Transformation Tuesday #57: Garage Clear-Out

It's GARAGE SEASON, Y'ALL! I've been organizing several garages and basements this spring and summer and absolutely loving it. 

I got to spend a morning with a dear friend working on her detached garage. This is an area that's so easy to forget about because it feels very "out of sight, out of mind." My friend has been on a purging journey this year and it was time to finally tackle this space together.

 
 

We used the carport as the staging area for trash, recycling, and donation items. We worked through the garage clockwise, separating larger items to create more space before we began sorting through various tools, cleaners, and outdoor toys.

We were able to clear away two carloads worth of donations by the time we were done! There were several toys the kiddos had outgrown, furniture items like a rolling cart, lawn chairs, an old high chair, multiple BBQ grills - you name it, we found it! This was an opportunity to "shop" the garage for the "best of" items so that we could give away the duplicates.

 

A quick sweep and it felt like a new space. Sweeping is serious business. Now that several large items were removed, we could stack the bikes alongside one of the walls and create better accessibility with the industrial shelving. 

 
 

So satisfying to open up a pathway in this space! Spending some extra time to thoughtfully edit your garage or basement will free up your schedule in the future - no more hunting for tools or cleaning products. When you know where things belong, it's easier to put things away and stay on top of the maintenance of the room.

Transformation Tuesday #56: Reading Nook

Sneaking in this transformation before the day is over! I've been working with a lovely client on several spaces within their home got a chance to organize this little reading nook.

We had already done some paper purging and furniture-swapping in the study and guest rooms in our previous organizing sessions. They had a few chores they needed to tackle around the house so I asked if I could work on this space.

It's a great space situated off a hallway between a couple bedrooms. I love these projects because they are a great confidence-builder for those who feel overwhelmed with spaces like a bedroom closet or a basement.

In these areas, start with items that don't belong - remove any trash, recycling, dishes, laundry. After that, it's a just a matter of straightening up the books, art, and display items.

 
 

What are some of the "easy" areas you like to cross off your tidying to-do list? Let me know in the comments below!

Transformation Tuesday #46: the Craft Box

I love transformations, big and small, and the craft box, or "stash" as my friend explains here, is no exception!

Last month, I decided to remove the gift wrap/craft storage that hung over the door of my hall closet, mainly because the hook was starting to bend which meant I had too much stuff. I consolidated ribbon, a couple gift bags, and all the art supplies into whatever box I had around the house. This sat on my bedroom floor for about a month (yikes!) until I found the right storage solution.

I decided to treat myself to a trip to Storables and found the large Cascade bin in gray - I wanted something pretty and sturdy. I also needed an odd size in order to fit my practice calligraphy pad and this was one of the few options out there.

 
 

Seeing all my supplies in a nicer bin makes me so happy and it was such a quick fix. What kind of tiny transformations have you made around your home? Let me know in the comments!

 

 

Transformation Tuesday #41: Packing Light

I'm pleased as punch to be packed and 99% ready for my upcoming trip to Hong Kong! It's been a whirlwind January as far as work goes. I've spent the last two weeks working on a move and was able to have all of yesterday afternoon to get my suitcase in order and drop into a yoga class.

I thought I packed and organized my bag pretty well on my last couple trips here and here. However, I think I've hit a whole new level - check out the open space next to the green jacket! I don't plan to do a ton of shopping and generally bring back consumables like tea and candies for gifts. It's not like I saved room to fill up my bag coming home.

 
 

It's such a thrill to have this ready to go 48 hours beforehand. The only To Do's left on my list are picking up some snacks at Trader Joe's for the plane (I'm a fan of the jerky sticks and dried apple rings) and researching the best option to get from the airport to the Airbnb. Not too shabby!

Anyone have any packing tips to share? A favorite checklist to ensure you've packed everything you need? Let me know in the comments below!

Transformation Tuesday #34: Entry Way Quick Clean-Up

Many people have asked me how long it really takes to organize - the answer is different every time, depending on the project. When the clutter piles up, it can be hard to just get started. Like the garage, the entry way is a spot in your home that you might not pay much attention to but you have to go by it everyday. 

I can tell how busy my week is by looking at the entry way table, aka the dumping zone. Because this is in close proximity to my washer/dryer closet, clean laundry ends up on this table quite frequently (my way of forcing myself to take care of it rather than relocating it to the bedroom floor). If I don't have time to deal with mail, a bill, and other paperwork, little stacks start appearing.

I spent about 15 minutes organizing this time around. I brought the recycle bin so I could toss items immediately and had my filing box handy so that I would move paper off the table right then and there.

Not too shabby!

 

Transformation Tuesday #33: The Pesky Sock Drawer

Every one of us has experienced socks going to that black hole, the abyss, whatever you want to call it. So how do we organize, better yet, TAME, that pesky drawer?

I recently learned two great tips:

  1. Completely empty the drawer - you WILL remove items so it will automatically be cleaner than when you started (unlike digging a hole and filling it back up with dirt, you always end up with more dirt)
  2. Set aside the unmatched socks in a small bin, box or bag near your dresser - you choose for how long (I recommend a week or two). As you wash your laundry, match up the missing socks. Whatever is left, time to toss (better yet, recycle it by donating to your local thrift store).
 
 

This took no time at all and I made a small tweak to the drawer by shifting the cardboard box holding the socks so it was horizontal. I don't have to dig toward the back to reach the thicker socks now and the drawer closes easily now! I call that success ... take a look below on how ten minutes can transform a drawer.

 

What tips or tricks work for controlling the chaos of your sock drawer (or junk drawer)?