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Organizing

How to Organize your Wardrobe: Closet Organizing 101

It’s no secret that women are fascinated by the closets of other women.  I know I am! I enjoy seeing how other women organize their wardrobes, you just never know what tips you can discover!  In honor of Spring Cleaning I’m sharing organizing tips straight from my own closet.

 

2 Essential Rules to Organizing your Closet:

Closet Collage101

Learn to Edit: Become a Curator of your Closet

Most women stand around inside a jam-packed closet declaring they have nothing to wear.

What they really mean is they have nothing they like wearing.

If you don’t like the clothes in your closet or you haven’t worn it in awhile, why are you keeping it?

Donate, Consign, giveaway or throw out the clothes that are taking up space in your closet.

Even if you reduce your closet by 50% at least it will be easier to see the remaining 50% of your clothing that you actually wear and you’ll have the space to start rebuilding your wardrobe, wisely.

 

 Maximize the space you have

When I worked as a Professional Organizer the hardest thing I had to teach my clients was that it wasn’t that their closets  (or homes) were too small, it was that they had too many things for their closet.

Learning how to use your closet space wisely is important, however it’s not as important as being realistic about the actual space you have to work with.

Try not to think of this as a negative. Sometimes being forced to choose helps us with the first rule, which is to edit our wardrobe to what we actually wear.

 

Tips for Organizing Shoes

Shoes. I have an obsession with shoes.  I also have large feet so it’s not easy to find shoes in my size, which makes me buy shoes as I find them instead of based on what I may need, like a black ballet flat.

Looking at my shoes I also realize that there is a part of me that must think I Walk the Red Carpet for a living. I have way too many pairs of sparkly pretty heels for a homeschool Mom of 5.  I think I could wear these heels while teaching Mechanical Engineering, right?

How to organize Shoes

Okay, enough joking.  Organizing your closet is serious business.

Here is the first rule:  Don’t line up your shoes in a straight line. Instead, flip one pair backwards and you’ll fit more on the shelf (or the floor).

How to Organize Shoes and Boots

Keep the Left shoe facing forward and flip the right shoe, then slide it back a little.   This works well with both heels and flats.

Here’s a tip for organizing sandals:  Put them inside each other.

How to Organize Sandals

If it bothers you that the sole of one shoe is touching where your feet are, you can flip it so one pair is upside down. I don’t do it that way because this looks prettier to me.

 How to Organize your Handbags

Handbag Organization

Well, I guess my handbag obsession is now out of the bag (pun intended).

A friend once encouraged me to organize my closet in a fun and attractive way.  She said it would make getting dressed each morning (instead of just throwing on the closest pair of sweat pants) much more enjoyable.

At first I thought it was silly, but I have to admit that it works.

I now try to display my accessories much like they do in stores. It gives me the feeling of shopping—only I’m shopping my own closet!  This also encourages me to be creative and come up with new wardrobe combinations.  Neat and pretty is always inspiring, isn’t it?

Don’t feel you need to have a large collection in order to create a  display.  Remember, a collection is just more than one.  Display what you have.

To help handbags keep their shape I stuff them. You can use shoe bags, tissue paper or butcher block paper.  I also use Acrylic Shelf Dividers (which can also be used for organizing clothing).

Resources: Acrylic Shelf Dividers

 

How to Organize your Jewelry

There are two ways to organize your jewelry: Display it or Store it.

Jewelry Organization

My favorite way to organize and store costume jewelry is to simply put it in Stackable fabric boxes which can they be stacked and stored in a closet, on a shelf or in a drawer.

Jewelry

Displaying favorite pieces, trendy pieces or new pieces is also fun.  I have a small island inside my closet where my laundry and dry cleaning bins are stored.  However a dresser or vanity table is also a great place to lay out fun pieces and encourage the art of enjoying and wearing what you own.

Jewelry Display

Resources:  Tiered Jewelry organizers, stackable jewelry trays.

 

Basic Closet Organizing Tips

Have matching hangers.  Whatever kind you can afford, just make sure they match.

Not only does it make a difference aesthetically,  but good hangers protect your clothes from damage.

Changing hanger styles to one uniform style is generally done over time.  The easiest way to do this is to choose a type of hanger in your price range and then, either weekly or monthly, replace the  (assorted) old hangers in your closet with the new style.  If you are choosing a style that is on sale, make sure it isn’t on sale because it is being discontinued.  Otherwise, you may not be able to replace your hangers over time before they sell out.  Good hangers are a worthwhile investment because you can truly own them for a lifetime.

Invest wisely.

Hangers

Group items in your closet by category: Shoes, Blouses, T-shirts, Cardigans, Sweaters, pants, shorts, skirts etc.

Generally, after you’ve grouped your wardrobe by category you can then organize each category even more by grouping into subcategories.  A popular way to do this is to simply arrange the clothing by color, from lightest to darkest.

As you can see from my closet, I don’t do this.  I prefer to arrange my clothing in subcategories of style.  My blouses are grouped by sleeve length, my pants by leg cut, etc.  I group my dresses in subcategories of: casual, dressy daytime, evening, corporate, cocktail and gowns.   Don’t feel you need to do this.

Always your clothes in the way that makes the most sense to you and is the easiest to maintain.

 

closet organizing 101

Remember the out of sight, out of mind rule.  You want to be able to see what you have.  Hang the clothes you wear most often and store other clothing (particularly those sweat pants or gym clothes you keep grabbing when you aren’t working out) in drawers.

how to organize your closet

 

How to maximize Drawer Space

Instead of stacking your clothes on top of each other, arrange them in the drawer (as shown below) so that you can easily see everything you have at first glance.  This also maximizes space as you will be able to hold more clothing in each drawer.  Try it, you’ll see!

How to organize shawls in a drawer

The picture above shows my collection of heavier shawls/scarves but this system also works well with t-shirts, tank-tops, and gym clothes (as shown below).

how to organize tshirts

In the interest of full-disclosure I’ll admit that I have to edit my t-shirt drawer some more.

I often get asked if the t-shirts come out wrinkled when you store them this way.  The answer is no.

When you properly fold the clothes (and don’t cram too many in) the t-shirts come out beautifully. Try it!

I hope you enjoyed the tour of my closet and learned a couple tips and tricks you can apply to your own closet.  Do you have any organizing tips to share with me? Please do so in the comments.

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

3 Quick Organizing Tips

I’m working on reorganizing my home office/classroom today.  Tropical Storms apparently send me into nesting mode. 

When I worked as a professional organizer I didn’t have children. So I was clueless (just clueless) about creating simple organization systems that can be created somewhat quickly and maintained easily.  I shudder when I think how often I reorganized already organized spaces in our home because I was bored.  

What I would give to have that kind of time on my hands these days!  Needless to say I’ve learned a few more things since I’ve become a Mom of 5.

4 Quick Organizing Tips

Don’t buy storage containers before you know what you intend to put in it and where it will go.  So often people say, “I’m going to get organized” and run off to the store and buy a bunch of containers, baskets and bins before they’ve even sorted, purged and categorized their belongings.  Yes, it’s somewhat of a downer to stop mid organizing and dash off with your detailed list of what you actually need—but its more efficient in the long run. Trust me.
If it is going to be in view make sure it’s pretty but still accessible.  

Store things by frequency of use. You don’t want to put something you use daily in a closed basket on the top of a shelf for example. Likewise, don’t give up your prime storage real estate for something you rarely use.

Think
outside of the box when it comes to organizing and using containers.

You don’t always have to use something the way it was marketed to be
used.

The Container Store’s 4 Tiered Jewelry box is my new office supply desk caddy.

 

Join me on Tuesday for my Home Office/School Room reveal.  I’ll have some more organizing tips for you on the Trophy Mom Facebook page too. 



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This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

For the love of Instagram: How to make the most of the app and your photos

I have a serious crush on Instagram.  As far as social media platforms go I think I would place Instagram above  Facebook and Twitter as my favorite social media platforms.  As my interest (or addiction) to Instagram has grown so has the ways in which I like to utilize it.

Whether you are just venturing out into the Instagram world or are looking for new ways to utilize your own Instagram pictures, here are some ideas on how to get the most out of your Instagram pictures.


Social Sharing

Your
instagram feed isn’t the only place you can share your photos.  The
Instagram App allows you to easily share your pics  via Facebook,
Twitter, Tumblr, Flicker,  and Four Square, however you aren’t limited
to those platforms.



Since photos are saved to your picture gallery you can share your Instagram pictures anywhere you can upload a photograph.

 If you are a blogger consider using Instagram and a few creative photo apps to create photos for your blog.

Create a Photo Journal

 One of the things I’ve recently discovered doing with my Instagram shots is actually printing them out (iPhone Photocube Printer) and putting them into a Smash Journal.  
I particularly like to make travel journals this way, however it also is a great way to keep a photo journal.  I’m also thinking of making one for each of our children which will include funny things they say and special memories.  Need some more ideas?  Read: Stuff to do with all those Instagram Shots.

Create Photo Gifts & Products



 In addition to sharing your pictures virtually, via social media platforms, you can turn your Instagram pictures into real works of art or just print the photos to use and share  the old fashioned way.


Become  an Instacanv.as artist and you 
can curate your own Instagram gallery and allow others to purchase your pictures.  Another
alternative to Instacanv.as is Canvas Pop where you can also turn a picture into multiple split canvases or select from various frame styles and sizes.  While you’re at it, don’t forget to purchase your own art and create your own custom wall art for yourself or gift to others.

Casetagram allows you to take your favorite Instagram pics and turn them into an iPhone case. 


Postagram allows you to send real or virtual postcards using your Instagram pics. I particularly like this for my travel photos (alternative to purchased postcards), but they also work great as a thank-you to a hostess for a great party you attended, or use them to create thank-you notes for your children.  Your first 5 Postagrams are currently free, so give it a try!

Printstagram allows you to print virtually anything using your Instagram photos. 
My personal favorites are the:


Memory Box where you get tiny prints in an archival box. This is a great way to showcase your children’s artworks and favorite childhood things.  Just take a picture and you’ll have it forever.  Alternatively, just get an  memory box full of everything you’ve ever taken on Instagram and sort it by year. You’ll have an instant photo record of your year and you won’t have to worry about what losing your pics if Instagram ever gets taken down or changed by Facebook.


PhotoSquares come in 2 sizes and can be used in scrapbooks, photoalbums or Smash Albums.


Mini Books are 3.5 x2.4 books of your favorite pictures.




Take better pictures


The ultimate way to get the most out of your pictures is of course to take better pictures to begin with.  If you have an iPhone the smartest thing you can do is learn to master your iPhone camera technology.  Lets face it, most of us take the majority of our pictures using our iPhone.  Why? Because it’s handy, its easy to use and its always on us! 


From practice and watching what friends do I’ve seen  SOME of my iPhone pictures take on an almost professional quality. Who doesn’t want to take pictures like a professional? If you would like to learn to take better pictures grab Alli Worthington’s ebook,  iPhone Photography: The Visual Guide (currently only $5) and you’ll be taking better pictures after one Chapter!


iPhone Photography: The Visual Guide by Alli Worthington


Do you enjoy using Instagram? What are your favorite tips?

This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.

How to organize your kids’ artwork in 5 easy steps

 

Display it

Display your children’s work of art throughout your home…don’t just limit artwork displays to the kitchen refrigerator, next to the pizza menu or scotched taped to the back of a door.  Creative displays not only look more appealing in your home but they add value to your child’s artwork.  Show your child that you value and appreciate their doodles and artwork by displaying it BEAUTIFULLY for a period of time.  In our home we have a bulletin board in the playroom that gets rotated weekly, a large bulletin board display in our mudroom that gets rotated monthly and picture frames throughout the house that display some of our favorites for 6-12 months.
Edit it
After you’ve displayed the artwork for a period of time have your child help you decide what you will keep, what you will give away and what you will photograph and/or throw away.  Once children get used to the idea that their artwork rotates through the house they tend to want to hand on to it less. In our home I’m often the one who wants to keep it up longer than my children!
Gift it
Encourage children to pick a family member or close friend that they would like to give some of their artwork to.  This can be done formally (in a frame), informally (presented as is)or used to create another gift, such as notecards, of their: drawings, a calendar or even a mug.For grandparents consider giving them “art of the month” packages with a selection of original artwork created by their grandchildren.
Archive it
Once you’ve decided what you are keeping you have a few options.  Depending on the type of artwork and the size you may want to consider keeping the original in an archival box.  For larger pieces that are harder to store you can also scan or photograph the artwork and create a digital album showcasing your children’s work. Oftentimes this is just as much fun to look at as the original was. Especially since you could easily store 12 albums of your children’s artwork in less than a foot of shelf space!
Retire it
Once you’ve displayed it, edited it, gifted it and archived it; the only thing left to do  with any remaining artwork is retire it to your trash bin. Usually when your kids aren’t watching.  If you start to come down with a bad case of Mommy Guilt for not saving every piece of paper your dear child has created, look around your house at the other pieces of art you do have up. Don’t forget the art books you created from scanned or photographed artwork.  Let go of the guilt and enjoy the freedom from the clutter!
  
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An Organized Laundry Room


In some households the laundry room is mom’s personal office. In other households its the pit of depression. Hopefully these ideas will inspire you to create a room that is both functional and enjoyable for you.

Remember, inspiration is just a launching point. The goal is not to recreate the rooms pictured below, but to find elements that appeal to you and incorporate the ideas you like best using your own space and resources.

working laundry rooms aren’t the prettiest but we’re keeping it real!

This first laundry room is all about form & function. When your room is not large enough for a traditional center island you may want to consider a peninsula island—one that comes off the wall. The washer and dryers are installed on the other side of the peninsula allowing for a high countertop to be placed above for folding. Hint: If you budget or room constraints coupled with large amounts of laundry to do consider getting 1 washer and 2 dryers to make laundry day go a little faster. The built-in baskets allow for easy sorting and the storage cabinets to the left can house cleaning supplies, toilet paper and other household essentials. When designing your laundry room don’t forget about your hand washables, ironing board and drying racks. This laundry room can hold it all!

 

The Laundry/Craft roomis a somewhat new and popular idea for those who have a little extra space but need to get more out of it. Since this laundry room is larger it houses two stackable washer/dryers but also utilizes the peninsula island concept. The island is counter height and acts as a craft table with the cabinets to the left housing craft supplies and gift wrap supplies. You can place your gift wrap in the drawers for easy access. A small tv mounted on the wall makes the time spent doing laundry go faster.

Here are other examples of creative dual purpose laundry rooms.


By creating a dual purpose room you take advantage of every inch of space in your home, plus you have the added benefit of doing something happy, fun, or at least distracting while you are getting your laundry done. I know of many moms who scrapbook while they do their laundry in the evening. I like using my laundry room as a gift wrap center as well. If you like the idea of a dual purpose laundry room, you won’t want to miss HGTV’s laundry room/personal office.

For those who like no fuss consider placing a stackable washer/dryer in your closet! Though I couldn’t find a photo of one online, this is another popular idea and it will sure cut down on hauling the laundry to and from the laundry room!

Another creative dual purpose space to place laundry rooms is in a closet in the kitchen. You can use your kitchen counter tops for folding laundry if need be after the counters are cleaned and the dishes are put away. This is great if you are short on space but have a kitchen island!

Original Source

What does your ideal laundry room look like?


The 10 Days Series is organized by iHomeschool Network, a collaboration of outstanding homeschool bloggers who connect with each other and with family-friendly companies in mutually beneficial projects. Visit us on Facebook, Pinterest, and Twitter.  And of course, click the image below to visit all the 10 Days posts from these homeschool moms of the iHomeschool Network.
You’ll be blessed with tips on how to handle bad days, cultivating curiosity, teaching with Legos, and much much more!


This post may contain affiliate links. Read my full disclosure policy here.