Category Archives: organization ideas and tips

calming the chaos (kind of): storage solutions for baby gear

9th October 2013

One thing that has come along with our new little lady has been a lot of stuff. You know, the baby gear. I don’t even feel like we have tons of gear at this stage, but boy does it ever seem to pile up. And I know it’s only going to get crazier as this kiddo grows and more actively wants to play with things!

In case you didn’t realize it already, I’m not one that likes things to be super un-tidy. I can totally deal with a dirty house (okay not forever… but I can let the chores slide for a good long while), but clutter everywhere? Nope. Really don’t like it. Drives me bonkers. So this whole baby gear stuff is throwing me for a bit of a loop.

Here are the few things I have done so far to try and keep it all under control (sort of).

Maya’s nursery is organized to the brim with clothes, diapers, books, blankets, her baby bathtub, carriers, etc – with a customized closet to fit her things perfectly. As you know, we live in a small two bedroom bungalow (with a basement that’s rented out), so storage space is at a premium.

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I use a bin on her dresser to keep diaper changing gear on hand.

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We have even used the space under the crib to store some awkwardly-sized items – like playmats with big overhead bars (you can see them poking out in the photo below).

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In the living room we have a bassinet on the floor which she has some daytime naps in, and a baby vibrating chair out in the open. I have done my best to give the smaller items specific homes that are out of the way. For example, all of the small soft toys are piled up in a basket that tucks under the coffee table.

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We have a small blanket and pillow that stays out on the floor (play time!), but the rest of the squishy tiles and mats live in the cabinet next to the TV. We have dedicated that whole cabinet to baby things, so there is an easy spot to put things away in at the end of the day.

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I have even managed a still-empty basket at the bottom of our bookshelf in the living room, ready to store board books and puzzles when we get to that stage.

Bottles and other feeding gear have been sorted into baskets and tucked between the fridge and the upper cabinet – easy to access and slide in and out.

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Our kitchen counter has a new bottle dry-rack (it looks like grass – cute!) to hold all of our bottle/pumping supplies. There is one bowl out dedicated to dirty bottle paraphernalia (I don’t always have a free hand to wash everything right away), and another bowl dedicated to bottle warming. Because we had some major breastfeeding challenges, I’m officially a “pumper”, so we always have a lot of bottle stuff on the go. The counters look so cluttered now and I definitely miss the white space.. but there isn’t much I can do about it with our wee little kitchen!

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As much as I have tried to give everything a certain place, there are still things that don’t have a dedicated “home”. The stroller lives in our entryway, where the car seat is also often hanging around.

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The bathtub usually just sits on the floor in the nursery when it’s not being used. The carrier, although sometimes hung up by the front door, is often just flung around wherever we last took it off. And our second bouncy seat that I use to entertain Maya in the morning while I’m getting ready sits in the corner of our bedroom.

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So that’s my attempt at keeping the baby gear under control for now. I know it’s going to just get crazier from here. You win some, you lose some, right? If all of these colourful things keep my little gal happy and entertained, well then I’m thrilled to oblige.

What about you guys? Do you have any baby gear organizational tips? I’m all ears!

garage clean-up

5th September 2013

One of the projects on the “before baby” list that we did manage to check off just before Maya arrived, was a bit of a garage clean up.

It was bad you guys. SO much stuff and no system of organization. We had just continued to shove things in, and it was getting seriously out of control. Here it is, after we had moved out a bunch of furniture (that we sold/moved/got rid of). So this is already looking about 30% better than how it originally looked!

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So embarrassing! We dedicated one Saturday afternoon to the garage and got to work.

I have a bunch of old windows and frames for my vintage rentals business, and there was never a good way to store them. My handy husband decided to tackle making a storage box on wheels to use, instead of just leaning them up against the side of the garage. DSC_0475

He used basic lumber, plywood, and casters that you can get from any hardware store.DSC_0476

Clever guy, right? DSC_0478

We also bought some heavy duty storage shelves from the Home Depot for about $40 a pop. We don’t park our car in our garage, so decided to setup some of these in the middle, which is where I could store some of my other inventory. Just don’t look at the workbench/cabinetry part at the back of the garage – that is hubby’s section and is still on the “to organize” list (since he was busy building the storage box that day!).

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You’d think I had a thing for mason jars, huh? DSC_0485

Here is the other wall of the garage post tidy-up. We already had those shelves setup, but we did a better job of sliding in bins and other boxes more tightly. I know it doesn’t look perfect, but it’s so much better. Everything is clearly labelled, and so it’s pretty easy to find what we’re looking for now. DSC_0487

And look – I still have empty shelves to fill up! DSC_0489

And a walkway! You had to climb over bins, bikes, and miscellaneous chairs before. DSC_0492

Oh and did I mention that we tackled this project when I was 39 weeks pregnant? I was a hot and swollen mess… but that wasn’t going to stop me! DSC_0495

Have you guys done any garage or other organizing lately? Do you guys have one of those more minimalist, pretty garages that you actually park your car in? If so, Jealous!!

nesting?

5th August 2013

As my due date approaches (tomorrow! I think the little lady is pretty cozy in there!), I think I fall more deeply into nesting mode. Dan says I’m a “nester by nature” – and I agree – but I think my nesting tendencies have definitely upped a notch or two in recent weeks.

Besides getting things checked off the to-do list, purging stuff, and organizing baby things, one of my little nesting moments recently was to deal with our coffee/tea situation.

What do I mean by that? I’m talking about this totally un-organized, things-fall-out-when-you-open-the-door cupboard in our kitchen. No rhyme or reason to what went where and tons of almost-empty tea boxes.

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I spotted these glass jars at HomeSense for $13 for the pack of 3, and knew they would be perfect for my tea. They have tight seal lids, and were pretty cute with their mason jar look going on.DSC_0518

Organizing always gets worse before it gets better — case in point as I laid out everything from that cupboard.
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 I took a lot of the teas out of their boxes and sorted them into groups – chai, herbal (mostly mint and chamomile), and black. For any tea bags that didn’t come in individual packaging (other than the black tea), I put them in a small ziploc with the name of the tea on it before putting them into the jar. That way I wouldn’t just have to rely on the sniff test to know which tea it was.

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I’m craving a chocolatey chai right about now…DSC_0531

They fit nicely in the cupboard, and I was able to put some of the larger tea boxes and loose leaf teas beside and behind. No rocket science here or ultra pretty pantry organization with labels and chalkboard paint and all those fancy things, just a simple solution that makes me happy.DSC_0528

The middle shelf now houses all coffee-related stuff (I think I need to get some kind of wire basket to hold all of those), and the tupperware and microwave dishes are up top. DSC_0529

What else do I have to organize around here… no drawer or cupboard is being left untouched!

Do you guys have a scary cupboard or drawer in your kitchen? I know I can’t be the only one. Gotten really fancy with your pantry organization? Any fave tips to share?

basket case

12th June 2013

I have been chipping away at our front entryway for a long time. First there was the chevron ceiling, then the mint mirror, then the thrift store light fixture, and then replacing all the hangers with wooden ones. There are still a few things on the to-do list though.

Here is the prettier angle of the entryway.

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And where we left off from the other (not so great) angle. See those mismatched woven baskets? Well, I always was a bit annoyed that they were different sizes (we just shoved them in there when we moved in), and they weren’t tall enough to really be taking advantage of the space. All of our hats, gloves, scarves, etc live there and were always poking out.

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When we built the closet in the nursery, I did a bit of basket re-arranging, and brought all of those woven ones into the nursery where they fit perfectly. Then it was time to head out to HomeSense (the Canadian version of HomeGoods) to do a bit of basket shopping. Things always get a little worse before they get better, you know?
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I had my measurements with me when I went shopping so I knew exactly what size to get. It didn’t leave me with many options, but I did find these three that I knew would fit perfectly. I would’ve liked to have all three in the beige colour, but wasn’t too bothered by having a lone green. It sort of ties in with the mint mirror down the hallway.DSC_0693

Once I knew they fit, it was time to transfer everything. Woah did it ever make such a difference to have properly sized baskets. I have one with all of my hats and scarves, Dan has one with his hats and scarves, and then the one in the middle has all of our gloves and other miscellaneous stuff.DSC_0695

Such a simple upgrade, but makes a world of difference.DSC_1150

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And the last thing left on the list for this area? THE SHOES. Oh man, it isn’t good. We have a crappy shoe shelf that is put in sideways and an old winter shoe mat. Oh, and a bucket on the other side of the hallway (not pictured) that house all of our flip flops. Time to build some custom shelves… DSC_1146

 Do you guys use baskets throughout your house to keep things organized? I don’t know what I would do without them. Do you have a small entryway like we do? Any tips for keeping it neat looking? I struggle with ours as we can’t easily put a door up to hide the jackets thanks to the curved ceiling. I think getting the shoe/boot situation under control will help though. 

magazine madness

3rd June 2013

I don’t know about you guys, but I have a bit of a magazine hoarding problem. I usually recycle the not-so-great ones right away, but then let my faves pile up thinking I’ll crack them open again at some point.

Well, with the recent influx of baby things at our place, I am really wanting to get rid our house of any unnecessary clutter. And these magazines? Well, they were getting unruly (that is just pile #1 of 2).

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We had a few rainy days this weekend, so I plunked myself down on the couch, turned on HGTV, and got to those piles. I flipped through each magazine quickly and tore out fave pages. On some of them I wrote what I liked with a sharpie marker (ie. “try this as DIY artwork”, or “love those built ins”), but mostly I just left the tear sheets as-is.DSC_1095

I thought this was going to be a fairly quick project, but dudes, it took a loonnngg time. After a few sessions of TV watching, the pile on the “recycling” side was finally winning.
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And as for those tear sheets? Well I had put together some magazines files to hold them. DSC_1099

They are sorted into three main categories: living/dining, kitchen/bath, and other (bedroom/DIY/outdoor). Eventually I could start a few others or put them into plastic sheets in large binders, but for now, these are working out just fine.DSC_1097

They sit along with some others in our basement storage area.

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And as for that farm chair that you could barely see any more in the living room? Well, it is happily on display again!

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New resolution: no more magazine hoarding from now on.

Do you guys hang on to fave magazines, or are you pretty good about reading + recycling? Have a good system for keeping tear sheets? Do you even still keep tear sheets now that there are things like Pinterest and blogs a-plenty for inspiration?

project nursery: the closet

15th May 2013

I mentioned on Monday that we were on a bit of a roll with the nursery – maybe it’s because I’m officially now into my third trimester (28 weeks!) and feeling a major urge to get the house ready? I’m kind of a “nester” by nature, but I think it has started to kick into overdrive a little bit. Over the weekend I was waking up at 5am because all I could think about is what we need to get done. And it’s so silly, because we live in this comfortable little house and don’t have any major stresses. Yes we still need to get and setup a few keys things (carseat, crib, etc) but really, we could bring baby home tomorrow and all would be just fine. Reminder Gemma: you can chill out.

Anyway, back to that nursery.

Since it’s a small room and is doing double duty with the office, we knew that smart storage was going to be so important. Luckily, the room does have a little closet. It used to hold Dan’s suits and Navy outfits (being in the military = a ridiculous amount of clothes), and some of my more formal dresses. When we did project basement storage a few months ago, all of those items got moved downstairs into a new armoire.

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I knew I wanted to paint the closet a fun colour – a nice surprise from the bright white room. I had purchased a can of “oops” (ie. mistint) paint from the Home Depot a while ago in a perfect pink for a mere $9. The colour is a bit deeper than a pastel pink, and has a nice hint of coral.

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Two coats later, and here’s how she was looking. Fun, right?

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We didn’t want to spend too much dough on any fancy closet systems, but did want to do something custom and built-in. Handy hubby put his thinking cap on and planned out some shelves for the bottom half of the closet where we could line up a bunch of baskets. This would help maximize the amount of storage space, but also leave some room for bulkier things (packs of diapers, etc) on the upper shelf and along the ground.

We had the wood already, but buying basic boards from any big hardware store doesn’t run you much moola. Dan the man cut the wood to size using his circular saw, and cut the 2×1 wood strapping that the shelves sit on using his mitre saw (but you can use a circular saw for this step also). The strapping was either a) screwed into a stud or b) screwed into the drywall using good quality drywall anchors. Shelves were then nailed onto the wood strapping so they don’t move. He had to use some drywall anchors as there were not enough studs in the right spot to screw on the strapping.

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Once those shelves were installed I did a quick two coats of the same pink paint on them to keep the whole look cohesive. I haven’t put a coat of polyeurothane on them yet, but I’m thinking I’ll slap at least one on to make sure the paint doesn’t chip. It’s just wall paint, so may not stand up to constantly pulling the baskets in and out.

This is how things are looking at this point. It’s packed full of stuff right now as we finish up the rest of the room. Still need to get a dresser in place, so a lot of those folded clothes and things in baskets will be moving over the dresser. And all the stuff on the top are “things to use in the nursery” that just don’t have a home quite yet.

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PS. Did you see all of those sweet little clothes? I have been SO lucky with a few friends who each had two baby girls, are done having kiddos, and are now dropping off their stuff as they grow out of it. Going in there and gazing at the outfits has become my new favourite evening activity. Baby girl is going to have so many outfits! Oh, and mama ain’t the only one with snazzy velvet hangers – these baby versions also came from HomeSense.

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One closet-related thing we still have on the to-do list (other than organizing it) is to remove the door and hang a curtain to cover it. This is going to buy us a bunch of extra space along the wall for the dresser, as we won’t need to leave room to open and close a door.

Here is where we stand on the nursery to-do list:

-paint room + closet
-install Chasing Paper wallpaper on feature wall
-put together new desk and organize office supplies
-get new office chair (maybe one that could double as ‘nursing’ chair?)
-closet: paint, build shelves, organize with baskets, remove door and hang curtain
-find used dresser and paint it coral (add gold hardware) + put change pad on top
-buy and put together crib
-move in rug
-make and install roman blind
-build and install book shelves on wall
-install shelves above desk
-hang artwork
-add accessories
-add storage for toys and laundry

Slow and steady wins the race! What about you guys? Painted the insides of any closets a super fun colour? Got any great storage tips you want to pass on? Anything else exciting going on? I’m all ears.

velvet crushin’

13th March 2013

With all of the organizing happening lately (like our newly decked out basement storage), plus my influx of new maternity clothing, my closet was in need of a bit of help.

Remember a few months ago when I made the switch from our mis-matched hangers in our front hall closet to all-wood ones? And remember how much better it looked and functioned (and how happy they made me!)?!

Well, it was time to do something about the situation in my closet. They were a mish mash of  plastic/wood/wire and besides not looking great, were taking up extra space.

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A few of you mentioned in my wood hanger post that you used velvet hangers for your clothes as they are slim and hold things up really well. Well, I listened, guys! A trip to HomeSense, and I came back with half a dozen packages of these beauties. They were on sale for $9/pack of 18, which I figured was a pretty good price.

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And then I set about taking absolutely everything off the original hangers, and hanging it all back up again. This also happened to be a great opportunity to bag up some shirts that are already too small for my growing belly. Who knows when I’ll be able to fit into those again.. so they are going to go off and live at my parents house for a while (thanks mum and dad!).

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Ahhh so. much.better. The way they slide around is smooth as butter, and I have about 1/4 more clothes on here now (thanks to some seriously lovely gals who have given me garbage bags full of maternity clothes!) and you wouldn’t even know it. These hangers really do take up way less space.

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The closet is small, but it works hard. I have all of my shirts and dresses and some sweaters hung up, have some shelving and drawer units underneath for PJs, socks, belts, slippers, leggings, and bathing suits, and then everything else folded up top or in the shelves that divide the ‘his’ and ‘her’ sides of the closet.

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On the shelves up top and along the side are my bulky sweatshirts, all of my sweatpants/workout pants, shorts, lesser worn sweaters, casual/workout tee-shirts, and jeans. Oh to have a big walk-in closet. One day!

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The other fun thing about velvet hangers? The fact that they come in just about every colour. I got a mixture of deep purple, hot pink, and greys. So pretty. Oh and it’s true – clothes really doesn’t slip off them – they just sort of stick to the velvet texture.

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And hubby’s side of the closet? Well he didn’t get the velvet hanger treatment (poor guy), but I did at least make sure he had all matching white plastic hangers (his request when I asked which were his fave). DSC_0312

Have you guys done a hanger switcharoo? Got any fave types? Are you on the velvet bandwagon? Please don’t gloat and tell me you have a gorgeous walk-in closet. Or okay.. tell me about it and I can daydream and be totally green with jealousy :)

an organized basement nook: the after

11th March 2013

After working away in this little corner of our pad for the last month, we can finally call this spot done-zo. And let me tell you, this nook works harder than any other spot in our place.

Here is what we started with. So much wasted space, so little organization, and just plain uuuugly.

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We cleared out the space, painted the turquoise wall, invested in our IKEA Algot system and Aneboda wardrobe, some storage bins, and got to installing and organizing….

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And now? Organization overboard. Booyah. Every single thing has its place. And probably a label to go along with it.

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There are a few main zones of the nook. First off is the paint zone. We had this spot which was perfect for narrow shelves, so we took advantage and fit them exactly for small pots and spray cans. Hopefully at some point we’ll use up more of those gallons on the ground, and then can decant leftovers into smaller mason jars and move them up along with the others.

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To the left of the paints are the drawer section of our Algot system. I really liked the idea of drawers, so I’m glad we designed it in such a way that we could squeeze them in. I’ve got pillow cases and small rugs in the top drawer, throw blankets in the second, and sheets and duvet covers in the third. Even though it appears tight in the photos, there is plenty of room to pull open the drawers and get at what’s in them without banging into the wardrobe behind you.

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Then we move over to the actual shelving part. The meat and potatoes of this whole operation. I tried to use as many coordinating bins as possible – both so keep it looking streamlined and to maximize the space, as they are designed to work with these shelves. Some things just didn’t fit into the bins though. We stacked our weekend bags/backpacks in one area, fit our picnic basket and board games on the top shelf, and kept some of our magazine files in rotation.

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All of our paperwork had been in magazine files up in our office (which will be no longer, with baby sprout coming along!), so we re-organized them into file boxes. It is nice to have them all in 3 boxes now and it’s good to go through files every now and again to purge paperwork that is old. A certain someone (*cough* hubby *cough*) likes to keep cell phone bills and receipts from the 90′s. They could practically be considered antiques at this point. Oh, and see that empty bin? Yep, still space to grow, baby.

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The magazine files that stayed were for a few select items that we add to very frequently. In this row there are ones for my design tear sheets (I rip things out of magazines or newspapers all of the time and go back to them for inspiration), stationary, and my stuff related to the blog.

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The shelves didn’t quite reach all the way to the other wall due to a bulkhead, but luckily, this worked out perfectly. We needed a little spot to put our vacuum (see it tucked away on the ground there?), our brooms/mops (which we installed a wall mount for), and wrapping papers.

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I needed a bucket of some sort to corral my wrapping papers and other long tube-y things, so this hamper from HomeSense did the trick. It cost $16 and adds a little bit of pretty to the space.

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And finally, along that last wall, is our new wardrobe. It’s actually pretty attractive, and it’s nice to have a break from all of the open storage.

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The wardrobe is packed with functionality – we hung up suits, out of season coats, and a few of my dresses, and then still had plenty of space for shoes. Dan has a bunch of his boots and shoes along the bottom (the guy has SO many clothes since he’s a reservist in the military), and I fit a bunch of my shoes into clear shoe boxes and put them up top. My shoes had all been living under our bed, so it’s nice to get them into a proper spot where I can easily see them again. Once winter is officially over (c’mon, spring!!) , I’ll move my winter boots down here and move up my summery shoes.

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After passing by the storage area, you get to the door to our basement apartment (those closet doors on the left lead to our shared laundry). I’m so happy to get all of this organized and looking better now. It’s SO much nicer for our tenant who has to walk by it every day!
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As for the budget breakdown, this wasn’t a super cheap project, but it was well worth it. Plus, all of these things are move-able, so if we ever want/need to re-locate anything, we can! Nothing permanent here.

-IKEA Algot system (this was for all of the brackets, shelves, drawers, and clear storage bins): $300
-IKEA Aneboda wardrobe: $100
-Round bin from HomeSense for wallpaper: $16
-Wall mounted broom holder from HomeSense: $12
-3 File bins with some hanging files and labels from Staples: $100

Grand total: $528

For more info, check out the other posts associated with this project: the beforeclearing out, installing the Algot system, getting organized and making labels.

Phew! Glad to get that one out of the way. Our office is feeling incredibly empty now… time to start thinking nursery!  We are going to be finding out the sex baby sprout pretty soon… anyone have a guess?!

ready, steady, organize

4th March 2013

So the last time we left off on Project Basement Organization, we had just installed the IKEA Algot shelving/drawer system. This past weekend was a nice, quiet one at home, so it was the perfect time to get cracking on organizing down there.

Just to recap, we need to keep everything that was originally down there (paints + supplies, home improvement stuff, brooms, vacuum, etc), and then add in a whole more.

Like, for instance, this entire closet from the guest room/office which will soon be the nursery’s closet…

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.. and our games from this little dresser in our living room, which will soon house our laptops (when we’re not using them), and some baby stuff….

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… and all of our paper documents which are currently filed away above our desk (these shelves will go when this room turns into the nursery) and in a cabinet at my parents’ place…

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… and a few other things floating around our pad. So yeah, a lot of stuff. Other than one small linen closet in our house, it’s our only storage area besides the garage (where hubby’s workshop is, plus sports gear, big pieces of furniture we’re not using, everything car-related, etc).

My basic method was to tackle one area at a time. I would take everything out, group like things together, and then fit them into the most size-appropriate bin. We had purchased the clear bins from IKEA that fit perfectly with the Algot system – some are tall and others are shorter and you can stack them. Once I had things in their bin, I would bring the bin down and place it on the shelves. Oh, and you’ll notice in the left hand side of this photo, that Dan put together the armoire (it’s the Aneboda from IKEA for $100), which replaces that wooden shelving unit that had been sitting there.

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There were a few things that didn’t fit into bins (like our bags), some file folders we decided to keep (instead of filing away in filing boxes), and the linens which went into the drawers, but just about everything got a bin.

And you know what bins mean to this organizational freak, right? Labels. So my jam. It was a use-what-I-had situation, so I grabbed some colourful cardstock and cut them to size.

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I used some double-sided sticky squares to adhere the labels to the bins. That way they’ll be super easy to take off in case I ever need to switch them up.

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I also needed to do something about the paint cans. Remember all of those big gallons sitting on the floor? Well, at least half of them were almost empty.

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Time for some decanting. Luckily I had some unused mason jars sitting in the garage, so I grabbed the cans and the jars and got to transferring the paint over.

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Mason jars have a good seal, so paint can happily sit in these jars for quite some time. Actually, I read it was better for them than sitting in an almost-empty can that has tons of air sitting in it. Oh, and for anyone wondering, we had the window wide open and I was wearing a mask while doing this job. Not all of these are low-VOC so gotta protect baby sprout!

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I didn’t do anything too fancy with the labels on these guys – just used some white address labels I had. I made sure to write down all pertinent information – brand, colour, finish – and also what rooms I had used it in. It makes a huge difference to get a lot of those big cans off the floor.

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So that’s where we stand. Things are really coming together. Just a few last finishing touches, and moving our clothes down to the armoire, and we’ll be set. After photos to come soon!

What did you guys get up to this weekend? Doing any organizing at your place? Ever done the mason jar thing with your paint stash? 

 

the algot install

20th February 2013

Alright guys, back down to that basement. Maybe now it makes a bit more sense as to why we are tackling our storage problem? We need to clear out our office/guest bedroom to make a nursery for baby sprout! So not only do we need to better organize what was already down in that storage space, but we need to add a lot to it, too!

So you saw how we planned and then cleared out and painted the space at the bottom of our basement stairs.

Next up was a big trip to IKEA to get all of the pieces of the Algot system we were going to need. This ended up turning into two trips. We brought our measurements with us, and then on that first trip checked out the system, understood how it worked, and tried to plan in the store (using those really little pencils they have!). Inevitably we got too few of some parts and too many of others. No biggie though, a second trip later (in mid-install) and we were fine.

I didn’t do a super great job of taking photos of the Algot install (whoops! got too caught up in getting ‘er done!), but it’s really pretty simple. First step is to drill in these long rails straight into the wall where you want to hang your shelves or drawers – best to get them into studs and to use heavy duty drywall anchors.

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Then you insert brackets along the rails, and click your shelves or drawers into them. There are a few different depths and lengths of shelves, so you can really customize for what works best in your space. We went with a mixture of long deep shelves on the back (turquoise) wall, and then shorter/narrower shelves and drawers on the side wall.

Ignore the stuff we stuck on the shelves as we were putting them up – it was half because I just wanted them off the floor to walk around, and half because we were testing to see how high we wanted the space between the shelves to be.

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You can see in the next photo that we left some room to the left of the shelves on the turquoise wall. This was partly because that bulkhead stuck out, making it tricky to get the shelves to fit into the whole space, and partly because I knew we were going to need a little nook for our brooms and vacuum.

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Here is that side wall during our install. We were testing out the heights of spray paints and small paint pots to ensure we got the height of those shelves right. Need to maximise that space, yo!

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When you first click in the brackets that the shelves or drawers slide into, you can see that they look pretty rough and unfinished (look at the higher bracket compared the one underneath in the photo below).

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Well of course IKEA thinks of everything, so they come with these great little caps that snap on and finish the whole look off.

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Too. much. paint.

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So there are the beginnings of the install. We need to move that wooden shelving unit out of the space (it’s off to live in our furnace room for storage for our tenant), and set up a new armoire in its place. Since we have our “formal wear” (as long as I got my suit and tie…) in our guest room closet, we need to move that somewhere. See, I told you we’re having to squeeze a lot in here? And then I really need to properly organize the space – bins, and labels, and order, oh my!

Have you guys used the Algot system before? Or any other IKEA storage units? They really are pretty great and making it simple, adjustable, and attractive.