The following is a guest post from regular contributor, Rachel at Useful Beautiful Home.
Lately, I’ve tried to dedicate more free time to my favorite hobby, reading. Currently, I’m enjoying four separate books (what can I say, apparently I binge read). One of these books is very popular and all about organizing. That said, I’ve noticed some common trends in the organizing world and I thought it may be helpful to narrow them down to the ones that are free. After all, organization itself is free, right?!! So, let’s focus our efforts on that aspect!
1. Re-purpose your furniture. Life is ever-changing and so is our need for organization. A new baby brings a whole new set of organizational needs just as much as an empty nester needs to re-organize for downsizing. Classic storage pieces are being re-purposed in so many creative ways. The picture above shows an entry table of mine that has morphed several times over the years. First it was on diaper duty a few years ago by concealing diapers, wipes, and a portable changing pad for my downstairs needs. Today we’re past those needs and now that same drawer stashes seasonal candles I don’t want in the attic.
Another example of re-purposed furniture are the many creative ways people turn things like medicine cabinets into jewelry organizers, or old crib parts for a entryway shoe bench. The possibilities of this are endless. Since it’s a rather popular trend right now, the inspiration is easy to find. My example is just using a drawer in a different fashion, but other bloggers have DIY furniture re-purposing that is simply amazing!
2. Use what you have. This is similar to the first trend, but slightly different to qualify as a second point. I’ve done this myself by covering cardboard boxes with pretty contact paper to fit a need I had on a budget (pictured above). I find it amazing how many creative solutions have been developed because of this trend. My sweet friend, Morgan, who just joined the I’m an Organizing Junkie team gave a perfect example a couple days ago with her repurposed cup holder as a jewelry display (found HERE).
3. It’s okay to rethink your system if it isn’t working. Sometimes we implement systems that end up doing nothing but creating more trouble. Admitting it’s time to tweak what isn’t working helps to master the disorganization. Tweaking is usually free and mostly involves creative thinking and problem solving from another angle. Given the wide world of blogs now-a-days, lives are visually transparent and we are increasingly able to see that other people don’t “get it right” the first time either. This is a trend I find motivating to fix a trouble spot until I get it right!
4. Don’t forget the electronics. Personal electronics are on the rise, so it makes sense that another organizing trend involves ways to keep electronic data organized. And not just the data itself but also cords, cables and other electronic accessories. If you take the time to keep your pictures, contacts, calendars & accessories organized, I think you’ll be more likely to find them user-friendly. Just think, your cell phone may have cost a pretty penny to purchase, but you can organize your daily calendar, photos, and helpful apps for free! 🙂
5. Get creative with containers. Just reflect back on some of my door organization posts where I showed 33 ways to utilize the inside of a door for organization. People have clever ways to use objects meant for one purpose in a completely different way to meet other organizing needs.
Last year I showed you my way to make a new shelf in the freezer by using a cupboard organizer. It was my way to think outside the design of a wire basket and turn it into something more useful for my purposes.
6. Make it visible. Yet another freebie we see commonly right now. An example of this would be open kitchen shelving or removing kitchen cabinet doors for open storage. It’s rather popular and seems to be a way to keep things visible for frequent use. Above I show you a little vignette in our powder room (this room has limited cabinet storage space). It’s not my personal favorite way to organize bathroom necessities, but that’s not to say it’s wrong. Keeping on theme of the setting (a powder room) and organizing visibly makes no guess-work for our guests should the paper products run low.
7. Organizing as home decor. Who says organization isn’t pretty? To most of us Org Junkies, it is the very definition of pretty. 😉 In fact, you’re likely already doing this one. It’s popular to add some prettiness with your organized systems to create a balanced home decorating scheme. This is easily done by adding favorite pieces to bookend your file system or embellishing with your favorite style of labels. Whatever, you choose, make it suite your taste. Seeing trends develop in your own home doesn’t mean loosing your sense of individuality. I just posted a simple tutorial on using PicMonkey (which is also free!) to design and print your own stylish labels.
8. Purging, purging, purging. I saved the best for last. This is a HUGE trend right now. In fact, that book about organizing that I mentioned earlier is ALL about purging at an extreme level. Laura painted us a beautiful picture on the topic a few days ago (found HERE). I love how she shifted the lens from not needing a bigger home for our things but to create the space desired by purging. Giving our home “room to breathe” is a vivid description for the objective of our purging efforts.
May I also interject that although this is a fairly recent trend, Laura has been encouraging us in blog posts and by her actions for as long as I can remember. She’s always showing us her donation piles on Instagram. I don’t know about you, but it usually makes me toss a few more items into my own pile when I see her lead by example. While this minimalist approach is gaining new attention, it isn’t exactly a new concept for the organizing veterans of today. So, keep on, keeping on in this department. It’s the best method of keeping clutter contained and it happens to be FREE!
Any other organizing trends you can think of that are free?
In the professional world, I’m a nurse by trade. But, around our house, I’m known as Mommy to our young daughter. My two worlds collided and began shaping into a blog. Useful Beautiful Home represents the hours I’ve dedicated to managing my household as efficiently as possible. I offer you motivation to keep your home healthy, organized, and welcoming. My goal is to share what I’ve implemented in my home to inspire you with fresh ideas and to encourage you to keep up the good work in yours! Learn more about me HERE or visit me at UsefulBeautifulHome.com.