Simply Savvy Organizing:: A One Hour Weekend Project

Weekends are for relaxing and doing things to help you feel better the rest of the week. If you only had one hour this weekend to accomplish one house project what could it be? (and yes, you have the time) Get motivated with this inspiration::

1. Sort bills and file keep papers

2. Purge last years school work and art papers that are not worth keeping

3. Clean-out dated and unused make-up or bath products

4. Donate toys and kids clothes

5. Run those errands you’ve been putting off

6. Pair your socks and trash those unmatched and old ones

7. Clean your refrigerator or pantry

8. Put away your clean laundry

9. Take a trip down memory lane and download your photos

10. Dust your fans and clean your blinds

11. Discover what’s under the beds

If you need a little eye candy to motivate you…these might help!

 

bhg.com

 

houzz.com via pinterest

 

marthastewart.com

 

younghouselove.com

 

There is so much you can do that takes little time– and feels so good when you’re done! Be productive, play, and enjoy your weekend. Share your task!

 

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organizing and storing kids work and treasures

It can be hard to choose what school work, art work, and mementos to keep for your child.  If you create a system for those admired pieces of work you’ll eliminate paper piles and hard descisions. Think of these as steps: Love it or Toss it, Display it and Store it. Decide how you want to achieve each of these areas and you’ll have a system that is enjoyable and managable.

 

Getting Started

Make a Date: You first need to set an date where your plan is to revisit all kept work and edit what is not needed. Your date may be once or twice a year, depending on how well you feel you’ll handle the increased paper amount. Keep a few writing samples, funny stories, pictures, and needed testing results or report cards.

 

Love It or Toss It

When the work enters the home, toss items you know are not worth keeping. Then move on to your display or file location. Once you’ve enjoyed viewing older work, rotate items from display to store. Always ask yourself when you touch the work for the second time, is this truly a keep item. Remember, you’ll revisit all work on your set appointment date.

 

Display It

Kids love to see their work on display. So, framing or hanging work and then rotating them when new work comes in keeps things special and in order. Plus, it’s the quickest way to put things up.

 

There are so many creative options for displaying art.  The display system you choose works as a boundary for you and the kids–teaching them if it can hold it, you can keep it. They’ll see what they value more and what can rotate or be thrown away.

 

This gallery and chalk wall by A Soft Place to Land is a great all-things-kids solution–very special to have a kids focal wall.

 

 

Try a DIY project like this one by Jen Grant Morriss. Take pictures or scan the artwork and then create a grid in Photoshop (or other program)–print, frame, and enjoy for any age!

 

 

If you want something that is easy and requires a simple mount, I came across these display boards by STRECKS– so many styles and sizes.

 

 

…and this very easy idea- I’ve done something similar with twine tied to removable adhesive hooks–mini clothes pins work great for little hands to add their own work.

 

 

Store It

What can you do with the artwork until your review date? Keep it in a flat portfolio folder (great for larger work), or roll it up in tubes. You can also use small binders with clear pockets and dividers. It’s easy to view and enjoy, and then edit on your scheduled date. A standard file bin with hanging folders is also effective, if you have the room to store the bins. Quick tip: label the storage of choice with child’s name, categorize by year, and group like contents.

 

Go digital

Once you decide on what you want to keep longer term, consider taking pictures or scanning work and creating a printed album from your digital library.Condensing to one work/art album (every 5 years or so) makes a special book, gift, and keepsake. I love that it also allows you to edit your printed album collection.

 

Take a look at these great tips on Edudemic and the Top 5 APPS for Organizing Schoolwork–yes, they have an App for that!

 

There are many sites to consider for storing images and printing albums or even calendars, here are two you’re likely familiar with Shutterfly.com and snapfish.com.

 

Treasure It

Keep a treasure box for items you and/or your child want to hold onto. I suggest an acid free photo box for each child.  Though a lot of people love to scrapbook, it takes time and is not for all. The bonus of a treasure box is having a quick location to place items you’re not ready to get rid of or want to keep for a period of time, or longer.

 

Be creative: Artwork can also be placed on mugs, shirts, and more creative ideas from sites like cafepress.com.

 

For more ideas, take a look at the Simply Savvy board on Pinterest.

 

Share your ideas and what you do in your home. Leave a comment and share links to your projects. I love sharing back!

 

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maximize your space:: savvy solutions for organization

I have lived in a home where I felt that there was not enough space to manage my things, display my possessions, or allow me to function efficiently. I have been there and I find that to be a frequent statement from my clients–not enough room or they think they need to spend big money to address space challenges. This is why I love organization and redesign. I get to help clients transform their spaces by getting rid of clutter, reorganizing belongings, and repurposing and repositioning their things for better use and focus. These latest images from MarthaStewart.com  are a perfect example of how to make your things special and function for your home.

 

This caught my attention because I recently moved a clients trunk from looking lost against a wall to having a greater function as a coffee table. This simple move gave new life to a waisted trunk. The idea of utilizing the interior of the trunk for a filing system or desk storage is brilliant. Linens, seasonal blankets, or keepsake items can also be stored in a trunk, but this function is simply clever.

 

 

 

I also admired these orderly bookshelves because of their multi-functional possibilities. If you lack a home office, cabinet storage, or closet space, utilizing bookshelves (built in or not) is a great way to stash your things. By keeping the colors and storage solutions uniform the shelves look clutter free, stylish, and purposeful.  Use book covers and a variety of  bins to store magazines, media, photos, or office files and no one will know what’s behind that lovely book shelf–until you share your creative ways! Surround your storage solutions with your collections and you have a very stylish bookshelf–with true function.

 

Of course, the main benefit for adding bookshelves is the use of vertical space. They are the perfect solution for adding space and storage to your home. Be savvy and save by searching garage sales, craigslist or your local thrift stores for solid shelving–and get out the paint.

 

 

 

 

Love the space you are in, be creative and create a new purpose. If you find yourself stuck, I’d love to help-submit your question at You Asked I Answered.

 

 

How have you been creative in your home, utilizing what you have? Leave a comment and share a link, I love sharing back!

 

 

 

 

 

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sleek and chic organization::weekly product pick

Getting organized is a task we do to manage our space, our day, and our lives. The tools we use to get organized can (and I believe should) add style and design to a space.

 

I’m always keeping my eyes open for things to share that is an organizing must-have; however, this week I’m sharing three organizing love-to-haves.

 

The first two product picks are from Wisteria. I received the current issue of the catalog and instantly loved these items.

 

This collapsible iron organizer can be used to hold your magazines, catalogs, design books, or files. I love that it adds a sleek and industrial touch that is very interesting. Of course, it’s functional and keeps items easy to see–an organizing must!

 

 

I can’t say it enough (I’ll keep saying it too!), labeling is a key ingredient to successful organization. My favorite labels are those that are flexible and add a pretty touch to your containers and baskets. These handcarved clay tags are a great solution. I like these for baskets placed on open shelving; such as, the laundry room, pantry, or bookshelves. These deserve attention!

 

 

My third product pick (by Three by Three Seattle) is one I found on Julie Morgenstern’s shop at OpenSky . (Quick plug: You should join that site if you have not already)

 

These writable bamboo panels are very flexible–you can write, hang, containerize, and stick items all on one chic board.

 

 Do you have a favorite organizing product you want to share? Leave a comment.

 

I was not paid or sponsored to share these products. I share what I find and what I really like. If you’d like Simply Savvy to check out your products, become a sponsor, or provide a giveaway, contact us for details.

 

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savvy solutions::you asked I answered

So glad you have stopped by to Ask Simply Savvy! I enjoy sharing readers challenges in organization, time, space, and design. I also love to share your successful spaces. Send your questions and I will review submissions and may detail a solution in a regular post on the Simply Savvy blog. I might share product ideas, mood board designs, or provide a list of how-to’s or tips. I will answer all email, but will selectively post for others to see.

Ask Simply Savvy

Don’t forget to Subscribe to the Simply Savvy blog!

If I choose your submission for a post, I will email you for permission to use your name, show your question or challenge and share your photo. I may have additional questions for you too. I have a lot to share, so I cannot do this detail for every submission, and I want everyone to benefit.

So, think of your spaces, your current challenges, things that make you feel chaotic, your to-do list that adds stress to your day, or just general questions…I look forward to helping you accomplish your goals and hope to inspire others along the way!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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blog series:: get organized for savvy savings:: toy storage

As I continue this series on tips to help you save by getting organized, I hope you see the savings potential of having order. A great place to start is with your childrens’ toys and their spaces. On the last post, hold a swap-out, I provided examples on how to hold a toy swap for savings. Not only do you save money by not making new purchases, but you rid the clutter in your space. Once you have completed your clean-up, it’s time to create a simple organized solution that you and your family can follow. Though there are fabulous designs to inspire us, I want to share some simple and affordable solutions, along with some must-haves.

The key to a successful toy space is for the children to participate in the process and find it easy to maintain. Here are a few ideas:

 

  • Choose your storage: Buckets, baskets, cubbies, and lockers all come in a variety of materials, colors and  prices. You can also be creative with what you already have in the home. For example, cover plastic bins, cans, or shoe boxes in fabric or paper and label.  It is important that your solution not require them to dig deep. If they can’t easily access items, they’ll be underused.

 

  • Hang it up: If space is an issue, consider a creative solution to mount storage bins or crates on the walls-be sure it’s within reach.

 

  • A place for everything: Staying organized means that all belongings have a home. Keep your budding artist in order by setting up a creative corner with caddies for supplies. Then, completed work can be displayed on wall mounted clips, magnet boards, or hung on twine…be creative.

 

  • Label it: Keeping storage labeled according to the contents is key to ensuring items make it back to their assigned home. Check out BHG free printable labels or make your own chalk labels like those shown on Hoosier Homemade.

 

  • Maximize your space: Consider an empty wall a wall of possibilities. Use hooks and a painted pegboard for hanging buckets, toys, and more.

 

  • Individuality is key: Children like their own spaces and have toys that are favorites. To head off sibling squabbles, create bins or buckets that are unique for each child. Be sure to create a meaningful label; such as, names, initials, numbers, or an object.

 

Start with some inspiration, review your space and needs, and select the tools to make it work well for you and your family. Keep it simple and affordable with a little creativity. Take a look at these…

See my Pinterest page for more ideas and photo credits. What creative solutions have you used? Be sure to leave a comment and share the post!

Get Organized with Simply Savvy

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loving the family landing zone

All homes need a family landing zone where everyone knows where belongings go the moment they walk in the door. Create a family landing zone before homework gets lost, teacher notes get buried, and special dates are forgotten. The best thing about a plan is that your family, not just you, has a responsibility for their things. It’s never too soon to teach your kids how to be organized.

Some homes have mud rooms for shoes and coats or command centers for papers and mail. I like  a family landing zone that combines all things. So, I thought I would share my tips,  inspiring pictures, and products I find simply savvy.

To begin, determine where your family ‘drops’ things off when they enter the room–I call these your “footsteps” in your space. If you don’t have an ever-so-fabulous mud room, you can create a landing zone in the main family entrance in the home that will be just as lovely.

by Inspiration For Decoration

Next, determine what function you need your landing zone to have. Is this a place for keys, cell phones, mail, school notes, shoes, coats, bags, and pocket change? What creates cllutter in your daily juggling of activities? What do you need to be able to locate quickly? Once you have determined these things, you are ready to create your zone with some essentials.

  1. Hang it up for order: I suggest mounting decorative hooks, knobs, or a coat rack for items that need to be hung; however, an umbrella stand works nicely too.  Be sure to place your solution at a level everyone can reach.
  2.  Store the goods: You can use baskets, shelves, totes, or buckets as storage units. In fact, if you mount baskets vertically it adds a clean, stylized look to your room. Place bowls or other small containers inside wall mounted baskets or shelves to hold change and keys. Trays or folders work well for school work, lunch calendars, and in/out mail. Clutter control: Once you have reviewed the work or mail , determine what to purge and move any keep papers to a more permanent home. For school work, this would be your school year box, or childs work display located in their space. If you don’t have a place for the school work you want to keep…you need one!
  3. Out of site and out of mind: Use a magnetic board, cork board , or memo board to post important notes, things to sign, and dates to remember. If you don’t like to see floating papers, use hanging file folders and large labled clips for these things. Clutter control: If you get in the habit of posting important notes and dates in an online calendar with automatic email reminders, you will minimize the paper clutter.
  4. 10-minute clean-up: Any organized solution needs tweaking. Once you have put your landing zone in place and your family knows where things now go, determine what is working and what isn’t and make changes. At the end of each week file papers and/or clean out items no longer needed.

 These are great examples of a space that combines hanging, storage, and wall solutions.

 

by Under The Table And Dreaming

 

by Decor & You

 I love this option that uses a coat stand….but for a familly landing zone I still want to see a place for keys, papers….

Creative solution by The Yello Cape Cod. You can add a storage bench and baskets to complete the landing zone.

This family landing zone by Organize Magazine shows a great solution for wall mounting all things.

 

The ideas are endless but here are a few of the styles you could choose…

Anthropology

organize.com

 

The Land Of the Nod

Art&Artifactby

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

by Stacks and Stacks

by Stacks and Stacks

threebythree.com

at Target

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

marthastewart.com

 

 

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