Lands’ End Canvas Storage Totes Giveaway

Lands’ End Organizing and Storage Solution

By Amy Trauntvein

I received this set of Lands’ End Canvas Storage Totes, but the pictures and opinions and storage ideas are my own.

I adore Lands’ End! With their classic designs and high quality, you can never go wrong when choosing a Lands’ End product.  So when Lands’ End offered to send me a set of their Canvas Storage totes AND give a set to one of our readers, I was ecstatic!  Set of 5 Canvas Storage Totes (value $195.50 online)

Land's End

Lands’ End also asked me to come up with some creative storage solution for my beautiful totes and let me tell you, this was no easy task!  Only because I had TOO MANY ideas for each size! But in the end I chose one storage idea for each tote that worked best for my home.

Extra Small- I do a lot of cooking and baking and so I keep my cookbooks out on my kitchen counter.  I like having them out because I use them so much, but everytime I’d grab one, they’d all fall over.  The Extra Small Canvas Storage tote was the perfect size to hold my cookbooks!  No more books toppling over whenever I need one.  And it looks cute too! I do have other cookbooks in a cabinet, but these are the ones I use most.

Land's End

Small- I use tablecloths, a lot of tablecloths.  When we moved into our new home 8 years ago, I bought myself a nice, solid hard wood dining set.  Then my kids started using my beautiful table and chairs. Yeah.  So now, to preserve the top of my table from craft projects, spills and whatever else they come up with, I use tablecloths which help immensely!  Since I’m always changing out my tablecloths almost daily, I need easy access to them.  I’m kind of embarrassed to show you where I use to keep them, but here it is…  In a lower cabinet all stacked up and ready to fall out at anytime.

Land's End

No longer!  I was able to fit all of my table cloths into the Small Canvas Storage tote and find an open spot at the bottom of my pantry.  Just open the door, and there they are!  All neat and tidy and ready to be used.

Land's End

Medium- During the summer, we go swimming. A lot!  Not only do we go to public pools, but we have some great friends to own a pool and invite us over many times during the warmer months.  I have needed a bag large enough to fit all of our towels, sunscreen, goggles, sunglasses and pool toys and the Medium Canvas Storage tote was the perfect fit!  It held it all, plus had some room to spare!

Land's End

And when the season is over, I can just take the entire, filled bag and store it in my hall closet ready for the next year!

Land's End

Large- One of my favorite things to do when the day is done, is to snuggle up in a cozy blanket with my hubby and either watch a movie or catch up on our favorite TV shows.  I have invested in some pretty awesome blankets but where do I keep them without it looking a mess all piled up in a corner?  I used a big basket in the past, but it quickly fell apart.  Not so with the Large Canvas Storage tote, this thing is top notch and sturdy!  I also love how it matches my blankets…

Land's End

Hamper- I wanted to do something different with the Hamper, but what else do you do with a hamper besides hold dirty laundry?  I put it in my youngest daughter’s closet to hold all of her dress ups!  I used to store her dress ups in a large plastic tote with a lid, but as with all those big plastic totes, the lid was hard for her to get off and pretty bulky for her to pull out too, AND it was so full it was starting to bulge and hard to get it closed.  Not with the hamper, it’s plenty large enough to hold all her pretty things, shoes and all, and with no lid, there’s no more, “Mom, I need help!”  Also, with the sturdy metal support rods, I’m not worried about her breaking the supports.

Land's End

 

Land's End

I love these Land’s End Canvas Storage Totes for their quality, functionality, gorgeous construction and finally, for helping me find some great storage solutions in my home!

Giveaway-  Land’s End is giving one of our readers a full set of 5 Canvas Storage Totes as seen here (color may vary).  One set contains the extra small, small, medium, large and hamper. Retail online $195.50.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Also be sure to go over to visit Toni at A Bowl Full of Lemons too! Her awesome organizing blog is having a giveaway of the Lands’ End Storage Totes too!

Love To All! ~Amy

 

 

 

 

 

I have been married for 23 years to my awesome hubby, Todd and we have 4 equally awesome kids who keep me young! Our favorite thing to do together is travel. I enjoy gardening, yoga, walking and saving money! I am very active in my church and am currently serving the children, and I love volunteering at my kids’ schools doing whatever I can to help the teachers and staff.

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A More “Grownup” Bedroom

March 14, 2013 by  
Filed under Amy, Bedrooms, Blog, Closets, Decorating, DIY

A Bedroom Redo For My Daughter

by: Amy Trauntvein

You can redecorate a bedroom on the cheap also!

Grown Up Room

The time had come, all too quickly, for my oldest child to leave the nest (sob!).  He embarked onto college and now is in California serving a mission for 2 years and will be heading back to college once he’s back, so that meant changing up bedrooms, much to my 2 middle children’s utter excitement!  My second child inherited the “bachelor pad” downstairs so that left his bedroom empty.  It didn’t take long for my 13 year old to lay her claim on a new (bigger) bedroom along with her complaint that her current room was “way too young” and “way too pink”!  Yes it was pink, 2 colors of pink in fact along with bit of purple too.  Yes, we agreed it WAS time for a change, and time for her new room to reflect a more grown up style.

First, she needed a new bed.  The one she had was fine, but it is a twin bed and with all the sleepovers she has, I wanted to find her a full size so they could stop sleeping on the floor or even worse, squishing themselves both onto the twin bed!  Man, I could have gotten some great pictures!

As luck would have it, about a week after deciding to get her a new bed, a good friend and neighbor was having a yard sale and selling a whole bedroom set!  Full-size bed, nightstand and dresser!  Lucky me!  The set was a very sturdy, solid wood but a honey brown color.  No problem!  I just ran to my nearest home improvement store and bought sand paper, primer, and white paint.  It took me about 4 days to refinish it all in the garage.  We also repainted an old desk she had ,white with black drawer fronts, and the chair shiny black.

Grown Up Room

Grown Up Room

Once the furniture was ready, I needed to tackle the bedroom walls  and repaint.  Boring beige, not a fun color for a teen girl!

Grown Up Room

Grown Up Room

I had noticed that the white baseboards were no longer white.  After living in the house for over 7 years, they had really yellowed so after taking off all the electrical covers to prepare for painting, we taped off the carpet and tackled the baseboards.  Yellowed trim does NOT look good with any color!

Grown Up Room

When painting trim, if the walls are getting new paint too, you don’t have to be exact on the top.  The wall paint will cover your overage as long as you don’t leave any ”clumps” of paint.

Grown Up Room

Emily loves bright colors and had decided on turquoise with black accents.  As luck would have it once again, my sister had 2 gallons of brand new turquoise paint that she wasn’t going to use.  We popped open the lid, and it was exactly what she wanted, thanks Rachael!   I was a bit worried at first, since it is so bright, but once it was all up, I loved it too and it totally matches my daughter’s personality. Here’s the room mid-painting.  My hubby had taught me how to paint edges without taping which saves a TON of time and even looks better since you don’t have to deal with paint seeping under the tape.  If I paint again sometime I’ll show you how.

Grown Up Room

Painting finished, furniture getting put back together and figuring out where to put everything.  It only took me a day to do the trim and walls.  Sorry about the lighting, it was late.  :)

Grown Up Room

The final product!  She absolutely loves her new “grown up” room!

Grown Up Room

The scrolled mirror and picture frames were all white before, I just bought some glossy spray paint and made them all black instead of buying new.

Grown Up Room

The storage cubby came from my second child’s room which he no longer needed so we gave it a clean coat of paint and bought the two black fabric drawers to match.  The top outer shelves hold her favorite books and the middle top shelf houses keepsakes from around the world (her own trips and presents from grandparents trips).  And look!  Open shelves to grow with!

Grown Up Room

Every girl needs a spot for jewelry…

Grown Up Room

And no “grown up” girl should be without a vanity table….

Grown Up Room

Emily LOVES nail polish and has quite the collection.  She used to hold it all in an ugly box in her closet that honestly was overflowing.  Why not display all the beautiful colors?  Bowl from Michael’s craft store, $7.99- 40% off coupon. Cheap and easy!  My kind of idea.

Grown Up Room

Onto the closet… When we bought the house, all the closets came with the standard wire shelving which we quickly tore out.  Sorry, to me I dislike the wire shelving.  So we re-purposed it in our garage for storage and hung solid shelving with a double shelf and rod on one side and a single rod on the other for dresses and other longer items.  The top rod holds her school uniform tops, sweaters, skirts and jackets and the bottom hold her everyday tops.  The metal basket on the top shelf holds new items I’ve bought on clearance for the upcoming season, (flip flops, shorts, swimsuits etc.) and the metal basket on the bottom shelf hold her belts.

Grown Up Room

We also have realized how much unused space is in the ends of bedroom closets so my hubby also built four shelves to hold “stuff” as I call it.  Top shelf  (not seen) holds items for Marching Band that she isn’t using until the fall. The second shelf hold keepsakes that she still wants, but doesn’t necessarily want displayed.  The third shelf hold her school uniform pants and shorts (easy access in the morning).  And the fourth shelf holds all of her “layering” tops (cami’s, plain short-sleeves) also for easy access.  They just got all jumbled up and wrinkled in drawers when she was looking for just the one she wanted. Bottom floor are her flip flops and sandals and come warm weather, we will put her boots there and bring out the sandals for easy access too.

Grown Up Room

Other side of the closet…  Her dresses. Top shelf holds more keepsakes including a quilt she made with her Grandma and Great-Grandma this past summer.  She gets it down and uses it, but it stays in the closet so no one else can.  ;)  And look!  More open space on the bottom rod….Yay!  We did A LOT of purging before she could move in to her new space.  She only kept things she loved and used.

Grown Up Room

I gave her a crate that we already had to hold her bags/purses in one neat spot inside the closet.

Grown Up Room

When we got her bed set up, I wondered how I was going to do a bed skirt since it has side boards and going without one completely wasn’t an option because the naked box spring would show.  Not good.  We found a perfect solution.  I just bought a single fitted sheet in black (the contrast color of her bedroom and sheets) and covered the box spring in that.  Nice and neat!  And since I can see under her bed now, no shoving stuff under there and telling me that her room is clean.  Yep.

Grown Up Room

As for the black embellishments on the walls, they are vinyl wall stickers.  I bought mine out west on clearance last summer at their big warehouse clearance sale, but I’ve seen the exact ones I have here at major retailers in the home decor section. Target, Kohls, Meijer.  My favorite is the chandelier.  I was so excited when I found that one!

Grown Up Room

I hope you had fun joining me on my daughter’s room redo and I hope maybe this has gotten your wheels turning if you’re thinking about a room change!  Since I know I will get questions on where I purchased things, I have included a shopper’s guide…

The Home Depot   ~ Paints–White (no color added), Semi Gloss by Glidden  ~Sweet Rhapsody, Egg Shell by Behr  ~Black, Glossy by Glidden  ~ Drawer Pulls

Target                      ~Comforter Set  ~Sheet Set ~Black Fitted Sheet ~Accent Pillows ~Curtain Rod ~Sheer Black Curtains ~9 Square cubby shelf ~Black Fabric Drawers

~Metal Baskets (bought a few years ago)

Michael’s                ~Glass Bowl

IKEA                        ~Sphere lamp

Kohl’s                       ~Dress Form Jewelry Holder

Various Major Retailers  ~Vinyl Decor

Love to all!  ~Amy

 

 

 

 

 

I have been married for 23 years to my awesome hubby, Todd and we have 4 equally awesome kids who keep me young! Our favorite thing to do together is travel. I enjoy gardening and puttering around my yard. I am very active in my church and am currently serving the children, and I love volunteering at my kids’ schools doing whatever I can to help the teachers and staff.

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Simple Inexpensive Closet Solutions To Maximize Your Space

Use All Of Your Closet Space!

By adding extra closet shelves in your closet, you can maximize your closet space.  We have a fairly small walk in closet and we have maximized the space for minimal money.

Of course I’d love to have a custom closet, but it isn’t something we can afford to sink money into. So we have utilized our space by adding extra shelves. You can see where the normal clothes hanger is. On this wall we just added a short shelf to use some of that upper space.  I can put things such as my suitcases up there. Things I want to keep out of the basement, but I don’t use that often. It’s just a wire shelf and cost us under $15 I’m sure. Be sure to measure to see what size will work for you though.

On the wall when you first walk in, I added some extra shelves as well. I can keep travel supplies, extra bathroom supplies, beach towels (when out of season) and I also have my wedding keepsake box up there.

You can see that one other solution I’ve used is to add an extra hanger bar. I have my pants and purses hung on that. You can get a wooden extender bar like I have for $19 on Amazon. It works great and gives me extra space for my clothes.

You don’t have to have a expensive custom closet to accomplish the task. Would we like to have one? I’m sure most of us would.. I know I sure would! But it isn’t a priority for us right now. But I do want to get the most space out of my relatively small walk-in that I can. By doing simple things like adding extra shelves and extender rods you can really maximize the space.

 

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Closet Solutions

September 3, 2012 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets

Be Creative With Your Closet Solutions

I was organizing a room and needed a closet solution for this closet.  The room was going to be used for an office rather than a bedroom and we had a lack of space for the large amount of office supplies.  The shelves that were already in place were not a good solution and putting in an installed shelving system was not an option.

“BEFORE”

office closet

I started thinking about what else was in this house and knew there was a bookcase that was not being used.  Measurements were a must in this instance.  I “thought” it looked like it was going to work, but I also knew it was going to be a close fit – so of course I got out the tape measure to be sure. (I always recommend measuring before you move things around in a home)

It was going to work! I was so excited!  I had a couple guys carry this bookcase for me and thank goodness it fit perfectly!

From there I  took out the shelves that were not attached.  I took out the closet bar.   I was like a kid in a candy shop I was so excited for all the space.

I  got many clear bins and sorted out the many office supplies that needed to go in this space.

Each pen was tested to see if the ink was good.  I even made up a bag of pens to go in their car. Donating pens and pencils to under privileged schools or communities is also a good option if you find yourself over flowing in pens and pencils.

Each bin was labeled with what was in that bin and the lids were stored safely underneath the bins.  I knew in this case that if I used the lids to close off accessibility to the supplies, then the system was not going to work for this individual. Making it easy and accessible is often the best solution.

Perfection in each individual bin was not critical either. You can line everything up perfectly, but unless you have an individual that is going to keep it that way, that isn’t a system that appeals to all.

Remember if you are helping another person organize, to keep your closet solutions (or any organizing) customized for the individual, not yourself.

“AFTER”

closet solution

They will have no problem finding the office supplies they need next time they go to their “supply closet”.

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Organizing and DIY Monday Link Party – Week 18

Springtime Can be Busy Time! Organizing and DIY will help

organize and DIY
 

How is the spring finding you? Busy? Anyone graduating soon? Weddings to plan? Vacations to go on? It seems like so much starts happening this time of year. If things are organized, it certainly helps. DIY projects can help save you money!

We have one graduating this year and have vacation coming up in just a few weeks. It is amazing how time is flying by!

Thanks for linking up to my blog last week! I have three bloggers that I am featuring because I loved what they linked up.

Julie from Redhead Can Decorate did an entire kitchen make over. It looks awesome. I’m going to go back and look around her blog some more, her premis is that she can decorate for affordably.

organizing and DIY

I like some of the ideas that Dagmar from Dagmar’s Momsense found for organizing. She found pictures from around the web of things she would like in her perfect house.  This shelf has magazine holders as the base for storage. Cool idea!

organizing and diy

Closets! Who doesn’t like organized closets? Margo from Joyful Homemaking redid her closet for $150.

organizing and diy

Link up to my Linky Party! I’d love to see the ideas you create yourself or find from other inspiration online!

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog
2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (url code under button tab )
3) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning or DIY or crafts or decorating are WONDERFUL!
4) No sales pitches or web sites.
5) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.
6) By linking up to my post, I might use your pic (with link and credit to you) next week in my post!

 

Looking for other link parties? I have a whole list of them. Thumbnail via day above and keep scrolling down to find a more extensive text lists by day on my link party list. If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple. If You Are On A Reader and Want to View All the Great Link Up’s on this post please Click here 
This party will be open until May 13, 2012 at 11:59pm est.

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Organizing and DIY Link Party

Easy Craft, Organizing and DIY Ideas

Enjoy seeing the organizing and DIY ideas that some of you linked up to last week. Thanks!

organizing & DIY
 

Love that Vanessa from The Rookie Seamstress used duct tape to decorate some old boxes to make them useful storage. With all the fun and decorative duct tape that is out there now, the ideas are endless.

organizing and DIY

Great idea by Ginny from Organizing Homelife on how to label your left overs. Time flies with when you have left overs in the re-fridge. It is amazing how fast things can turn green! lol

organizing and DIY

 

Utilizing clear shoe door organizers can be used for a multitude of purposes. Margo from Joyful Homemaking shows a variety of ideas.

organizing and DIY

 

Jo-Ann from Growing in Grace made a plant hanger and address plate to decorate her her home.

organizing and DIY

 

Link up to my Linky Party! I’d love to see the ideas you create yourself or find from other inspiration online!

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog
2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (url code under button tab )
3) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning or DIY or crafts or decorating are WONDERFUL!
4) No sales pitches or web sites.
5) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.
6) By linking up to my post, I might use your pic (with link and credit to you) next week in my post!

 

Looking for other link parties? I have a whole list of them. Thumbnail via day above and keep scrolling down to find a more extensive text lists by day on my link party list. If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple. If You Are On A Reader and Want to View All the Great Link Up’s on this post please Click here 
This party will be open until May 6, 2012 at 11:59pm est.

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Organizing and DIY Link Party – Week 5

Dresser Drawer Organizing and DIY ideas

You can get some ideas for organizing and DIY ideas from checking out the links others have linked up on the linky list.

organize and DIY button

Do your dresser drawers look like this?

Organizing and DIY

 

Or do they look more like this?

Organizing and DIYIt isn’t hard to organize your dresser drawers.  I did a post on Organizing Your Dresser Drawers and showed you how easy it is to do.  I used organizers that I found at Ikea and a few I also found at Old Time Pottery, but you could also use shoe boxes or other boxes that fit into your drawers and achieve the same thing.

Share your DIY, crafts, decorating, organizing projects!

You can find the link for my button on my top “Buttons” Tab. (right now I only have the Organizing Mission Monday button, so it is fine to continue to grab that) 
1) Link to your specific post – not your blog
2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)
3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it
4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning or DIY or crafts or decorating are WONDERFUL!
5) No sales pitches or web sites.
6) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

Looking for other link parties? I have a whole list of them. Thumbnail via day above and keep scrolling down to find a more extensive text lists by day on my link party list. If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple. If You Are On A Reader and Want to View
This party will be open until Feb 5, 2012 at 11:59pm

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Cubby Storage

January 25, 2012 by  
Filed under Bedrooms, Blog, Closets, DIY

Using Cubby Storage In Your BedRoom

I LOVE cubby storage, as most of you know who have followed me for awhile, so I decided to utilize them in our bedroom. I am in the process of slowly making over our bedroom.

cubby storage

We don’t have the finances to go into a beautiful bedroom set (that happens when you have eight kids right? Everything else like college and food come first! lol) so we do the best we can with what we have.  I also love Ikea, and I found some tall cubby storage units that we could use to help with our clothes storage.

We were storing our jeans, sweaters and sweatshirts on wire shelves in our closet. I tend to be more practical & functional than decorative, so I didn’t have a problem with open clothes storage in our room.

We have three of these cubby storage units in our rooms.  They are five shelves tall, with Dave having two of them and I have one.  This one is on the other side of the room from the top picture.  I got him two baskets also to help out with socks and T-shirts.

cubby

We also got two smaller cubbies that are on either side of our bed. We each have two baskets in them.  Yes that is my gun safe if anyone is wondering. You can see my cool pink gun on my pinterest board. (no nasty comments about me having a gun please)

cubby storage

There are plans to paint and also plans to make one of the cool headboards that I found on Evolution of Style  blog. Isn’t this awesome? I pinned it on my DIY pinterest board . This is in her little girl’s bedroom.   I loved it because it is right inbetween two windows which is the exact set up we have in our bedroom. I am still trying to decide on a paint color (not pink, I love it.. but poor Dave) and think my headboard will be the brown/black to match my Ikea pieces. Thoughts?

diy headboard

 

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Transferring Clothes For The Season

September 27, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets, Family & Friends, How To Organize

Are You Ready For The Cold Weather?

The Changing of the Guards Clothes – Bring Out The Winter, Put Away the Summer!

This is not something I look forward to each season!  But it is something we need to do this week.  The kids have a couple days off school, so I thought it would be the perfect time to get it done.

The triplets are now old enough they can do most of it on their own, I just have to give instructions and follow up. (If I don’t, I will have one huge pile of clothes and they won’t know what they are keeping or getting rid of)

When we bring out the clothes from last year, there are some things that Alex can wear of Zach’s from last season. Even though they are triplets, Zach is about 5 inches taller than Alex and weights about 25 pounds more, so it does make it nice for handing down clothes.  The boys also have clothes that I have saved from Tim & Drew who are now 17 & 18.

8 Easy Steps to Transferring Clothes For The Season

1) Get your supplies ready. White (donate) and black (trash) trash bags, sharpie
marker, labels (sticky address labels work great, bins (clear are best).

2) Get out the winter clothes from storage.

3) Start in the kids rooms and pull out one drawer at a time. Determine with each
piece
* Will it fit someone in the family in the future? (If not donate)
* Is it in any condition to save? (If not then throw away, don’t donate clothes
that are torn, stained or are better for rags)
* Will the next child wear it? Was it worn at all this season? (Do they like it?)

4) Make piles.
* Save for next year
* Donate (white bag) – Doesn’t fit, they don’t like & won’t wear.
* Trash (black bag) – torn, stained, not in good enough shape to donate.

5) Go through the new season clothes and do the same thing as you put them away in
the kids drawers. Make sure they will fit your child this year and it is
something they will wear.

6) I prefer you use clear bins. Get ones that fit your space to store and latch closed. They will go from season to season.

7) Take the bins you have for next year and be sure to label them.
Put boy/girl, season and size on each label. For instance, Boy – Summer  - Size 10

8) Donate can be taken to friends who can use them, sold at a garage sale or resale
shop or taken to a facility such as Good Will.

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Closet Organized

June 28, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets

Reorganizing My Messy Closet

Did I say I had a messy closet?  You bet ya!  My organized closet gets unorganized with the best of you.  Our room ends up being one of the last priorities (other than basement) in the organizing and cleaning order of things.  I only have so many hours in the day and at the end of it, I get lazy. I’ll toss my clothes down, I’ll put my clean hoodies and sweaters haphazardly on the shelves etc.

It is really bad and I can’t believe I’m showing you my closet in this bad of shape.  I have wanted to get it taken care of for awhile now, but with everything else I’ve had going on I just didn’t do it.

Tonight after dinner I tackled it.  I have been wanting to get nice looking matching organizing cloth cubbies for it. I’ve priced them a few times, and they are out of my budget for a closet. That has been one of my excuses for putting it off.

No more excuses, I didn’t go buy anything new to use. I didn’t have any fun, cute matching cubbies (like I want) or fancy tags to label things.  It is just down and dirty…. sorting… donating….and putting back on the shelves in some kind of order.

Before

closet

Below this we have a laundry hamper for our dirty clothes.

closet

Ugh… (so embarrassing)  We added the 2nd shelf  when we first moved in. Another way to make the space go further.

 closet

We also have no linen closet, other than a very narrow small one in the kids bathroom. So when we moved in we also took the left wall and transformed it into our linen closet with several shelves.

Here are the top two shelves.  The top is my keepsake box. (right)  The red basket is my hair coloring clothes.
The beach towels are the next shelf. We only use them in summer so they are on an upper shelf.

closet

The shelf underneath the beach towels presently is a real mess.  I have a couple pair of jeans on the left. The iron is out and my sweatshirts on are the right.

The shelf below that  has the hand towels in the blue basket on the left, wash clothes in the small red one and pillow cases in the right blue one.  Below that are the bath towels. A set of winter flannel sheets also got left on that shelf.There is one more shelf under the baskets that has the bath towels on it.

closet shelves

I have a shoe rack on the bottom. I’m not big into shoes and clothes. I would like to be, but this body is not easy to fit… so buying clothes isn’t so easy.

LOL.. what a mess! My suitcases, the toilet paper gets tossed in here once the bathrooms have all been stocked. This has been driving me crazy (as it should!)

messy closet

There is more to the closet. But I told Dave that I wouldn’t show his side.  He has less room than I do, but he did just organize his things and tossed out a couple of shirts to be donated.  I would have liked to have done it, but he wanted to do it and I said I wouldn’t touch his side.

I went through and pulled out the clothes that I did not wear this last winter.  I donated them.  A couple things were hard to donate. For the last couple of years I had debated a couple items, but I gave it one more winter… and since I didn’t wear them again – this time I got rid of them.

I moved the winter sweatshirts and sweaters to the “summer” bin.  Most of my summer clothes were already in my closet.

I borrowed my daughter’s 2nd closet rod. She wasn’t using it and is old enough she can reach clothes hanging from the regular closet rod.

After

I really thinned out my clothes.

clean closet

But I also added a 2nd rod.  I hung my shirts on the top and my dress pants on the bottom.  I don’t have very many pair of dress pants.  Mainly I wear jeans, but I do have dress pants. I am very heavy right now and don’t want to have very many pair of “fat” pants.

closet rod

I also hung my extra purses here.  I thinned them down to two (I did have 5 purses) plus my tote bag. There is still plenty of room for the hamper.  My big suitcase is still in the corner. My pants are not touching the ground (although it looks like they might be in the pic.)

closet

I put my weekend suitcase up on the shelf and moved the other set of luggage to my daughter’s closet. I don’t use that set anymore and know she could get some use out of it.

I kept out a few hoodies if it gets cold, and made a place for my jeans.

closet shelf

Here is a better view.

closet after

Now onto the linen closet side of our closet.

I moved my keepsake box lengthwise out on the shelf.  It is up high enough that I don’t have to worry about hitting my head on it. It takes up less space this way.   I also put several of the good adult larger beach towels up top. I like to have towels that are large enough for me when I do need one.

The next shelf down I put the toilet paper. I also had the little clear shoe boxes. I am going to label them with a sharpie and sticker.  I have my travel accessories in them.  Left one has travel organizers for jewelry, make up etc.  The top middle box has travel sample sizes. My hairspray, toothpaste, etc. Below that there are small purses. A couple of dress purses, but a couple are small over the shoulder purses that are nice to pack in my suitcase. I don’t like to take my big purse if I’m out and about on a trip.
The far right plastic bin has my bathroom tote bags already to go. The larger one (you can’t tell in this pic.. they just look black) for longer trips and then I have a small one that goes into my carry on suitcase.  Both are packed and ready to go other than for a couple things that I use daily that need to be packed.

closet

I moved a couple shelves around. I moved the beach towels down to where the kids could reach them. They were forever trying to pull one down and several would tumble.  This will work much better this summer.
I also sorted through the pillowcases and hand towels (had too many of both) and sorted them out. I moved the pillow cases into the small red basket and the wash clothes into the larger basket.

closet shelves

The bath towels are on the bottom shelf.  I have a load of clean towels downstairs that need to be put on this shelf. We really do have more bath towels than this for seven people.

closet shelves

I got rid of a couple pair of shoes that I don’t wear. Since I moved all the purse and travel stuff up on the other shelves, I had more room for my shoes.

shoes

My big suitcase stayed in the same place.

suitecase

Hopefully next time I reorganize my closet and clean it out, I will be able to get the nice matching cubbies to put everything in.  But don’t think you have to spend money to clean and reorganize.

I spent about two hours tonight in my closet doing this. I feel SO good!  ahhh…

 

 

 

 

 

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Organize your Handbags and Purses

How To Organize All Those Handbags?

Are they over taking your closet?  Do you have a purse for every outfit or every pair of shoes?

Beth pursesDo you have an idea what my advice is going to be?   Yes….. you need to sort through them and purge them.

I want you to ask yourself these questions:

1) When was the last time you used it?
2) Do you LOVE it?
3) Is there anything wrong with it?
4) Do you really Need it?

Here is what I want you to do.

Beth purses

Make 4 piles:

1) Keep Pile -  Use it frequently (within the last 6 months)
2) Maybe Pile -  It matches an outfit perfectly that I have worn in the last year and the outfit fits me
3) Donate – I haven’t used it in over a year. (or ebay, Craigs list)
4) Trash - Not in good enough shape to use or donate

I think they are all self explanatory except the “Maybe Pile”.  I want you to go through your maybe pile and only pick out the purses that you WILL be sure to use in the next 6 months.

Now.. you may be saying, “But Sandy, no way! I paid WAY too much for that handbag to just donate it!” Then sell it on ebay or Craig’s list, or a resale store. But give yourself a date to do that by, don’t just throw them in your closet and think you will do it later (because we both know you won’t)

It may be hard, but be realistic, how many purses do you really need to keep? They are more than likely taking up space that you could use in your closet.

I want you to note which bags you use over the next year. I bet it is only a couple.

If you HAVE to buy another purse, then decide which purse you are going to get rid of. One in… One out!

How To Organize Your Remaining Purses

The Closet Purse Hanger – These are basically “S” hooks. You can put several purses on one hook. I also use these for belts. They work great.  They are different from your standard “S” hook because they are twisted so they hold your purse correctly in your closet.  (update 11/2012 I’m unable to find this product. Here is a purse hanger that looks similar

purse hanger 4
You can see a closer view here.
purse hook 3

Here is another option that I reviewed called Simply Sarah Handy Hold All.
purse hanger 2This has fabric hooks that wrap around your purse to hold it in place.  If you have long straps, you have to wrap them up, so they don’t hang down too long.

purse hanger 1

There are of course many other options:
You can find cardboard bins like this called Park-a-Purse from Organize.comorganize.com Park a purse

Be sure to watch for the rest of my posts this week:

Purse Organizing – (Part 1)
Purse Organizing - The pouchee (Part 2)
Purse Organizing – Card Cubby  (Part 3)

I want to see how you organize your purses!! If you link up your purse post to my linky party and it is of how you organize all your purses, I’ll pull a picture and add a link to this post too!

I’d love for you to link it up to my Organizing Mission Monday Link Party
It will be open until March 27th to link to.

Organizing Mission Monday

I LOVE your comments!

Thank you to Beth from Plus Size Mommy for taking all her purses out for me to get a picture!

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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 13

It’s Almost Spring! How is Your Spring Cleaning Coming?

organizing mission monday link party I have tacked a few projects myself that I will be sharing posts later with you.  I have so many more lined up, it is just a matter of making the time to do them.  I bet that sounds familiar doesn’t it?   But I am adding the decorating component into my spring cleaning this year.

I am going to be working on my medicine cabinet tomorrow!  So start thinking about how you want to clean yours out!

Featured Bloggers This Week!

Mel from Mama Buzz and Real Heart Prints – Closet & Movie Cabinet

Mel took her closet from this:

BEFORE:

closet before

To This!

AFTER

closet afterSee what all she did by visiting her at Real Heart Prints !  You can also see how she added a shoe mirror onto her door to check out those shoes before you walk out the door.  Then you can get the bonus of seeing her organized movie cabinet also.

Jo from Creative Collage -  Master Bedroom Closet Makeover

I’m am so impressed with this!  Check it out.

Jo’s master bedroom closet:

BEFORE

closet before

Here is her after, but keep in mind, Jo did all of this herself!  She didn’t have a company come in and install it, she didn’t buy it pre-made and install it… she made it ALL herself!

AFTER

closet afterDidn’t she do an awesome job?   She goes through the tutorial of how she did it on her blog, so be sure to check out The Creative Collage.

Bianca from Walnut Avenue – Office Makeover

Bianca took her office from this:

BEFORE

office before

She had an inspiration picture that you can see on her blog post, but she knew the look she wanted in her office. She said in her post that she isn’t finished with the entire office, but look at the cool arrangement that she has made so far.

AFTER

office afterShe has really made great use of shelves for her office! I love them.  Be sure to stop by and read her post about her office on her blog Walnut Avenue!

Be sure to stop by both of my featured bloggers today and give them some “comment love”

For those of you who were featured this week, please pick up your button (code below the button) for your blog!

Organizing Mission Monday

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Link up to my Link Party

Link up any organizing or cleaning post to my link party!!

But this week I encourage you to start working on your medicine cabinets!  I will be having a blog post tomorrow on how I did that, so be watching!!

Organizing Mission Monday

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Rules

1) Link to your specific post – not your blog

2) Please Link back to my blog with my button or link (link just above underneath my button)

3) I’d love if you’d follow me on google and/or FB. The google is new and I’m trying to build it

4) Blog post related to Organizing or Cleaning

5) No sales pitches or web sites.

6) If I feature you I will use one or more of your pictures with a link back to your blog.

8) Feel free to link up more than 1 post.

Be sure to check out my list of link parties

If you have a link party.. please link it up! Underneath the daily buttons there is a list of text links I have compiled too! (Many more there!)

If you aren’t sure how to link up… see my link party tutorial here. It is simple.

This will be open until Sunday March 27th.

I LOVE your comments!!

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Shopping Saturday – Woman’s Closet

March 5, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets, Sales, Shopping, Stores

Check out this awesome “woman’s” closet.

Remember last week’s master bedroom that I would love to have? Well, here is the closet that goes along with that master bedroom.  Now keep in mind this is only the woman’s closet.  Yes on the other side of the room was the man’s closet.

closetThis is just a small part of the “closet”. Can you believe this is a closet?  They were getting ready for the Parade of Homes in this MI home. They had one of the drawers pulled out sitting on the window seat.

Check this out….

womans closet The doors open out to make this 3 way mirror!

Now look at this touch in the closet.  Remember this is the closet!!

closet lightNow to see through from one side of the closet to the other.

womans closet

You can see some more drawers sitting on the floor, they were going to be opening the Parade of Homes the next day, so there was still a lot of finish working going on.  Kind of reminded me of Extreme Home Makeover last minute rush!

Wouldn’t that be awesome to have a closet like this?

If you have an awesome closet.. link it to my Organizing Mission Link party – Mission Spring Cleaning !!

Organizing Mission Monday

I LOVE your comments!!

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Spring Cleaning – Declutter Winter Gear

Spring is (almost) here. Let’s clear out winter clothes & gear!

Winter clothes, coats, hats, gloves, boots, shovels, sleds are just part of what can be either decluttered from your home or stored away until next winter.

When you go through your winter gloves make sure if you are going to keep them that:

1) They all have a match
2) They still fit your children and there are no holes in them.

If they are in good shape but are too small for your children, then put them in the donate bag.  If you only have one, then don’t keep it, and certainly don’t throw it in the donate bag (someone one other end of sorting will just be the one to have to get rid of it)

gloves

For your hats and coats and boots – Go through the same thing. For those items that will still fit next year and are in good shape, store them in a clear bin and label it.

For your snow shovel and sleds and skies.  Ski racks on your garage wall would be ideal.  The same for the snow shovel if you have the space.  Look UP in your garage. Use your wall space.  If you have rafters in your garage… use those for storage!

snow shoves

8 Easy Steps to Transferring The Clothes

1) Get your supplies ready. White (donate) and black (trash) trash bags, sharpie
marker, labels -sticky address labels work great, bins (clear are best).

white and black trash bags

2) Go through the drawers & closets. Pull out each piece of clothing and evaluate it quickly.

* Will it fit someone in the family in the future? (If not dontate)
*  Is it in any condition to save? (If not then throw away, don’t donate clothes
that are torn, stained or are better for rags)
* Will the next child wear it? Was it worn at all this season? (Do they like it?)

dresser drawer

3) Make piles

* Save for next year
* Donate (white bag)
* Trash (black bag)

4) Get out the summer clothes from storage.

5) Go through the new season clothes and do the same thing as you put them away in
the kids drawers. Make sure they will fit your child this year and it is
something they will wear.

6) I prefer using clear bins if possible. Get ones that fit your space to store and latch closed. They will go from season to season. Now for really long clothing storage, you might want to look into another form (but I don’t suggest long term clothing store of any one item …usually)

spring clean clothes 37) Take the bins you have for next year and be sure to label them.  The labels don’t have to be fancy printed out labels!  Just get something you can see clearly and you can peel off or stick over for next season.
Put either sex or child’s name, season and size on each label. For instance, Boy – Summer – Size 10

8) Your donate bags can be taken to friends who can use them, sold at a garage sale or resale
shop or taken to a facility such as Good Will, but get them out of your house as soon as possible.

We have so much cold winter gear, that just putting it away or giving it away makes you feel less cluttered doesn’t it?

I’d love to see how you clear out your winter clutter!  Blog about them and then come back and

link it to my Organizing Mission Link party – Mission Spring Cleaning !!

Organizing Mission Monday

I LOVE your comments!!

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Organizing Mission Monday Link Party – Week 5

You Can Leave a Post or Find a Post!

organizing mission mondayAnother great week with some really fun ideas!  I am loving this!  You all have some really creative ideas and I will be using a few of them in my own home.

Here are my Featured Blog posts for this week.

Please pick up my “Proud To Be Featured” button from my sidebar.  (for whatever reason the coding of my buttons are going wacko when I put them in a post. Until I get someone to fix them for me, I’ll ask you pick up the buttons from the sidebar – Thanks!)

Megan from Polish The Stars has creative this awesome craft closet out of a utility closet.

empty closetShe took this utility closet and decided to create her craft room!  It went from bare to craft closet beautiful!!

craft closetIs this too cute or what? Look at how she even incorporated the water faucets to make it look cute? She didn’t try to cover them up or anything.. they just look like they fit there. lol

craft closetI love this method she used to hand her ribbon also.

ribbonBe sure to stop by and check out her full blog post to see the rest of the pictures she has.  Also check out the rest of her blog Polish The Stars

House on Ashwell Lane has some unique organizing solutions that I liked.

gutter for bookLooks like just a normal book shelf on a wall doesn’t it?  But it is house rain gutter!  Isn’t that a neat idea?

This is my favorite idea of hers.  So easy.. and no cost!

toilet paper rollsI think this is such a neat idea.  I am actually collecting empty rolls right now because I need a better solution for my cords by my chair. I am thinking of stacking and gluing them together… and making them like a pyramid.

Be sure to check out House on Ashwell to see the rest of her Clever Solutions.

Michelle from Sustainabley Chic Designs got my attention with this homemade washer & dryer pedestal

Her husband took it from this

washer dryer pedestalThen to this:

washer and dryer pedestaland finally to this:

washer and dryer pedestalIsn’t this awesome!!  She took a basement laundry room with brick walls and turned it into a cute little laundry room. Love the colors! Look at the complete guide on the rest of the laundry room make over at Sustainabley Chic Designs

Link Up!

Rules

1) Link back to my blog with either the button or my link. (Use the Organizing Mission button on my sidebar)
2) Would also love it if you could follow me
3) Blog posts related to Organizing or Cleaning please.
4) Family friendly (or I will delete)
5) No sales pitches or web sites please.

I ask that you please link back to me with my button or my link (or both!) Thanks!

Be sure to check out my list of link parties! If you have a link party and I don’t have you listed, let me know and I’ll add you to the list.

Not sure how?  It is simple….

1) In the first box it says “link it to” – Just put the url of your specific blog post. Still not sure? Click on your blog post (not your blog, but specific post) You will see the http://your blog name/your blog post name up at the top. Just Copy and past that link.

2) Caption or Title – What is your blog post titled or what do you want the readers to see under your picture

3) Your email- that is simple

4) You can either check “From File” and this will take you to your computer info where you can pick a picture. Or you can pick “From Web” . This will take you to pictures from your specific blog post and blog. This is the one I usually pick as there is much less searching to do for a picture.

5) Once you pick your picture it takes you to that picture and you can move the box to show what part of the picture you want. then just click load or start at the bottom of the picture. Your done!

I would love it if you could vote for my blog! You can vote up to once per day. Thank you!


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Organizing hats and gloves

January 11, 2011 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets, How To Organize

Are your Closet Shelves Over Flowing with Hats and Gloves?

closet before Do your hats and gloves need organizing?  This has been a frustration for me.  With 7 people in this house… we have many hats and gloves… and not just in the winter.  We have the ball caps in the summer too. (fuzzy pic, but I took it awhile ago)

I still don’t feel like I have the best system down for all this mess….but I’ll show you a few things I have done.

closet organized Here is one solution.  Use baskets to organize the hats and gloves.  This works pretty well for the ball caps.  However… a couple things that I didn’t like with this idea.  Stacking the baskets didn’t work at all.  No one is going to take the time to actually reach up and lift the top basket off to put anything away.  Plus this is not a good option for younger kids who can’t reach.    The cubby’s are a possible solution to this.

cubbysWe use these for a catch all option for the kids as you come into the house.  They can be used for the hats and gloves.. and they do- along with all kinds of other things.  Keep in mind this was right after I cleaned them completely out last week.

This is my latest attempt to organize these pesky hats and gloves.

hat and glove organizing I have this hung at the landing of the basement stairs.  Since we have such a small entry area and small hall closet, we have issues with book bags and  coats too.

hat and glove organizing
This is the view looking from the top of the basement steps.
bin for bookbags I have tried hooks inside the closet door for the book bags and coats. As the kids get older the book bags are just too heavy for the hooks now.  Since they always want to throw their book bags on the floor anyway…I am just trying to help them a bit by having a big bin for them to put their book bags in.

coat hooksWe have hooks on the wall for extra coats.

This basket is another tool I use to help with the clutter and stuff that have to go downstairs.

basket

This is not for the kids to put hats and gloves in. This is for me to use. Small things that have to go down to the basement go in here. Then I grab the basket on my way down to the basement and can put them away.

I linked this post to:


<br />
http://www.thethriftyhome.com

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Organizing Clothes

October 28, 2010 by  
Filed under Blog, Closets, Family & Friends, How To Organize

Winter is coming!!  The “Changing of the Clothes”

plastic bins in store

Do you dread the “changing of the clothes” as much as I do? Getting out the winter clothes and putting away the summer?
I do not look forward to it. In fact, so far this season I have not done it.  I always leave a few warming things in their drawers for the summer, so they aren’t wearing shorts on a 60 degree day)

We do use the “hand me downs”.  How could we not?  The older two have clothes that I have saved (that they liked… we didn’t save everything) for the younger boys.   Since we only have the one girl, we tend to either have one of a couple people give us clothes for her, shop in the resale shops or buy new. (Oh darn….how I hate to buy girls clothes.. Not!!)

Here are the tips that I used in the spring of 2009 when I did a post on transferring clothes from summer to winter.

7 Easy Steps to Transferring The Clothes

1) Get your supplies ready. White (donate) and black (trash) trash bags, sharpie
marker, labels (sticky address labels work great, bins (clear are best).

2) Get out the winter clothes from storage.

3) Start in the kids rooms and pull out one drawer at a time. Determine with each
piece
* Will it fit someone in the family in the future? (If not dontate)
* Is it in any condition to save? (If not then throw away, don’t donate clothes
that are torn, stained or are better for rags)
* Will the next child wear it? Was it worn at all this season? (Do they like it?)

4) Make piles.
* Save for next year
* Donate (white bag)
* Trash (black bag)

5) Go through the new season clothes and do the same thing as you put them away in
the kids drawers. Make sure they will fit your child this year and it is
something they will wear.

6) I prefer you use clear bins. Get ones that fit your space to store and latch closed. They will go from season to season.  Now for really long clothing storage, you might want to look into another form (but I don’t suggest long term clothing store of any one item …usually)

7)) Take the bins you have for next year and be sure to label them.
Put sex, season and size on each label. For instance, Boy – Summer  - Size 10

7) Donate can be taken to friends who can use them, sold at a garage sale or resale
shop or taken to a facility such as Good Will.

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Cache-Cachet Covertures Review

A little bit of luxury to store your delicate and fine clothing and accessories

cache cachet

There are times when you want a little bit a luxury to store your dine clothing items. The Cache-Cachet coverture might fit the bill for you!
This is a soft silk bag that has a button closure.  It has been used by Katie Holmes and Kate Bosworth who I’m told have both outfitted their closets with the Cache-Cachet covertures to store their clothes. (now wouldn’t that be a closet to have? wow!! – insert jealousy here)

cache cachetOne of the features that I love for organizing is that there is a clear window so that you can see what is inside.  That is so important to me.  Organizing items can be done, but to make it efficient and usable organization…you need to be make your storage solutions  accessible and easy to use.

cache cachet

Here is a picture off of the www.cachecachet.com site that shows how great these can be for organizing a closet.  (Wishing this were my closet!!)
cache-cachet
There are 2 sizes of Cache-Cachet Covertures, the small one is big enough for 2 sweaters – (which is exactly what I have stored in mine).  The other they said is large enough to store a jacket in.

You can use these for everyday storage. If it is for a little longer storage you can use the herbal sachet that comes with it.  This is a herbal mix that will keep any bugs out of your clothing.  Much nicer than moth balls..that is for sure!

Clothing Care Tips from Cache-Cachet:

1) Don’t use plastic bags: storing clothing in plastic bags or containers suffocates clothes and accelerates the aging process, causing your garments to take on a yellow color.

2) Don’t hang your knits: Sweaters and other knitwear will stretch over time and elongate.

3) Do Clean your garments before storing them: Wool and other fabric can become damaged by insects such as moths, carpet beetle larvae, cockroaches, beetles and silverfish.  Insects are attracted to fabrics stained with food, beverages, perspiration’s and oil from the skin and hair.

4) Do keep your closet looking as beautiful as the things that you have in it:  Don’t fill your closet with plastic bins and bags. Not only are they bad for the life of your clothes, but they distract from the beauty of the garments you love.

5) Do extend the life of your clothes and accessories: Store clothing in cloth storage bags with herbal sachets, like Cache-Cachet covertures and garment covers.  This will protect your clothing from snags, deter insect damage and other harmful elements.

My thoughts:

I think this would be a very nice way to store your fine clothing.  I folded and refolded my 2 sweaters a couple of times to try and flatten them out a bit in the bag, so that it would lay a little flatter. But I think if you stacked no more than 2, maybe 3 bags you wouldn’t have any problems.  The silk is so nice, that I could see them sliding a bit if they weren’t flat enough, or you stacked too many on top of one another.

Price: The small one is $39 and the large one is $49.  That works for some budgets, but not all of course.  But even if you have one or two special things, it might be worth the investment to keep them nice.

Disclosure:  I was given a small Cache-Cachet coverture for review at no cost.  The pictures above (with the exception of the closet organizing picture that I mentioned was taken from their web site) are my own and the thoughts are my own.  I did use the verbiage from the clothing tips card and from the Cache-Cachet Web Site.

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DIY Closet Under Stairs

In my teens Basement bedroom we had to create a closet underneath the stairs.

With his new room he was going to need a closet.  The kids had used this area as a fort before, so we had to remove all that stuff and do just a little prep work.  Creating an organized closet under the stairs doesn’t have to be complicated or expensive. I think the only thing we actually bought was the hardware to put up the clothes rod and the light fixture.

closet under stairsHere is my step son’s closet underneath the basement stairs.  Ended up working great.  My husband put a light in the closet.  He has a rack for clothes, laundry hamper for dirty clothes, baskets for “stuff” and the shoe hanger with a basket above it.

closet under stairsMy husband just had to put the rod in (right after he finished…so all his stuff is still sitting there.)

So… you can be a little creative and create some good usable space where you don’t think you have it.

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Hanes and Organized Undies Drawers

August 12, 2010 by  
Filed under Bedrooms, Blog, Celebrities, Closets

Is your underwear drawer Messy or Organized?

I was in New York City for the big BlogHer conference for bloggers.  I was invited to this Hanes party and what do you think I thought when I saw this display? LOL  Yep…right up my alley!

This place was decorated so cute with underwear on pillows and umbrellas made from T Shirts. But they had a display showing a messy underwear drawer and an organized underwear drawer.

And then an organized drawer.  Aren’t these cool?

Now…here is the kicker. They were having contest to see who could organize a drawer the fastest. They were giving out gift certificates. They had one more contest and of course my friends nominated me.  Ok…this was too much pressure. I am the organizer…of course everyone would expect me to win… and I should right?  LOL

There was a laundry basket of underclothes, sweatpants, underwear, socks, tshirts and bras. We had to take them and fold them and organize them in our drawers the quickest. The fastest time before our last group was 1 min. 50 some seconds (I think).

My hands were shaking!! Literally.  But….. I didn’t win. The girl you see in the picture beat me by a split second. I think our time was in the 1 min. 30 second range….so I also beat the record. Does that count? LOL

But it was fun….

Michael Moloney from Extreme Home Makeover was there as the MC. He was so nice!  And of course very nice looking! {drool}

But it got me thinking. My underwear drawer is not really very organized. I have everything in it’s “area” of my drawer, but I don’t have any official boxes or “sectioned off” areas.  Hmmm….I might have to do that especially with the new fun undies and bras that Hanes gave me as swag.

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