Tag Archives: organize

Entry Re-Do


So a while ago the boyfriend and I drove up to visit friends near our hometown. On our way north we stopped off at Ikea so I could spend some of my birthday money. I went in with a plan to buy two of Ikea’s Retur Recycling Bins. Thank you Young House Love and their helpful reader Roberta for the tip off! Each Retur bin is only $19.99 and a great solution for our dirty towel problem. My cat Persephone models our previous system below, which really wasn’t working for me. A big red laundry bag is not what I want to see when I walk in the door nor what I want my guests to see. Yuck!

Work It Persephone!

Of course the boyfriend was dreading the Ikea trip and I was smiling ear to ear. I don’t get to go shopping often due to a miniscule budget. I tried not to dawdle to much, but I did browse enough to pick up a few other things too.

They were selling $1 pillows. Yes I said $1 pillows. Granted these are the overly squishy, not much to them pillows but they are perfect for a future “headboard” project, so I grabbed 4. I may only need three for the project, so I might end up with a new pillow for the futon as well. I also picked up an ergonomic pillow for….$10 I think. Shaped for side and back sleepers. Foam, but not memory foam, so although it is better than the pillow I was using before it’s not fabulous. Cheap though. And lastly I bought a red Octopus! I figure it will be useful for hanging socks and such to dry when we don’t have enough quarters for the dryer. At $4.99 an adorable red octopus is worth it in my book! They had Red, navy blue and white, if you are interested.

Back to the reason for the Ikea visit. I measured correctly and the “recycling bins” fit perfectly in their new home. Much better solution than a laundry bag. The new bins fit a decent amount too! I think four- five bath towels and a few hand towels were shoved in the towel bin and it still closed nicely. I think I may need to add a few air holes in the back of the towel bin (on the bottom) as plastic traps moister and smells. Didn’t think of that when I bought them but it should be an easy fix.

The top bin now houses donate-ables and anything that needs to be returned to another. I LOVE new storage solutions! The only downfall is that the top on the bin sags a little in the middle with the items I put on top of it. If anyone can think of a way to reinforce the top that would be lovely! I might end up making a table to go over the bins eventually, but for now it’s all Dasiys and fluffy kitty butts!

Have you found any fun storage solutions recently? Maybe taken picture of your cat strutting their stuff for the camera?


Visually Simplify


Inspired by the lovely Laura’s recent post at I’m an Organizing Junkie, What Does Simplify Mean to You? http://orgjunkie.com/2011/08/52-weeks-31-what-does-simplify-mean-to-you-giveaway.html, I decided to dedicate a post to organizing tips for the visual learner.  Thank you for the inspiration Laura!

I love to organize and LOVE the Container Store with a passion! I have also been known to count pennies to relax, but I have not always been so together. I started becoming an organizational “freak” in High School as a way to cope with ADD. It took a while to figure out how exactly my brain works but I can now set up systems to keep me on track, most of the time. I am a very visual person which can be a double edged sword. Clutter drives me crazy, but out of site is practically out of mind for me. Luckily this world is full of beautiful and functional things.

Below are a few tips I assembled to help simplify your routines and your life

    • Make sure to have a space or system that is beautiful enough to make you smile while still functioning. If everything is all about function it will probably drive the visual person nuts. It’s all about finding the balance.
    • Recognize the most used areas and find a way to make those spaces work as your “command or action centers”.  ie: where you set you purse/wallet down, by the coffee pot or front door.
    • Figure out your weaknesses and focus on solutions for those first. Paying bills on time, piles of paper, forgetting items your need for the day? A pretty, “staged” bookcase is nice but spend your time on something that will make your life easier first. Less time tracking down coupons can save you time and money so down the line you can make that bookcase shine with less stress.
    • Figure out what makes you feel the most alive and find a system to inspire you. That can mean organizing the kitchen cabinets so you can get to your favorite sauce pan and get creative with your favorite edible masterpieces. Maybe that means sorting your paints or pastels and keeping a space clear to express yourself.
    • Find free or cheap solutions to test run a system before spending a bunch of money. It is a horrible feeling to get excited about a new organizer only to find out your solution creates unseen problems.

Above is the area that has become my “command center”. Here I set my purse, mail and my boyfriend sets his HUGE bag. There is only so much room for our stuff so I wanted to move my mail center off the bookcase and on the wall. I found the below inspiration picture on Pinterest and figured I could sew something similar to the fabric pockets.

Before I went through the process of picking fabrics and measuring I went the quick and easy route to try the system out. I gathered two different sizes of envelopes, cut off the flaps, glued them together and stuck them on the wall with 3m strips. I only had a few of the 3m strips so I used a little masking tape as well.

It may take a little more time to settle on the categories but so far I really like it.

I have now come up with a new system that streamlines my needs for a mail center which I tested on the cheap, will look fabulous once I pick fun fabric, and I can still SEE the bills I need to pay. One more gold star for ADD girl! (wink)

What projects have you done lately to simplify and bring order to your home? Do you have any tips for the blogosphhere?


*I joined Organizing Junkies link party here: http://orgjunkie.com/2011/08/52-weeks-33-using-weekly-planner-pages-for-organizing.html