From the laundry room to your digital photos, here are tips to organize every room of your house.
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How to Organize Your Mail
Everyone organizes paper items differently--there is no right or wrong way. Some people feel better when things are in strict order, while others are perfectly happy with organized clutter. Finding your comfort level is the most important aspect of dealing with excess paper.
Personally, clearing away the chaos makes me feel less stressed. When our tabletops--from the kitchen to bedrooms--disappeared under mountains of incoming mail and such, I knew I needed help. I was spending too much time finding lost items.
For many homeowners, the words "garage" and "storage space" are synonymous, but that assumption wears thin when parking the car inside requires divine intervention. So the next time you're forced to squeeze past a barrier of boxes and various yard items to get in the house, take advantage of the following tips--along with warm summer days--for a better, more organized vehicle-and-storage shelter.
If you're not careful, you can lose all photographic evidence of your life and times. Today too many people see their photos only on a digital camera's tiny screen, a precarious place to be. Good news: It?s easier than ever to set those pictures free and get them in order.
We spend a lot of time going in and out of our homes, so creating a functional and attractive transition space is well worth it. Before this mudroom addition, Kelly and Joe Armes's kitchen table and floor were always cluttered with backpacks and sporting equipment from their children, John and Annie. Now each family member has his or her own locker unit for drop-off and storage--one great idea in a space full of them. Follow Dallas designer Cindy Zelazny-Rodenhaver's tips to mudroom perfection.
Sometimes getting rid of a mess-prone zone in your kitchen is easy: Just hide it. These homeowners thought their pantry's open shelving (shown at right) looked disorganized, so they covered it with a pair of antique doors. On shelves above, salvaged apothecary drawers hold kitchen utensils and knickknacks. Next time you're scouring a flea market, look for fun ways to store stuff. Vintage wicker bicycle baskets can be hung on a wall and filled with fruits and vegetables. An antique pitcher works perfectly for keeping spoons and spatulas at the ready.
It's not often we're blown away by a laundry room. In fact, many homeowners we visit try hard to hide this space. They'll speed-walk past a closed door, offering only, "In there is just the laundry room. You don't want to see that." This was not the case with the Mitchell-Leef family, who put a lot of planning into their laundry room with the help of Harrison Design Associates in Atlanta. The room is all about the best storage, a smart layout, and little details that make cleaning clothes less time-consuming. We've piled up their tips plus many more.