Tag Archive for: organizing stuff

Would you rather?

Would You Rather

Would you rather…

…wear a banana costume for a complete day (not on Halloween) or strategically remove all your clothes that don’t fit and flatter you?

…let go of 5 sentimental thing or let a tarantula crawl up your arm?

…thoroughly organize your junk drawer or jump off a high dive?

… have oral surgery or organize your kitchen cupboards?

…get rid of all your current tchotchkes or buy absolutely nothing for two whole weeks?

… wear a blindfold for a day or reduce your book collection by 50%?

…mow the lawn in your bathing suit or get rid of 10 items you’ve been holding onto for someday?

…donate 6 gifts you’ve received but don’t like, or shave your head?

…clear out and organize your file cabinet or tell your neighbors that you love them?

…spend $100.00 per month for a year on a storage unit or work with a Professional Organizer for 10 hours at a rate of $70.00 per hour?

 

So, what did you find out about yourself and your willingness to organize you spaces, places and stuff? I bet you realized that some decisions are easier than others. Please share your insights with me.

©September 2021   Janine Cavanaugh, CPO   All rights reserved

Container Store

Before your trip to the Container Store

Organizing tipI like the Container Store as much as you, but before making a trip I ask myself these questions.

 

  1. Is reducing a better option? Would the space function more efficiently if I get rid of stuff so I don’t need to purchase a new container?
  2. What are my best container options? Do I have something here at home that will serve my purpose?
  3. Where will the container go? Do I have a specific spot for the container? Do I need to take measurements before my C.S. visit?
Maximize storage

How to Get More Storage

Adequate, functional storage is something we all want in our homes. However, it can be difficult to obtain. We often have to work with the less than adequate spaces we currently have. So, what is the best way to maximize storage space in our closets, cupboards, basements, and attics?

storage binsReduce what we’re attempting to store. We often fall pry to the idea that we already own it, so we need to hold onto it. I encourage you to question that idea. Think about the current usefulness of the things you’re storing and holding onto, and take the Keep Quiz. Eliminating what is no longer useful will free up valuable storage space. We can reduce in other ways also. For example, limit excess, surplus, and impractical quantities of things. Reduce collections by keeping only your favorites. Reduce seasonal decorations and opt for live plants, wreaths or floral decorations.  Go electronic and keep less paper.

Make full use of the space we have. Small adjustments can greatly improve our existing storage spaces. For example, in a closet, add hooks, shelves, and stack-able shoe bins. Take advantage of vertical space by using tall furniture pieces or by stacking short pieces. Use over the door organizers on cabinet, closet, and bathroom doors. Fill air space and kick space. Maximize storing potential by customizing closets, shelving units, and furniture.

 

Favor versatility. Have items that can do more than one thing instead of several single-use items. Avoid items with one very specific purpose like a bread machine. Instead get a mixer that has a bread kneader attachment. The same applies to furniture. Use furniture that has multiple functions and built-in-storage, like an ottoman with storage and a nightstand with a few drawers.

 

Shopping in bulk storesQuestion what we bring in? When bringing things in ask gatekeeper questions. Take a moment to consider what’s coming in and where it will go. How much storage space will be needed? Is it possible to rent or borrow equipment or tools instead of buying them? Buying in bulk can be a big money saver, but do you have the space to store large quantities? If not ask a friend or neighbor to go in on the purchase with you and split the goods.

Remember the less we have the less we have to organize, maintain and store.

©March 2021  Janine Cavanaugh, CPO®  All rights reserved.

 

 

A Space for Everything

Organizing tipThings without a place don’t belong in your space. I liked this catchy little phrase as soon as I heard it. It makes me think of Dr. Seuss and all the wonderful rhymes in his books. (His birthday is March 2nd, by the way.) However it’s not only catchy, it’s good, practical organizing advice. Establish a place for things, especially those things you use (and loose) all the time.

How to Create Organized Craft Space

You may already know that I’m an avid scrapbooker. I love creating decorative pages with photos and paper embellishments to highlight my family stories and milestones. I also love sharing my creations with family. They joke around and say I’m a scrapbook pusher, but I know they like looking at them. Thanksgiving or any family get together is a great time to share my scrapbooks. I always bring one to push into their hands and invite them to look and reminisce.

Before that finished scrapbook is ready to share, the creating process happens. Things get messy when I’m creating, and I think that’s typical of most people. When you’re in the creative groove, organization is not a priority. However, I think an organized craft area helps us be more productive. Don’t we all want to quickly and easily put our hands on the tools we need for our project? Wasting time searching for our supplies is frustrating.

So, how do we set up an organized craft area? Whether you have a whole room devoted to your crafts, or you have to pull them out each time you use them, you can create an efficient crafting space with the Reach Ability Factor. It is a system that helps you decide the best location for things based on how frequently you use them.
There are 4 sections in the Reach Ability Factor. Use them to set up your crafting workspace.
Section A:  Items in this section are tools and supplies that are used all the time. It depends on the craft, but some examples are scissors, pencils, cutting tools, and adhesives. Place items in section A within easy reach, so little effort is needed to reach out an grab them.
Section B:  Items in this section are tools and supplies that are used frequently, but not on every craft project. Some examples may be, templates, patterns, and instructions. Place items in section B within comfortable reach, which requires us to get up and move a little.
Section C:  Items in this section are tools and supplies that are used occasionally. Some examples may be special fabric, paper, and markers. Place items in section C within uncomfortable reach, which requires us to exert more effort to reach.
Section D:  Items in this section are tools and supplies that are used once in a while or on special projects only. Some examples may be unique supplies that require more time to use, and items that are for a very special project. Place items in section D within difficult reach, which requires us to move other things to get at them.
Whether you have a designated craft space or you set up shop wherever you can, the Reach Ability Factor can help establish crafting order. By using it as a guide to set up your crafting workspace, you place yourself in the center circle and your tools according to use in the concentric circles around you. This enables you to create without having to waste time searching for tools and supplies. Enjoy the creative process.

The Reach Ability Factor can be used in other areas as well, for example a home office, the kitchen prep and cooking areas, and a homework area.

© November 2020   Janine Cavanaugh, Certified Professional Organizer®   All Rights Reserved