Jul 12 2012

7 TOP TIPS TO ORGANIZE YOUR HOME

1. Install hanging closets and cabinets. This maximizes over-the-head space.

2. Designate a “to do” corner where you can put everything you can’t take care of right away. This can include items you have to repair, finish or spend time looking over. Once you have repaired the item or completed it, put it back in its original spot. For example, if you have sewn new buttons on your husband’s shirt or glued the handle of your daughter’s favorite mug back on, put the shirts in the closet and the mug in the kitchen cabinet.

3. Use the space inside and outside the door.
In most cases, a hanging rack or hooks that go over the door can fit easily inside a closet to give you even more organizational space and flexibility. Hanging clothes racks and shoe racks can make the most of the space you have, and any unfilled shoe racks can be used to store other small items, including tools and even jewelry.

4. Install a corkboard in the main places in your house such as near any land lines you might have, near the refrigerator and in your home office. This will make it easy for you to pin urgent messages and reminders. You can also keep track of important items with a white board.

5. Segregate clothes by season, color and occasion.
You can divide up your clothes into seasonal wardrobes and rotate them in and out of your closet in order to have more room. You can hang clothes by color, occasion (work, play, formal), item (skirt, blouse), and then mix and match. Be sure to keep each item repaired, with all buttons and so on sewn back on if you lose them, and rotate all of the items in your closet so that you get the most use out of them. If you own anything you have not worn for a year, consider donating it or selling it.

If you have clothes in lots of different sizes, you need to be realistic about your weight gain and try to slim down but not starve yourself back into the clothes. You can use one of the smaller sizes as motivation to slim down. If you have lost weight but are still hanging on to the large sizes, donate them and promise you will never be that heavy again.

6. Buy air-free storage bags.
These bags are connected to a vacuum hose so that the clothing you put inside it is compressed and no air inside takes up precious space. It also looks neater in the closet rather than bulky bags. You can slip them under the beds as well, or even store them in the attic, basement or garage without having to worry about the clothes inside getting ruined.

7. Create your own closet from an unused alcove. You can get sliding or louver doors to make a closet out of a small, unused alcove. As long as it is deep enough to hold a clothes rack and the clothes can fit on the hangers, you can create a whole new closet for your room. You can also put up the door and use it for storage space for plastic bins and so on.

FURTHER READING:

How to Create an Organized and Productive Home Office

The New Green Family Guide: A Beginner’s Guide to Going Green As a Family

Green Mother’s Guide: How to Raise a Child More Greenly and Naturally

How to Get Started as a Do-It-Yourself Mom

Jul 06 2012

7 TOP TIPS FOR A CLUTTER-FREE LIFE

1. Develop a passion for recycling.
Recycle bottles, plastic bags, paper and more. Know what things you no longer use can be made into new things. In case you can’t recycle the item any more, do not think twice: donate it or throw it away safely.

2. Losing keys all the time? Try putting them in the same place every time you come in, such as on a rack by the door, or in a tray or bowl. Keep a spare set or two around in case of emergencies. You can also get a key finder key ring. If you lose your keys, press the key finder and that will trigger a sound from the keyring so you can find them easily.

3. Remove junk from your trunk!
A full car costs more to run. Cut fuel costs and get rid of any items that are not essential. Declutter your car and it will be far easier to find things that you need, like your tools if you should ever end up with a flat tire or other unexpected situation.

As for your own trunk, even gaining a mere one pound of muscle can boost your metabolism and lead to greater weight loss. Clean out your car, vacuum and detail it, and you can keep fit at the same time., for no more junk in your trunk.

4. Spill-proof your paper clip and tacks container.
Put a magnet at the bottom of the container or at the lid. This works even for vinyl-coated paper clips and push pins. You can also buy one with a magnetized mouth that will stop spills.

5. Set a good example for the rest of the household.
If you have children, instill in them the importance of becoming organized by setting a good example. There is no use complaining about the way your home looks if you scatter things in every direction the minute you walk in the door, or can barely find things because you never put them back where you found them. Simple organizational tasks like putting dirty clothes into the hamper instead of leaving them on the floor, or hanging them up in the closet instead of draping things on the backs of chairs, can serve as a great example for your children to follow. It will also save you a lot of time getting ready for work each morning, so that you will be less stressed every morning as the whole family heads off to work and school.

6. Minimize you laundry time by using different hampers for your clothes. Use one for your light-colored clothes, another dark, and one for mixed colored clothes. You will still have to check through the white load just to be sure no one has put in a colored object that will run and ruin the whole load, but if everyone in the family sorts as they go along, it can save you a lot of time each laundry day.

You might also consider just doing a load of wash as soon as you see a full load has accumulated. Washing as you go will not only help your family keep clean, it will also free up your time at the weekends instead of allowing your precious days off being eaten up by chores.

7. Extend the storage capacity of your closets by adding attachments such as hooks and rods on the closet doors, where you can hang your belts, ties, scarves, ribbons and other accessories. You can get sturdy metal hanging hooks and use them on the inside and the outside of doors. Hanging shoe bags are another great way to get organized and save space.

FURTHER READING:

How to Create an Organized and Productive Home Office

Green Mother’s Guide: How to Raise a Child More Greenly and Naturally

The New Green Family Guide: A Beginner’s Guide to Going Green As a Family