Haven't we all been there… A whole LOTTA junk and nowhere to put it?
Now I am sure we can all be adults about this, sometimes there are things that you just need to keep. Be it bath towels(not that I ever have time to shower with two babies running around here) or winter gloves, you can't just throw them away cuz they aren't being used at the moment.
So, for conversation sake, lets say we've already purged the un-necessary and we now need a place to store some stuff. What do you do if you have limited space but have stuff to store? It starts with each individual room or space. This post will hopefully give you a starting place for looking at your space and rethinking how you organize your spaces.
First: look at the each individual space or room in your home.
Go from room to room or space to space, and make a definition of the space. This is my dining room. This is my family room. … A little elementary I know… but reapeat it like a motto- Let's start at the very beginning, a very good place to start!.. I promise it will help! Those rooms that don't seem to have a definition need to be defined, Office/Workout/Craft room. … Create one!
This is a good time to also think about how often you use the space that way. It may sound exciting to have a guest room, but if you don't have out of town guests very often, this is more likely to be a wasted space. Do you have spaces that the previous owners defined but, you don't use it that way? Do you have a formal dining or living room that does nothing but sit there and look pretty? Make a list if the spaces you need, and try to reinterpret the unused spaces. By naming the spaces, we are helping to understand how or what we think the room is.
Second: Define what do you need to accomplish in this room.
Is it a living room? Where you entertain, study, relax, what is the space used for? Most rooms have multiple uses, but we may not realize it, because we just call it a ___fill in the blank__ room. By naming the room, without considering how we use it, we may be missing possible uses for the space. If you don't have a lot of square footage for example and you need an office, look at the option of creating a multipurpose room. Using a dining room as an office might be the perfect solution. What other uses might your dining table have. It could be an impromptu office, study area, game room… Get creative to see what additional uses you can make of different spaces, and make that square footage work for you.
Third: What do you need to keep in this space?
Books, music, movies? If you have decided to make it a dining room/ office. You need to collect all the office items and all the dining room items to their new central location. ** This is important. If you keep your like items in several different places, you will be more likely to end up buying or storing doubles, that take up more space. Also, your spaces will tend to feel less organized. By centralizing the storage you will know where to put things and what you have available.
Forth: Once all the items to be stored are congregated, look around the room and find out, what space is being wasted?
Do you have a window that doesn't have space for a large piece of furniture but might be able to house a window seat? Can a buffet become the “office”? What about a closet? Closets are the perfect places for creating multipurpose rooms without it feeling- well, multipurpose.
Fifth: Once, you have defined the uses of the space, and collected the appropriate items to be stored this is where you get to be creative.
Consider all furnishings, closets and wall space. How can you use the space. If a piece of furniture is not adding to the space, and has no important function it might be time to consider letting it go, and replacing it with something useful. In our last house we had not room for an office so we created one in an armoire. An end table might be the perfect place to hide a filing cabinet, covered with a round table top and skirted. Beautiful baskets are a great way to store things on an open shelving unit. If you don't have the budget for baskets, consider cardboard boxes that have been gift wrapped in a simple paper so that they all match. Simple shelves above a buffet could add a ton of new storage.
Don't forget, when organizing the room be sure to leave some open space, if at all possible. It gives you space to breathe and helps you feel less crowded. I hope that these ideas give you the courage to reorganize you spaces and use them the best way for your family!
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