Last month, I blogged about the drowning nature of clutter– ugh – and this month, I’m talking about the healing nature of well-organised storage. Aaaand sigh.
A place for everything and everything in its place. This phrase greatly appeals to my Virgo nature. When a possession in the home is without a proper place, it becomes clutter. As such, well thought-out storage is key to keeping a tidy home. But how do you go about selecting the right solution for your home? I have three great tips that will be sure to help even the untidiest of homemakers.
1. Keep it Simple
Simplicity is the key to good storage because the simpler it is to use, the more you’re likely to use it. This is especially true in wardrobes; no one puts clothes away at night if they have to wrestle with other clothes when it comes time to hang them up and a few nights of not facing your wardrobe leads to quite a pile on the bedroom floor. Like Spock, I use logic in deciding where things should live and I always keep everyday items, like my favourite shoes, trousers and blouses, in easily accessible areas whilst keeping out-of-season clothes tucked away in areas that aren’t so front-and-centre.
But it’s not just the wardrobe where this tip works, it’s also great for how you organise your accessories, cleaning supplies and miscellaneous household necessities.
The more your micro-dived things, the more difficult it is to put them away in their many individual places. Also if you micro dived stuff you haven’t given yourself room to grow. After all, 20 tie compartments means that you only have room for 20 ties, so what happens when you want to add more? Instead consider rails on the back of your closet door so you can easily display an expanding collecting. The same is true for kitchen drawer organisers, office shelves and laundry room hampers: fewer fussy compartments make organising easier and more flexible.
2. Make Space Work Harder
When I design any form of storage, from bookcases to kitchens, I look at maximising the internal space to make the piece work as hard as possible for my client. I do this by using interior fittings that allow my clients to get the most usable space out of their furniture. For example, in a bathroom I designed for a client, I incorporated a kitchen larder pull-out under the sink. Pull-outs are great as they allow you to easily access your products and, when finished, allow them to simply be slid away, leaving the sink clutter-free.
Pull-out drawers like this are also great in the kitchen, in sheds or garages, and in creative studio spaces where you want to tuck-away anything from pasta to wrapping paper, paint tins or cleaning products.
3. Think Outside the Flat Pack Box
It can be a mistake to think all storage needs to be custom built or from IKEA. After all, anything that can house objects– whether it has a shelf, lid, drawer or doors– is storage, so don’t be afraid to look at vintage pieces, which are beautiful to look at and can gobble lots of things, as well as new. For larger pieces like armoires, hunt at antique shops, auctions and even eBay. For smaller livingroom pieces, use old family trunks as coffee & side tables to hide away old filings whilst still having a space to place a cup of tea or glass of wine.
To add character to a room, I love some of the quirkier smaller storage solutions that are popping up. These work especially well in bathrooms or dressing tables. I love filling jars with cosmetics or toiletries, silver cups with small beauty tools, and laying artist models with necklaces. By using something with personality to house your everyday things, you can create beautiful tableaux throughout the home.
So between a good clear out and some well thought out storage, you should start to feel the calming effect of a clutter-free home this spring. As the weather brightens up so should your spirits.
Glass jar photo via Neptune. All other photos are our own.