Greeting Cards Organized in Hanging File Folders

A client of mine loves to give gifts and send greeting cards to friends and family.  She had been keeping her cards in several baskets but they were not in any order.  After sorting the cards into similar categories: birthday, holiday, sympathy and so on, and purging some cards that she no longer cared for (especially the free cards sent by charitable organizations as a thank you for your donation) we needed a way to organize the cards.

card drawer

The volume of cards was considerable so the card storage boxes that can be purchased at Hallmark would not cut it.  My client already had a two-drawer filing cabinet in her bedroom that was not being utilized.  After emptying the filing cabinet, we madefile tabs with her categories and put the cards in the hanging files.  This makes it much easier for her to see the collection she has and choose a card to send. read more

Real World Organization: Wall of Games

My husband and I have some friends who like games just as much as we do.  I’m talking about board games.  While this is a great hobby, it does create the need for a way to store a large volume of boxes and game containers.

Games.thumbnail

My friends created this awesome shelving system to store and display their games.  Long pieces of wood shelving were attached to L brackets attaching the shelves to the wall.  The open concept makes it very easy to see all the games that are available and easy to put away after playing. read more

The One Month Cardboard Box Test from Peter Walsh’s book It’s All Too Much

In his book, It’s All Too Much, Peter Walsh offers a simple test to determine what kitchen utensils you are using and what can go:

Not sure what you use and what you don’t?  Here is a tried and true way to find out.  Empty the contents of your kitchen utensil drawers into a cardboard box.  For one month, only put a utensil back into the drawer if you take it out of the box to use it.  At the end of the month seriously consider discarding everything that’s still in the cardboard box.  Face it: If it’s still in the box after four weeks, you don’t need it! read more

How to Dispose of Unused Prescription Drugs

I received a leaflet from my veterinary clinic with instructions on how to best dispose of unused prescription medications.  While the source of where I received the leaflet was slightly odd, the information is relevent for human and animal medications.

I always remember hearing “throw unused medications down the toilet.”  This is no longer reccommended due to the impact the drugs may have on the environment.  Here is what Smarxt Disposal reccommends:

  1. Pour medication into a sealable plastic bag.  If medication is a solid, add water to dissolve.
  2. Add kitty litter, sawdust, or coffee grounds to the plastic bag.
  3. Seal the plastic bag and dispose in the trash.

Unused prescription medications almost always come up in my work with clients.  I now know the responsible method for disposal. read more

Product Review: Extra Storage Closet

I have used a few different versions of self-contained storage racks with a client recently.  We have been constructing them to store seasonal clothing stored in the attic.  The enclosed nature of the rack provides protection from dust and critters.  My client has a few different brands of the product, but by and large they are equivalent.  I did notice that one product had a canvas cover, while the other had a vinyl cover.  I anticipate they will provide the same level of protection, however I suspect the canvas cover will have more breathability versus the vinyl cover.  Not to mention the vinyl cover smells like a new shower curtain- this may be good or bad for you. read more

Use a Lazy Susan to Tame Craft Supplies

If you are a crafter, you know how many small supplies go along with your hobby; pens, scissors, pins/needles, tape measure, buttons, paint, the list goes on.  While these items are essential for the success of your work, they are also easy to lose.  Having a clear home for these items helps you stay productive and organized while working.

A great organizing strategy for the craft or hobby room is a Lazy Susan.  The ability for the supplies to be displayed clearly and interacted with easily is ideal.  The Lazy Susan in the picture came with several glass dishes that fit in the tray.  They were perfect for holding pins, measuring tape and other small items.  If your Lazy Susan does not have dishes, simply using cans or jars will serve the same purpose. read more

Product Review: Custom Drawer Dividers

These drawer dividers are a great alternative when traditional drawer organizers do not work.  In working on a desk organizing project with a client, we discovered that the pre-made drawer organizers in stores were either too big or too small.  We wanted to be able to take advantage of as much space as we could.  These custom dividers turned out to be our best option.

The dividers come in long strips and are intended to be scored and cut to size.  Additionally, they come in a few different heights to best accommodate drawer heights.  I was amazed how cleanly the product snapped after scoring it with a razor.  After the strip was cut to size we used the mounts included with the product to hold the dividers in place.  The mounts are self-adhesive, however we opted not to use the adhesive and instead have the tension hold them in place.  The adhesive is a nice option should tension not cut it after a while. read more

File Organizing: Use Stickers to Identify File Homes

In the process of revamping a client’s filing system recently, I recommended using matching colored interior and exterior file folders to help identify different parts of her world: family, bills, home etc. (This system is described in detail by Erin Elizabeth Wells in this video.)

While color-coding a filing system is a great long-term organizational tool, it can also be expensive. This particular client already had a vast quantity of manila interior file folders, so she opted to use those instead of buying more. Then she purchased exterior hanging folders in five colors and some small colored stickers. read more

Craft Organizing: Toilet Bowl Brush as Crafty Clean-Up Tool

Did you ever think there may be an alternative use for a toilet bowl brush other than scrubbing the toilet?  There actually is!

The tight, coarse bristles on the brush work well to pick up stray pieces of string on carpets.

This is especially helpful for quilters who are often cutting small pieces of string that don’t always make it into the trash can.

As I mentioned in a video blog about craft room organizingone of the biggest parts of keeping your craft space organized is spending a few minutes after your crafting session to clean up your project.  Making your craft space clean and orderly will help you stay focused and feel more productive at the next session.  Doing a little cleaning of the carpet will help you feel as cleaned up as you can be. read more

Store Craft Projects in Clear Sweater Bags

Organizing and containing crafts is a part of several of my client’s worlds.  One trick I learned years ago from my mum is to reuse the plastic bags that new linens come in.  They have a nice zipper top (usually) and best of all, they are clear for easy viewingof the project being contained.

Clear Sweater Bag

Another great idea I learned from a client is to use clear garment bags intended for sweaters.  These bags also have a sturdy zipper and can be labeled with your label maker.  Ideal projects to be stored in bags like this would be small sewing projects, knitting projects (especially if you have a kitty who likes to run off with the yarn!), stamping and paper crafts, I could go on… read more