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Everyone walks around their house saying, ‘I wish I had a place for this.’ Write down your ideas and communicate them to your designer. —MONICA GARNER, HOMEOWNER
M ASTER BEDROOM Drawers along one wall of the master bedroom, above, feature dividers for organizing belts, scarves, and jewelry. Floating nightstands on both sides of the bed, left, include an electrical outlet at the back and are big enough for a tablet to fit inside. A hole on top allows Monica and Curtis to pull cords through so phones can be used while charging.
E N T RY + LI V I N G Maximize storage in your entryway and organize your media room to create versatile family spaces. 26 GOAL: Streamline Your Entryway 28 GOAL: Conquer Media Room Clutter 30 CASE STUDY: Child’s Play 34 PRODUCTS: Grab & Go Storage RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
MAKE IT A HABIT Set aside a specific place for keys so you’ll always know where they are. A marble soap dish on an entry table is a simple, stylish option.
SMART CONTAINERS All containers are not created equal. Choose a solid box for small items, such as coins, to ensure they donâ€™t slip through. Add a liner to a wire-grid container, if necessary.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 25
”I call the entryway the family launchpad since this is where the family enters and exits each day. It’s a great place to post checklists for kids so they remember their daily routines.” —JENNIFER FORD BERRY, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
Transform a wall into a message center with chalkboard paint.
E N T RY + L I V I N G Q U I C K & E A SY S O LU T I O N S
STREAMLINE YOUR ENTRYWAY Employ storage strategies that put everyday gear and supplies in order so they’re easy to grab as you head out the door. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL
CREATE ZONES for everyone—even a pet. “Give each person a spot. This could be a basket, bin, or shelf, but this is their one spot to drop stuff,” professional organizer Jamie Novak suggests.
Add a basket to a tabletop to serve as a landing spot for mail, keys, and more.
END PAPER CLUTTER by creating a dedicated space for managing mail, opposite. Use baskets to sort mail and create a handy spot for outgoing mail—so you’ll see it on your way out. If you get a lot of magazines and catalogs, carve out a place for them as well.
CORRAL SHOES so they don’t take over the floor. Craft a shoe bin for each person, such as a crate dressed up with hairpin legs, right, and limit shoes to what can fit inside. Professional organizer Samantha Pregenzer also suggests storing gym bags and briefcases in decorative containers to get them off the floor. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
Always losing your phone around the house? Add a charging station to your entry, so you can drop electronics when you walk in the door. The Compact Charging Station ($35–$45) lets you charge multiple devices in a limited space. greatusefulstuff.com
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 27
”For wall-mounted TVs, a wall-colored cable concealer between the TV and components can make wires less apparent. Of course, wireless connections can also keep cable clutter down.” —JANINE ADAMS , PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
Hide cords and a power strip in a basket with a hole cut into the back.
E N T RY + L I V I N G Q U I C K & E A SY S O LU T I O N S
CONQUER MEDIA ROOM CLUTTER Tame the mess of remotes, video game consoles, and cords with clever built-ins, attractive containers, and simple labels. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL
HIDE THE MESS . Place the TV and consoles behind cabinet doors or sliding barn-style doors, opposite.
CORRAL REMOTES in a cute container on a table, right. Conceal extra video game consoles in bins as well, suggests professional organizer Barbara Reich.
LABEL IT. ”Use a label maker to label both the cord and the equipment,” Reich says, so you don’t get confused later. Also take a moment to label all remotes—or invest in a universal remote.
Are video game controllers and accessories spilling out of your media cabinet or taking over your coffee table? Get media room chaos under control with the Wall Mount Video Game Rack ($27). It lets you store games, controllers, and headsets in one convenient, out-of-the-way space. organizeit.com
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 29
E N T RY + L I V I N G C A S E ST U DY
Organizing a wall of bookshelves in this multifunctional family room ensures kids can easily access toys, books, and more. Cleanup is a snap too! WRITER NANCY RICHMAN MILLIGAN PRODUCER K ATE MALO PHOTOGR APHER MART Y BALDWIN
were piled in a jumble, with like items scattered among the shelves. QThe children couldn’t reach all of their books and toys, so Mom and Dad had to get them down and put them away. QValuable space was given to things that were no longer needed or used. QThere was no space for overflow supplies from the crafts/sewing area.
SOLUTIONS SORTING ITEMS AND WEEDING OUT unused
toys was the ﬁrst order of business in this busy play area. With the help of Certiﬁed Professional Organizer Kathy Jenkins (see bio in “Meet the Pros,” page 90), homeowners Rachael and Scott, and their three children, began removing things that didn’t belong or were no longer needed. That gave Jenkins the green light to take stock of the items the family wanted to store on a 15-foot wall of shelves. After considering size, shape, and quantities, Jenkins devised a plan to organize the books and toys by category and accessibility. “Because the kids are little, we wanted all their stuf down low so they can be “Before you turn off the lights, do a quick pass through the room and put everything away. You will feel so much better the next time you come into the room.” —KATHY JENKINS, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
30 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
opposite: Toys and books were stacked haphazardly prior to the organization, and the kids depended on adult help to get out many of their things. above: A combination of open and closed bins and baskets (each with its own colorful label, inset) was selected once the homeowners identified the items to be stored. The kidsâ€™ belongings now fill the lower shelves, allowing their mother to store fabric and family games on the upper shelves. Puzzles fit nicely in zippered mesh bags.
E N T RY + L I V I N G C A S E ST U DY
ONE- HOUR CLUTTER CURE STAY FOC U S E D To break down a big job, pick just one category of item to organize at a time. Pull out all the items in that category and bring them together. “When you spread things out, each item seems important, but when you pile them all together, it’s easier to figure out what is worth keeping and how much storage space you are willing to give it,” professional organizer Kathy Jenkins says.
self-sufficient in both locating toys and putting them away,” Jenkins says. The reachable shelves along the bottom feature see-through wire bins for stufed animals, balls, and larger toys. “If you have open storage for kids, it is so much easier to pull things out and throw them back in,” Jenkins advises. She hung a repurposed wall organizer at the lowest level, ﬁlling it with books that are easy to see and put away. Jenkins devised picture labels for storage bins that the youngest child can follow. “The labels work great because everything has a home, and the children are in the habit of putting things away now,” Rachael says. 32 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
The shelf design and size and shape of the toys dictated what type of storage bins to use. “We needed closed storage that stacked to make the best use of space, and lidded plastic bins were perfect to corral small building pieces and toys,” Jenkins says. Big fabric buckets on higher shelves hold chunky blocks and less frequently used items. Family members now have a calmer, more functional gathering space where they can watch TV, play, and craft without the specter of disorganization hanging over them. And thanks to clever storage strategies, the room is designed to stay that way. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
above: The organized shelves function for the whole family and add to the aesthetics of the room where they spend most of their time together. A small table and chairs provide a designated place for the kids to color, do crafts, or eat a snack.
1 A wall-mounted organizer encourages kids to reach for picture books. The organizer can be
put to use elsewhere after they have grown. “As life changes, you need to reevaluate the space and ask if it is still working,” Jenkins says. 2 Stackable, closed bins work great for small toys. Picture labels clearly tell the kids where, for example, the toy dinosaurs go. 3 Plastic zipper bags ensure that puzzle pieces don’t get lost, a strategy that mom Rachael calls “genius.” A file holder keeps them grouped together on one shelf. 4 Wire bins hold stuffed animals and other large toys. Kids can find what they want and toss them back in at cleanup time—nothing to it.
E N T RY + L I V I N G P R O D U C TS
WHAT TO BUY
GRAB & GO STORAGE Put your entryway walls to work with hooks, shelves, and bins that are super efficient and inviting. WRITER HANNAH G ILMAN
TOP SHELF Showcase your favorite art and knickknacks on this slim shelfâ€”and leave room for mail and other items you need to grab on the way out the door. Levie Floating Wall Shelf, $40; overstock.com
2 SORT YOUR STUFF Store hats, mittens, mail, homework, and more in this five-compartment organizer. Made of galvanized iron, the unit can hold up to 75 pounds. Take Five Gold Wall Bin, $69; landofnod.com
HANG TIGHT This sleek over-the-door unit is the answer for tight spaces. Its unique pivot design allows the hooks to lie flat against a door or wall when not in use. Pogo Over the Door Wall Hook, $25; umbra.com
MIRROR, MIRROR Grab your keys and spotcheck your look at the same time with this mirrored wall shelf. A small ledge holds mail to go out or makeup for quick touch-ups. Command Mirror Organizer, $20; amazon.com
”I love a good coat tree that can rest in a corner. Just don’t let the coats add up—keep it to the current season’s essentials.”
—KATHY VINES, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
ALL ABOARD Jot notes on this 16×24-inch board with clear overlays for dry or regular markers. Its electro-adhesive surface keeps items in place—no pins, tape, or magnets required. Justick by Smead Mini Dry-Erase Board, $80; myorganized.life
6 INDUSTRIAL CHIC Bring a warm-yet-edgy flair to your entryway with shelves made from black iron pipes and reclaimed wood originally cut from the outside of living logs. Living Edge Reclaimed Wood and Pipe Bookshelf, $155; ireclaimed.etsy.com
ODDS AND ENDS Wooden knobs are smooth enough to drape delicate scarves over and ideally sized to hold keys. Stow mail, phones , and wallets in the metal bin. Estique Key Hook & Organizer, $15; umbra.com
DEEP POCKETS Hang this five-pocket storage bag by the door to stylishly corral sunglasses, wallets, phones, and more. The thick, polyurethane-coated fabric holds its shape well. Homecube Hanging Storage Bag, $10; amazon.com
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 35
KITCHEN + PA N T RY Make your cooking area work harder with smart storage ideas for cabinets, drawers, and shelves. 38 GOAL: Organize Your Junk Drawer 40 STORAGE STRATEGIES: Pantry Smarts 44 ROOM TOUR: In the Zone 48 PRODUCTS: Cabinet Organizers RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
EASY TO CLEAN Plastic has come a long way. Look for food-safe containers in fun colors and a variety of sizes. They’re easy to wipe clean—a bonus in a busy kitchen.
36 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
GET CREATIVE Head to the office supply store to find kitchen storage ideas. This organizer was designed with pencils in mind, but it works great for cutlery too.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 37
”Limit yourself to one junk drawer. All those little pieces and gadgets that you are not sure what they are for—toss them out!” —JENNIFER FORD BERRY, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY Q U I C K & E A SY S O LU T I O N S
ORGANIZE YOUR JUNK DRAWER Throw out what you don’t need, sort what you do, and finally bring order to your messiest kitchen drawers. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL
EDIT YOUR STUFF and plan to store only essentials in the kitchen. “If you need 20 rubber bands but you have 100, store the extras in an ‘office supply section’ in another area of the home,” professional organizer Jennifer Ford Berry suggests.
Use boxes of various sizes to create a home for all your kitchen essentials.
GROUP LIKE ITEMS together. Professional organizer Barbara Reich recommends using drawer inserts and organizers, opposite, to create specific spots for pencils and pens, office supplies, or even petty cash. Give each drawer a specific purpose—and get away from thinking of it all as “junk.”
LABEL A LOT if you want to keep your drawer organized. Add labels to specific compartments within each drawer, right. This will ensure that all family members know where things should be put away later.
Need more space in your junk drawer? Maximize your creates two levels of storage in the same amount of space. It provides 23 compartments of various sizes and
Bright paint on the pantry wall makes glass jars of food stand out.
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY STO R AG E ST R AT E G I E S
PANTRY SMARTS Make the most of your pantry, whether you have a spacious walk-in or just a few shelves for food storage. WRITER MEGAN BOET TCHER
HAVE YOU BEEN DREAMING ABOUT A
walk-in pantry? A dedicated room seems to promise a foolproof way to find space for all the things you have jammed into your kitchen cabinets. But no matter what size your pantry is, you’re likely to feel as if there’s not enough room for everything you want to store there, and that it’s too hard to find what you need when you need it. A pantry is only as good as its setup, so believe it or not, the solution isn’t more space. It’s a better use of the space you already have. Careful planning and a few helpful storage containers can go a long way in improving any pantry and ensuring everything is easy to find, access, and put away. If a pantry overhaul is on your to-do list, also consider a plan for maintaining your storage system. Food is constantly moving in and out of the house, so you must think through how to keep your pantry wellorganized for the long haul. We have some ideas to help you get started. SEE IT THROUGH Airtight glass jars, opposite, are great for storing grains and baking supplies. When items get low, jot down a reminder on chalkboard-paneled pantry doors, left, so you can add them to your grocery list later.
CREATE A PECKING ORDER To decide where items should be placed in your pantry, start by organizing them into categories, such as breakfast, baking, snacks, etc. Rank each group based on how frequently you use it. The categories that get used the most should go on shelves that are easiest to reach. Work your way through the other items to fill out the remaining shelves. Store small appliances on a low shelf to avoid lifting heavy items over your head.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 41
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY STO R AG E ST R AT E G I E S
CUSTOM FIT Reimagine your pantry by removing all contents and discarding expired products. Adjust shelving heights as needed to fit essential items. If shelves are not adjustable, consider adding bins, pullout drawers, and dividers, above.
EASY ACCESS Shallow pullouts— instead of immobile shelves—are a great idea, above right. They allow you to easily reach deep into a pantry cabinet and are a back-saving solution for low shelves. No more stooping!
MAKE IT COUNT Put every inch of storage space to use with shallow shelves on the back of the pantry door, right. Use this space for small items like condiments and spices that can easily get lost in the back of pantry shelves.
Stop buying food that’s already sitting on your shelves at home with a free app called Pantry Check. Scan products in your pantry and note the quantity and expiration dates. Then double-check what you already have on hand when you’re at the store. Bonus: Use the grocery list feature to further simplify shopping. pantrycheck.com
DIVIDE + CONQUER SAVE S PAC E You’ll be shocked at how much more you can
fit in your pantry when you take products like granola bars and individual snack bags out of their original packaging and place them in bins. When you group them in dedicated spots, not only can you store more, but you can also help family and friends to quickly find what they’re looking for. When arranging bins, consider who will access them and how often. “If you have children and you are OK with them getting their own snacks, put those on the lowest shelf possible,” suggests professional organizer Kathy Jenkins. Conversely, if you’re not much of a baker, consider stashing all your baking bins on the pantry’s top shelf.
KE E P IT F R E S H Airtight canisters keep cereal and grains fresher longer. For the longest shelf life, opt for containers with vacuum seals and pop-up tops. “I absolutely love using clear glass jars in the pantry,” says professional organizer Jennifer Ford Berry. They make it easy to see when contents are running low so you don’t run out of a crucial ingredient at exactly the wrong time. Remember, pantry contents aren’t all straight-from-the-store purchases. In addition to snacks and baking ingredients, consider storing fresh baked goods or homemade trail mix in glass canisters too. Jenkins recommends sticking with square or rectangular containers if you’re short on space—cylindrical containers look nice, but you end up losing out on storage potential and they often aren’t stackable.
WRITE IT O UT The easiest thing you can do to improve your pantry is to add labels. Otherwise, your best-laid organizing plans will soon come undone. Establish a general category for each shelf, such as snacks, canned goods, or baking supplies, and then label individual bins with a more specific tag, such as granola bars, chips, or cookies. Whether the labels are printed or handwritten, make sure the text is large and easy to read. For flexibility, consider labels that can easily be changed, such as chalkboard or dry erase labels. Another quick way to swap out labels is to slip paper labels in and out of a frame or clear vinyl pouch that is permanently attached to the container or shelf.
DOWN LOAD PRI NTAB LE PANTRY L AB E LS
Visit BHG.com/PantryTags for free labels to help you identify and organize food containers in your pantry.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 43
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY R O O M TO U R
IN THE ZONE
Create efficient, step-saving space in and around your kitchen by storing items according to how you’ll use them. WRITER MEGAN BOET TCHER PHOTOGR APHER EMILY J . FOLLOWILL
SMART KITCHEN STORAGE doesn’t mean you need to have tons of cabinetry. It means you need to be strategic about where you place items. Think about a task, such as making breakfast. You first grab a bowl, spoon, and coffee mug. Then you still need to stop at the pantry, refrigerator, and coffeemaker. An efficient kitchen groups items in zones by activity to minimize the effort needed to do everyday tasks. Take a look at how this remodeled Atlanta kitchen features organized storage areas for each activity and reveals tips for maximizing efficiency. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
1 COOKING ZONE This kitchen includes pullout cabinets that keep frequently used ingredients and items handy yet neatly out of sight. Oils, vinegars, and spices are stored within arm’s reach of the cooktop, above. A similarly sized pullout cabinet on the perimeter wall, right, holds baking sheets.
Opt for mounting hardware that lets you view the TV from several spots.
DINING ZONE Include storage space for linens near an in-kitchen eating area. Make the most of your banquette by adding drawers that can keep tablecloths and place mats within easy reach when setting the table.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 45
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY R O O M TO U R
”When you create zones in your kitchen and place them strategically, it will be easier for you and your family to find things and put them away.” —JANINE ADAMS, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
OFFICE ZONE Dedicate a small table or stretch of countertop for sorting and attending to mail, bills, and other paperwork. This area also makes a handy spot for researching recipes and charging the family’s mobile devices.
4 PANTRY ZONE
5 LAUNDRY AREA
Place your dry food storage near the refrigerator so you can easily put away groceries and gather ingredients for meals. If you don’t have a pantry, carve out space in cabinets near the fridge for supplies.
An in-kitchen washer and dryer are great when you need to throw in a quick load. Save space with a wall-mount ironing board and dedicate a cabinet separate from food for detergents and other essentials.
6 BREAKFAST ZONE Simplify the morning rush with a breakfast station that includes coffee supplies, a few dishes, and a toaster and/or microwave. If this area isnâ€™t near the pantry, consider storing frequently used foods like bananas, oatmeal, or bagels there.
RECYCLING CENTER Plan for all the stuff youâ€™ll want to toss or recycle. Keep it simple with one bin for trash and another for recyclables, or include bins for specific items such as general recycling, trash, compost materials, and batteries and lightbulbs.
Save steps by storing extra trash bags in the drawer or cabinet next to waste bins.
CLEANUP ZONE Leave space for your sponges and dish soaps in the undersink cabinet, installing organizers that fit around plumbing pipes to make the best use of the cabinet. Place plates, bowls, and glassware in cabinets above or near the dishwasher so clean dishes will be easy to put away.
SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 47
K I T C H E N + PA N T RY P R O D U C TS
WHAT TO BUY
CABINET ORGANIZERS Maximize storage in existing kitchen cabinets with adjustable inserts and pullout add-ons. WRITER HANNAH G ILMAN
1 SPACE SAVER
2 CUSTOM FIT
3 STOCK UP
Use a sleek shelf riser to make the most of cabinet space. Customize the height in 1 ⁄4-inch increments to stack double the dishes or pantry items. YouCopia StoreMore Cabinet Shelf Organizer, $18; amazon.com
Say good-bye to jumbles of cookware or serving items. This drawer organizer features movable pegs that lock in place to ﬁt many shapes and sizes. Peggy Drawer Organizer, $20; umbra.com
Keep drinks from rolling around the fridge. This nine-can organizer boasts a bonus shelf and is translucent, so you’ll know when to restock. Linus Fridge Binz Soda Can Organizer, $20; containerstore.com
DEEP DIVE Easily reach items in the depths of your cabinets with handy pullout organizers . Heavy-duty steel holds up to 20 pounds, and a durable drip guard keeps spills at bay. Pullout organizers start at $40; simplehuman.com
5 LEFTOVER CONTROL
6 SQUEAKY CLEAN
This sturdy pullout organizer features adjustable dividers and pegs to help keep storage containers under control. Base Cabinet Pullout Food Storage Container Organizer, $396 and up; rev-a-shelf.com
Store sponges, sprays, and all your spring cleaning supplies in this tiered undersink caddy. Detach the tote and carry it from room to room for easy cleanup. Pullout Cleaning Caddy, $94; hafele.com
SWEET TREAT Cookie sheets, cake pans, muffin tins—all your baking gear stays upright and orderly with this slotted stand, which slides open to fit most cabinets. Expandable Bakeware Stand, $30; bedbathandbeyond.com
8 AT YOUR FINGERTIPS Bring hard-to-reach spices front and center with this wire spice rack. Simply pull it down to eye level while you’re cooking and pop it back up when you’re done. Pull-Down Spice Rack, $20; containerstore.com
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PUT A LID ON IT Use lidded boxes for special items that need to be protected. Sort jewelry by type, or group items that you would wear together.
B E D RO O M, BAT H + C LO S E T Combine easy storage add-ons and custom built-ins to banish clutter in personal zones. 52 GOAL: Tidy Up the Linen Closet 54 EASY PROJECTS: All Grown Up 60 STORAGE STRATEGIES: Built-In Charm 64 CASE STUDY: Master Plan 70 PRODUCTS: Shoe & Boot Storage RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
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ROLL WITH IT Help protect ties by rolling them up and placing them in a divided tray. Theyâ€™ll be easy to find, and the limited space will help you keep your collection in check.
”Whichever way you fold your towels, be sure the folded edge is facing out. This makes towels easier to grab, plus it just looks neater and more organized.” —JAMIE NOVAK, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T Q U I C K & E A SY S O LU T I O N S
TIDY UP THE LINEN CLOSET Organizing towels and toiletries will ensure it’s easy to find what you need for your family and guests. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL
KEEP ITEMS ACCESSIBLE on the shelves. Toiletries can get lost in the back of deep cabinets. “I encourage my clients to work as though the cabinet is only half as deep,” professional organizer Kathy Vines says. She suggests placing empty shoeboxes in the back to take up that hard-to-reach space.
FIGURE OUT A SYSTEM so everyone can fi nd what they need. “I’m a fan of organizing community items (fi rst aid, toilet paper, cleaning supplies) by type and personal items (makeup, lotion, shampoo, etc.) by person,” Vines says. Use baskets, opposite, to corral toilet paper, hair dryers, and more.
ORGANIZE SHEETS by room so you can grab a new set in a hurry if unexpected guests arrive. Use labeled baskets, below, to keep sets sorted. Make it even easier to grab what you need by storing each sheet set inside one of the matching pillowcases, suggests professional organizer Jamie Novak.
GREAT IDEA Is there more in your linen closet than just sheets and towels? If so, you’re going to need labels to keep everything neat and tidy. Sure, you could make your own, but we found these cute printable linen closet labels on the blog The Homes I Have Made. Once you subscribe, you can print them for free on stickers (we used Avery 22830 labels)
FOLD LIKE A PRO Watch our video at BHG.com/FoldTowel to learn tricks for folding towels in neat stacks that won’t fall off your shelves.
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B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T E A SY P R OJ E C TS
Integrated shelves offer generous space for shampoo and soap.
A new panel with magnetic door latches provides easy access to plumbing.
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ALL GROWN UP Thanks to expanded storage and easy do-it-yourself projects, this once-dated bath now accommodates three teenagers with style. WRITER DEBR A STEILEN PRODUCER CATHY KR AMER PHOTOGR APHER MART Y BALDWIN
THANKS American Paint, Delta Faucet, E&S Tile, Hinkley Lighting, Kohler
FRESH FUNCTION To update the kids’ bath, above right, the owners swapped in grown-up wallcovering and a shower/tub unit, opposite. A painted ladder holds chic storage baskets.
BUILT-IN STYLE New storage niches within arm’s reach of the shower, above, give the teens handy places to stash essential items. Matching baskets help sort items and create a cohesive look.
JUST ASK ANY PARENT: Training teenagers to keep their bathroom organized often seems more frustrating than doing it oneself. This family’s bath worked for the kids when they were young, but 10 years later they needed a more grown-up space with plenty of storage options to keep clutter at bay. The room’s ceiling is 9 feet high, so it made sense to put the walls to work. New built-in niches beside the shower keep necessities handy. A six-cubby tower, double-decker storage unit, and 36-inch-wide vanity amplify storage as well. The modern farmhouse look completes the upgrade. Best of all, the teens now find it simple to stay organized. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
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ONE- HOUR CLUTTER CURE FOC U S O N E S S E NTIALS Declutter your vanity or dressing table by pitching expired products or ones you seldom use. Categorize what remains by use for hair, skin, eyes, lips, nails, etc., and group similar items together. Use drawer dividers, bins, and baskets to keep products organized inside cabinets. Dress up the top of your vanity with select accessories; a dash of style will motivate you to keep things tidy.
VANITY FLAIR The old pedestal sink, above right, lacked storage potential. A new matte-black vanity, opposite, now hides grooming essentials behind closed doors. A partial wall clad in repurposed barn boards separates the vanity from the tuband-shower combo.
EASY ACCESS Although plumbing for the sink takes up valuable space, a full-extension drawer inside the vanity cabinet, above, keeps sundries and washcloths accessible for daily routines. The top shelf (cut to fit around the pipe) sports convenient outlets for a hair dryer and other styling tools.
LAYERED STORAGE Divided drawer inserts, right, allow grooming gear to be pulled out for morning and evening use. The vanityâ€™s top drawer stores dental supplies (opposite, inset), the middle drawer stows shaving gear for the two brothers, and the third drawer holds the daughterâ€™s brush and lotions.
Custom drawer dividers ensure no space goes to waste.
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VERTICAL LEAP The homeowners said good-bye to a rarely used chest and stool, above, and said hello to a clean-lined storage tower, right, that fits perfectly between the room’s two windows. It stores items they needed quick access to, such as shoeshine gear and a bucket of cleaning supplies.
CUTE CONTAINERS The tower’s clever storage, right, includes apothecary jars that hold bath salts and soaps, and an old swimming-pool basket that organizes shaving gear and hairstyling supplies. The white “ouch” box, below, keeps bandages, ointments, and other first-aid supplies handy.
Vintage thermos bottles serve as faux legs for the wall-mounted tower.
DOUBLE DECKER Four pieces came together to create a two-story shelving unit, opposite. The top tier is a repainted bookcase salvaged from the original bathroom. The base features a pair of shallow bookcases topped with a slab of lumber coated in one-step paint. Two wheeled hampers help the teens sort lights and darks for laundry day. Chalkboard labels with initials on baskets keep individual personal items separate. (An extra basket with a “G” holds supplies for guests.)
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T E A SY P R OJ E C TS
Boxes on the top shelf hold seasonal items like flannel sheets.
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B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T STO R AG E ST R AT E G I E S
BUILT-IN CHARM Smart cabinetry brings much-needed storage and welcome character to an awkwardly shaped master bedroom. WRITER MAR A BOO PRODUCER SHANNON QUIMBY PHOTOGR APHER L AURIE BL ACK
Drawers in the lower third of each tower corral small items with clear dividers.
60 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Dougâ€™s ties are easy to grab from pullout drawers.
CHARACTER BUILDER Custom cabinets in Georgina and Doug Miltenbergerâ€™s bedroom are crafted of paint-grade poplar and maple and feature full-height storage towers. Each side boasts a trio of double-door cabinets outfitted with shelves and bamboo-lined drawers. Open cubbies across the top display books and sentimental objects. A storage bin holding extra sheets, inset right, slides under the bed.
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T STO R AG E ST R AT E G I E S
The wall-mounted mirror opens the desktop for writing or primping.
WITH ITS ODD DIAMOND SHAPE,
an awkward entrance, and a serious lack of storage, the master bedroom in Georgina and Doug Miltenberger’s 1940s Portland, Oregon, home was more akin to a nightmare than a dream. Adding to its woes were a cramped, inconveniently located closet and faulty baseboard heating that never quite warmed the room. “It was cold, literally and figuratively,” Georgina says. Designer Chelly Wentworth helped them transform the tired bedroom into a serene master suite with plenty of space for stashing clothes, accessories, and media. New cabinetry around the bed jump-started the renovation, blending style and storage for a fresh look. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
DOUBLE DUTY Surrounding the bed with storage, above, freed just enough space for a feminine, painted desk in one corner, left. Here, Georgina writes thank-you notes and applies makeup. Stationery supplies, along with lipsticks and eye shadows, tuck inside the desk drawers.
Pillows invite relaxation on the window seat and add welcome pattern.
ROOM WITH A VIEW A charming window seat, right, encloses a new, energy-efficient radiator. Its painted, perforated metal surround allows heat to circulate easily. The cushioned seat offers an ideal perch for putting on shoes or reviewing the dayâ€™s calendar. Doors conceal the television and related items when theyâ€™re not in use.
OPEN AND SHUT A floor-to-ceiling, built-in corner cabinet, left, hides a flat-screen television. When the cabinet is open, the TV is visible from the bed. Shelves and baskets below organize accessories, towels, and extra linens. SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 63
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T C A S E ST U DY
Faced with an under-performing closet, one urban couple got serious, prioritizing and discarding contents before reorganizing the space. WRITER AND PRODUCER PAMEL A PORTER PHOTOGR APHER MART Y BALDWIN
shoe storage and inefficient use of space led to disorder. QThe closet was storing items other than clothing and accessories. QThe owners were holding onto rarely worn clothing.
SOLUTIONS FOR HELP RECLAIMING THEIR MESSY MASTER CLOSET , homeowners Joy and
Chris turned to Certified Professional Organizer Yvette Clay of LivingOrder Austin (see bio in “Meet the Pros,” page 90). After assessing the situation, Clay determined the couple had plenty of space but needed a major purge and appropriate organizing systems. Their main charge from her was to get rid of anything that wasn’t absolutely essential or regularly used. Any remaining items that weren’t clothing or accessories were designated to be stored elsewhere in their townhouse. “My rule of thumb is that if you can’t wear it on your body, it shouldn’t live in the closet,” Clay says. “Clutter is postponed decisions. Don’t put it down—put it away.” —YVETTE CLAY, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
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“I love the mix of double hanging and long hanging options. No more wasted space!” —JOY, HOMEOWNER
A small folding step stool puts higher-up items within Joy’s reach.
opposite: Before their closet makeover, Joy and Chris had to step over piles on the floor. above: Afterward, a single-hang rod remains on Chris’s side (on left), providing room for a hamper below. New double-hang rods accommodate Joy’s clothes, which she now organizes by category (such as short-sleeve tops) and sorts by color within each category.
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T C A S E ST U DY
below: Before the makeover, Joy had the right idea with this hardworking cubby unit positioned behind the door. Clay helped Joy go a step further, by eliminating the useless hang bar and organizing the jumble of bags, books, and footwear.
To jump-start the couple in what can be an overwhelming endeavor, Clay introduced her A-B-C-D prioritization concept, with A items being those used most frequently and D items those used least or not at all. After thinning out and redistributing misfit items, Joy and Chris took a true inventory of their belongings and joined Clay in devising a plan. Clay determined the single-hang rod on the short side of the closet could fit Chris’s items, which meant Joy could utilize the longer side and back wall. “One thing became quite apparent,” Joy says. “With more than 50 pairs of shoes and boots between us, footwear storage was a big priority.”
A new shoe tower on her side and two shoe shelves on Chris’s addressed their needs perfectly. After calculating the linear footage of her long and short clothing, Joy had the closet components cut accordingly to accommodate double-hang rods on one side of the tower and single-hang for her dresses on the other. The existing cubby unit stayed put, displaying and keeping handbags accessible. Two cabinets on top provide convenient space for folded clothing and allow just enough room for the carry-on luggage Joy uses almost weekly.
above: In a closet, accessibility is paramount. But having everything visible can quickly look chaotic. Drawer space for sweaters and jeans was not available elsewhere, so Joy added cabinet units above the cubbies to hide folded belongings behind closed doors.
RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
ONE- HOUR CLUTTER CURE KE E P IT U P Once your closet is in order, don’t stop there. “A critical step many people don’t take is
maintaining their newfound order,” Clay says. “Establish daily routines to sustain your system and devote an hour every few weeks to revisit your plan and determine what’s working and what’s not, then make adjustments if needed.”
above: Although an awkward shelf was replaced with cabinets, the modular cubby unit stayed put. Canvas drawers and baskets stow socks, intimates, and accessories. One drawer, inset, is for items to give away. When it gets full, Joy makes a trip to a donation center. SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED | 67
B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T C A S E ST U DY
below: Shoeboxes, bedding, bins, and bags crammed the couple’s master closet from floor to ceiling before their big purge. Although it boasted ample hanging space, the closet didn’t adequately address their shoe storage needs.
2 1 Knee-high boots call
EASY CLOSET UPDATES: Visit BHG.com/ ClosetTweaks for more quick organizing tricks.
for horizontal boot bins, which help the long shafts keep their shape. (Rolled-up magazines inside help too.) The clear, lidded bins let Joy see inside and keep boots dust-free and off the floor.
2 The key factor to the closet’s success is a nine-shelf tower that showcases Joy’s shoe collection. “The sight of it makes me happy every morning,” she says. Joy also loves the bed with built-in storage they purchased to house the closet’s overflow items.
HANG TIME When it comes to hangers, one style does not fit all. GENERAL USE These are available in many forms; find one you like and stock up. PANTS This hangerâ€™s open end allows pants to slide on and off with ease. SKIRTS Clips let you hang skirts rather than piling them, eliminating wrinkles.
3 3 Clay believes in getting everything off the floor, and these easy-to-assemble shoe shelves did the trick on Chrisâ€™s side of the closet. Their capacity even allowed him to move a few pairs of shoes out of the front entryway. Matching hangers give the closet a neat, finished look. Joy prefers non-flocked hangers so clothes slide on and off easily. 4 Alternating the direction of shoes helps maximize
shelf space, and the sleek rail keeps shoes from sliding off angled shelves. Joy opted for a shallow angle, which allowed for an additional shelf. By measuring the height of her shoes beforehand, she was able to install the shelves at various heights to accommodate flats, heels, and ankle boots.
Joy cleverly repurposed a small crate as an organizer for flip-flops.
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B E D R O O M , B AT H + C LO S E T P R O D U C TS
WHAT TO BUY
SHOE & BOOT STORAGE Keep your footwear neat and tidy with versatile organizers for inside the closet and out. WRITER HANNAH G ILMAN
1 PERFECT PAIR
2 SHOE CHIC
Save space in your closet while protecting your boots from creasing with these plastic boot shapers, which can be adjusted to fit shaft height. Boot Space Saver, $15 for two; containerstore.com
Made of metal and vinyl, this double-shelf shoe rack is simple and sophisticated, and gets the job done. Need more storage? Stack another unit on top. Imelda Shoe Rack, $30; umbra.com
STAND TALL No more toppling! Corral up to four pairs of boots in this hardworking metal rack, which fits nicely in the closet beneath hanging garments. Whitmor Boot Rack, $25; target.com
ROOM FOR MORE Serious shoe lovers will appreciate this 60-pair chrome rack that rolls where you need it for easy organization and selection. Rolling Shoe Rack, $60; bedbathandbeyond.com
5 WALL ART
6 ON DISPLAY
7 FOLDED FLAIR
Put unused vertical space to work with these colorful shoe holders that stick to walls and doors thanks to an adhesive backing. (You may need extra adhesive for heavy shoes.) Wall Mounted Shoes Rack, $11; amazon.com
Tuck this 15-cubby shoe rack into a closet or let it serve double duty as an entryway landing spot. Label cubbies so everyone will know where to stash their shoes. Room Essentials Shoe Rack, $35; target.com
This 10-pocket canvas organizer hangs from a swivel-neck hook sized for a closet rod. Cardboardreinforced pockets hold their shape well. Umbra Origami Hanging Organizer, $40; containerstore.com
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WO R K + H O B BY Transform your work spaces and crafts areas with efficient storage and clever organizing tricks. 74 GOAL: Straighten Up Your Desk 76 CASE STUDY: Creative License 82 ROOM TOUR: Five-Star Garage 88 PRODUCTS: Laundry Helpers RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
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GATHER SUPPLIES Use a shallow tray (less than 1 inch deep) to keep select materials for a current project grouped together.
RIGHT AT HOME Before heading to the store, search your house for small boxes and bins that can be repurposed as drawer organizers. You may already have just what you need.
”Be very thoughtful about what you leave on your desk. If you’ve paid that bill, either scan it and shred it, or file it away.” —KATHY JENKINS, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
WO R K + H O B BY Q U I C K & E A SY S O LU T I O N S
STRAIGHTEN UP YOUR DESK Get clutter off your desktop and you’ll discover more space to work. WRITER RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL
USE VERTICAL SPACE to clear off your desktop. Install shelving and cabinets above a desk, opposite, to store reference materials and supplies. Or attach wall pockets to the wall or desk side to store papers you need to access often, suggests professional organizer Kathy Vines.
Add bright colors and inspiration boards to make work more fun.
FOCUS ON ESSENTIALS and think about what you really use at your desk; move everything else to other storage areas. “If you don’t staple papers, don’t put a stapler on your desk,” professional organizer Kathy Jenkins says.
COLOR CODE supplies if more than one person will be working in the same area. File folders in different colors keep papers separate at this family homework station, right. Matching storage boxes disguise additional supplies on the desktop.
Keep notebooks, planners, and binders organized with tabs in lively colors and patterns. The Avery Ultra Tabs Refi llable Clip & Go Carrier ($7) lets you tuck a set of tabs in a binder and take them with you for work on the go. amazon.com
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WO R K + H O B BY C A S E ST U DY
Careful space planning and dedicated storage areas help an artistic mother and daughter reclaim a once chaotic crafts room. WRITER MAR A BOO PHOTOGR APHER MART Y BALDWIN
surfaces were buried under piles of supplies, leaving little room for creativity. QIt was impossible to tell where crafts supplies were located or what items needed to be replenished.
SOLUTIONS GUIDED BY PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
Deb Cabral of The DeClutter Coach (see bio in “Meet the Pros,” page 90), homeowner Melissa launched a four-step process to reform her crafts room. She wanted to ensure it would accommodate her many creative pursuits—along with those of her daughter, Olivia, and even Olivia’s Girl Scouts troop. Melissa began by gathering wayward items from elsewhere in the house. “She had so many supplies that some had migrated to other rooms,” Cabral says. “We had to have a true understanding of what she owned before we could decide what to do with it.” Because Melissa and Olivia sew, paint, draw, quilt, and scrapbook, their supplies were abundant and varied. Cabral advised “Having a maintenance plan is key to staying organized.” —DEB CABRAL, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
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opposite: Once-cluttered work spaces hid supplies and put a damper on creativity. above: Thanks to well-thought-out storage along the roomâ€™s perimeter, surfaces now are clean and inviting. A tall cabinet opens, inset, to reveal hanging plastic bags filled with gift wrap, zippered pouches with scissors and tape, and clear boxes holding bows. The adjacent cabinet holds kidsâ€™ crafts supplies.
WO R K + H O B BY C A S E ST U DY
ONE- HOUR CLUTTER CURE SAVE O N STO R AG E Organizing doesn’t have to cost a fortune if you’re smart about how you spend your
money. Recycle glass food jars, such as pickle, salsa, and spaghetti sauce, and use them to group small items that hide behind closed doors. Choose more decorative—and likely pricier—containers for visible storage that can provide a nice pop of color and energize your space.
allocating a specific spot in the crafts room for each activity so that Melissa could sort items according to how they were used. Notions, for instance, were staged under a sign taped to the wall marked “Sewing,” and stamp pads were placed beneath a “Scrapbooking” sign. Editing came next. “Crafters see a potential use for every button and scrap of fabric, and can own 400 rubber stamps,” Cabral says. She encouraged Melissa to keep only items she uses frequently, recommending she toss, give away, or donate the rest—particularly those that were broken, dried up, or not earmarked for a specific project. The next step was reconfiguring the room itself. Melissa’s table received a fresh coat of
paint and now serves as the room’s dedicated crafting area. Here, Melissa can wrap presents on a flat surface near where ribbons and bows are stored. A sewing machine stands on a desktop reserved for stitching curtains and pillows, and a long stretch of countertop enables Melissa to assemble scrapbook pages with ease. To ensure work surfaces remain clutterfree, Melissa fits all supplies into thoughtfully planned storage containers. Many are items cleverly repurposed for specific uses, such as plastic sock drawer dividers that separate acrylic paints by color. All are located right where they’re used. “It’s a lot easier for us to be creative now,” Melissa says. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
above: Paper crafting supplies and decorative items cluster above an L-shaped countertop for scrapbooking. Glass canisters and spice jars on wallhung shelves hold crafting essentials. Bulky items like heat embossers and die cutters are stowed behind cabinet doors.
1 An extensive range of scrapbook papers fills a three-shelf unit. Magazine holders contain paper stock sorted by color; thinner
papers are organized by pattern and color on open shelves below. To the right, a tower of clear plastic drawers holds papers divided by holiday and theme. 2 Wall space is employed for storage purposes throughout the crafts room, including above the scrapbooking counter, where shelves and rods welcome ribbon scraps and rolls. 3 Scrapbooking templates and layout aids gather in a divided letter sorter with a minimal footprint that allows maximum counter space to remain free for working. 4 Packaged embellishments for paper crafting loop around a wall-mounted kitchen utensil rod. 5 In a drawer, acrylic paints are separated by hue in plastic sock dividers and turned upside down so colors are easily visible.
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WO R K + H O B BY C A S E ST U DY
”Ask yourself, ‘Do I absolutely need it?’ It’s important to be able to say ‘absolutely’; otherwise, you’ll talk yourself into keeping it.” —DEB CABRAL, PROFESSIONAL ORGANIZER
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6 A trio of bookcases
stylishly holds albums, baskets, and boxes filled with photos. Wire baskets display lengths of fabric. 7 Less attractive storage is hidden behind closed doors but labeled to make fi nding contents easy. 8 The sewing machine sits at the ready atop a counter ergonomically positioned at a comfortable height. 9 In-progress sewing
projects earn their own plastic bins to hold the fabrics and notions necessary for completion. Snap-on lids ensure contents remain secure as theyâ€™re toted to the sewing machine.
Creating a sewing space leaves the table free for other crafts projects.
Store all the supplies you need for a current crafts project in a box you can easily move to your work area. The Creative Options Clear Organizer Project Box ($20) is sized just right for scrapbook paper and can be stacked if you are working on multiple projects. amazon.com
WO R K + H O B BY R O O M TO U R
FIVE-STAR GARAGE This hardworking space holds two cars, two workbenches, a rolling table, and a slew of baskets, drawers, and cabinets. WRITER SAR AH WOLF PRODUCER JESSICA BRINKERT HOLTAM PHOTOGR APHER BRIE WILLIAMS
1 THE GARAGE IS OFTEN MERELY A BIG REPOSITORY FOR TOOLS, yard implements,
and off-season items with nowhere else to go. But Miesje and Dana Corbo of Scottsdale, Arizona, knew it could be more. Working with interior designer Caroline DeCesare, they filled their three-car garage with work areas, storage, and art. “You spend more time in the garage than in some rooms of the house, especially if you’re like me and a little bit handy,” Dana reasons. The end result is a stylish space to sort and store everything a busy family with four preteens might need—and then some. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
WORK AND PLAY One bay of Miesje and Dana Corbo’s three-car garage is dedicated to two workbenches and a table on casters. In this hardworking zone, open wire shelving organizes often-used tools (drills, flashlights, tape measures, etc.) in easy reach of work surfaces. Framed signs lend a playful mood. The other two garage bays, left, are for cars.
Have a lot of tools? Store one type in each bin to avoid a jumble.
SORT IT OUT Like items are grouped together inside a corner cabinet. Cleaning products are rounded up in baskets, pesticides are out of reach in another labeled bin, and golf club covers are stored next to golf balls.
CLOSE AT HAND Containers suit the size and shape of various supplies. Shallow metal drawers below one workbench stow hand tools; under them, big wire mesh baskets hold bulky extension cords, rope, and cases for Dana’s drills.
SPACE SAVERS A cabinet outfitted with screen doors for a rustic look is built into the wall so it doesn’t take up any extra floor space. The Corbos measured the shelves to make room for Dana’s golf bags. Hooks get ladders and a broom off the floor.
ONE- HOUR CLUTTER CURE U P AN D AWAY Want fl exible storage fast? Dana Corbo recommends installing a wall-mounted rail system, such as the Rubbermaid FastTrack system he used in his garage. “That’s the fi rst thing I would do if I were starting with a new garage,” he says. “You can hang the rack as high or as low on the wall as you want.” The rails (which include hooks for specific tools) can be installed with a drill, screws, and anchors.
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WO R K + H O B BY R O O M TO U R
LOOK UP Don’t forget about the storage potential near the ceiling. The Corbos added a shelf high on the wall for a dozen black plastic totes that store off-season clothing, camping gear, memorabilia, holiday decorations, and “anything we get down once a year,” Dana says. For maximum benefit, they added extra framing support to make sure the shelf would support heavy items.
Light is gained from windows, ceiling cans, and pendants.
5 WORK SPACE ON WHEELS An antique table got a new set of casters so it can be moved wherever it’s needed. (“It’s also a convenient place to dump things when you get out of the car,” Dana says.) Deep drawers tucked into alcoves under windows are big enough for all the sports equipment the Corbo kids can throw in them.
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WALL OF STORAGE A multipurpose cabinet stacks items from the stained concrete floor nearly to the ceiling. Metal bins (some vintage scores, some new purchases) store items such as lightbulbs, paint cans, rags, wood stain, gardening gloves, and seed packets.
7 PARKING SPACE
Two sets of drawers fit snugly under the windows along the back of the garage, leaving plenty of room for cars. Industrial-style stools offer a resting place next to the table.
8 ODDS AND ENDS An industrial rotating bin the Corbos found at the Round Top Antiques Fair in Texas holds nails and other small items that can easily get lost. It sits atop a cabinet with numbered drawers, where Dana stashes such things as batteries, hook-and-loop tape, and glue. 86 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
WO R K + H O B BY R O O M TO U R
Repurpose vintage finds as clever containers for tools and supplies.
9 SMART SINK
The work space boasts a utility sink and faucets (formerly a weathered zinc bucket and outdoor spigots). “Paint and all that stuff is very messy,” Dana says, “and we just deal with it in the garage rather than in the house.” The workbench features tilt-out bins sized just right for a table saw, clamps, and other bulky tools.
WO R K + H O B BY P R O D U C T S
WHAT TO BUY
Streamline washday chores and make the most of a small laundry room with these space-savvy accessories. WRITER HANNAH G ILMAN
1 COLLAPSIBLE FIX No room? No problem. Simply pop up this basket on laundry day and collapse it once everything’s clean, dry, folded, and put away. StoreSmith Collapsible Laundry Basket, $40 for set of two; hsn.com
HANG IT UP Turn any available space, indoors or out, into a drying rack with this 40-foot retractable clothesline that’s simple to remove when not in use. Bonita Delight Clothesline, $21; wayfair.com
88 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
OUT TO DRY With 14 nonslip clips, this handy accessory can dry multiple items at one time and hangs from a shower rod or drying rack. Open, it’s 38.5 inches long. OXO Folding Clip Dryer, $22; containerstore.com
SPLASH OF COLOR Retire your plastic hamper for a fashion-forward canvas basket that’s both practical and pretty enough to put on display. Better Homes & Gardens Teal & Taupe Stripe Canvas Square Hamper, $13; walmart.com/BHG
”Add shelves or cabinets above the washer and dryer, and look for pockets of space where you can add a rolling cart to hold laundry supplies.”
—ABY GARVEY, ORGANIZING EXPERT
5 SORTING STATION
6 DOUBLE DUTY
7 OUT OF THE BOX
8 ON THE WALL
Introducing your new laundry helper on wheels. Three bags make sorting easy, and the shelves are perfect for storing detergent, softeners, and more. Trinity EcoStorage 3-Bag Laundry Station, $100; bedbathandbeyond.com
Set up this ladder in the A-frame position or unfold it completely and lean it against a wall. It works as stylish storage or a drying rack for laundry and towels. Bamboo Ladder Clothes Drying Rack, $35; containerstore.com
Stock up on these stackable laundry sorters. Made from sturdy fabric , each features a lid and a pull-down opening for easy access to your lights, brights, and darks. Brabantia Stackable Laundry Sorter, $35; crateandbarrel.com
Make the most of vertical space with a wall-mount drying unit. The rack tilts out at three adjustable angles to fit the height of your items. Space Saving Wall Mount Drying Rack; $80 and up; improvementscatalog.com
ORGANIZING EXPE RTS
MEET THE PROS
Meet the organizing professionals who offer tips throughout the issue.
YVETTE CLAY Yvette Clay, a Certified Professional Organizer, is the owner of LivingOrder Austin. She works with residential and small business clients to help streamline their lives and their living and working spaces. She loves creating spaces that are organized, less cluttered, and more efficient.
BARBARA REICH Barbara Reich is the founder of Resourceful Consultants LLC, a firm specializing in the organization of people, their lives, and physical spaces. Her areas of expertise include home and office organization, time management, digital decluttering, organizing for academic success, and managing everyday chaos. Reich is the author of Secrets of an Organized Mom, winner of the Mom’s Choice Award. BARBARA REICH, RESOURCEFUL CONSULTANTS; NEW YORK CITY; RESOURCEFULCONSULTANTS.COM
YVETTE CLAY, CPO, LIVINGORDER AUSTIN; LIVINGORDER.COM
JANINE ADAMS Janine Adams is a Certified Professional Organizer in St. Louis and founder of Peace of Mind Organizing LLC. She leads teams of organizers to help clients create order and peace of mind in their homes. She blogs at peaceofmindorganizing.com and organizeyourfamilyhistory.com. JANINE ADAMS, CPO, PEACE OF MIND ORGANIZING; ST. LOUIS; PEACEOFMINDORGANIZING.COM
DEBORAH CABRAL A Certified Professional Organizer and Productivity & Efficiency Consultant and Trainer, Deborah J. Cabral launched her company, The DeClutter Coach, in 2010. Growing demand has led to the expansion of the business to include DC Efficiency Consulting, a corporate training and consulting division; Organization Motivation!, her 30-minute national television show; and “Organized in 60 Seconds,” nationally syndicated news/lifestyle video segments. In addition to being a business owner, Cabral is also a wife, mother of three, and an active community volunteer. DEBORAH J. CABRAL, CPO, THE DECLUTTER COACH; NEW HARTFORD, NEW YORK; DECLUTTERCOACHDEB.COM
KATHY JENKINS A Certified Professional Organizer, Certified Family Manager Coach, and Professional Organizer Coach, Kathy Jenkins has been helping families and small businesses since 2005, and she is the founder of Come To Order. She often speaks about organizing, and her advice has been published in books and magazines such as Better Homes & Gardens, Woman’s World, Good Housekeeping, and Real Simple. As a working mother of two school-age boys, Jenkins meets the challenges of staying organized every day. KATHY JENKINS, CPO, COME TO ORDER; RICHMOND, VIRGINIA; COMETOORDERVA.COM
90 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
DONNA SMALLIN KUPER Organizing expert Donna Smallin Kuper, founder of Unclutter.com and author of nine organizational help books, says flexibility is key in an efficient home. Kuper received the 2006 Founders Award from the National Association of Professional Organizers for contributions to the industry and frequently serves as a brand spokesperson for manufacturers and service providers.
Kathy Vines is a Certified Professional Organizer, Productivity Specialist, and the owner of Clever Girl Organizing. She is the author of Clever Girl’s Guide to Living with Less: Break Free from Your Stuff, Even When Your Head and Heart Get in the Way.
DONNA SMALLIN KUPER; UNCLUTTER.COM
KATE MARTIN Kate Martin is a Certified Professional Organizer, international speaker, certified art teacher, and owner of Organized Joy LLC. She is the author of several books, and hosts a blog and YouTube organizing channel. She juggles being a business owner, wife, and mom to two young boys with help from decorating magazines and dark chocolate.
KATHY VINES, CPO, CLEVER GIRL ORGANIZING; MELROSE, MASSACHUSETTS; CLEVERGIRLORGANIZING.COM
KATE MARTIN, CPO, ORGANIZED JOY LLC; ROUND ROCK, TEXAS; ORGANIZEDJOYLLC.COM
SAMANTHA PREGENZER Samantha Pregenzer is the founder of Simply Organized and specializes in individualized solutions for moms and stressed-out homeowners. She is a Contained Home Organizer, Evernote Community Leader, and NAPO member. She is the writer behind the Simply Organized blog and its addictive Instagram feed. SAMANTHA PREGENZER, SIMPLY ORGANIZED; SAN FRANCISCO; SIMPLYORGANIZED.ME
JENNIFER FORD BERRY
Aby Garvey is an organizing expert who believes organizing can be creative and fun—the more you love an organizing solution, the more likely you are to use it. She offers an online organizing newsletter and a variety of online classes that can help you get organized.
Jennifer Ford Berry is an organizational expert, best-selling author, entrepreneur, and speaker. Her books, including Organize Now! A Week-byWeek Guide to Simplify Your Space and Your Life and Organize Now! Think & Live Clutter-Free, have sold more than 450,000 copies worldwide. Berry has been working as a professional organizer for 16 years. JENNIFER FORD BERRY; BUFFALO, NEW YORK; JENNIFERFORDBERRY.COM
ABY GARVEY, SIMPLIFY 101; SIMPLIFY101.COM
JAMIE NOVAK When not on the road presenting humorous, helpful organizing workshops, Jamie Novak is searching for a cure for her addiction to clipping recipes she never prepares. She is the author of multiple best-selling books, including Keep This Toss That, and she can help you sort through your things so you can unclutter your life and get organized. JAMIE NOVAK; LOS ANGELES AND NORTHERN NEW JERSEY; JAMIENOVAK.COM
For help organizing your home, contact these retailers and professionals for more information about products and services.
KEY [T] TO THE TRADE
These items or services are not available to the general public. Contact a design professional for help. [P] PAINT COLOR
Because of the magazine printing process, paint colors depicted on our pages might vary slightly from the manufacturers’ colors. Use paint color names or numbers, when provided, as a starting point. To get the exact color you see in the magazine, take the page to a paint retailer for matching.
SMALL SPACE: FRESH OUTLOOK
board on perimeter counter Nonslip
cutting board in slate and red—Epicurean;
Framed phone booth artwork—IKEA;
ikea-usa.com. Rug at sofa Midcentury
Abrash—West Elm; 866/428-6468; westelm
.com (product line varies). White pillow
Double bike rack—REI Co-op; rei.com.
with shape of Oregon—Stacey Coleman
Basket with lid—World Market;
Pillows, Eugene, Oregon; ssnow27@
877/967-5362; worldmarket.com. Bed—
comcast.net. Black stripe pillow Woven
Restoration Hardware; 800/910-9836;
Blocks Wool Kilim pillow, red stripe pillow
restorationhardware.com. Side table lamp
Woven Mohair Striped pillow cover, red
Anglepoise in Signal Red—Rejuvenation;
desk chair Henry in red—Rejuvenation;
888/401-1900; rejuvenation.com. Duvet
888/401-1900; rejuvenation.com. Sofa—
and shams Organic Cotton Pintuck—West
Christopher David; christopherdavidhome
Elm; 866/428-6468; westelm.com (product
.com. Black pendant light antique theater
line varies). Black-and-white lumbar
lighting—Old Portland Hardware and
pillow Black Global Oversized lumbar
pillow from Threshold—Target Stores;
ON THE COVER White cabinet Adept
Coffee table made by homeowner,
800/800-8800; target.com (product
Storage Credenza in white, vases with
desk—homeowner’s collection. Galvanized
line varies). Framed artwork at bed—
copper bottom Cement and copper
tray in coffee table, red fabric boxes
HomeGoods; 800/614-4663; homegoods
vases—At Home; athome.com. Copper
in shelving—HomeGoods; 800/614-4663;
.com (product line varies). Drawer
pencil holder and coin holder, ceramic
homegoods.com (product line varies).
dividers Hofta in white, curtains—IKEA;
tray, purse on bench—Target Stores;
Shelving racks—World Market; 877/967-
ikea-usa.com. Pendant light—The
800/800-8800; target.com (product line
5362; worldmarket.com. Produce crates
Home Depot; homedepot.com (product
varies). Wire wall baskets Copper Wire
with chalkboard labels—Amazon;
Hanging Wall File, woven baskets with
amazon.com, search: Mcmarks produce
white bottoms Beach House Storage
crates. Canisters with white lids OXO,
Bins with Handles, woven boxes in
black tie tags—Storables; 866/227-0092;
top shelves Taupe Rowan Storage
DESIGN SOLUTIONS: CUSTOM CRAFTED
Bins, aqua boxes Premium Gift Box in
aqua, copper baskets Copper Wire
Red stools—Fred Meyer; fredmeyer.com.
Architecture, interiors, construction:
Desk Organizers—The Container Store;
Red and white ceramic lidded
JAS Design Build, Seattle; 206/547-6242;
containers above refrigerator
jasdesignbuild.com. Table reclaimed
Growlers—Portland Growler Co.;
elm plank—Pizitz Home and Cottage,
92 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Seaside, Florida; 850/231-2240. Chairs
planter Small Round Marble Canister
green lidded transparent bins Blue and
Colt Highback in turmeric—O&G, Warren,
in white, lid included, round copper
Green Medium Top Boxes, wire bins Down
Rhode Island; 520/247-1820; oandgstudio
container from the Copper Magnetic
to the Wire Cube Bins, large wire hamper
.com. Chandelier—Circa Lighting;
Desk Set, sold as a set of three magnetic
Flea Market Wire Ball Bin—The Land of
cups and tray—The Container Store;
Nod; 800/933-9904; landofnod.com.
Bookend—Jonathan Adler; 800/963-0891;
Chairs many similar styles available— Wayfair; 844/347-4808; wayfair.com.
jonathanadler.com. Page 21
Coffee table used as crafts and play
Gift-wrap bins—The Container Store;
table Lack in white—IKEA; ikea-usa.com.
GOAL: STREAMLINE YOUR ENTRYWAY
Rug—West Elm; 866/428-6468; westelm
with ring pulls—Target Stores; 800/800-
.com (product line varies). Cabinet over
White cabinet Adept Storage Credenza in
8800; target.com (product line varies).
fireplace, sofa storage table—custom,
white, vases with copper bottoms Cement
Labels similar available—Amazon;
homeowners’ collection. Metal chair
and copper vases—At Home; athome.com.
amazon.com, search: hanging labels.
Rizza—Grandin Road; 866/668-5962;
Copper pencil holder and coin holder,
ceramic tray—Target Stores; 800/800-8800;
target.com (product line varies). Wire wall
KITCHEN + PANTRY OPENER
Pendant lighting—Circa Lighting;
baskets Copper Wire Hanging Wall File,
Green trays Mint Poppin Accessory
877/762-2323; circalighting.com. Island
woven baskets with white bottoms Beach
Trays, sold in small, medium, and large,
paint Manor House Gray—Farrow &
House Storage Bins with Handles, woven
green knife holder Mint Poppin Silicone
Ball; 888/511-1121; farrow-ball.com [P].
baskets in top shelves Taupe Rowan
Organizer, blue trays Aqua Poppin
Farmhouse sink—Kohler Co.; 800/456-
Storage Bins, aqua boxes Premium Gift
Accessory Trays, sold in small, medium,
4537; us.kohler.com. Faucet—Rohl;
Boxes in aqua, copper basket Copper
and large, white squared-corner box with
800/777-9762; rohlhome.com. Desk chair
Wire Desk Organizer—The Container Store;
square holes White Like-It Bricks, white
Marais—Industry West; industrywest.com.
rounded-corner box Clear and White
Drawer Organizer Trays, aqua round-
Cabinets and bed custom, bedding—
Flooring COREtek Plus in Weathered
cornered boxes Clear and Aqua Drawer
homeowners’ collection. Pink throw on
Concrete 50LVT1803—US Floors;
Organizer Trays—The Container Store;
bed—Jonathan Adler; 800/963-0891;
888/266-8246; containerstore.com. Food
Rug, tray on table, large aqua bins
preparation tools Large Spatula in flat
jonathanadler.com. Mirrored boxes on built-in desk—West Elm; 866/428-6468;
gray and washed blue, Basting Brush in flat
westelm.com (product line varies). Drawer
gray—Target Stores; 800/800-8800; target
dividers—The Container Store; 888/266-
Professional organizer: Kathy
.com (product line varies).
Jenkins, CPO, Come to Order; info@ cometoorderva.com; cometoorderva.com.
Puzzle bags Zippered Vinyl Mesh Pouch,
IN THE ZONE
ENTRY + LIVING OPENER
several sizes available, DVD storage
Architect: Roger DeWeese, AIA,
Copper wire baskets assorted sizes
Acrylic DVD Rack, clear totes similar
Peachtree Architects, LLC, Atlanta;
Copper Wire Desk Organizers, dark
available, Our Clear Storage Boxes,
wood boxes Feathergrain Wooden Desk
several sizes available—The Container Store;
Contractor: Artisans of Atlanta; 404/377-
Organizers, white boxes with square
888/266-8246; containerstore.com. Puzzle
3350; artisansofatlanta.com. Cabinetry
holes Like-It Bricks, white marble key
file holder similar items available—Staples;
custom—Block & Chisel, Atlanta;
dish Marble Soap Dish in white, marble
800/378-2753; staples.com. Blue and
Storage Box, square gold tray with
Grey Soft Storage Boxes in large and
folded corners Umbra Gold Glamour
medium—The Container Store; 888/266-
Black countertops soapstone—
Jewelry Tray with linen base, square gold
8246; containerstore.com. Shelving
Dorado Soapstone; 888/500-1905;
tray Square Gold Lacquered Serving
unit at laundry area Hemnes in black
Tray, large and small navy blue boxes
brown, white shelves at laundry area
countertops Statuarietto marble—
and small gray box Bigso Marten
Godmorgan High Cabinet in white—IKEA;
Marmi Natural Stone, Norcross,
Desk Organizers in navy blue and gray,
ikea-usa.com. Shower curtain Trio Linen
Georgia; 770/921-7601; marmistone.com.
available in assorted sizes, woven tray
in shale, Pine Cone Hill, rug at vanity
Backsplash mosaic in Carrara marble—
Small Makati Storage Bin, divided box
Gradation Ticking woven cotton rug, Dash
Specialty Tile Products, Inc.; 800/536-
with dots Vanilla Supersize Stacker—
& Albert—Annie Selke; 877/586-4771;
9224; specialtytile.com. Cooktop, ovens,
The Container Store; 888/266-8246;
annieselke.com. Stripe towels at shower
microwave—Wolf Appliance, Inc.;
Ribbed Stripe towel in birch and white—
800/332-9513; subzero-wolf.com. Vent
Garnet Hill; 800/870-3513; garnethill.com
hood—Miele, Inc.; 800/463-0260;
(product line varies).
ALL GROWN UP
Inc.; 800/222-7820; subzero-wolf
Tub and shower surround Sterling
.com. Dishwasher—Bosch; 800/944-
Ensemble in white, vanity Poplin,
2904; boschappliances.com. Sink—
countertop Verticyl in Ice Grey with oval
Designer: Chelly Wentworth, CKBD, CAPS,
Blanco America, Inc.; 800/451-5782;
cutout, sink Verticyl in white, cabinet pulls
formerly with Arciform, Portland, Oregon;
Poplin rectangular pull in brushed nickel—
503/493-7344; arciform.com, now with
USA, Inc.; 800/774-1181; dornbracht.com.
Kohler Co.; 800/456-4537; us.kohler.com.
C Change Design Co., Portland, Oregon;
Pendant light Lasso in opal matte—Besa
Tub and shower faucets Ara Collection
Lighting; 800/446-2372; besalighting
with TempAssure 17T Series in stainless
Builder: Arciform, Portland, Oregon;
.com. Barstools Onda by Jesús Gasca
steel—Delta Faucet Co.; 800/345-3358;
for Stua—Design Within Reach; 800/944-
deltafaucet.com. Lighting at vanity
Wall paint Serenity SW7250—The
2233; dwr.com. Desk chair vintage
from the Congress Collection—Hinkley
Sherwin-Williams Co.; 800/474-3794;
modern Saarinen style—check with local
Lighting; 800/446-5539; hinkleylighting
sherwin-williams.com [P]. Blue pillow on
dealers. Desk-chair upholstery luxury
.com. Dark floor paint for distressed
bed, desk chair—Pier 1 Imports; 800/245-
vinyl—Knoll, Inc.; 800/343-5665; knoll
look Freedom Road, light floor paint
4595; pier1.com. Green throw and green
.com. Upholstery work—Terry Taylor
Navajo White—American Paint Co.;
pillow on bed, pillows on window seat—
Custom Interiors, Atlanta; 404/352-1893.
americanpaintcompany.com for a retail
HomeGoods; 800/614-4663; homegoods
Banquette table custom lacquered steel—
store near you. Flooring top coat
.com (product line varies). White coverlet
Puzio’s Iron Studio, Atlanta; 404/888-
High Performance—General Finishes;
and pillow shams—West Elm; 866/428-
0340; puzioironstudio.com. Banquette
generalfinishes.com for a retail store near
6468; westelm.com (product line varies).
fabric faux leather—Kravet; 800/645-
you. Wood tile for wall—E&S Wood
Under-bed bin—The Container Store;
9068; kravet.com. Television—Sony
Tile; eandstile.com. Wire baskets on
Electronics, Inc.; 800/222-7669; sony.com.
shelving on wood wall, fabric-lined
Sheets in bin, desk table lamp, pencil
small basket at laundry table, hampers
holder, letter sorter—Target Stores;
Harvest Hamper, gray plastic shower
800/800-8800; target.com (product line
BEDROOM, BATH + CLOSET OPENER
totes Casabella Flexible Shower Tote,
varies). Tall basket at desk, blankets in
white steamer in bottom basket by
corner cabinet—World Market; 877/967-
Rectangular gold box with lid Gold
iron, ironing water, starch, and spray
5362; worldmarket.com. Baskets in
Lacquered Storage Box, round gold
bottle in basket above iron, gray lidded
corner cabinet—Storables; 866/227-0092;
box with lid Gold Round Lacquered
boxes above laundry hampers Bigso
94 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Hardware; rh.com. Black storage totes
with yellow lids—Costco Wholesale;
Professional organizer: Yvette Clay,
Professional organizer: Deborah
costco.com. Wall organization system
CPO, LivingOrder Austin; yvette@
Cabral, CPO, The Declutter Coach;
for ladders Rubbermaid FastTrack
livingorder.com; livingorder.com. Shoe
tower, shelving, cabinets, shoe
Wire mesh baskets inside cabinets
Classico plank in Rosso 00710—Shaw
Elfa, scrubbing brush, black circle
closetmaid.com. Step stool—T.J. Maxx;
Floors; shawfloors.com. Chandelier
hangtag labels—The Container Store;
800/285-6299; tjmaxx.com (product
Ocean Sapphire Mason jar—BootsNGus;
containerstore.com. Watering can—
line varies). Pants hangers—Amazon;
bootsngus.etsy.com. Rug grid ivory
Target Stores; 800/800-8800; target.com
amazon.com, search: J. S. Hanger. Skirt
wool tufted—Dash & Albert;
(product line varies). Silver chandelier
annieselke.com. Gift-wrap organizer
over work island Factory Overhead
search: Joy Home skirt hangers. Plastic
Wrappy—Wrap It, Inc.; boutique
Six-Light Chandelier—Barn Light Electric;
.wrapitgiftbag.com. Window film
barnlightelectric.com. Gray totes with
search: Whitmor Spacemaker. Hamper
black lids Rubbermaid—The Home Depot;
discontinued, similar items available—
homedepot.com. Black oval peel-and-
JCPenney; 800/222-6161; jcpenney.com.
stick labels—Office Depot; officedepot
Cubby shelf unit 16-Cube Organizer,
.com. Old Pepsi crate—Williams-Sonoma,
woven baskets Dark Woodchip Basket,
Architect: Mark B. Candelaria, Candelaria
light gray canvas lidded boxes, all
Design Associates, 6900 E. Camelback
from the Better Homes & Gardens®
Rd., Suite 400, Scottsdale, AZ 85251;
Collection—Wal-Mart Stores, Inc.; walmart
ONE MORE IDEA
.com. Plastic bins—The Container Store;
Interior designer: Caroline Tyler
Dairy crates—The Container Store;
DeCesare, DeCesare Design Group,
800/786-7315; containerstore.com. Cord
Inc., 166 W. Main St., Suite 202,
attaching crates Polyester Rope Cord,
Mesa, AZ 85201; 480/668-5490;
WORK + HOBBY OPENER
dowel—Menards; for locations throughout
White tray Compact Modular Bin Lid
the Midwest, visit menards.com.
sold with bin, white trays and boxes with
Builder: Ron Barney, Ron Barney,
colorful lining Deep and Shallow Metal
RD Enterprises, LLC, 2451 E. Desert Ln.,
Drawer Organizers in navy blue, sky blue,
Gilbert, AZ 85234; 480/275-2999; ron@
red, and orange, orange tray Orange
Poppin Small Accessory Tray, navy tray
Garage cabinetry: Matt Parsons, Desert
Navy Poppin Small Accessory Tray, navy
Cove Woodworks, LLC, 11201 N. 21st
organizer holding upright pencils
Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85029; 602/944-0118;
Navy Poppin Silicone Organizer, small
multicolor box from the Bigso Prism
workbenches, vintage island on casters,
Stockholm Desktop Organizer System,
vintage blue sink, vintage metal
sold as set, multicolor box with lid Bigso
storage unit, vintage circular metal
Prism Stockholm Magnetic Pencil Box,
storage container—DeCesare Design
small, white, round, lidded containers
Group, Inc.; decesaredesigngroup.com.
Magnetic See & Store Containers, sold in
Wire cubby baskets holding cleaning
set of two—The Container Store; 888/266-
supplies above golf clubs, industrial
twin-bulb overhead lights—Restoration
⁄8×73⁄4×24-inch white shelf, 3⁄4 -inch poplar
ONE MORE IDEA
Transform a pair of milk crates into a durable and stylish bedside bookshelf that’s just right for a kid’s room.
EASY UPDATE This upcycled nightstand gives the classic milk crate a whole new look. To make it, stack two crates and wrap parachute cord around the handles, inset, to keep crates together. Cut an 8×24-inch prefinished white decorative shelf in half to make two 8×12-inch shelves. Stretch strips of patterned electrical tape over the shelves for extra flair. Cut four pieces of 3⁄4-inch dowel to the width of the crates plus a few inches. Slide the dowels through the crates to serve as shelf supports. Place shelves on dowels, and voilà, you have a stylish spot for books, games, accessories, and more. RESOURCES BEGIN ON PAGE 92.
96 | SECRETS OF GETTING ORGANIZED
Secrets of Getting Organized™ (ISSN 1933-2696), Early Spring 2018. Secrets of Getting Organized is published twice a year in March and December by Meredith Corp., 1716 Locust St., Des Moines, IA 50309-3023. In Canada: Mailed under Publications Mail Sales Product Agreement No. 40069223. Canadian BN 12348 2887 RT. Better Homes & Gardens is a registered trademark in the United States, Canada, and Australia. Better Homes & Gardens marca registrada en México. © Meredith Corp. 2017. All rights reserved. Printed in the U.S.A.
WRITERS SAR AH WOLF AND RENEE FREEMON MULVIHILL PHOTOGR APHER MART Y BALDWIN
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