Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Maximizing Closet Space

Small closets? Transition your clothing seasonally. Store out of season clothing in storage boxes, chests or even cardboard wardrobe boxes in your garage. When the weather changes, make your transition. And when you hang your new seasonal clothing, face the hangers backwards in the rack. When you wear an item, wash and re-hang, put the hanger on the correct way. At the end of the season, whichever hangers are still backwards are holding items that you never wore and can get rid of, rather than storing for the next year.

Another way to maximize space is with huggable hangers. These hangers are great because they are really thin and allow you to fit more into your closet.

All the storage items listed can be found and purchased on the suggested products list at www.cleartheclutterprofessionalorganizing.blogspot.com.




Meagan Farrell, professional organizer, is the owner of Clear the Clutter organizing services. She can be reached at (360) 631-7268 or at clear_theclutter@yahoo.com. Check out her blog at http://cleartheclutterprofessionalorganizing.blogspot.com/

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Managing Sports Equipment

Sports equipment can get really out of hand. Whether if be for the grown ups or the kids, it can really become a nightmare when you are running out the door and need to gather it all to take with you. Get a special carrying bag for each sport. For example, if you play softball and basketball and your child plays soccer and field hockey, you should have four different bags. You could even color code them by the person. Keep all the equipment for that sport in that bag. Put it right back after it is used and teach your children to do the same. Keep those bags on hooks by the door or in the garage. When you are running out, you simply need to grab that bag and go. No more running around the house trying to find all the gear at the last minute.




Meagan Farrell, professional organizer, is the owner of Clear the Clutter organizing services. She can be reached at (360) 631-7268 or at clear_theclutter@yahoo.com. Check out her blog at http://cleartheclutterprofessionalorganizing.blogspot.com/

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Organizing your kitchen

Ah, the kitchen….. It is always the place where we just don’t have enough storage. As with any kind of organizing, the first suggestion is to get rid of that which is not truly needed. Here are some questions to honestly ask yourself as you embark on this project:

• Do I really need a rice cooker, or can I make rice just as easily in a saucepan? Specialized kitchen appliances are rarely used and suck up a ton of space. Most things can be cooked/prepared with a basic set of pots and pans. Unless you seriously use it on a regular basis, consider whether the same job could be achieved with a more versatile item.
• How much Tupperware does one family honestly use? How many shapes and sizes do you really need? I realize that you may have a lovely coordinating set, but if you aren’t using all the pieces, consider keeping only that which you do use. And, have you considered collapsible pieces? They work just as well and collapse into thin pieces which take up very little space (more information on these on my blog).
• Do you really entertain 50 people at a time? And will the drink be less refreshing if it is served in a different shaped glass? If not, then do you really need all that glassware? I will admit that when I got married, I registered for all those cute glass sets – margarita, high ball, martini, etc. After 12 years of marriage, I am down to water glasses and margarita glasses because those can be used for all types of drinks (and really, the margarita glasses could go too, but I use them enough to justify the space). Also, I went from sets of 12 to sets of 8. Glass wear sucks up storage space like no other, yet most of it goes completely unused.

Here is a suggestion: Pick a cupboard or drawer to start with. Get a box and pull everything from that space. Keep it in the box unless you use it. If you do use it, then put it away after. If you don’t use it, it stays in the box. Give it a month. At the end of the month if you have not used it, you probably don’t really need it.

Another quick thought is to keep any holiday or special occasion kitchen items in storage with your holiday items. For example, if you have a special Thanksgiving platter, keep it with your fall/Thanksgiving d├ęcor instead of the kitchen. It not only frees up space in the kitchen, but reminds you that you have it (and should use it) when you get out the holiday items.




Meagan Farrell, professional organizer, is the owner of Clear the Clutter organizing services. She can be reached at (360) 631-7268 or at clear_theclutter@yahoo.com. Check out her blog at http://cleartheclutterprofessionalorganizing.blogspot.com/