Showing posts with label Organize It. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Organize It. Show all posts

January 22, 2011

Organize It: Spices

Ok, I feel like I shouldn’t even have to mention this because it’s just so obvious but you’d be surprised how many houses I have gone in where there are two or three shelves of spices and you wouldn’t have a clue where to start looking for the basil.

I think the reason a lot of people don’t have this small thing organized is the same reason I didn’t have mine organized; I didn’t want to spend the money on a spice rack, and I collected spices one by one so the disorganization snuck up on me.

This disorganization first of creates a lot of wasted space. Second of all there are likely a lot of repeats because you couldn’t find a spice that you thought you had so you bought another, which just adds to the wasted space problem.

A while ago I went on a search for the perfect spice rack. I wanted something that was low lying because I hate having heaps of things on my counter, and I don’t like the look of counter spice racks. I found something that had no spices (I’m a spice snob and you often pay $20 extra for a rack that has spices and they’re usually really bad quality anyway), stickers for labeling, and it spun and best of all fit perfectly in my cupboard. So that brings me to the organization of the whole thing:

1) Take all your spices out of their hiding places and take stock of what you have

2) Combine all the doubles (this will help you determine what you need for storage or how big of a spice rack you’ll need. I was surprised at how many spices I really had!)

3) Get yourself a spice rack or containers to fit your spice bottles in

4) If you got a spice rack pore all the spices into the jars and go label crazy

5) If you’re just putting them in a container make labels for the top of each bottle (so you can do a quick scan for what you are looking for instead of having to pull each bottle out to see what it is)

6) If you have extra spices (doubles) after all this, create a little shoe box and store it (I would suggest somewhere that isn’t prime cupboard space). There’s no point in keeping your doubles up with the rest of your spices, again a space waster.

7) Keep up the system! Just like everything else if you don’t keep it up you’ll go back to the original problem.
Happy organizing!

January 15, 2011

Organize It: Bedroom Clothes

I know we already talked about the hall closet but now let’s talk about the clothes closet or bedroom closet. I feel like it’s sort of like spices. We get so unorganized and don’t know where to find things that we often forget what we have so we buy more.
First of all most of us have more clothes then we need (I know I do!) and second of all a lot of us hold onto things way longer then we should (“I’ll use it as a paint/house work shirt!”….you don’t need five of them!) And then there’s the habit (that I have as well) of piling things mile high in the top of my clothes, mostly just because I can. That’s not a good use of your clothes closet space (you can’t get to anything because there are four boxes on top of it) and it can be dangerous. So here are my suggestions:

1) Define your closet. Decide what you want to have in there and don’t have in there (don’t store boxes of none clothes/shoes items in there. If it’s being stored put it in your storage area…which I’ll take about a couple of posts from now)

2) Pull out anything that doesn’t fit your description and put it in a pile

3) Go through your clothes and shoes with a fine toothed comb (gulp) if you don’t wear it don’t keep it. Find a friend that would love it, bring it to a consignment shop and get some money out of it or give it to a thrift shop for charity. DON’T THROW IT OUT! Almost every piece of clothes or shoes can be reused and you’ll feel much better about this purge if you knew it went to someone that will love it as much as you once might have.

4) Once you’ve cleaned it up get organized with what you have left (I’ve even gone so far as to color code things. It helps me pick outfits; “I need something blue to go with this skirt” AND it shows you how much black you really own!). If you are going to keep things like shoes, belts or socks in there label your boxes or spend a little money and get some storage boxes that fit in the top or bottom of your closet. I have clear ones and it’s great because I can see what’s in them and never forget what I have.

5) Go back to your pile of things that don’t belong and sort. If you don’t use it get rid of it. If you want to keep it find a home for it.

6) Keep up the system! Just like the hall closet don’t even let yourself think about putting something in there that doesn’t belong. Put it in the right place the first time. Progress not regress!

Having an organized clothes closet feels so great! You know what you have, you know what you need, and you know where everything is! And I find that having it organized helps me be more creative with my fashion, which I take as always a plus!

Happy organizing everyone!

January 8, 2011

Organize It: Night Time Tidy Up

In The Happiness Project she talks about doing an evening tidy up. I love the idea, mainly because I was already doing it and I know it helps heaps!
It’s not that hard to keep you going and it’s a great step to keep things from piling up. It’s pretty straight forward but for consistency sake (because I love consistency!) I’ll still do a couple of points:
1) Take 10-20 minutes each night, before you go to bed to do a around the house clean up
2) Pick up clothes that need to be put away and put them away
3) Put dishes in the dish washer or wash them
4) Put away shoes, phones, remote controls, any little thing that isn’t in its home (the closet, the remote box, the key holder etc.)
5) When you’re getting ready for bed take the clothes that you wore during the day and do something with them; laundry, hang them up etc. It’s great to include this on your clean up.
6) Keep up the habit! It’s so worth it!
Anal? Maybe, but it feels so wonderful waking up in the morning to a tidy house, and knowing that you don’t have a pile of stuff to do and it will keep you on track with the rest of your organizational goals.
Happy organizing!

December 18, 2010

Organize It: The Black Hole a.k.a. The Hall Closet

I find that the hall closet is often the everything closet; if you don’t know where to put something it goes there. When we were still in our apartment our hall closet was acting as a linen closet, tool shed, storage room and pantry. We didn’t have a lot of room so each shelf had a different function and title.

But I think everything has its place and if your hall closet is your linen closet then keep it that. Don’t just put things in there just because you’re lazy and can’t think of somewhere else to put it (I’ve so been guilt of this!).

Closet clean up:
1) Define what you want that closet to be (e.g. linen closet, pantry, etc.)

2) Take out everything that doesn’t fit your closet definition

3) Reorganize the order of what is left in a closet and decide how you want it to look from now on (face clothes on this shelf, beach towels and cleaning products on this shelf etc.)

4) Go through the pile of things you’ve taken out. Get rid of what you’ve kept for now reason or don’t need any more (the thrift store in your area will be happy to get a donation!) and find a new home for the other items

5) Keep up the system! When you come across something that doesn’t fit your hall closet definition don’t even think about putting it in there. Find it the right home right away or in a little while you’ll end up having to start the process all over again.
Simple right? Happy organizing!